Frequently Asked Questions

Welcome to our Help Center. Here you will quickly find answers to our most commonly asked questions

Email Marketing

What is Email Marketing?

Email marketing uses the Internet to communicate information about promotions, company offerings, product updates and more. It is a valuable dialogue between a prospective or current customer and a company. Email marketing is most effective when the recipients are targeted and the information is relevant and timely.

Why would I use Email Marketing?

Email marketing is more cost effective, and achieves results faster than traditional direct mail marketing. Most importantly, email marketing is twice as effective as traditional direct mail in getting a response from the targeted audience. This may be because of its immediate call-to-action, through "buy now" or "sign up now" links that can be directly embedded in the message. It is ideal for anyone looking to increase revenue, boost sales, generate leads, build brand awareness or shorten sale cycles.

Can my business benefit from online newsletters and special promos?

eMarketer estimates there are 153 million Internet users in the US, spending 92% of their online time sending and receiving emails. Given the low cost and high impact value of email marketing, there are no businesses that would not benefit from tapping this market.

How do I start?

Start your email campaign with existing customers and grow your contact list by encouraging recipients to forward your message to others. Include a subscribe button on your Website and ask prospective customers if you can send your newsletter to them. Make sure your collateral includes a reference to your newsletter and consider running a promotion or give away to generate interest. Your list will grow faster than you would have believed.

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Managing Email Lists

How do subscribers unsubscribe?

Each email you send using EmailBrain has an unsubscribe link appended to it. If you have only one general subscriber list it will say 'Unsubscribe from this mailing list'. If you have several categories of subscriptions active on your subscribe form, the link will be 'Manage my subscription'.

How do I get new subscribers?

The EmailBrain subscription form builder (available under the Manage Mailing Lists section) enables you to collect new subscriptions from a subscribe link on your website. The website link enables users to subscribe to specific mailing lists (which you can set up to correspond to your newsletter categories). You can design your subscription form with logos, fonts and colors. After you have set up the subscription form, EmailBrain generates the HTML code for you (or your webmaster) to insert into your existing website code.

Will I receive bounced return emails from (newly) invalid addresses?

No! This is where EmailBrain saves you time and removes the headache of hundreds of undelivered emails bouncing back and clogging your inbox. EmailBrain automatically flags invalid email addresses ('hard bounces') so that they are excluded from future campaigns. 'Soft bounces' (addresses that are temporarily unavailable), go through a series of checks before they become a 'hard bounce'. Email addresses are being checked for validity on a continual basis, even when you are not logged in.

Can I use a 3rd party list, or list that I purchased/rented/aggregated from websites?

No, EmailBrain is for permission marketing only, so you can only use it to send email to your own customers, and to subscribers who have opted in to your list. Click here to read our Terms & Conditions for more information.

How do I get my list imported in to my EmailBrain account?

EmailBrain will accept your email addresses in 3 file formats; .txt (text file), .csv (Comma Separated Values) and .xls (MS Excel Spreadsheet). Simply browse to where the file lives on your computer and let the EmailBrain wizard guide you through the import.

What if I don't have an email list?

Not a problem. There are several ways you can collect email addresses. EmailBrain provides a list building tool in the form of a sign up box to be put on your website. Your site visitors can sign up for your email list and their addresses are automatically imported in to account. You have access to this tool even in the free trial.

Other ways to collect would be to set up a guest register and have customers provide you with their email addresses that you will import in to your EmailBrain account. Trade shows, conferences, etc - any time you touch your customer, invite them to join your list.

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Receiving Newsletters

Why can't my recipients see my images?

In EmailBrain, images are not embedded in the email. Newsletters have code that points to the images, which either reside in your EmailBrain pictures folder or on another website, according to your preference. When a recipient opens the email, the newsletter calls the image externally, and it is downloaded to the recipient's computer. If the recipient is not online, they will see a broken link.

Why are people not getting my emails?

Unfortunately, no email service can guarantee 100% delivery. People change email addresses when they move or leave jobs, auto responders are set up when people are on vacation and spam filters trap messages before they arrive based on key words and phrases in the content. Industry averages for delivery rates are 30-40% for business to business newsletters and 10-15% for consumer newsletters according to eMarketer. Your message content and your relationship with your list (whether or not they white listed you in their email client) also have a lot to do with successful delivery. With EmailBrain, you are able to see exactly who has opened which email over time and work on improving your open rates. Without a similar tool, you never have any idea who is receiving the email.

Why have open rates of my emails dropped?

