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  1. #21
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    Default Re: How to force html with every email

    Quote Originally Posted by gjh42 View Post
    One thing seems to be being ignored here. You say the majority (even if it's the "vast majority") of your customers want HTML e-mail. Has ANYONE ever knowingly selected text only on your site? If so, you are going against their explicit wishes and it is possible that your HTML e-mails will not display properly in their inbox depending on their mail client. You are eliminating all choice for them. Think about that one...

    If you think (most of) your old customers would have selected HTML, it would be possible to change their settings in the database (I don't know exactly how, and wouldn't try to tell you if I did) and leave current and new customers the freedom to receive your e-mails in their preferred format.
    gjh42, it wasn't ignored, linnix answered that objection on the first page, as have I. Business's thrive by reaching customers and convincing them to buy. If even 5% of the email receivers object to receiving HTML mail is basically irrelevant to whether or not sending the HTML mail is the best way to spur increased revenue from the other 95%. As RodG has abundantly pointed out, those who object to HTML mail will A:) send them to the spam box, B:) disregard them or C:) unsubscribe and possibly stop doing business (although that is an extreme example). Those are options that people have, so no, he is not "eliminating all choice for them", this isn't a violation of a person's body for crying out loud.

    This same kind of problem presents itself in the bar world where a few people object to having smoking allowed, yet choose to go into those establishments and force others, including the business owner to conform to their views. Its not as though people don't have the option of going some place else. And yet, in the United States a few ruin it for the many... why is that? Its a symptom of a much larger issue.

    More to the point, all of us (including myself) have been talking about the ethics, and have indeed ignored the issue of how it could be accomplished. This thread wasn't asking if it was right, it was asking how to accomplish it because that's the business choice he was making. So to tell someone you wouldn't help them even if you knew how is a waste of space and I argue every bit as rude and irrelevant to the initial question (which he has already solved).

  2. #22
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    Default Re: How to force html with every email

    Quote Originally Posted by gingabox View Post
    More to the point, all of us (including myself) have been talking about the ethics.
    WHAAATTT??????

    Boy am I embarrassed.

    I've been talking about the *technical* aspects.

    1 AND 1 = 1
    1 AND 0 = 0

    Sorry about that.

    Cheers
    Rod

  3. #23
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    Default Re: How to force html with every email

    Quote Originally Posted by gingabox View Post
    gjh42, it wasn't ignored, linnix answered that objection on the first page, as have I. Business's thrive by reaching customers and convincing them to buy. If even 5% of the email receivers object to receiving HTML mail is basically irrelevant to whether or not sending the HTML mail is the best way to spur increased revenue from the other 95%. As RodG has abundantly pointed out, those who object to HTML mail will A:) send them to the spam box, B:) disregard them or C:) unsubscribe and possibly stop doing business (although that is an extreme example). Those are options that people have, so no, he is not "eliminating all choice for them", this isn't a violation of a person's body for crying out loud.
    Then WHY make such a big deal out of it by FORCING all clients to receive HTML formatted e-mails?? or better yet, if you TRULY believe that your customers have selected text BY ACCIDENT, whey not sen an e-mail out asking them if they would like you to change it?? You ARE eliminating your customer's choice if you MAKE them accept HTML formatted e-mails. Now they may not stop shopping in your tore, but they may unsubscribe to your mailing list.. I assume this is NOT a desired effect? You would rather that they NOT get the information at all if they CHOOSE to receive the information in plain text format??

    Also MANY people disable HTML mail formats in their e-mail clients so even if you FORCE them to receive HTML formatted e-mail, they will not see your pretty e-mail. My Hotmail account BY DEFAULT disables links and images in messages unless I say I want to see the images and links in this ONE message or for ALL messages from the sender..

    At work our Outlook clients are configured to disable image sin e-mail unless we enable them.. Then images will be displayed for as long as I am viewing that message. Once I move to a new message and go back to that same message I must AGAIN explicitly enable images..

    The point is that you and linnix are trying to force your customer's to see your e-mails in a format that many will NOT see as you intended because their networks or e-mail clients don't allow it. Also (based on your responses here) you both seem to be ignoring that some people MAY NOT want to see your e-mails in the format in which you are sending it.. If it's not a big deal then hy not simply change the settings for those who have complained (and are apparently too lazy to change their OWN settings) and leave the rest of your customers alone instead of the extreme response you are endorsing... The folks here in this thread have responded in the manner they have responded because in a nutshell they are trying to say that this is a BAD idea and the wrong response to the situation...

    It appears that both you and linnix are hell bent that ALL of your customers want this based on complaints from a few customers.. Seriously ALL of your customers called and asked about this??? IMHO your logic/reasons for this extreme response seems more anecdotal than factual..

