Sending your own newsletters for FREE
I am sending my pagayo.com newsletters for free with WordPress. But before you start doing this please read this blog posts.
Why would you want to send your own newsletter?
- It is cheaper/free.
- You can create anything you want.
- You have 100% control.
What are the downsides of mailing your own newsletter?
- If you abuse it and many people mark you domain as spam your domain name gets damaged.
- Your server has lots to do.
- You need to set it up first.
So why do it anyway?
I have tested many newsletter solutions and not one of them could do what I want. MailChimp was the only one I did like, but when you have more newsletters to send it starts to get expensive very fast.
So lets start creating our own Newsletter mailing system. What do you need?
- A good and limit free cheap server. Check this one It is good, cheap and well supported.
- Install WordPress. When using SiteGround you start/install WordPress in 1 click
- Install this free WordPress plugin.
- Create your first newsletter.
- Start sending.
So that’s it? No it is not that simple. The main problem you have now is your emails will not be trusted. So you need to setup SMTP in your Newsletter plugin. Below you can see my setting.
So now we are ready? No you are still not ready. Now your newsletter is being mailed by SMTP and not by PHP but you still have a problem. Many people use Gmail and your mail will arrive but looking like this;
That does not look good at all.
So to prevent this from happening you need to set up SPF
Sender Policy Framework (SPF) is a simple email-validation system designed to detect email spoofing by providing a mechanism to allow receiving mail exchangers to check that incoming mail from a domain comes from a host authorized by that domain’s administrators. The list of authorized sending hosts for a domain is published in the Domain Name System (DNS) records for that domain in the form of a specially formatted TXT record. Email spam and phishing often use forged “from” addresses, so publishing and checking SPF records can be considered anti-spam techniques.
But you are in luck, you have listened to me and you have created a account at SiteGround. So you have cPanel and with it, this is very simple. In cPanel you can create your SPF by using “Email Authentication”.
Here you can see my settings. For security reasons I have changed and blurred my ip address.
v=spf1 +a +mx +ip4:37.32.280.41 +a:pagayo.com +mx:pagayo.com -all
Now we are done. Your email will be trusted and look like this now. Do not worry, my head will not popup in your mails 🙂
If you have any more questions or suggestions, please let me know.