Getting Started Back to Top
Sending your first email campaign

Sending your first email campaign is a simple task but requires some initial setup before we can proceed. Follow the simple steps below and you'll be sending your first email campaign in no time.


To create a contact list, click the "Create a Contact List" option under the "Contact Lists" tab.
Step 1. Create your contact list

A contact list is a collection of your contacts details. It includes their email address and any optional fields such as Name, Age and Sex which you can create. When sending out an email newsletter, you send it to a contact list which means everyone on that list will receive the email.

Note that your administrator may have already created a contact list for you. To check to see if a contact list already exists, click on the "View Contact Lists" option from the menu options.



To create a custom field, click the "View Custom Fields" option under the "Contact Lists" tab.
Step 2. Create custom fields (optional)

Custom fields allow you to collect extra information about your contacts, such as Name, Age, Sex, Country, etc. You can create as many custom fields as you like and you can use them in the content of your newsletter.

Custom fields need to be created before you create your subscription form as they are included as fields that can be filled in by your web site visitors along with their email address. More on this later.

Step 3. Add/import contacts

Before you can send a newsletter you need someone to send it to. In step 1 we created a contact list. In this step we will look at 3 different ways you can add contacts to your contact list:


To import contacts from a file, click the "Import Contacts" option under the "Contacts" tab.

1. Import contacts from a file

If you already have a list of contacts in a file on your computer, you can upload that file into the system and add the contacts to your new contact list. To start, you will need to export your contact list from your other mailing program. You should export your contact list into a CSV (comma separated value) file. A CSV file will contain a list of your contacts details in a line-by-line format, such as:

user1@site.com,MALE,Y,20030101
user2@site.com,FEMALE,N,20031014
user3@site.com,MALE,N,20020706

Move your mouse over the "Contacts" tab and click the "Import Contacts" option, as shown in the diagram on the left.



To import contacts from a file, click the "Browse..." button to choose the file.
This will start the "Import Contacts" wizard. Choose the contact list you want to import contacts to and click the "Next >>" button.

The example import file above includes three records, and each record is separated with a new line. Each record contains four fields, and each field is separated with a comma. The CSV file will typically have a .CSV or .TXT file extension. Start by clicking on the "Browse..." button in the form to select your CSV file from your hard drive:

If your import file contains a line of headers like this:

EMAIL,SEX,EMPLOYED,DATE
user1@site.com,MALE,Y,20030101
user2@site.com,FEMALE,N,20031014
user3@site.com,MALE,N,20020706
...

... make sure you tick the "Yes, this file contains headers" checkbox. Click the "Next >>" button to proceed to the next step.

You will now be asked to map the fields from the imported file to the fields in the system. Simply click the dropdown box next to each field that was found in the file and match it up to the field in the system. Here's an example for an import file that included "Sex" and "Age" custom fields:


Click the dropdown next to each imported field to map it to the appropriate field in
the system.
Click the "Next >>" button when you are done. Finally, click the "Start Import" button. Your contacts will be imported one by one and the popup window that appears will show you how many contacts have been imported and how many remain.

You will see a final report when all contacts have been imported:


The final screen will tell you how many contacts were imported. It will also tell you if your contact file contained bad data.

2. Type in contacts manually

If you only have a handful of contacts to add to your list, you can use the "Add Contact" form to add them in manually. Move your mouse over the "Contacts" tab and click the "Add Contact" menu option:



Choose a contact list to add contacts to and click the "Next >>" button. Fill out the form by typing in their email address and values for any custom fields you've created for the contact list.


To add contacts by typing them in, click the "Add a Contact" option under the "Contacts" menu.


When you're done, click "Save" to save the contact to the contact list and add another contact. Clic "Save And Exit" to add the contact and return to the main page of the system.
Complete the form to add a contact to the selected contact list.


3. Create a subscription form for your web site

If you want to offer visitors to your web site a way to sigup to your contact list, you can create a subscription form in the system to add to your site. You will need to have a little experience with HTML to add the form to your web site.

To get started, click the "Website Forms" link shown in the top right-hand corner of the system. This will take you to the "Manage Website Forms" page. Website forms are special forms that you can create. You can create website forms to accept contacts, for someone to unsubscribe, modify their subscription details or send an email campaign to their friends.

Click the "Create Form" button to create a form. Type in a form name and make sure you choose the "Subscription" option from the "Form Type" dropdown. If you aren't sure what any of the fields are, just move your mouse over the help icon next to that field:

Creating a form to accept contacts from your web site is easy.

