Emails Get a Social Life

We hear all the time about the impact that social media has had on the world of online marketing, but even as Facebook takes over the world, email remains one of the two most popular activities on the Web, and thus, still a necessary and beneficial channel for Internet marketers.

However, as of late, brands and marketers have been clamoring for a way to tie these two avenues together to help make email campaigns more social and increase their virality. Email marketing service Campaigner listened to these concerns and included new social sharing capabilities into its email marketing programs, in addition to other major enhancements.

"The synergies between email marketing and social media are evident, particularly as email marketers explore the value of enabling their messages to be easily shared on social networks like Facebook and Twitter," says Campaigner's Product Manager, Paul Turnbull.

By adding a social sharing feature to its email platform, Campaigner is helping marketers take a holistic approach to sharing their message and helping develop their brand with new share-with-your-network (SWYN) functionality that allows subscribers to share the emails they receive with their friends and followers on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+ using sharable permalinks. It will come with easy-to-read analytics that let marketers see the reciprocal traffic that they get from social network shares that is independent of their regular email campaign activity, which helps determine which social channels generate the most traffic.

Marketing emails will now come adorned with a 'sharebar' across the top of the message that allows users to "Like" the email on Facebook (where it will be posted to the user's personal page), share it on Twitter, Google+ or LinkedIn or send it in an email to one of their contacts. So, the next time a special promotion or insightful newsletter particularly affects a recipient, they can share it on the social Web to potentially hundreds of prospective subscribers, improving the discoverability and extending the reach of the email marketers, while also providing another way to build their subscriber lists.

And in order to better appease these subscribers, Campaigner has also included functionality for customized subscription management forms and messaging. This allows companies to customize how the subscribers access and manage their email preferences, edit contact information and opt-in or out of the mailing lists, or just the kind of campaigns they receive.

This ability is a "total change" from what was previously available, as Campaigner only offered marketers generic, mostly inflexible subscription forms. At the request of its customers, the company made it possible for marketers to easily brand their businesses at every step of the process by editing the subscription pages that let recipients choose to opt-in to other lists, change their email addresses or unsubscribe. They also have the option to make any mailing list either visible or hidden, a useful feature for separating males lists used entirely for internal contact groups from those that subscribers can opt into (or out of)

In addition to these two major enhancements, Campaigner also extended support to include the latest versions of the Mozilla Firefox and Google Chrome Web browsers and included multi-user support that allows administrators to add and manage other users within the primary account. Plus, the company improved its Smart Email Builder tool for creating new emails. It now offers greater text formatting and alignment controls, and has capabilities for inserting merged fields.

Finally, Marketers can now include Quicklinks into the body of their email messages, which are customized, frequently used hyperlinks (such as subscription management and social media links) stored to be more easily inserted into an email. Users can store up to 25 different self-defined links, including some offered by Campaigner (e.g. links to "Like" the brand on Facebook), or more unique ones, so long as the users know the necessary syntax to include them.