Email Marketing Pro gives you the flexibility to use different email services for outgoing email. In this article, we look at how to configure outgoing mail.
But first, — very important — why you would need to use different outgoing mail services for different occasions, and why you need to undertand clearly the risks of sending your own email marketing materials with your own mail service, instead of with our service, ProMail.
Let’s start with the major email service providers: Yahoo, GMail, and Hotmail. Obviously, these services are intended for individual use. They have quotas that prevent you from sending bulk email, and the Postmasters at these services do not allow large volumes of email.
Typically, they do not mind if you send commercial email, as long as its solicited and you have a link to unsubscribe, as well as a few other rules (check their documentation).
Using one of these services can be the perfect solution if your mailing list consists only of 100 contacts. Or, if you have over 100 contacts and you don’t mind splitting up your mailing over a period of days, if necessary.
Here’s an example of why you may want to use GMail: let’s say you’re the head of your neighborhood watch and there are 75 people in your neighborhood that you would like to email about an upcoming meeting. Because you want to personalize information in the email, such as name and job role, you choose Email Marketing Pro for its personalization features. In this case, GMail may be just the answer. And, hey, you can also use it to alert them about the recent robberies (OK, I admit, I’m the head of my neighborhood watch and I use Email Marketing Pro to alert my neighbors).
If you’re a business that wants to send solicited, commercial email to over 100 recipients, then let me strongly recommend ProMail.
Again, let me say it louder now. ProMail!
ProMail is an outgoing, bulk email service provided by Atlantic Software (that’s us). It differs from using your own mail server or from a major email service provider in the following ways:
ProMail is designed for bulk email – let’s face it — it’s a jungle out there, and life would be simpler if we had a federal email service that does all of our delivery. But, we don’t.What we have on the Internet are many different types of email services with many different rules and regulations.
When you’re sending bulk email, you have to be aware that you are immediately suspect of being a spammer, simply because of the volume of email you are sending. And you have to be very careful about how you send those large volumes. Let’s look at what our ProMail servers do that’s so special.
Our servers throttle email messages . In other words, we don’t flood Hotmail with thousands of emails at once, but make sure that we’re sending the emails at timed intervals.
Our mail servers communicate with other mail servers It’s nice to talk about your problems, right? Using feedback loops, Yahoo has the ability to tell us, “Hey, someone’s spamming from your server.” When we get that alert, we can take actions to ensure it doesn’t happen again so that we can stay on good terms with Yahoo. Very important!
Our mail servers are certified. People know us. We use industry standard certifications to tell the other mail servers, “Hey, you can trust me. Remember me, I’m the legit server that sends email for the customers at emailmarketingprofessional.com and you can trust me.” It’s like making sure your doctor has a degree hanging on his wall.
Our mail servers are whitelisted. We’re in the in crowd. A big problem with bulk email is that sometimes legitimate, solicited email gets sent to the spam folder. A Whitelist is a way to prevent that. A Whitelist tells the receiving mail server to accept all incoming email and definitely do not send it to the spam folder. We’re whitelisted with Yahoo, Verizon, Hotmail, and AOL. Unfortunately, GMail does not have a whitelist, but, hey bulk email is a numbers game, right, and you have to take your chances sometimes.
Our mail servers are programmed to handle issues proactively. We’re a step ahead of the game. Here’s an example: let’s say you have a mailing list of 1,000 contacts. 100 of those bounce back, meaning that the email address does not exist. 50 of those recipients forgot why they signed up for your list and hit the “Spam” button. Well, without our service, you may continue sending to those invalid recipients or to those recipients who think you’re a spammer. Soon enough, you’ll find yourself blacklisted from sending email because receving mail servers do NOT like it when you send to invalid addresses or to people who have labeled you a spammer. ProMail, being smart, automatically records bounced email addresses and recipients who call you a is spammer because they don’t know any better. Then, we never send to those guys again — hey call me a spammer? Well, see ya!
You can connect to use multiple times. Hey, we’re bulk mail senders, too. So, we don’t mind if you open 20 connections to our mail server and send 20 emails at once, for maximum throughput and speed. But someone else might.