Click the "Next >>" button. Depending on which form options you chose, you may or may not be required to enter more details. Again, if you are unsure of anything just move your mouse over the help icon next to the field and read the help text.

Once you've created your form you'll be taken back to the "Manage Website Forms" page. Simply click the "Get HTML" link next to your new form and paste that code into your website to add the subscription form to your site.

Step 4. Create your email campaign

The most important part of your campaign is the email you will send to your contact list. Let's now look at how to create a simple email campaign by choose a professionally pre-designed email template from those included in the system.

Move your mouse over the "Email Campaigns" tab and click the "Create Email Campaign" menu option:

Complete the "Create Email Campaign form". Choose "HTML" for the format. In this example we will create a basic HTML-only newsletter with graphics and formatted text. Finally, choose one of the professionally pre-designed email templates from the "Email Template" box. Use the preview link to view all of the templates. Click the "Next >>" button when you're done.

Creating a simple email campaign in the system.



Creating an email campaign using one of the many included professionally designed email templates in the system.
When the next page loads, type in a subject line for your email campaign. This is the text contacts will see when they look at the emails in their inbox, so make it short and to the point. Scroll down the page and you will see the email editor. You can type in text content for your email here. In this example we'll just copy and paste a few paragraphs of text from Microsoft Word using the editor's "Paste From Word" function:


Creating the content of your email using the built-in WYSIWYG editor.

Under the email editor you will see two links: Insert Custom Fields and Insert Unsubscribe Link. You should always include an unsubscribe link in your email, and if you don't the system will warn you when it saves.

To insert the value of a custom field in your newsletter just click the "Insert Custom Fields" link:

Choose the custom field you want to add and click the "Insert" button next to it. The custom field will be added to your content and will be represented by a placeholder varaible, such as %%Email%% or %%First Name%%. When the email is sent, these values will be replaced with real values from your contact contact list. For example, %%Email%% might be replaced with user1@somesite.com and %%First Name%% might be replaced with John.

Complete the "Attachments" section of the form if you want to include file attachments with your email campaign. Before clicking the "Save And Exit" button to move on, send a preview of your email using the "Send Preview" section of the form.

Congratulations, you've just created your first email campaign! Let's now move on to send it to your contact list of contacts.

Inserting a custom field into your email campaign's content.


Congratulations, you've just created your first email campaign!

Step 5. Send your email campaign

Sending your email campaign in the system is easy. Let's look at how to send a campaign straight away using the build in popup window sending system. If your administrator has setup scheduled sending you can also use that too.

To send your campaign click the "Send an Email Campaign" link under the "Email Campaigns" menu:


Sending an email campaign using the popup window method

When the page loads choose the contact list you want to send your campaign to. For this example, uncheck the "Yes, show filtering options on the next page" checkbox. That's an advanced option and isn't needed when you're just getting started. Click "Next >>" to continue.

On the next step choose the email campaign you want to send from the dropdown list and leave all pre-selected options as they are and click "Next >>". The default options of tracking links and notifying the owner by email are fine. You can change any form options if you like.



Getting ready to send an email campaign using the popup window method

 



Sending an email campaign using the popup window method
Finally, click the "Start Sending" button to send the email campaign to your contacts.

When the window closes, the email has been sent to all contacts in the contact list. Check your inbox too, because as the owner of the list you will receive a notification that the campaign has just finished sending.

Congratulations, you've just created and sent your first email campaign!

  Adding Subscribers Back to Top
There are 3 different ways you can add subscribers to your mailing list:
  1. Import subscribers from a file
If you already have a list of subscribers in a file on your computer, you can upload that file into the system and add the subscribers to your new mailing list. To start, you will need to export your subscriber list from your other mailing program. You should export your subscriber list into a CSV (comma separated value) file. A CSV file will contain a list of your subscribers details in a line-by-line format, such as:

user1@site.com,MALE,Y,20030101
user2@site.com,FEMALE,N,20031014
user3@site.com,MALE,N,20020706

Move your mouse over the "Subscribers" tab and click the "Import Subscribers" option, as shown below:


To import subscribers from a file, click the "Import Subscribers" option under the "Subscribers" tab.
This will start the "Import Subscribers" wizard. Choose the mailing list you want to import subscribers to and click the "Next >>" button.

The example import file (on the left) includes three records, and each record is separated with a new line. Each record contains four fields, and each field is separated with a comma. The CSV file will typically have a .CSV or .TXT file extension.


Start by clicking on the "Browse..." button in the form to select your CSV file from your hard drive:


To import subscribers from a file, click the "Browse..." button to choose the file.
If your import file contains a line of headers like this:

EMAIL,SEX,EMPLOYED,DATE
user1@site.com,MALE,Y,20030101
user2@site.com,FEMALE,N,20031014
user3@site.com,MALE,N,20020706
...

