Mailing list management
Finding email addresses to send your newsletter to is easy. If you
already have a "snail mail" list, ask those people for
their email addresses. You can also set up a self-subscribing form
on your web page where visitors can request to be added to the list.
Here are a few additional ideas:
subscription information in your printed materials
with search engines
your newsletter in email discussion groups
your newsletter in your email signature
be a spammer!
Sending unsolicited bulk email (a.k.a. spam) is a very bad idea.
Ideally, all of the recipients of your email newsletter will have
asked to receive it. One-time spamming where you offer a newsletter
subscription is tolerable only if you have qualified the lead--in
other words, you have a strong reason to believe a particular person
would be interested in your newsletter. If they don't respond,
don't bother them again. And never poach email addresses off of
another organization's email list without their permission.
Lots of tools can help you manage your newsletter mailing list.
The best place to start is with your current ISP or email provider.
They can show you which tools are available to you under
your existing agreement with them. You can also look into
donated listserv/majordomo services from universities or corporations.
Several free services are available on the web as well (e.g. yahoo
groups) These free services will often tag an advertisement to the
bottom of your newsletter or you can pay a small fee to have the
Remember, most of these mailing list tools are used for discussion
groups, where you send a message to an entire list and you receive
all the messages posted to it as well. For an email newsletter,
you'll want to set up the list as "send-only" so only
you can send mail to it and any responses come to you only instead
of being broadcasted to the entire list.
Links to Good Email Newsletters
Here are links to some good email newsletters you might like to
review as samples. Keep in mind that these newsletter follow much,
but not all, of the advice suggested here. Also, the formatting
you'll see on their web page archives is often quite different from
the format used when it is sent over email. You might want
to subscribe to a newsletter to see how it is actually sent out.
for Thought from the San Francisco Support Center for Nonprofit
from the National Safety Council and the Society for Environmental
by Chris Hammer