March 2016

What’s New & Improved in Direct Mail 4.3

We have some shiny new bits available for you to download today. Our version 4.3 update includes oft-requested new features as well as enhancements to existing features, like autoresponders, that make them even easier to use. Here are some of the highlights of what’s new and improved (or you can read the release notes for the details).


Your messages and autoresponders can now be organized into folders. This is one of the most frequently requested features, and it’s easy to see why. If you have a long list of messages that you feel are cluttering up your project, use message folders to keep them nice and organized. Likewise, use autoresponder folders to keep your various automated campaigns organized and under control.

If you select a folder in your source list, you’ll see a handy grid view of all the messages and folders contained therein (double-click the thumbnail to jump right to the message for editing).

Contacts Syncing

Direct Mail has always supported importing contacts from your OS X Contacts app. Now you can sync your OS X Contacts to an address group in Direct Mail with just one click. Direct Mail will take care of updating contacts that have changed, as well as syncing unsubscribe information back to the Contacts app. This feature also works with the older “Address Book” in OS X 10.7.

Autoresponder Sequences

Campaign automation was one of the big new features to arrive in Direct Mail 4. This update builds on that foundation to make autoresponders even more useful and easier to use. The first improvement is that autoresponders can now be triggered by previous autoresponder emails. For example, you may want to create a three-week email training course that people can subscribe to online (one email per week). Here’s how to do that:

  1. Create three autoresponders: Week 1, Week 2, and Week 3
  2. The Week 1 email is triggered when a person subscribes to your course using a Direct Mail subscribe form
  3. The Week 2 email is triggered seven days after the Week 1 email
  4. The Week 3 email is triggered seven days after the Week 2 email

Look for the new “Trigger after another autoresponder” option in the Autoresponders window.

Another improvement is that autoresponder emails can now be triggered manually. In our above example, you may have a friend who did not fill out the subscribe form, but that asked to be added to your training course. To enroll that person in the email course, simply add their email address to your list in Direct Mail, then choose Addresses > Trigger Autoresponder from the menu bar at the top of your screen. Your friend will now begin receiving your email course.

Additional Improvements

The release notes contain more detail, but this release includes a host of other improvements and bug fixes including:

  • A new, modern look for the Autoresponder, Design Test, and Spam Test windows
  • Design Test results can now be sorted by popularity, and results appear more quickly
  • Mail-merge tags can now be safely used inside URLs (see the release notes or help documentation for detail)

How to Upgrade

Upgrading is easy (and free)! Just open up the Direct Mail app and choose Direct Mail > Check for Software Update from the menu bar at the top of your screen. Mac App Store customers will receive the upgrade automatically in a few weeks once Apple has approved the update. Update: Apple has now approved the update.

Thank you to all our customers that have provided and continue to provide feedback on Direct Mail. We are excited to bring these improvements to you today, and look forward to the next round of great new features coming soon! Got an idea in mind? Please get in touch!

Improved Security For Your Email Campaigns

Since version 1.0, Direct Mail has always employed encryption to keep the contents of your email campaigns, mailing lists, reports, etc. private as they move between our servers and your Mac. This is also true for our iOS companion app, Stamps. Not only does this keep your information private, but also ensures that your data is not tampered with as it is transferred across the Internet. Beginning recently, we have started encrypting the content of your email campaigns as they are sent to each person on your list, too. This is known as encryption in transit, and it uses the same technology (TLS) that your web browser uses to keep your Internet browsing safe from hackers. This protection is enabled for all customers who send their email via e3 Delivery Service.

You may wonder why Direct Mail did not encrypt email in transit right from version 1.0. The reason is that most email providers (like AOL, Yahoo, Hotmail, etc.) did not support the necessary technology until only recently. As the need for encryption and digital privacy has become more apparent, a large number of email providers have made the necessary changes to accept email over secure channels.

Despite these advances in email security, it’s important to remember that it is still not a good idea to send sensitive information like credit card numbers, social security numbers, passwords, etc. via email. As mentioned above, a large number of email providers support encryption in transit, but there are still some who do not. There may be subscribers on your mailing list whose email providers do not yet allow them to receive their email securely.