... make sure you tick the "Yes, this file contains headers" checkbox. Click the "Next >>" button to proceed to the next step.


You will now be asked to map the fields from the imported file to the fields in the system. Simply click the dropdown box next to each field that was found in the file and match it up to the field in the system. Here's an example for an import file that included "Sex" and "Age" custom fields:



Click the dropdown next to each imported field to map it to the appropriate field in the system.

Click the "Next >>" button when you are done. Finally, click the "Start Import" button. Your subscribers will be imported one by one and the popup window that appears will show you how many subscribers have been imported and how many remain. You will see a final report when all subscribers have been imported:


The final screen will tell you how many subscribers were imported. It will also tell you if your subscriber file contained bad data.

  1. Type in subscribers manually
If you only have a handful of subscribers to add to your list, you can use the "Add Subscriber" form to add them in manually. Move your mouse over the "Subscribers" tab and click the "Add Subscriber" menu option:


To add subscribers by typing them in, click the "Add Subscriber" option under the "Subscribers" menu.
Choose a mailing list to add subscribers to and click the "Next >>" button. Fill out the form by typing in their email address and values for any custom fields you've created for the mailing list.


Complete the form to add a subscriber to the selected mailing list.


When you're done, click "Save" to save the subscriber to the mailing list and add another subscriber. Click "Save And Exit" to add the subscriber and return to the main page of the system.

  1. Create a subscription form for your web site
If you want to offer visitors to your web site a way to sigup to your mailing list, you can create a subscription form in the system to add to your site. You will need to have a little experience with HTML to add the form to your web site.

To get started, click the "Website Forms" link shown in the top right-hand corner of the system. This will take you to the "Manage Website Forms" page. Website forms are special forms that you can create. You can create website forms to accept subscribers, for someone to unsubscribe, modify their subscription details or send an email campaign to their friends.

Click the "Create Form" button to create a form. Type in a form name and make sure you choose the "Subscription" option from the "Form Type" dropdown. If you aren't sure what any of the fields are, just move your mouse over the help icon next to that field:


Creating a form to accept subscribers from your web site is easy.
Click the "Next >>" button. Depending on which form options you chose, you may or may not be required to enter more details. Again, if you are unsure of anything just move your mouse over the help icon next to the field and read the help text.

Once you've created your form you'll be taken back to the "Manage Website Forms" page. Simply click the "Get HTML" link next to your new form and paste that code into your website to add the subscription form to your site.
  Adding a subscription form to your website Back to Top
The easiest way to let people signup to your contact list is to create a subscription form. Using the system it's a simple matter of a few clicks to generate the HTML code for a simple subscription form that you can add to any page on your web site. Let's look at how to do that now.

Creating the subscription form

Note: Before you get started you should have already created a contact list. If you are unsure how to do this please see this tutorial. You can also accept other information from your contacts including name, age and sex. To do this, please see the custom fields tutorial.

Start by clicking the "Website Forms" link at the top of the screen. You will be taken to the "Manage Website Forms" page. Click the "Create Form" button to create a new form. Start by entering a name for your form, such as "Email Subscription Form". Next, choose a look and feel for your newsletter from the "Form Design" drop down box. You can click the "Preview" link to see how the form will look.

You can choose one of many pre-designed subscription form layouts
for your new subscription form


Make sure you have the form type set to "Subscription" and choose the email format you want your contacts to be signed up form: HTML, text only or HTML and text. If you want your contacts to receive an email to confirm their subscription (this is called double opt-in), then tick the "Require Confirmation" checkbox.

If you don't have a contact form on your web site and you'd like the details of each new contact to be emailed to you as well as being saved to your contact list, click the "Yes, emulate a contact form" checkbox.

Finally, choose one or more contact lists that you want the subscription form to accept contacts for. You can also change the order in which fields will appear on the subscription form using the up and down arrows next to the "Sort Custom Fields" box.

Click the "Next >>" button to continue. Depending on which options you chose, you will see different options on the next page. Complete all fields and if you need help just move your mouse over the blue help icon to the right of the field to learn about that field. In most cases you can simply click "Next >>" and leave the default options in place for this and the following steps.

When you've created your subscription form you will be returned to the "Manage Website Forms" page. Click the "Get HTML" link next to the form you just created to see the HTML code which you can place on your web site.


