An autoresponder is a special type of email campaign that can automatically send email to people on your mailing list based on the rules that you set up. For example, you could create an autoresponder that sends each subscriber an email on their birthday. Or you could create an autoresponder that sends a follow-up email to subscribers that click on certain links in your email. One common use for an autoresponder is sending "welcome" emails to new subscribers. Let's go over the different parts of an autoresponder:
Parts of an Autoresponder
The name appears in the list on the lefthand side of the Autoresponders window (choose Window > Autoresponders from the menu bar at the top of the screen). This name is not shown to recipients.
The content that will be emailed out when your autoresponder is triggered.
The event that causes the message to be sent. Direct Mail supports six different types of triggers:
- Subscribing to a mailing list
- Opening an email campaign
- Clicking a link in an email campaign
- Editing an address
- Adding a new address via the API
- Triggering based on a date
- Trigger after another autoresponder
Depending on which trigger you choose, you will be given different options for selecting which recipients receive your message. For example, if you use the subscribe form trigger, you will need to choose which subscribe form(s) will trigger the autoresponder.
You can also filter down the list of eligible recipients. For example, you could use a filter if you only wanted to send to subscribers that selected "California" as their home state when filling out the subscribe form.
You can choose to send your message as soon as the autoresponder is triggered, or delay it by a period of time. For date-based triggers, you can optionally send before the date arrives. You can also specify which days of the week you want your autoresponder to be active.
The time-delay feature can be useful for setting up a sequence of emails that are sent over time. For example, you could set up a training course by email that sends one email each week.
Just like a regular email campaign, autoresponder email campaigns include a performance report. This report is available in the Reports tab, and shows you all of the data that you'd find in a regular campaign report (opens, clicks, bounces, etc.)
Autoresponders Require the Cloud
To use autoresponders, your Direct Mail project must be moved to the cloud. If you remove your Direct Mail project from the cloud, any autoresponders in that project will be automatically paused.