Friday, February 26, 2016

Open the mail!

by Lorraine Bartlett / Lorna Barrett / L.L. Bartlett

HAPPY PISTACIO DAY!!! 

But that's not what I want to talk about today.

Today I'm talking about mailing lists.  Yup--you've probably signed up for a few. (And we hope OURS!!!  The signup is on the left hand side of this blog. If you haven't signed up--please do!)

Every so often (and apparently not often enough), it's time to purge the list of people who don't open the newsletter.  It's a rather complicated process trying to figure out who is and isn't opening the emails. I mean, it's easy--the company who sends them out for me will let me download a list. But I have to download FOUR lists to see who is and isn't opening. Then I have to cull the list. (That took an ENTIRE DAY.)

But wait! The list is by no means accurate because not everybody opens their email the same way.

Take me, for example. I have a bunch of newsletters delivered to my gmail address. But I don't open them in gmail. They get forwarded to my AOL address and I open them there. According to the company that sends them out -- I'm not opening them at all. This happens a lot with yahoo addresses, too.  (And for some reason, people with comcast email addresses seem to "bounce."  That is, are never delivered at all.  Go figure!)

See how confusing this is?

Gmail is funny, too -- because a couple of years ago they decided to HELP their users by putting newsletters in a PROMOTIONS folder. Too bad they didn't make this clear. A lot of gmail readers say they don't get the newsletter and even look in their spam filters. No newsletter there, either. Yeah, because it's in the PROMOTIONS folder.

So today I'm sending out a newsletter to 1700+ people and asking -- do you read my newsletter?  I sure hope I get 1700+ replies.  But if I do, I may be out of touch for a while ... it'll take a while to open all those emails!

What do you like to see in an author's newsletter?