Getting the HTML code for your new subscription form to place it on your web site

Edit the page on your web site where you'd like to add the subscription form and paste the HTML code there. Save the file and upload it to your web server using FTP. When you visit your web page you should now be able to accept contacts to your contact list.
Testing your new subscription form

  Custom Fields - Collecting Additional Information (First Name, Age, etc) Back to Top
From Contacts Collecting your visitors email address is fine, but what about when you want to personalize your email communications? That's where custom fields come in. Custom fields allow you to collect additional pieces of information from your contacts, such as name, age, sex and location. In this article we'll look at a simple example of using custom fields to improve email response rates.

Choosing What Information to Collect

As you know you can already collect your contacts email address using the system, but what other information would you like to collect? (Keep in mind that the more information you ask for, the less likely your contacts are to want to join your contact list).

In our example let's pretend we run a web site that sells flowers. We want to collect our contacts email address, first name and favorite flower. To do this we need to create a "custom field" in the system for each piece of information we want to collect, so let's do that now.

Creating the Custom Fields

Move your mouse over the "Contact Lists" tab at the top of the page and click the "View Custom Fields" menu option. You will be taken to the "Manage Custom Fields" page. Any custom fields you create will be shown here. Click the "Create a Custom Field" button to add a custom field. Creating a custom field is a multi-step process. To add the "first name" custom field complete the form as shown below then click "Next".


Creating our "first name" custom field in the system


On the next step you can add optional details to the custom field such as a default value and a maximum length. We'll skip these so just click "Next". Finally, choose the contact list you want to apply the custom field to and click "Save". Your custom field will be created and you will be returned to the "View Custom Fields" page.
Our "first name" custom field has been saved in the system.


Let's now create a custom field called "Favorite Flower". This custom field will be a dropdown box that lets contacts choose their favorite flower type when entering their email address in our subscription form. As we did earlier, go to the "Create a Custom Field" screen. This time, enter "Favorite Flower" as the name of the custom field and choose "Dropdown List" for the field type. Make sure the "Yes, this field is required" box is ticket and click "Next".
Creating the "favorite flower" custom field


We can now create the options for the custom field. We will let the contact choose from 3 different flowers: roses, daffodils and orchids. For the sake of our demo we will use the same text for the name and value of each option.


Creating the "favorite flower" custom field options

Click "Next" when you are done. On the final step choose a contact list to add this custom field to and click "Save". We now have two custom fields that we can add to our subscription form to collect additional information from our contacts.
Our two custom fields as shown on the "View Custom Fields" page


Choosing What Information to Collect


You can now create a subscription form to collect the information from your contacts. To create the subscription form and add it to your web site please see this tutorial.


  How to search for your contacts Back to Top
Filtering your searches allows you to view or send to a smaller selection of contacts by setting options to only find particular contacts.

This means that you can search for individual contacts, entire domains, email addresses that contain particular words, confirmed, bounced or active contacts or any combination of these.

To do this you can make use of the filtering options that you are presented with when viewing contacts, sending email campaigns and setting up your autoresponders.

Filtering by the basics

There are a few filtering options that will be available to you each time you filter your searchs'. These include "Email Address", "Format", "Confirmation Status", "Status", "Filter By Date", "Clicked On Link" and "Opened Email Campaign". These options work in the following way: Filtering by your own Custom Fields

When you create your custom fields and gather information about your contacts through use of your subscription forms, modify details forms and importing lists you can then use this information to find particular segments of your contact base.

These options will only be displayed to you when you are searching a single contact list as the custom fields are based on individual contact lists and are not always available for all contact lists.

If you had created a Custom Field that was a check box that the contact could then save their favourite sports, you could then use the resulting data to filter your lists to show all contacts that like Soccer AND Cricket, or you could find all contacts that DO NOT like Soccer OR Cricket.

The more custom data you find out about your contacts the more specific you will be able to make your email campaings so as to send direct information about a topic that the contact is interested in rather then having to send an email that covers all topics.



  How to setup an Autoresponder Back to Top
An autoresponder lets you send an email to your subscribers a specific number of hours or days after they have subscribed to your mailing list. For example, if John signs up to your mailing list today, you can create an autoresponder to automatically send a welcome email to him 24 hours after he subscribes.

Autoresponders are often called the "marketer's dream tool", and in this article I'll show you how to setup a basic autoresponder to send an email to your subscribers 24 hours after they join your mailing list.

Important Note: You *must* have cron (the scheduled sending system) support enabled from the settings page in order to create and send your autoresponders, so make sure you check that before continuing. If cron isn't setup please contact your administrator and ask him/her to set it up for you.

