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toesslab - Newsletter

Send stylish newsletters to your registered users or any user group of your site.

Do you have the Public Registration Feature enabled on your website? Then this plugin is a must!

Design multiple templates easily.
Create multiple newsletters and bind them to any of your templates.
Choose user groups a Newsletter will be sent to.
Exclude individual users from the list if you wish.
You may send newsletters directly or over the concrete5 feature "Automated Jobs".
Decide how many emails will be sent per minute/hour/day/month.

This Add-On is fully translatable. German is included. French will follow.

Features:

  • Create as many Templates as you like and use them in different Mailings.
  • Create as many Newsletters as you like and associate them to a Template.
  • Send mailings to multiple user groups.
  • Send mailings directly or over the "Automated Jobs" feature.
  • Various settings are possible:
    • Send mailings over the concrete5 "Automated Jobs" feature or directly. If sending by "Automated Jobs", you may decide how many emails will be sent per minute/hour/day or month. This is an important setting because many providers today limits the amount of emails being sent in a certain period of time.
    • Set the maximum number of attachments that can be send.
    • Set the maximum size of attachments.
    • Get a report about already sent or saved mailings.
  • A Newsletter may have a header, body and footer text.
  • Include User Attributes as placeholder to all texts. Those placeholders will be replaced by the corresponding user value while sending.
  • All Newsletter texts have the integrated concrete5 Redactor Rich Text feature.
  • Inside the Redactor you may choose your favorite font family from a list of all available Google fonts.
  • A Template has loads of styling features:
    • Header image (linked to your site)
    • Header background color
    • Header size
    • Header margin & padding
    • Header borders
    • Title styling (h1 to h5)
    • Body background color
    • Body size
    • Body margin & padding
    • Body borders
    • Footer background color
    • Footer size
    • Footer margin & padding
    • Footer borders
  • Preview your Templates.
  • Preview your Newsletters in combination with any of your Templates.
  • Send test emails of your Newsletters in combinations with any of your Templates.
  • See all your mailings already sent in the "Newsletter History".
  • Test the sitewide email settings before sending any mailing into the Nirvana.

How to use:

  1. Install the package.
  • Settings:
  1. Set the maximum number of attachments per mailing.
  2. Set the maximum size of an attachment.
  3. Send Mailings as "Automated Job" or directly.
  4. If sending by "Automated Job" set the number of emails being sent in period of time. (Minute, hour, day or month).
    Refer to your provider or webmaster for more information about the allowed limit. This is very important, because if you don't follow the rules of your provider, your newsletters are not being sent and your provider may block your e-mail service because their spam rules.
  1. Decide if you'd like to receive a report by email about every mailing being sent.
  2. Enter the "From:" and "Reply-To:" email address
  3. Save the settings.
  • Templates:
  1. Create a new Template or choose one in the list to edit.
  2. Choose background color, margin & padding, size, borders and title styles of the header, body and footer. Please refer to the three existing Templates delivered with the add-on. If you need help with the styling feature, don't hesitate to contact support@toesslab.ch.
  3. Decide whether there should be a header image or not.
  4. Preview the Template.
  5. Send test emails of your Templates.
  • Newsletters:
  1. Create a new Newsletter or choose one in the list to edit.
  2. Write header, body and footer text with the Rich Text Editor of concrete5.
  3. Attach the Newsletter to any of your Templates previously designed.
  4. Attach files to the Newsletter.
  5. Preview the Newsletter with any of your templates.
  6. Send test emails of your Newsletters.

Design Templates:

To start it is advisable to duplicate one of the 2 existent templates and play around with it. A template is divided into four parts. All parts have a background, padding, margin and border section. These can be styled using CSS (Cascading Style Sheets). See explanations on CSS below.