ProMail is designed for marketing – we know our customers want to send email to make money, drive fans to their site, or spread an important message. So, we provide features that help. For example, we can track whenever someone reads or opens your email. You can use this information to target new campaigns or guage the effectiveness of your email sending.
Oh, and did we mention we can automatically append an unsubscribe link to track your unsubscribers and that we can provide reports showing you what email bounced back, rather than having to do it the old fashioned way, of checking your inbox before every campaign?
ProMail separates your bulk mail from your regular ol’ email – You probably have never read anything from the GMail postmaster. He/She is no Shakespeare, but can definitely give you some clues on how to send bulk email effectively, in Modern English.One thing the GMail postmaster recommends is splitting up your bulk email from your regular email? Why?
Well, again, sending bulk email is risky. With every email you send, you increase your chance of someone hitting the spam button. You also risk getting “blocked” by other mail servers on the Internet.There’s always the chance that Yahoo or GMail or Verizon will say, “Hey, your sending too much mail to my system. I don’t like you.” Block! Or in some cases they’ll say “Blacklist!” which tells the entire Internet community of email servers not to trust you.
So, if you’re smart, you’ll use a different email service for bulk email than for your regular email.
Because, what happens if you need to respond to a customer but you’ve been blocked from sending email due to bad bulk email sending practices?
Your Own Mail Server
So, you’re smart, and understand the risks of sending bulk email.
You have the time and the technical ability to manage spam reports, bounce backs, stay off blacklists, stay on whitelists, check your online reputation, communicate with dozens of Postmasters, and have the money to manage a separate mail server.
Add to that the time to create marketing materials, manage your mailing list (unsubscribers and subscribers), reply to customers, develop your newsletter, blog, and pay your bills.
Go right ahead, we won’t stop you. But you’re on your own.
Let’s say, in this case, you should happen to get on several blacklists and ruin your email reputation because you didn’t really know what you’re doing, and you’re totally in the dark as to whether people are even reading your email, because those blacklists won’t tell you they’re not delivering your email (remember, they think you’re a dedicated spammer now and aren’t talking to you anymore, but more or less sending your email into a black hole).
When that happens, we’ll give you a deal on ProMail, as our way of saying, “Yeah, we told you so, (but we admire your courage).”
However, we might want to think about getting you a new domain name, email address, and business identity because by that point, the entire “Internet Community” (i.e., computers who never forget anything) now thinks you’re a spammer.
Configuring Outgoing Mail
To configure outgoing mail, go under the Mail Tab. Then, click Outgoing Mail Settings.
In Step 1, you can select from the following providers: Atlantic Software’s ProMail, GMail, Yahoo! Mail, Windows Hotmail, or your own mail server. Click the provider you want to use.
In Step 2, enter the username and password for your service. If your are using ProMail or another major email provider, then those are all the settings you should need.
If you are using a different mail server, you will also need to enter the server name and port number. You can get these settings from the help documentation of your mail provider or from your mail server admin. Email Marketing Pro supports all major outgoing mail servers, such as Microsoft Exchange, SendMail, and hMail.
In Step 3, take a look at the details pane. The details pane provides links to get the Terms of Service for your email provider. This lets you know what kind of email you can send, and at what frequency.
In many cases, Email Marketing Pro automatically limits the number of emails you can send. For example, GMail only allows you to send 100 emails per day, and Email Marketing Pro helps you stay within this quota, to prevent you from getting your GMail account cancelled for violating their terms.
If you’re a ProMail customer, you will need to set your monthly email limit in Step 3. A drop down box allows you to select the number of emails you’ve purchased per month. This helps you keep track of the number of emails you have left for the month.
In Step 4, you simply enter your Sender’s name (a friendly name or company name), Sender’s Email Address, and Reply Address. Typically, the reply address should be the same as the sender’s address, because most spam filters require these to be the same. FYI, a sender’s address tells the outgoing mail server who is sending the email. A reply-to address tells the outgoing mail server where to send the mail back if the email cannot be delivered, similar to a return address on an envelope.
Click Test to verify your login to the mail server. If any issues arise, look under the mail service provider’s help documentation, or contact their support for assistance. Problems are usually simple to resolve, such as a quick change of the port number.
–Doug, Atlantic Software