To create an autoresponder, start by moving your mouse over the "Autoresponders" tab and clicking the "Create Autoresponder" menu option, like so:




To create an autoresponder, click the "Create Autoresponder"
option under the "Autoresponders" tab.
The "Create Autoresponder" page will appear. Choose the mailing list you want to create the autoresponder for and click the "Next >>" button. Complete the autoresponder details form. The only required field is a name for your autoresponder, which is used to identify the autoresponder in the control panel. This name is not shown to your users.

You can optionally filter the email addresses in your subscriber list using the other options on the form, but for our example we will send to everyone on the list. Click the "Next >>" button when you are done.

When the page loads, complete the form. Pay particular attention to the "Bounce Email" and "Hours Delayed" fields. The "bounce email" field is the email address where emails rejected by your subscribers mail servers will be sent. The "hours delayed" field tells the scheduling system how many hours after someone subscribes to your mailing list to send them the autoresponder email. "0" means it will be sent straight away.

Optionally, complete the rest of the form. If you're unsure about any of the options just move your mouse over the help tip to learn more. Click the "Next >>" button to continue.

On this page you can create the content for your autoresponder email. Enter a subject in the subject field. This is the email subject line your subscribers will see in their inbox. Enter the content of your newsletter in the editor too. Use the "Send Preview" option at the bottom of the page to send yourself a preview of the email before clicking the "Save And Exit" button.

Congratulations, you've just created your first autoresponder! Remember, you can create as many autoresponders for each mailing list as you like, so why not get creative and use autoresponders to your advantage?

Bonus section: Ideas for autoresponders

So how might you use an autoresponder in your business? Here's a simple idea that's quick and easy to implement. In this example let's assume you sell poker chips online from your eCommerce website.

  1. Create a new autoresponder that's sent 24 hours after someone subscribes to your newsletter. In it, include text and images describing your top selling poker chips and at the end include a link to "See all Top Selling Products at MyPokerChipsSite.com"
  2. One week later schedule another autoresponder to your subscribers. In it, include links to articles on your web site that teach them how to improve their poker/roulette/blackjack game. Nothing draws people back to your web site like free articles do.
  3. Finally, create a new mailing list and autoresponder to be sent out after 48 hours to those who order from you. Include your customer support details, including how they can contact you for help, a link to your knowledge base and any product warranty details they might want to know.
Of course this is just one example, but hopefully it's given you some new ideas as to how you can use autoresponders to improve your relationship with your web site visitors/customers.


  Sending Emails Based on Subscriber Segmenting Back to Top
In this brief tutorial you'll learn how to setup a mailing list with custom fields to collect the age and sex of your subscribers when they signup. After that you'll learn how to segment your mailing list and only send your email campaign to males over the age of 21.

Creating your mailing list with custom fields

To get started, create a mailing list. Click on the "View Custom Fields" menu option under the "Mailing Lists" tab and create two custom fields:
  1. Age: Make this a required number field.
  2. Sex: Make this a required radio button field with two options: male and female.

Create two custom fields: age and sex before moving on.

Import/add subscribers

Choose how you want to add some subscribers to your mailing list. For this example we will use the "Add a Subscriber" option under the "Subscribers" tab to manually add a few subscribers:


For this example we will manually add a few subscribers to our mailing list, being sure to add a variety of age ranges
(for example, 15, 21, 22, 25 and 40) and sexes.


Creating the email campaign

Create a basic email campaign. You can add any content you want. I started with the built in business template and added some content using the custom field placeholders. If you want to add a custom field into your email, click the "Insert Custom Field" link under the editor.


Create an email campaign - it doesn't matter what you type for the content of the email as this is for testing purposes only.

Sending and segmenting the campaign

Click the "Send an Email Campaign" option under the "Email Campaigns" tab at the top of the system. Choose the mailing list you want to send to, and make sure you tick the "Yes, show filtering options on the next page" option as this is where we will segment the list.

The first step of segmenting and then sending our email campaign.

On the next step we can segment and filter our mailing list, telling the system to only send to subscribers who match certain details. In our example we only want to send to males over 21, so we fill out the custom field filtering options. You can use powerful filtering options on number fields as you can see below.


The first step of segmenting and then sending our email campaign

On the next step we can segment and filter our mailing list, telling the system to only send to subscribers who match certain details. In our example we only want to send to males over 21, so we fill out the custom field filtering options. You can use powerful filtering options on number fields as you can see below.


Segmenting our subscriber list using filter options.

We have chosen to only send to males over 21. The "> 21" text in the age field takes care of the age segmenting for us automatically. Click the "Next >>" button to continue and complete the rest of the sending steps as normal. The email will only be sent to male subscribers over the age of 21.