Head Section

In the Head section, you may choose to insert an Image, like your logo or a portrait. This image will be linked to your concrete5 website. The following settings can be made concerning the header image:

  • The size of the image:
    • Changing the width value will automatically calculate the height value and vice versa.
  • The position of the image in the head container:
    • Left
    • Center
    • Right
  • The position of the whole header relative to the mail container
    • Top
    • Right
    • Bottom
    • Left

Body and Footer Section

The following settings can be made here:

  • Background color and minimum height
  • Padding
  • Margin
  • Borders
Headers

There are 5 different headers which can be used in the rich text editor inside the Newsletters. Here you can style them as follows:

  • Font family
  • Font weight
  • Font size
  • Font color
  • Padding
  • Margin

CSS Explanations

CSS is used to style the parts of the template. Templates can be styled using the CSS units pixel or percent. The CSS-commands being used in are explained below.

Text styling is made inside the rich text editor of concrete5. Please refer to the Editors Guide of concrete5.

Padding

Explanation
Padding is the distance between the container and the inner content.
In this example the padding is as follows:
  • Padding Top: 5 Pixels
  • Padding Right: 10 Pixels
  • Padding Bottom: 15 Pixels
  • Padding Left: 20 Pixels

Margin

Explanation
Margin is the distance between the container and its parent container, in our case this would be the email body.
In this example the margin is as follows:
  • Margin Top: 5 Pixels
  • Margin Right: 10 Pixels
  • Margin Bottom: 15 Pixels
  • Margin Left: 20 Pixels

Minimum height


Explanation
The minimum height defines the height a container must have. If the content is bigger than this height, the height will be adapted automatically.
In this example the minimum height is as follows:
  • Minimum height: 75 Pixels

Borders

Explanation
Borders may have width defined in pixels. They can be on top, right, bottom or left side of the container. The following styles are allowed:

Positioning

Explanation
The position of an element is in relation to it's parent container in that case the mail container.

Headers

Explanation
There are 5 headers defined in the rich text editor of concrete5 (in HTML generally there are 6 of them). You may define font family, style, color, weight, padding and margin of them.

Units

Following CSS units are allowed:
pixels or percents.
  • Pixels: In digital imaging, a pixel, pel, or picture element is a physical point in a raster image, or the smallest addressable element in an all points addressable display device ... Read more. [1]
  • Percent: The percentage CSS data types represent a percentage value. Many CSS properties can take percentage values, often to define sizes in terms of parent objects ... Read more. [2]
[1] Reference: Wikipedia
[2] Reference: Mozilla Developer Network

Create Newsletters

As for the templates, there are three section of the newsletter: Head, Body Foot. These are then inserted in the template you choose to be attached with the newsletter. The content is made by using the integrated rich text editor of concrete5. Please refer to the Editors Guide of concrete5.

User attributes

A part of that you may insert user attributes defined in the member section of your dashboard. These attributes will then be filled with the corresponding value of each user the newsletter will be sent to. These values will only be visible, when sending the mailing or sending a test message. The following user attribute can be inserted:

  • Text
  • Number
  • Date/Time
  • Email
  • Address
  • Text Area
  • toesslab - First Name
  • toesslab - Last Name
  • toesslab - Address

Simply click at the desired position in the editor, then click on the desired attribute and it will be inserted at the cursors position.

There are four user attributes coming with this add-on:

  • toesslab - First Name
  • toesslab - Last Name
  • toesslab - Address
    • Dear
    • Dear Madam
    • Dear Sir
    • Madam
    • Misses
    • Mister
    • Sir
  • Receive toesslab - Newsletter
    • Yes
    • No
Receive toesslab - Newsletter is the most important one and has been added because of the spam rules being in place today. You are strongly advised to add an information in the newsletter to tell your members that there is the possibility to unsubscribe from the newsletter by adapting this user attribute.
IMPORTANT: Any member having this attribute set to "No" is not receiving the mailing!

Please do not delete this attribute!

Social Links

The same way Social links can be inserted such as Facebook, Google+ etc. Those social links are defined under Dashboard -> System & Settings -> Basics -> Social Links. Please be aware that there is no warranty that the icons will be shown in all email clients.