The Best Way Of Managing An E-mail Marketing List

Ever since the first week I put up the list of SMTP servers on this website I've had regular enquiries from people asking about SMTP servers to use with their e-mail list. At first I thought the majority of these enquiries were from individuals but over the years it's become quite apparent that most are actually from businesses, or at least people looking to be running a business. This is long overdue then but this is how I would (and do) deal with e-mailing my mailing list.

The Only Way of Managing a Mailing List

I've tried all sorts of software over the years for keeping track of people who have agreed to be contacted on a list. I've also tried several ways of e-mailing them including but not limited to setting up my own PC as a SMTP server, using a dedicated hosting server and even attempting to use the SMTP of webmail services like Google. Frankly they have all been rubbish, crap in fact. There are so many things to go wrong with this type of mass mailing and if you’re running a legitimate business you have to get it right. I'm a software developer by trade so I had to have a dabble but I'm telling you for a fact, it's an area littered with problems just waiting to be discovered. The only reliable way of managing your mailing list in my opinion is to use one of the online services that specialise in exactly that. There are a few to choose from (Aweber and Constant Contact being two) but they all offer various pricing progressions to make it affordable for even the smallest business. In terms of reputation I think Aweber is generally regarded as the best but most do a free (or very cheap) trial so you can see what suites you best. It's not only the ease of managing sign-ups and things like that where these services excel it's also in deliverability. It’s their job to make sure as many as possible of your e-mails reach the recipient and the delivery rates are way above what you'll ever see from hammering somebody's SMTP server. They offer various bells and whistles to make your life easier but at their core they are about delivering your e-mails.

There are always going to be people looking for the bodged free option but if you're running a business online and are interested in building a list of people to market to (and why wouldn't you, e-mail marketing with these types of opt-in lists is hugely successful) then I plead with you to do it the right way. A friend of mine was playing around with Outlook for 2 YEARS until I finally convinced him to do it properly. He's a Real Estate Agent and in the last 3 months he has seen the enquiries from his e-mailings sky rocket to the point he gets more in one mailing now than he did in total for the previous 2 years. If you're legit and you want your mailing list to be legit then forget about looking for a SMTP server to take advantage off, spend that little bit of money on a professional service and you'll not only be making your own life easier but you might just see some amazing results.