As of November 16, 2003, we changed the way we track opens. Prior to this, if someone opened an email twice, it was counted twice. If half of the recipients opened their emails twice, stats showed a 100% open rate. This anomaly has been rectified. We now track individual email addresses as "UNIQUE". An individual is counted once even if they opened many times. Open rates of newsletters may seem smaller, but they are more accurate.

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Sending Newsletters

How do I know if emails that I sent out were actually opened?

EmailBrain provides statistics of sent newsletters and reports the percentage of emails opened per mailshot, how many were sent, how many website click throughs were generated, and who clicked on what links and who actually opened the email. We even enable you to generate or export these addresses as a separate list so that you can target your users based on their click behaviour.

What is a hardbounce?

A hard bounce is an email message that has been returned to you because the recipient's address is invalid. A hard bounce might occur because the domain name does not exist, the recipient is unknown, or there is a network problem on the recipient's end.

What is a softbounce?

A soft bounce is an email message that gets as far as the recipient's mail server, but is bounced back before it reaches the recipient. One of the most common causes for a soft bounce is a full mailbox. This will happen A LOT with your subscribers who use free email services like Yahoo and Hotmail, because they allow for very little email storage.

Can EmailBrain be used for unsolicited bulk email (spamming)?

EmailBrain was not designed as a SPAM tool, and it would be illogical for it to be used as such. EmailBrain has been designed as an online, value added service for a range of functions, including personalized opt in marketing to clients and inhouse communication with colleagues, as well as private use.

What is EmailBrain used for?

The EmailBrain tool is mostly used by corporations, associations, clubs, small businesses and private individuals. The uses are endless, but most people use EmailBrain to communicate with clients, staff, members, colleagues and relatives or friends. Private use would include invites, announcements, travelogues and family albums. Small businesses might use EmailBrain for press releases, newsletters, product launches, quotes, letters, proposals and more. Corporations, on the other hand, might have an in house communications department that wants to send out internal newsletters, reports, memos and directives to other offices, as well as a range of opt in or other marketing functions.

Does EmailBrain CC (carbon copy) or BCC (blind carbon copy) emails sent to multiple recipients?

No, when sending, each newsletter is addressed and sent individually. This is much more effective. When people see a single stock phrase in the "To" field of the received email, they usually associate it with SPAM.

Can I personalize the emails or use different subject lines?

Yes, we offer a range of personalization functions. You can address the emails to individuals, based on fields you set up in datasets managed in the Manage Subscriber Info area. You can also personalize the subject with a data field representing each individual recipient, such as their name.

Can I do scheduled sends with EmailBrain, choosing the time I wish my newsletter to be sent out?

Yes, scheduled sends are part of EmailBrain's functionality. They can be sent by hours and days, up to one month ahead.

Can the recipient's name appear in the 'To' field?

NThe TO field has to contain an email address. If you want to add the recipient's name, use our personalization tool.

Can I send out personalized emails?

Yes, EmailBrain allows you to personalize your emails and set up subscribe forms where your users fill in their details to populate sets of data that you can set up, with a choice in the type of information you wish to get from them. Go to Manage Subscriber Info and Create New (dataset). Full instructions are available in the help files. A small icon next to the subject line in the SEND area enables you to personalize the subject line.

Can you cancel an email once it is sitting in the queue to be sent?

No, only scheduled emails can be cancelled. If an email is sent immediately then the sending cannot be cancelled. Make sure your email is correct before sending it.

Can I add attachments to my email newsletters?

Yes, a download link to the file from your email will be almost the same thing as an attachment. It is also much more likely to get through corporate firewalls. In the editor position your cursor and then choose the Internal Link button (next to the table symbol). Upload your attachment to the Pictures folder - now select it in the list by clicking the 'Select'. Enter your link text (e.g. Download it here) and click OK.

How do I set up the auto responder - the automatic email that clients receive when subscribing to my newsletter.

You can set up auto responder text that your clients receive when they subscribe to your email, and when they unsubscribe.

Is there a cost involved in personalizing emails?

Personalization is one of many useful features that come with EmailBrain at no additional cost.

DCan the recipients name appear in the "To" field?

The "To" field has to contain an email address. If you want to add the recipients name, then you can use our personalization tool.

Does EmailBrain automatically send the correct version (HTML or text) to recipients?

Yes, EmailBrain is reverse MIME compliant and will automatically determine whether an email client can read HTML. If it cannot, EmailBrain will deliver the text version (a setting that can be turned on or off in your Emailbrain account).

Can you cancel an email once you have sent it?

Once an email has sent, it cannot be cancelled. To eliminate this possibility (discovering a mistake or sending to the wrong list) send a Test email to yourself, and double check that the mailing list, subject line and content are correct.

