So, why would you want to send your campaigns out using an email service provider(ESP) rather than your standard email program (SEP)? Here are some points to consider??
1. An ESP allows you to send the message using MIME technology, which means it sends an HTML (with pictures and colour) version to those who can receive HTML and a text version to those who can't. An SEP does not recognise whether the recipient can read HTML emails or not when sending emails. Therefore if you send an HTML email to all your recipients, those who cannot receive HTML emails receive what looks to them like gobbledygook ? which reflects badly upon your Company and results in many unsubscribes.
2. An ESP cannot send viruses as they are designed to only send emails, not receive them, hence they are virus free. Using an SEP, you may unknowingly send a virus to your recipients, as your computer can receive emails and viruses.
3. Using an ESP, you can personalise your emails, thereby not only helping with to build the client/customer relationship, but also enabling the success rate to be higher as the email will be more Spam filter friendly.
4. Each email is individually sent rather than the typical bulk send by SEP's. The Privacy law now required all bulk emails to use the BCC field (rather than the CC field), which in turn restricts your recipients to receiving the email, as many government and other corporations have set their SPAM filters to reject all BCC emails.
5. An ESP uses sophisticated software to automate the unsubscribe/subscribe process. When using a simple "click here to unsubscribe" link, you are putting the onus on the recipient to unsubscribe successfully. If you are using BCC, the recipient is unable to know which email address they need to use to manually unsubscribe. If they unsubscribe using the wrong email address, you will then still send them emails in the future, hence risk being reported by the recipient as being a SPAMMER..all simply because you put the onus on the recipient.
6. An ESP allows you to view the statistics of your campaign, such as open rate and click through rate for individual links, thereby allowing you to continually develop your relationship with your subscriber by utilising these statistics for market research. Using an SEP, you have no knowledge of who opens their emails and which links/products/services/articles are of interest to them.
7. With an ESP, you can programme when the campaign is to be sent out ? unlike sending it from your PC and using your ISP. ISP's have limitations on how many emails can be sent (generally 100), hence if you have a large database, they would need to be sent in batches, often days apart.
8. An ESP will enable you to upload your images easily to their system, therefore eliminating the need to FTP knowledge or a website server of your own. Most SEP's embed the images within the email, rather than referring to them on a server, which makes the emails time consuming to send & slow for recipient to open.
9. By sending attachments you are restricting the amount of recipients who will receive the email and/or open the attachment. Many corporations do not allow the recipient to open attachments due to the risk of viruses. In addition to this, Internet Explorer 6, Service Pack 1 has been released and Outlook Express users will find they can't open attachments after installing the new software as Microsoft has blocked the opening of attachments.
10. Using an ESP to send your email campaigns can prove to be cheaper in the long run once you have tallied up all the negatives of using an SEP.
Kath Pay is Marketing Director of Ezemail, a web-based e-communications tool, which enables you to create, send and track your email marketing and SMS messaging campaigns.
For more information please go to http://www.ezemail.com or contact Kath at: firstname.lastname@example.org.