27 January, 2017

email imageWhen email was first designed, security was not considered important and up until fairly recently it was still possible to send an email from any address and get away with it.

However, as spam, phishing and spoofing attacks by email have become increasingly common there have been various attempts to make email more secure.  In the last year or so the major providers (AOL, Google, Microsoft etc.) have all seriously tightened their security and authentication requirements for validating and receiving email.  The result of this is that a lot of legitimate email is now being classified as spam or rejected by those providers.  In order to ensure that your email continues to be marked as legitimate and received by these larger providers it is now almost essential that you implement SPF, DKIM and DMARC on your domains otherwise many of your...

Read more
11 January, 2017
Filed under CiviMail, Training

Civdesk is excited to announce our newest training opportunity - Effective Email Marketing with CiviMail. During this session you will learn how to best leverage CiviMail to get your emailing into your constituents Inbox and have your content read. 

During this two-hour training, you will learn about:

  • Best practices for getting emails in the inbox
  • Formatting do's and don'ts
  • Email client and readability testing
  • Using tokens including the Checksum token
  • Reporting
  • Optimizing your emails for better open rates (including A/B testing)
  • Technical email deliverability (SPF & DKIM)

Concrete examples will be used to illustrate all of these tasks. Much of this session will be spent looking at examples but we will also be using the CiviCRM interface.

We will use some HTML code but no coding knowledge...

Read more
18 November, 2016

CiviCRM support for multiple languages and locales has been present for many years already. Features like multilingual donation forms, for instance, are now both common and easy to use. Some usages, however, have remained a source of minor headaches. With the release of CiviCRM 4.7.13, a small step has been made in order to fix a major annoyance that affected multilingual emails.

(billet disponible en français)

The annoyance

Until now, there was no effective way for CiviCRM to determine the target language of mail merge tokens when mass emailing. Consequently, many emails would end up with :

  • badly translated tokens (ex: prefixes such as « Mrs » appeared in English instead of being translated to « Mme » when sending out content written in French)
  • links that didn't point to content in the right language (ex: ubsubscribe...
Read more
10 October, 2016

Mosaico Phase II - CiviMail workflow integration

There has been a lot of enthusiasm about the initial release of the “Mosaico” mailing builder. For those who may have missed the news (see previous blog post here!), the Mosaico extension provides “Mailchimp like” drag and drop functionality for composing emails in CiviMail. See a quick gif below:

 

With kind funding from Healthwatch England; the teams at Veda Consulting, Compucorp and CiviCRM core are working on a second phase of work, to integrate the Mosaico email composer into the standard CiviMail workflow so you can use and compose your emails as...

Read more
06 October, 2016
Filed under CiviMail, CiviCon


We received quite a lot of interest and feedback on our initial release. We're happy to announce that most of the requests have been resolved and the extension is ready for production use.

Some of the quality improvements / fixes that been made are:

  1. Duplicate your mosaico templates in one click.
  2. CIVICRM_MAIL_SMARTY flag is now supported with templates i.e you could now use smarty codes in templates, just like with any message templates.
  3. All Civi tokens now work as they would with civi message templates, including href tokens like {action.unsubscribeUrl}.
  4. Mosaico library updated to latest v0.15 - CSS Inlining, iPhone rendering issues, Tinymce fixes .. and many.
  5. Experimental feature : Import message templates into mosaico when CIVICRM_MOSAICO_IMPORT setting is...
Read more
15 April, 2016
Filed under CiviMail, Extensions, Tips

CiviMail is a great way to send targeted email to your supporters using CiviCRM to segment recipients and populate token values. Meanwhile, email marketing services such as Mailchimp and Constant Contact provide sending infrastructure so you don't have to worry much as much about deliverability. By using CiviMail with an SMTP or email API service, CiviCRM users get the benefits of both.

One popular service is Mandrill, which is offered by Mailchimp. Hundreds of organizations use the extension that integrates it with CiviCRM. However, in late February, Mandrill users received an email about “some significant changes that will affect your Mandrill account”.

To summarize, Mailchimp is looking to shed users who are not using their core Mailchimp product. Mandrill users will have to sign up for a paid monthly Mailchimp plan, and the allowance of 12,000 free emails per month is eliminated. Customers will need to buy $20 blocks of 25,000 emails per month....

Read more
07 April, 2016
Filed under v4.7, v4.6, v4.4, CiviMail, Extensions

The Mandrill email sending service, which a lot of CiviCRM sites were using as a cheap and reliable way to send emails, recently announced major changes in their operations and pricing structure that will certainly make it a lot less attractive to CiviCRM site owners.

But Sparkpost, another major email sending platform, stepped up to the plate in order to attract Mandrill customers and announced plans that include up to 100,000 free emails per month, which will be in effect for the life of the account. Clearly a very attactive offer, specifically as SparkPost is an email delivery service created by Message Systems, one of the leaders in (MTA) platforms designed for sending and receiving large volumes of...

Read more
06 April, 2016
Filed under CiviEvent, CiviMail

There has been some discussion in my organisation around possibly streamling the process and improvement process in regards to CiviEvents and Inviting people to come to the event. 

The senario is this, We have end users who create events such as come to our Phonebanking evening. Yet there is no way through the event create / configuration process to then create an invite email or similar that could go to a target group. Say there is a group already created of people who have expressed an interest in phone banking. 

What we think would be a possible imporvement is that there is an additional screen or such created in the CiviEvent configuration, that would allow for an email to be sent to a specific group. using from emails etc from CiviMail. The receipients of said invite email would then be recorded to the event as "Invited" and differentiate from those that are comming who are recorded as "registered"

If people can comment below on if this is a reasonable...

Read more
24 February, 2016
By Parvez
Filed under CiviMail, CiviDay

Well, ok, not quite but I’m hoping that anyone who’s used CiviMail and message templates in anger will relate to the need for change and how CiviMail can become an asset rather than the elephant in the room.

So let’s start at the beginning, Beatrice donates time to ACME Incorporated Chairty Arm also known as “Cheese For All”. She’s a marketing person and would really like to start putting together some engaging email content for Cheese For All, who made the right decision with both Beatrice and CiviCRM. She’s used Mailchimp in the past and has an expectation of what a mailing tool should allow her to do, so she walks in on Monday morning, ready to make a difference to Cheese for All, armed with her hot breakfast and a chocolate bar for the tough times. She quickly gets to grips with groups, the concept of mailing and gets stuck in, encouraged by the word “template” that's thrown around in CiviCRM. After digging around for 30 minutes, she soon realises that a...

Read more
15 February, 2016
By bgm
Filed under CiviMail, Tips

On 9 February 2016, Gmail announced it would warn users when they receive e-mail that was not encrypted by the sender. After all, e-mail often includes personnal information, but has historically never been encrypted. A webmail might use https, an IMAP account is usually using encryption as well, but users do not have an easy way to know if the communication between two e-mail servers is encrypted. Gmail therefore introduced a small red open padlock in the e-mail header to warn users if the communication was not encrypted.

If you are affected by this change, contact your server hosting provider to make sure that their outbound SMTP e-mail server supports encryption. You can also use a commercial bulk e-mail...

Read more