My newsletter was sent successfully, but no one has received it?

This could mean that either our servers are busy, or you have a big file, and downloading could take longer.

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Designing Newsletters

Do you cater for power users?

EmailBrain has a Basic Mode and an Enhanced Mode, which offers advanced functionality around the management of your newsletters, mailing lists, subscriber data, subscription methodology and more. The power of EmailBrain lies in the flexibility of the product. You can design your own subscriber forms and select - even customise - the type of data you wish to collect from subscribers to your mailing list. In the EmailBrain Editor, power users often prefer to cut and paste their own HTML code into a newsletter, especially when working with embedded Flash files and other objects. The HTML View takes you right into the code, where you can, for instance, use CTRL F to find the tag you wish to work on. Most Windows shortcut keys work in EmailBrain.

Does EmailBrain provide sample newsletters?

Yes, but you are not limited to these. You can design your own or have a EmailBrain designer create one for you. When you create a newsletter, we give you the option to save it as a template. EmailBrain provides a growing range of templates for different audiences: press releases, invitations, product launches, newsletters, quotes, memos, letters, travelogues, announcements and a series of e-cards relating to holidays or religious holidays.

What kind of universal settings can I get for my newsletters in EmailBrain?

Our Profile and Settings have a range of useful features, including "Create text version with HTML version", "Enable password on subscribe form for users with additional data", "Display 'Subscribe' link on all emails", "Display 'Forward to friend' link on all emails", and "Append the address (in Profile) to the footer of all emails sent out." (Obligatory, by the US CAN-SPAM act, for emails to US resident recipients) You can also set your date format and the Time Zone you operate in. You can even set the Start page for each section to save you time.

How does EmailBrain manage images?

You can upload and insert images from your computer hard drive into your EmailBrain newsletter, or use images that are elsewhere on the Web. EmailBrain stores your images in a folder for convenient access at any time. EmailBrain enables you to either upload images straight into your pictures folder to be inserted into a newsletter later, or you can upload and insert an image at the same time while working in the EmailBrain Editor.

Can I edit images when working in EmailBrain?

Yes, the EmailBrain Editor includes an image button on the toolbar similar to the picture icon in Microsoft Word. A popup window appears with the attributes and current settings of your picture. It contains a list of pictures in your pictures folder, with a preview of the image you selected. It tells you the Image Source (the URL path to the image in your Emailbrain folder), the alternative text (text that appears when a reader mouses over an image in your newsletter), as well as Height, Width, Alignment (the abs in absBottom stands for absolute), Image Border (thickness of the rule used as a border) and Vertical Spacing. You can change any of these attributes to change the way the image is presented. The image popup window includes other features, such as the functionality to upload images from your hard drive and insert them into your newsletter, or to insert pictures straight from your EmailBrain image folder.

Can I import HTML files into EmailBrain?

Yes, you can import HTML Web pages from your computer into your EmailBrain account. When you upload the HTML file's images to your EmailBrain images folder, your EmailBrain newsletter will automatically insert the correct path in the code to the images you have uploaded. You can also import an HTML Web page from another URL.

Can I create templates in EmailBrain?

Yes, you can save your newsletters as templates for use later, along with the variety of pre-designed Emailbrain templates. EmailBrain provides a growing range of templates for different audiences: press releases, invitations, product launches, newsletters, quotes, memos, letters, travelogues, announcements and a series of e-cards relating to holidays or religious holidays. You can also create newsletters based on other newsletters, which is useful when you want your newsletter to comprise other pages with the same look and feel. It's easy to cross-link to these pages. For customers who need help in designing templates, an EmailBrain designer can create one for you.

Can I create newsletters that link to other pages in EmailBrain?

Yes, because you can use a newsletter as a template, you can repeat the look and feel to create 'pages' of a newsletter, and cross link to them from your main page.

Can my EmailBrain newsletters contain PDF files?

Yes, a download link to the file from your email will be almost the same thing as an attachment. It is also much more likely to get through corporate firewalls. In the editor, position your cursor and then choose the Internal Link button (next to the table symbol). Upload your attachment to the Pictures folder - now select it in the list by clicking the 'Select'. Enter your link text (e.g. Download it here) and click OK.

Can I add (Flash) animations to a newsletter?

Yes, the Newsletter Editor enables you to place a range of visual objects, such as Flash files and animated GIFs, as well as the usual range of pictures.

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Other Questions

Can't find what you're looking for?

Our online Resources section has answers to many other questions.
Or feel free to Contact Us for more information.

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