Archive for September, 2009

Getting the most out of Lessn

September 23rd, 2009 | 31 Comments | Tutorials

As I wrote about a little while ago, I’ve been using my own URL shortener, powered by Lessn (app install notes here, and info about the update here). If ridiculously hyper sentences like that aren’t convincing enough, linking and how we link is very important. (more…)

Easy DIY HTML Emails

September 14th, 2009 | 3 Comments | Tutorials

Every so often a web project will have a campaign that requires a mass email. This may be called a “Newsletter”, an “e-blast” or “HTML Email”. I want to explore some of the pitfalls of this trend. If that doesn’t talk you out of it, we will talk a bit about how to pull it off.

Warning One: Why?!

This isn’t the kind of marketing that should be done “because you can” in my opinion. As someone who gets a lot of email I admit that getting a newsletter or any email with embedded images usually has me scrambling for the Unsubscribe link. In 2009 there are many effective ways of engaging your audience online without emailing. Before we begin ask yourself; “is an HTML email the most effective way to communicate to these people?”

Warning Two: Spam?

Once you have your message together, who will you send it to? Where are you getting your mailing list? Have these users opted-in on your site (like this), or have you simply collected the addresses independently?

If your registration form didn’t indicate there would be mailouts, or (and I have seen this happen) if the mailing list is from another site or campaign entirely, you are working against your privacy policy! This is essentially spamming, which no sane person will respond favourably to. You may be doing the brand or campaign a disservice in this case . (more…)

Doing Group Emails – The Hard Way

September 8th, 2009 | Comment | Tutorials

Recently I was asked about managing an Emailing list, and the best ways of distributing newsletters to your group.
I think

Recently I was asked about managing an Emailing list, and the best ways of distributing newsletters to your group. I think the answer that was expected would be either sharing about some mailing service (like this one, but there are many others that also Google well) or to give a step by step on free distribution methods (Update: I have written a post called Easy DIY HTML Emails).

What I want to share is a smarter and much more impacting way – and I don’t think it’s what the average client wants to hear:

Email your newsletter one at a time. (more…)

The Underestimated Importance of SEO

September 2nd, 2009 | 2 Comments | Industry

I am so glad my parents named me the way they did.

Arley McBlain (and by extension “ArleyM”) Googles very well. Thinking to the future when we start having kids, I feel pressure to come up with a unique name for a kid. SEO is so important!

We are a search engine culture. Life is full of questions, and Google has the answers (well, so do many other search engines, but c’mon. Google’s killing it out there!). If I need a phone number I won’t ever go to a phone book. If I want to know some fact I won’t even go to Wikipedia; I’ll let Google find that for me. (more…)