Tips for creating an email on Constant Contact

As of January 1, 2018, we are using the new "3rd-generation editor" for creating emails that we send out on Constant Contact.

Because of this, DO NOT COPY ANY OLDER EMAILS to use as tour starting point for creating a new one.

To create a new email campaign, please do the following:

Log on to the account with the new password. If you need it, please email Gil Brodsky, Bruce Berns, or Alisa Shapiro.
Click on "Campaigns" in the NavBar at the top.

Under "My Campaigns", you'll see "All Campaigns" and then "Folders". If "Folders" isn't expanded, click on the little triangle next to it to do so.

Click on the Folder named "2018Templates (13)". You'll see all 13 listed on the right.
Scroll down to select the one you will want to use.

Inline image

 

On the far right, click on the "More" drop-down and select "Copy."

The Template will open, and you will be immediately asked to select a name for the campaign. Please select something that identifies both the program being promoted and the organization (e.g., "Sisterhood Book Club February"), so that anyone going through the list of the thousands of campaigns sent will be able to see what this is.

You'll see a campaign with a header and footer already constructed for you. Please DO NOT CHANGE anything in the header or footer! If there is something incorrect, or something that needs to be changed, please contact me, and I will make the adjustment.

Make sure you change the Subject of the email from "Subject" to whatever you need, and change both the secular and Hebrew dates.

Change the subject in the blue-background header block.

In the text block, type in whatever you want to promote your event. use the tool palette above the block (it shows up when you click inside to edit) to change the font, size, bold/italic, justification, bulleting, etc. (But please don't get carried away with excessive style editing!)

If you have a picture you want to include, be sure the "Build" tab is selected on the far left of the page, and drag the "Image" icon into your text article. You'll see a pink box pop into place on either the right upper or left upper corner of the text block. Once it's there, you have to specify the image to be inserted. You can choose from what's already uploaded to our ConstCon library, or upload a new image. (If you do a new one, be sure to give it a useful name, such as "dreydel laughing", instead of "jpg2716".) If you don't know how to do this, ask one of us (see list below).

Once the image is in place, you can re-size it, and you can add a link to it. What you cannot do, however, is move it to any other place in the block than the right upper or left upper corner.

You can add multiple text blocks, and if you need multiple pictures, you can only add one to each block. You can also have a block with just a picture, which can be left, right, or center-justified (just drag the new image block from the left palette into your projet so that the pink line shows up between or below existing blocks).

If you have multiple articles or events, you can add a spacer bar between the text blocks as well.

You can even add a YouTube video frame, which will open the video when the user clicks on it (either right in the email or in a new browser window, depending on the reader's device, browser, and settings).

You an also add a button, for things like "click to register." Just drag the button into place.

You can duplicate any block or divider, then move it to a new location if you wish. Hover over (don't click) the block, and you'll see move and options icons show up to the right. The options are to delete the block, duplicate it, or change the color of the background (default is no color).

f you want to create a link, click on the text (or the image or button), and click the link con in the tool palette above. You'll have a drop-down choice of web page, email, or document. For now, we're asking that you not use the "document" option. For a web page, just enter the URL (best to copy it in your browser from the actual page and then paste in). For email, it will ask you to enter the email address. Here you should also include the subject of the email as well. So instead of just "[email protected]", you should type in "[email protected]?subject=Sisterhood Book Club". Sue gets so much email on so many things that she does, that it's much better if she can tell right away reproducibly what this email is about.  So the way you do this is to enter "?subject=" right after the actual email address (no space, although you can include spaces in the actual subject text).

Also, with regard to links, once you've created one in order for it to stand out, we need it to stand out from the adjacent text. So while the text is still selected, make sure it is underlined and the correct color. The style sheet color we would like to have everyone use for links is the blue that matches the blue in the "fountain" of the TA logo. If you click on the font color icon (a big "A" with a color bar underneath in the tool palette) you will see a set of recently used colors, and this should be one of them. If it's not there, click on the color chooser, go down to more colors, and in the hex chooser, enter "#31348f".

Similarly, our style sheet is that dates and times are in the TA logo red. For some of the templates, we have already set this up. Again, as you choose the color, it should be there in the "recently used" choices. If not, set it to #e14525.

If you make a goof, you can undo you recent steps. To do this, you have to click the "undo" button at the top of the page. Note that typing CTRL-z or choosing "Undo" from the browser Edit menu will NOT work.

As before, if you are still working on your campaign, save it, then exit, and you can come back and see the draft on the main "Campaigns" page. Once you have your campaign done, as before, you click on "Continue" on the upper right of the page, choose the time and date to send and the mailing list to select the recipients.

Some things you cannot do in this newer version: You cannot put in tables! You cannot directly edit the html! You cannot place anchors in the email itself and link to them!

This new editor is a little different from the one we used before, so for those who have sent out email campaigns before it takes a little while to get used to it. But it's very powerful, and ultimately intuitive, and the good thing is that it's very hard to corrupt the content, which by contrast was very easy to do inadvertently before ("all I did was change the text color down here and the entire paragraph above got right-justified!"). Another advantage is that content will display neatly on any device that the reader uses to read his/her email, whether on a computer, Android or iPhone, or tablet. If you're comfortable and adventurous, play around with 2- and 3-column designs (just drag those over, or drag a second text box next to an existing one instead of below it).

When your email is ready to send, click on the "Continue" button at the upper right.
This will take you to a page where you schedule the date and time for the campaign to be sent and which list(s) of recipients it will go to.
Choose the list(s) carefully! (You don't want to send an email focused on a particular group to everyone!
Also, please note that there is a box below the time that says "Send me early results." It is best to unclick this. If you do want to have Constant Contact send you data on opens, click-throughs, etc, then check this box, but be sure you choose the correct recipient from the pull-down list below, otherwise it will go to some other unsuspecting person.

Screen shot

Finally, when you are ready, click "Save". then click "Schedule."

If at any point you have questions, or comments, please feel free to reach out to one of us: Gil Brodsky - Bruce Berns - Alisa Shapiro

 

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Temple Aliyah is an egalitarian Conservative congregation in Needham, Massachusetts, with a warm and inviting atmosphere.  We are a dynamic and diverse community that embraces people of all ages, backgrounds and lifestyles.  With the guidance of Rabbi Carl Perkins, we encourage our members to enrich their Jewish lives, to enhance their Jewish identities, and to engage in lifelong learning.

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