    But anyway you all were asking for facts and such so I decided to provide a few. The US Spam laws do not explicitly state that you can't force folks to receive HTML formatted e-mails, but there is language in the laws which could be applied to a situation where a customer signed up for a newsletter with certain specifications (e-mail formats, etc) and those specifications are ignored. Please rad the laws for yourself and do consult an attorney. Personally my clients all err on the side of caution.. Anyway I posted other useful information I found in case anyone else runs into this thread. I hope they will give this a bit of thought before going down this slippery slope..

    Using HTML messages to allow for text formatting, multiple columns, images, and brand recognition is growing in popularity and is widely supported by most email client software. However, most SPAM is also HTML-formatted as well; permission-based and SPAM HTML messages can often be difficult to differentiate in the mind of the recipient. If you do send HTML, it is important to always send a plain-text alternative message (also called text/HTML multi-part MIME format).
    In recent testing, we discovered that HTML emails actually bounced more often than text-based messages.
    Plain Text vs. HTML Email Deliverability HTML Text Bounce Rate 2.30% 1.15% Open Rate 2.03% 4.70%
    What You Need to Understand: HTML email gets rejected by ISPs and SPAM filters twice as often as plain-text email.
    Bounce Rate Source: 2004 Study of over one million email messages by AWeber Systems, Inc.
    Open Rate Source: MarketingSherpa 2005.
    1. Send Legitimate Content
      Many ISPs filter email based on the content that appears within the message text. Therefore, you should be very careful when creating the copy for your email marketing messages. The following guidelines should be kept in mind:
      Website URLs: Research potential newsletter advertisers before allowing them to place ads in your newsletter issues. If they have used their website URL to send SPAM, just having their URL appear in your newsletter could cause the entire message to be blocked or filtered.
      Words/phrases: Choose your language carefully when crafting messages. Avoid topics often found in SPAM such as medication, mortgages, making money, and pornography. If you do need to use words that might be filtered, don't attempt to obfuscate words with extra characters or odd spelling; you'll just make your messages appear more like SPAM.
      Images: Avoid creating messages that are made up entirely of images. Use images sparingly, if at all. Much open-rate tracking technology uses images to calculate the number of opened messages. You may choose to disable this kind of tracking to avoid being filtered based on image content.
      Attachments: With viruses running rampant and spreading through the malicious email attachments, many users are wary of attached documents. It's usually better to use a website URL to link to files; this will eliminate fear of attachments on the part of recipients and also reduce the overall message size.
    How to Protect Yourself Against Vulnerabilities in Email Clients


    Email is one of the most widely used applications on the Internet due to its convenience, cost effectiveness, and time saving ability. Because of its ubiquitous capability it can be left open to many different types of vulnerability.

    There are multiple ways that hackers can attack your email clients. Some of these methods include distribution of malware such as spyware, adware, Trojans, and viruses, to name a few types. Other attacks on your email client can include phishing, spam that is laced with malware, and denial of service attacks which are the result of sending a massive amount of messages to a server causing it to crash. Attacks can also cause a lot of damage to your other applications, data, and ultimately the PC operating system itself.
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  4. #24
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    Default Re: Can I force html with every email?

    Nice post, Diva.

    Another option would be to mimic Barnes & Nobles' somewhat bizarre policy. When I created an account at B&N after buying a Nook, I was't offered the option of plain text. I received at least one HTML email every day for a few weeks. Then I went into My Account settings and found that I could change my preference to plain text. I did so, and haven't heard from Barnes & Noble since.

  5. #25
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    Default Re: Can I force html with every email?

    @gingabox

    If you run an online store (or a B&M store), you provide a service. Right?

    The customer wants html emails - they get it!

    The customer wants text-only emails - they get it!

    You tend to forget who pays your bills: the customer!

    Quote Originally Posted by gingabox View Post
    Question 1. What is the benefit of shooting someone inside your home?

    Question 2. What are the disadvantages of shooting someone inside your home?

    If you answer honestly and accurately, it will become quite apparent that there are far more dis-advantages to shooting someone inside your home than there are advantages.... AND yet there is a time when even something so drastic is preferred to the alternative.
    This is the greatest piece of non-sense (as opposed to common sense - which is rare these days) I have heard or read for a long time.....
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  6. #26
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    Default Re: Can I force html with every email?

    Quote Originally Posted by stevesh View Post
    Nice post, Diva.
    Thanks!

