Friday, June 20, 2008

Good Mailing List Management

“Do you know of any free mailing list programs Kayleen? I need to do another mailing list but don't want to keep the files on my computer, I'd rather have them stored online somehow. Any suggestions?”
I have been asked about any free mailing list management systems before and it is a good question. It is easy to get free software and free business tools on the Internet but I would like to point out a few things first.

  • Always run your anti-virus and anti-spyware software over these downloads before opening them. Downloading freeware can come as at cost. I have a program called Avast which is brilliant. An IT friend of mine put me onto this software. Avast has a free home edition and a professional edition and it picks up on bad downloads often before it even gets to download into your temporary Internet folder. The PC enemy doesn’t even make it to your machine before its sirens go off and tell you to stop the download. It also cleans up worms easily. As with all things that appear free, sometimes they can cost you dearly in sneaky ways so be careful what you download.
I often download trial software which is less likely to have a hidden agenda and if happy with the product, I am happy to pay for it; after all, the person who created should be compensated. Sometimes you get freeware that is clean and works pretty well. The reason for freeware is sometimes the developer is trailing the software and trying to build traffic to the web site to sell other products or later sell the new improved original software.
  • Google the exe file names to see if I can find any bad reports on the practices of the individual product download before you unpack the exe file. I have found the occasional bad report of spyware on some products that passed my filter before unpacking and have deleted them before I did after reading the warnings.
  • Free Download Web Sites:
    Two places to go to get free downloads are www.download.com and www.tucows.com. You can go to these places and search around for the free software you need. Check the reviews of the software also as you can waist a lot of time on installing clunky, buggy programs that don’t work as they should or later crash on you when you have put time into them and saved valuable data in the program. As I just stated, the trails are most likely to be a better product.
Now back to the question which was: “Do you know of any free mailing list programs Kayleen? I need to do another mailing list but don't want to keep the files on my computer, I'd rather have them stored online somehow. Any suggestions?”
  • Free Mailing List Programs
    Yes there is software out there and the most obvious would be to use your hosting account cpanel if you have access to it. You can create lists in there and send auto responders as well.
  • PHPLists is a free program for mailing list management and can be easily installed on your server however it is for the technically minded. If you like php then go for it. Another drawback is it is light on reports. I have kicked it around as well as a couple other options but wanted something a bit more thorough and easy to use and why I ended up with an Aweber account. This had all the features you needed, the company keep improving the product and there was all the tutorials and information in there to step me through not only setting it up but how to take full advantage of the Aweber mailing list management. It was like having the program, a tutor and mentors all wrapped in one. It also has an active business community which is a bonus. You pick up quite a bit of info through other successful people.
I hope this has answered your question and been helpful. What is most important is actually getting a mailing list set up and managed well.

2 comments:

Lauren said...

ooohhh I feel so special, thanks for taking the time to answer!

I am reluctant to pay for a service, but it might be the only way to go. I'll have a play!

Thanks again xx

Kayleen West. said...

You are special and most welcome. let me know how you go.



 
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