Author Topic: New Idea - Email Newsletters  (Read 17575 times)

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Offline Jazzerkins

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Re: New Idea - Email Newsletters
« Reply #4 on: September 23, 2012, 19:29 »
Another great idea from you TPC!  I would love to receive a newsletter, even though I keep up with the forum.

Offline The Peregrine Chick

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Re: New Idea - Email Newsletters
« Reply #3 on: September 23, 2012, 17:26 »
What would be the annual subscription rate be for those who want to pay only for the newsletter?

less than $5, probably closer to $3 to be sure to cover the email service fee and the paypal/banking fees.

Offline bcbird

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Re: New Idea - Email Newsletters
« Reply #2 on: September 23, 2012, 15:22 »
I think ithe newsletter is a great idea, though I'm impressed that you feel you have the time for another task!

Free with a minimum donation level is also a good idea.

What would be the annual subscription rate be for those who want to pay only for the newsletter?


Offline The Peregrine Chick

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New Idea - Email Newsletters
« Reply #1 on: September 23, 2012, 12:44 »
Hey folks,

I am considering putting out an electronic newsletter, or perhaps a couple, using one of these online e-newsletter services, so I thought I would bounce some ideas around with you all for comment.

Preamble:
1.  Most folks who watch the webcams are not members of the forum
2.  I have more folks on my e-updates list than we have members (active & inactive) on the forum
3.  There are lots of "fans" who are neither on the forum or on the e-updates list

Idea:
Have a newsletter monthly during the nesting season so that folks can keep track of what's happened in the last month and what they should watch for in the next month.  For example, the April newsletter would go out at the beginning of April and would include information on who's home in March, what they will be doing in April and that the cams go live in May.  The May newsletter would say who came home in April, who's on eggs where and when we expect them to hatch in May and a specific date when the cams will go live.  You get the idea I hope.

Additional Idea:
At the end the beginning and end of the nesting year (March and October for instance) and individual newsletter for each nestsite that can be distributed to folks who work near the Radisson for example or who are guests at the Radisson or who have a specific fondness for the Radisson.  It would provide updates on what we are hoping for at each site (spring issue) and then what happened through the year (fall issue).

Concerns:
To do the newsletter just as a Word document and mail it out is problematic because email software likes to block emails with mailing lists if it is done regularly/semi-regularly or when there are alot of emails which there would be in this case.  I also have to maintain the mailing list which is hugely labour intensive and time-consuming - every update, deletion due to a failed email address, new subscription or when someone "unsubscribes" is done by manually.

Using an email service - I can get it free up to a certain number of subscribers and a certain number of e-newsletters emailed out.  The system keeps track of who's who, who subscribes, who unsubscribes and who's emails fail.  It also sends out each email individually which usually solves the "blocking" email software (both your software on your computer and your internet provider's software) does now to protect from spam and phishing.  The system solves the labour & time management concern and they minimize the labour on my end putting the actual newsletter together because they provide templates that I can tweak easily to fit our needs. 
  • So the problem comes down to, what happens when I have more subscribers than the free service will allow?  The alternatives then are stop new people from subscribing (not ideal as you can imagine) or charge folks a small fee for an annual subscription and those who don't want to participate can leave, those who do want to continue, become paid subscribers.
  • Caveat to this one, the thought was anyone who donates $30 or more would automatically get an annual subscription.  For folks who prefer to purchase things online in support of the Project, because we keep costs as low as possible to say thank you for folks support, I would add the option to pay for the subscription whenever someone purchases from us.

The newsletters would be like the kind pretty much everyone receives from via email these days from companies and other organizations like ours keeping you updated on their products and services - banner, text and photos with subscribe and unsubscribe links on each email so one can unsubscribe whenever.

So now I throw open the floor for your comments on this idea - and yes, its just at the idea stage though I have thought of floating one this fall just so folks can see what I thought might be of use/interest to the peregrines' fans.

Thanks in advance!