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JMAC
02-17-2008, 09:49 AM
I'd like to send out an e-newsletter promoting my woodworking business every 6 months to folks on my mailing list. I have no experience in this sort of thing and don't have a proper mailing list either. Anybody have any experience with this?

George Roberts
02-17-2008, 10:30 AM
It is nicer to mail a short note with a link to your website newsletter.

Will your mail server allow such a large mailing?

(My wife used to mass e-mail a professional newsletter about 1000 addresses. She had to do it 200-250 at a time.)

Hwyl
02-17-2008, 10:47 AM
Norman, unusually for you, you did not read the post. It's about email.

Given what I know of your business JMAC, you should have already built an email list for yourself, and the emails had better have outstanding content, otherwise (it I was the recipient) I'd mark them as Spam.

Michael s/v Sannyasin
02-17-2008, 11:05 AM
I would second the comment about putting your newsletter up on your own website, then sending out only the link...

I manage the website for the Westsail Owners Association, and we used to send out this newsletter in PDF format to about 400-500 members quarterly. But, when the thing started to get image heavy, that meant we were sending out 4-5mb sized attachments!

For people on dial-up, this is killer... you might effectively kill their e-mail, as maybe their connection won't last long enough to download the attachment, and yet, every time it fails, it will try again.

In your e-mail notices, I would just have a little text reminding people who you are, maybe outline what is in that issue of the newsletter, and provide a link so that they can opt-out of being on your list.

JMAC
02-17-2008, 11:53 AM
The Yellow Rose
Petros Guitars’ 35th Anniversary Limited Edition Guitar is Done!

The Yellow Rose is the culmination of 35 years of progressively creative guitar building experience and the collaborative efforts of good friends.
The new Yellow Rose will make it’s debut April 11 at the Newport Guitar Festival in Miami Beach. We will also be bringing an African Rose GC cutaway and a Brazilian Rosewood/Italian Spruce Celt Grand Concert. We invite you to come to this show and see these guitars in person and take them for a test drive. This is going to be a fantastic show that will feature about 70 guitar makers as well as a vintage guitar show. Matt & I would love to meet you.

For the full story on The Yellow Rose, please visit:
http://web.mac.com/petrosguitars/Site/Models/Pages/Yellow_Rose.html

For the full story on the guitar festival, please visit:
http://newportguitarfestivalinmiami.com/site/?page_id=9
--
Sincerely,
Bruce Petros

Petros Guitars
345 Co. Rd. CE
Kaukauna, WI 54130
920-766-1295
http://www.petrosguitars.com (http://www.petrosguitars.com/)

Please forward this announcement to those you know who are interested in fine guitars.


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This is one from my luthier friend in Wisconsin. Find anything offensive? How does one put a newsletter on the website?

Bruce Hooke
02-17-2008, 02:48 PM
JMAC,

What your friend in Wisconsin did is what a lot of places seem to be doing...send out a teaser email to get people to go to the website to read the full details. A few thoughts:

1. You need to give people enough details in the email so they will want to go to the website to get the full story.

2. Ideally the content should be posted on the website as one or more web pages rather than something like a PDF. However, this is a lot of work, especially if you do not know how to edit and update a website to add new content and need to pay someone else to do it. Also, do not discount how much time it takes to write the content and prepare any photographs. One benefit of posting it on the website is people who come to your website can see the newsletter even if they did not get the email.

3. If you are going to be sending this to more than 75 or so people you should probably sign up for a service that will help you with the process. One well-known one that seems to be very popular is Constant Contact. You upload the mailing list to your Constant Contact account and then manage things from there. People can unsubscribe themselves if they want to, which is good for keeping people happy since some people do not like getting any unsolicited email and it also makes your life easier because it is automatic. You can also include an way to sign up for the newsletter on your website, and again it will be handled automatically rather than you having to make manual changes. There are tools on the Constant Contact website to allow you to create nice looking html emails with some pictures, a colored background, etc., if you want to dress things up a bit. Just be careful with photographs because they are the real bandwidth hog.

4. Do your best to make sure the people you are emailing actually want to hear from you, and make sure they have a way to unsubscribe if they do not. Among other things, if someone reports you for sending spam you can have problems with your ISP. Ideally, when someone gives you their email address for whatever reason, there should be a way to opt in to getting a newsletter, but of course you cannot do this with addresses you already have.