How to Send Me a Newsletter

Like most people, I get waaaaaay too much e-mail. Between some crazy deadlines, out-of-town conferences and wiping out my primary desktop machine, I’ve been offline for a couple of weeks and boy-oh-boy have the messages piled up. [If you’re waiting for a reply from me on something, I promise I haven’t forgotten you. 🙂 I’m still re-installing and it’s going to take me a few more days to dig my way out.]

While I don’t subscribe to nearly as many newsletters as I used to — most of my news-ish stuff comes in the form of RSS feeds these days — I still subscribe to a few. Here are some tips if you’re writing a newsletter that will decrease the odds that I’ll delete it without reading it:

  • Don’t change your “from” address. I white-list only those newsletters I want. If you change your address without telling me first, your newsletter will be deleted as spam and I won’t even know it.
  • If you must change your e-mail address, tell me before you change it. Sending me a “we’ve changed our address” message from your new address is an instant FAIL. I’ll miss it because your new address isn’t white-listed. I can’t believe how many people don’t think about this one.
  • A unique per-user ID in the subject line helps me tell your newsletter apart from phishes that look just like it. If I get too many phishes impersonating your newsletter, I’ll probably just unsubscribe it. I know it’s not your fault, but I don’t have the time to spend sorting out the fakes. A unique per-user ID in the subject is a very fast, easy way to make it obvious which messages are probably real and which are almost certainly fake.
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