As a longtime MailChimp user and a member of their developer program, I feel a little disloyal saying this — but a WordPress plugin called MailPoet looks like a better choice those of you looking to create an integrated digital marketing, recruiting, and member retention program for your Toastmasters club.

MailPoet makes it easy to assemble content from blog posts and web pages, plus any other text and images you’d like to add, into an email newsletter. They provide a nice drag-and-drop visual designer (which you can see in the video below), which is particularly good for pulling together content you already have on your website (no need to upload it again to a separate service).

In addition, I’ve been working on ways of integrating meeting and special event content. If you have people register online to attend your meetings, you can invite them to sign up for your email list at the same time. These features are available to both Toastmost users and independent website administrators.

The video below is a mashup of a speech I gave at Online Presenters, plus some supplementary material.

watch on YouTube

And here’s an example of the welcome email guests at Online Presenters now get when they sign up for our email list as part of the process of signing up to attend a meeting.

As distinct from a group email discussion list, which is another handy tool for a club to have at its disposal, an email newsletter is good for sending out more polished and designed marketing messages.

The MailPoet email newsletter distribution service is free for up to 1,000 subscribers, as long as you don’t mind an ad in the footer, and competitively priced beyond that level. If you should happen to hit the 1,000-subscriber mark with your Toastmasters club promotions — first of all, congratulations! — you can figure out whether paying for the service makes sense. But I suspect most clubs will happily use the free tier of service for a good long time.

For more, including details on how to set this up on Toastmost, continue reading “Why a MailPoet Email Newsletter Might Make Sense for Your Club”→

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