Constant Contact Best Practices

Settings

Keep all global settings on the “My Settings” page non-person specific.

  • Only exception: If you will be the ONLY person in your department using this account.
  • If your department has more than one individual sending emails, you can add your name using the specific message settings and message blocks of the email to personalize it.
  • You should not change the department's user name. If for some reason you feel a change is necessary, your department's Primary Contact should discuss the change with Webster's Constant Contact Administrator. Changing the user name will impact billing arrangements.

Join My Mailing List

If you intend to use the Join My Mailing List functionality, consult with your specified Constant Contact representative to make sure features are set up appropriately. Also, consider these points:

  • Any list you specify as a “Join My Mailing List” list (through the Contacts page) will allow any individual to sign up for the list. You will not be able to restrict who can sign up.
  • If you use this functionality, be sure to customize the Welcome, Change of Interest, and Update Profile emails accordingly (accessible via Contacts > Join My Mailing List) before publicizing your lists.
  • If you plan to use your account exclusively for private lists and not utilize any true public mailing lists, please keep in mind that someone may still be able to add themselves to the General Interest list (which you would have renamed to your department). Therefore, you should still modify the "Welcome" and "Change of Interest" emails to communicate to users that this is not an active list and that questions about your department should be directed to the a designated contact. You should also verify the "Update Profile" email has an appropriate message. This is the confirmation email your contacts will receive when they update their information.

Contacts

  • For consistency, best practice is to maintain all your lists in external files, such as Excel spreadsheets, and upload them to Constant Contact. When the list needs to be updated, export its contents from Constant Contact back to the other software. Later, re-upload the changed lists.
  • One contact may be a member of multiple lists, but Constant Contact will contain only ONE record for that contact. Therefore, any updates to a contact happen across every list in your department's account.

Sending Guidelines

  • You may import Excel files (.xls), but if the file contains complicated formatting or errors during the import process, save it as a comma-separated file (.csv).
  • Schedule emails between 5:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m. CT.
  • If you plan to send to 4000 or more webster.edu email addresses, contact the IT Service Desk at least three business days prior to the distribution to ensure email server availability. Call the Service Desk at 314-968-5995 or 1-866-435-7270.

Important:

Your department must decide how to assign custom fields because contacts are shared across lists. For example, if in one list Custom Field 1 stores a contact's major, it stores the major in all lists. Custom Field 1 CANNOT store different data (e.g., a financial aid award) in any other list.  Consider keeping a departmental spreadsheet that lists each custom field and what it's used for so that anyone who creates a new list will not assign different data to a custom field that's already in use.