Customer and Reservation E-mail Lists and Batch E-mailing

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These functions, Customer E-mail List and Reservation E-mail List, can be used to generate a list of customers with their E-mail lists.  They are available in the Reports menu, but you can also get to them through the Customer menu (for Customer E-mail list) and Reservations menu (for Reservation E-mail list).  


The same E-mail list dialog may also be invoked from right-click menus on many tab views (e.g. on the Arrivals tab view, right click and select Print or E-mail for all shown reservations / Reservation E-mail List).  In that case, the list will be automatically filtered/limited to those reservations/customers currently shown on the Arrivals tab view.


As with the Customer Mailing Labels report, you can use the Reservation Filtering to select various criteria for which customers to be shown.  Additional options are available to only show customers that have an E-mail address (or at least have an "@" symbol in the E-mail field), and also to exclude customers that have the Exclude from E-mail flag or the Warning flag set.


While Campground Master can be used to send mass mailings (see below), this list can also be exported to a CSV file for use in other programs to do the mass mailings -- use Export List.



Sending E-mails (Batch E-mailing)


Besides just getting a list of customer E-mails to print or export, this dialog is used to batch-send E-mails to the list.  You can select 1 or more customers to E-mail (highlight the rows as usual), or send to the entire list (the default when none are selected).  Of course this assumes that you have done the SMTP Setup so that E-mailing from Campground Master is possible, and that your Access Level allows sending E-mails to multiple customers.


When enabled, you will have some additional options available:


E-mail format -- this drop-down list allows you to select which Form to send (and in some cases a "blank" option allows you to send a free-form E-mail, which you will type in after clicking Send).  The Form selections depend on the situation (e.g. Customer vs Reservation forms), but the available forms depends on the enabled E-mail Forms defined in the Forms Setup.  If you're in the Customer E-mail list function (as opposed to the Reservation E-mail list), then it will only show Forms that were specifically designated as Customer-based.  That is, they can't have any reservation-specific information on them like a site number or dates, confirmation number, etc.  While no Customer-based E-mail forms are defined by default, it would be appropriate to create Customer-based Forms for general messages like "thank you for your stay" or "upcoming events".


Edit Form -- if the Form selected above is a custom form, and if you have sufficient operations access, then this button will appear so you can make last-minute changes to the form if needed (through Edit Form Definition).


Show... Transaction selections -- if a form is selected that contains a transactions table, e.g. the E-mail Receipt, then you will have the typical options for what transactions to include just like for printing receipts.


Attach file(s) to E-mail -- You can select one or more files to attach to all E-mails sent.  This would be appropriate for a campground flyer, upcoming events calendar, etc.


Preview each E-mail -- If this is selected, every E-mail will be shown to you before sending, so you can view and edit it as needed before sending, and they will be sent one at a time as you tell it.  This of course is very slow and cumbersome if you send more than a few, but it's a good idea to do this with a few at first before sending to a whole list, so you can make sure everything looks correct.


Send Customer Emails (or Send Reservation E-mails) -- Finally, this button would be clicked to start sending the batch.  A confirmation will be shown first, indicating how many will be sent.  If you didn't have the Preview option selected, then it will start sending them quickly in "batches" with pauses between them, as defined in the Batch E-mail Options.  For instance, it may send 10 at a time, with a 5-second pause between them.  This is partly to allow you a chance to cancel during sending (during each pause period), but is also helpful in keeping your E-mail provider from flagging you as sending spam.



Resuming a batch


This information applies to the basic Customer/Reservation E-mail List report, e.g. entered through the main Reports menu or through the right-click functions on tab views. Monthly Billing and Meter Reading functions handle this separately, see those sections for details.


If a batch is canceled or stops due to an error, it will ask if you want to keep the unsent ones selected for re-sending.  If you do, then those will be selected in the list, so all you have to do to resume is click the Send button again.  (If you change what is selected and click Send again, then it will ask whether you want to use the new selection or the saved 'unsent' list.)


You may also need to exit this report function to make corrections before continuing -- don't worry, if there are unsent records then it will ask if you want to save those for next time.  As long as you re-enter the report the same way again (e.g through the Reports menu, vs Arrivals, etc), and on the same workstation, then it will offer to re-select them again.  Note that this also means it will keep a list of unsent records for each tab view separately.  Also note that this list is workstation-specific, so each computer keeps track of its own list of unsent records for each tab view or report function.



General warning about batch-sending E-mails


Any time you send large quantities of E-mail, you risk being labeled as a "spammer" by your customers, your internet service provider, your E-mail provider (e.g. G-Mail), or any number of E-mail black-list organizations.  Therefore we caution you to be very conservative with E-mail sending.  Do your due diligence in finding out what restrictions your providers may have and study the general best practices discussed on the Internet.  Limit E-mail sending to only recent customers who have a legitimate need to know about what you're sending them.  We cannot be responsible for any issues that may arise from sending mass E-mails or for the content of those E-mails.



Additional Topics:


SMTP (Send mail) Setup


Confirmation E-mail Text & Options


Invoice, Receipt and Statement E-mail text



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