New Message Tool - Sending Emails

 

The powerful New Message Tool allows you to send emails to your community with ease! Each contact receives a unique email and will not see who else the email was sent to. You can send an email to the parents of a selection, schedule the email to send later, honor bulk email opt-out requests, and the list goes on! Keep reading for a detailed walk through on sending an email using the New Message Tool.

Make sure your staff and volunteers can send emails using the New Message Tool by making sure the User's Email Quota in at least one Security Role that is greater than 0.

Inside the New Message Tool: Message Tab
Note: If your system is not configured to send text messages via the New Message Tool, you will not see the New Message email or text option. The header will simply say "New Message."

When you launch the New Message Tool, the tool opens as pictured. The various aspects of this tool are as follows:

1: Message Type

Select how you'd like to send your message, either by email or text.

2: To

If launched from a selection, the selected records are captured here. You can click the (...) to select different or additional records. Each Contact will receive a unique email and cannot see who else received the same Message.

3: Recipients

This list presents related records based on Sub-Page Views. To appear in this list, a Sub-Page View must have Messaging View = "True."

4: Send To Parents

Checking this box sends the Message to the parents of the Recipients. "Parent" is defined as any Household Member with Household Position "Head of Household" who has a valid email address and is not inactive/deceased. If the selected recipient is a Head of Household, they will not receive an email—nor will the other Head in their Household. Note: It also includes any Heads of Household associated via Other Household with Household Type "Non-Custodial Parent" unless the relationship is end-dated. And also note: If the Parent has opted out of receiving bulk emails, they will not be included when the message is sent. To include them, be sure to check the "Include recipients who have opted out of bulk email" box on the Advanced tab as described below.

5: Subject

The Message's subject line. A subject line is required for sending a Message from the New Message Tool.

6: Formatting Options

The New Message Tool has a variety of formatting options, including: bold, italics, underline, strikethrough, numbered list, bullet list, indent, outdent, align left, align center, align right, create link, remove link, insert image, toggle full screen, view HTML source. Note: If you view the HTML source, be sure to switch it back to the text before hitting send. If you don't, everyone will receive the HTML version of your email, which, depending on your audience, might make it challenging to ready ;)

7: Templates

If desired, you can choose a Template. Templates are useful for Messages sent with frequency or for ensuring consistent language. The list is organized based on the Template's Pertains to Page and the Page your recipient list was selected from. Any edits you make to a Template in the New Message Tool only apply to this specific Message (and do not update the Template record). Templates are available to Users with at least Read level permissions on the Templates page. Users will see Templates they have access to based on the Template User and Template User Group fields on the Template record.

8: Snippet

If desired, you can include Snippets in your Message. Snippets are pre-written HTML text that can be re-used over and over again. They often include links which quickly and easily grant the Message Recipient automatic access to their Portal account.

9: Fields

If desired, you can include Contact Fields in your Message. These merge fields facilitate personalizing a Message for the Recipient. For example, using the [Nickname] merge field automatically adds the Recipient's Nickname to the Message. If Send to Parents is used, the fields will be populated with the child's (the selected record) data.

If desired, you can include From User Fields in your Message. These merge fields facilitate personalizing a Message for the Sender. For example, using the [From_User_Nickname] merge field automatically adds the Sender's Nickname to the Message. Sender is defined as the currently authenticated User or a selected User for whom they are a delegate. 

If desired, you can include Data Fields in your Message. These are merge fields that allow you to quickly and easily add page-specific data to a Message. Data Fields are available on every page except Contacts. The Message must be sent via the selected page, rather than from the Home page. If Send to Parents is used, the fields will be populated with the child's (the selected record) data. Data fields are based on sub-page's fields if a sub-page view is selected for the Recipients list.

10: Insert Menu

Tap to display the Templates, Snippet, and Fields options.

11: Sending

Hover over the Send button to reveal the Send to Me, Safe as Draft, and Send options. A Message can be saved as a draft at any time. Once complete, a Message can be sent. Note that if no Contact Fields or Data Fields are used in the Message, duplicate emails will automatically be removed. For example, if a husband and wife have the same email address in each of their Contact records and both of their records are in the selection, one email would be sent to the one email address. (The Send count shown is calculated prior to duplicates being removed.)

To receive a copy of the Message for review before sending to all Recipients, choose "Send to Me." Note that "Send to Me" Messages will include, but not render: merge fields, data fields, and snippets. Attached files will be included. 

Inside the New Message Tool: Attached Files Tab

The Attached Files tab of the New Message Tool allows you to attach, open and remove file attachments. There is a 20 MB file size restriction. Additionally, the receiving systems (and possibly your sending system/SMTP server) may have smaller file size restrictions and, if so, those restrictions may prevent your email from being successfully delivered.

When attaching, you have the option to:

  • Add as Link
  • Add as Attachment

If you have multiple attachments, you can mix and match. Choosing Add as Link will add a bulleted list of links (one link for each attachment) to the bottom of the email. These links will not be visible on the Message record inside the tool. The recipient can click the link to open the attachment in their browser. The file is saved on the Message record and the link will pull the attachment from your MP server.

When at least one attachment has been added, a current count of attachments is visible via the badge icon overlaid on the Attached Files tab. This icon will also display a count if a selected Template contains attachments. 

 
Inside the New Message Tool: Advanced Tab

The Advanced tab allows you to further customize your Message:

 

1: From

The From drop-down indicates who is the sender of the Message. If a SPoC has granted a User rights to send on behalf of someone else, the From drop-down will include additional names. Note: If a From Contact is indicated on a Template, the sender of the email needs to be a delegate for that value to be honored.

2: Reply To

The Reply To drop-down indicates who receives replies to the Message. If a SPoC has granted a User rights to allow them to indicate someone other than themselves in the Reply To drop-down, the Reply To drop-down includes additional names. Note that email clients often handle out-of-office messages differently than replies; out-of-office messages may be returned directly to the sender indicated in the From drop-down.  Note: If a Reply to Contact t is indicated on a Template, the sender of the email needs to be a delegate for that value to be honored.

3: Scheduled to Send At

The Scheduled to Send At fields allow you to schedule a Message to be sent at a future time. 

4. Bulk Email

Checking this box includes Recipients whose Contact Records have Bulk Email Opt Out = True.

Sending a bulk email? Be sure to include an opt-out footer so people can opt-out of receiving future bulk emails if they want. By default, this box is unchecked and messages will not be sent to Contacts who have opted out of receiving bulk emails. To send a message to someone who has opted out of receiving bulk emails, you must check the box. Pro Tip: Include a link to the My Household Widget in your opt-out footer so Users can update their communication preferences, including opting out of receiving text messages and bulk email.