The techniques available to send and compose newsletters might make you confused. We decided to make a short summary for those who are not yet all familiar the subject.
To send out a graphic newsletter, you could choose either one of the three following methods:
- Encoding single newsletters and sending them by email.
- Using a built-in delivery software on a content management system, email program or CRM system.
- Using software which is created specifically for sending newsletters.
Each of the different ways of sending newsletters have their own advantages and none of them are perfect. We decided to address each of them individually to get a better insight:
1. Single encoded message templates
Even in many bigger organizations every newsletter is encoded separately, in a similar way to static HTML pages. This approach is very common for companies with a dedicated IT-department. Typically, however, nobody else in the organization can create, update or send these newsletters.
The positive side with encoded templates is that in this case you are not dependent on external providers and information security stays in your own hands and guarantees work for the IT department. The downside is, however, the fact that those doing the marketing communication as they daily roles, in most cases marketing, sales and communication teams, cannot edit and send the messages, but are dependent on the IT-department. Equally, companies come to realize their limits when they want more accurate campaign reporting data, ease of use and centralized recipient address management. Also the servers, which are being used when sending the messages can put lot of stress for company’s data traffic and potentially black list the company IP address resulting blocked business emails from individuals.
Since separately encoded graphic newsletter are more or less problematic, difficult to monitor, address management is uncertain and orders and cancellations usually need to be done manually, in most cases companies are better off using tools which are specially developed for email marketing.
2. Using a built-in delivery software on a content management system, email program or CRM system.
In advanced CRM systems it is possible to send various newsletters to contacts that are managed in the system. Most systems allow text based messages and some more advanced systems allow HTML messages as well. There are some benefits in this approach to email marketing: in CRM systems the addresses and data stays in company’s own servers and the information security stays within the company. When using CMS and ￼CRM systems the company needs to invest less or not at all, because company’s own servers can be used for sending out the newsletters.
However, email marketing features in the CRM solutions are typically not the focus of the software or a core functionality in them. In most CRM and CMS systems you can therefore only get partial benefits of HTML newsletters.
For example, testing the messaging templates is not provided automatically, so the newsletter functionality in recipients email clients is not ideal in most of the cases. The biggest problem is that company’s own servers are used for email marketing. From spam and information security reasons point of view it is wise to centralize the marketing communication to separate servers and use company email for its own servers.
3. Using software which is created specifically for sending newsletters.
Dedicated software for email marketing work as SaaS and can be used by any web browser over the Internet. Software specially developed for email marketing is recommended since they include some of the functions set by typical local rules and regulations and are also easy to use. For example, it is a common requirement to have a link in the newsletter, which allows the recipient to unsubscribe the newsletter at any given time.
When using dedicated software typical tasks, such as distribution list management, image resizing, subscribing and unsubscribing are made easy and automated.
With this kind of software you can also monitor the success of your delivered messages, get extensive and useful reporting data as well have the benefits of many add-ons and email marketing extensions.
To compose an HTML newsletter, the following techniques may be used:
Since encoding every newsletter from scratch is very time-consuming and would require each template to be tested individually, we recommend you use a re-usable template especially designed to fit your corporate image. While using a pre-made template, there are two kind of editors to use in composing your letter:
1. WYSIWYG editors
WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) editor enables you to edit graphics, text and for example choose a title style from different options. UsualIy style definitions are pre-made for the template to make sure the visual look of the brand is maintained. In WYSIWYG editors the structure of the newsletter is usually quite difficult to modify unless the editor has HTML skills.
2. Drag & Drop editors
The modern way to compose a letter is modular. In this case there are different content modules defined in your template that can be easily dragged and dropped the way you want. In short, the email newsletter is made out of content blocks that can be edited as you wish. In addition to editing your text and images, you may therefore also change the structure of your letter to meet each campaign's specific needs.
No matter which solution you choose to compose and send your newsletter with, it is important to think about the production and implementation process from the beginning. Successful email marketing requires repetition (monthly or weekly newsletters, for example) and efficient processes that reduce the workload and save the nerves of those doing the marketing.
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Read More about LianaMailer™ - the power tool specifically designed for e-mail marketing. With LianaMailer you can choose to use the WYSIWYG or Drag & Drop editor, depending on which one of the two better fits your company's individual needs.