    Quote Originally Posted by stevesh View Post
    Another option would be to mimic Barnes & Nobles' somewhat bizarre policy. When I created an account at B&N after buying a Nook, I was't offered the option of plain text. I received at least one HTML email every day for a few weeks. Then I went into My Account settings and found that I could change my preference to plain text. I did so, and haven't heard from Barnes & Noble since.
    I guess they decided that if you don't want e-mails in the format THEY want to send them in, then NO SOUP FOR YOU!!!
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  7. #27
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    Default Re: How to force html with every email

    Quote Originally Posted by DivaVocals View Post
    Then WHY make such a big deal out of it by FORCING all clients to receive HTML formatted e-mails?? or better yet, if you TRULY believe that your customers have selected text BY ACCIDENT, whey not sen an e-mail out asking them if they would like you to change it?? You ARE eliminating your customer's choice if you MAKE them accept HTML formatted e-mails. Now they may not stop shopping in your tore, but they may unsubscribe to your mailing list.. I assume this is NOT a desired effect? You would rather that they NOT get the information at all if they CHOOSE to receive the information in plain text format??
    Apparently you have been misread the posts because I am not making a big deal of it by FORCING all my clients to do anything. I am simply replying to the initial set of posts and offering the other side of the debate. Some how people have gotten the idea that because I say its ok under certain criteria, then that means that I am doing it, which is not what any of my posts have said. But, yes, I would rather that they NOT get the information at all if they CHOOSE to receive the information in a format that I CHOOSE not to support. Those are choices. If I choose not to provide text emails, and they choose not to accept HTML then the roads dont cross. Its a choice that must be made depending on the particular circumstances.

    Quote Originally Posted by DivaVocals View Post
    Also MANY people disable HTML mail formats in their e-mail clients so even if you FORCE them to receive HTML formatted e-mail, they will not see your pretty e-mail. My Hotmail account BY DEFAULT disables links and images in messages unless I say I want to see the images and links in this ONE message or for ALL messages from the sender..

    At work our Outlook clients are configured to disable image sin e-mail unless we enable them.. Then images will be displayed for as long as I am viewing that message. Once I move to a new message and go back to that same message I must AGAIN explicitly enable images..
    And that is fine, whats the problem with that?


    Quote Originally Posted by DivaVocals View Post
    The point is that you and linnix are trying to force your customer's to see your e-mails in a format that many will NOT see as you intended because their networks or e-mail clients don't allow it.
    Again, I am not trying to do anything. I am stating that depending on linnix case that he needs to proceed being well informed, of which you and others are offering only one side. There are in fact two.

    Quote Originally Posted by DivaVocals View Post
    Also (based on your responses here) you both seem to be ignoring that some people MAY NOT want to see your e-mails in the format in which you are sending it.. If it's not a big deal then hy not simply change the settings for those who have complained (and are apparently too lazy to change their OWN settings) and leave the rest of your customers alone instead of the extreme response you are endorsing... The folks here in this thread have responded in the manner they have responded because in a nutshell they are trying to say that this is a BAD idea and the wrong response to the situation...
    Here is the problem, you call people lazy, when in fact it might not be the case. Just because DivaVocals is techsavvy does not entail that the rest of the world, nor linnix customer base is, thus it might be the case that in his line of business that it would be better to force HTML than to not. You see you make assumptions that its just some people that are "apparently too lazy to change their OWN settings" and ignore WHO the people in question are. Its assumptions that are the heart of the problem that I have been outlining here. You assume that not everyone in his client base accepts HTML and wants HTML, you then assume if they dont change their settings its because they are too lazy and then you assume that its only a few people. BUT you have no idea if any of those assumptions are even valid before insulting people.


    Quote Originally Posted by DivaVocals View Post
    It appears that both you and linnix are hell bent that ALL of your customers want this based on complaints from a few customers.. Seriously ALL of your customers called and asked about this??? IMHO your logic/reasons for this extreme response seems more anecdotal than factual..
    Again, I am not hell bent on doing anything... appearances are deceiving aren't they? Even if its the majority of customers, linnix is within his rights as a business owner to offer services in HIS preferred method. Just as it is with the products HE chooses to carry.


    Quote Originally Posted by DivaVocals View Post
    But anyway you all were asking for facts and such so I decided to provide a few. The US Spam laws do not explicitly state that you can't force folks to receive HTML formatted e-mails, but there is language in the laws which could be applied to a situation where a customer signed up for a newsletter with certain specifications (e-mail formats, etc) and those specifications are ignored. Please rad the laws for yourself and do consult an attorney. Personally my clients all err on the side of caution.. Anyway I posted other useful information I found in case anyone else runs into this thread. I hope they will give this a bit of thought before going down this slippery slope..
    All well and good, again it depends if he is doing business in the US or not (part of why I don't like the US is their continuing to seek to control the web, even for those like me outside its borders, nor do I feel the need to roll over run my business with certain rules because the U.S. says so - since when did the U.S. get authorization to be global dictators?) Again, I never said that it was right for everyone nor in every situation and location, that is what you on the other side seem to be doing... what I said is that linnix needs to look at the situation and both sides of the debate to make an informed decision, so thank you for posting that information.

  8. #28
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    Default Re: Can I force html with every email?

    Moderator's Note: this thread is getting way beyond the initial question. It is now closed.
    Please do not PM for support issues: a private solution doesn't benefit the community.

    Be careful with unsolicited advice via email or PM - Make sure the person you are talking to is a reliable source.

 

 
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