How Many Accounts Do I Need?

The user can be provided with one or more accounts.In order to optimally plan and deploy accounts, templates and user rights in the system it is helpful to comprehend what exactly an account represents.

As mentioned in the overview, an account is a space of addresses and functions. Modules, features and rights for each account can be individually configured. Furthermore it represents an address area where it is ensured that each address only appears once. Therefore, when a recipient unsubscribes, this always happens in relation to an account. This results in important consequences:

a) Newsletters and Target Groups Basically you can send multiple newsletters to different target groups from one account. When the target groups overlap, though, it might happen that a reader of one newsletter – unintentionally- unsubscribes from all newsletters, even if only intending to unsubscribe from one. Unsubscribing always affects the entire account (and the newsletters dispatched from it) in order to ensure that an unsubscribed address will not receive any more mailings.

In order to avoid this, you have two options:

the recipient can subscribe or unsubscribe for individual newsletters using a profile page. This information will be stored as contact field (profile option) in the address area. Signing off will only modify this contact field, leaving the recipient subscribed (active) for the remaining newsletters. This may become confusing, especially when handling larger data stocks: when uploading address data you need to ensure that these contact fields are not overwritten.

In such cases we recommend setting up one account per newsletter – in particular when address data overlaps must not occur (press, premium customers etc.).

b) Mapping Corporate Structures

Another reason for using multiple accounts is activity in diverse marketing segments or branches, and the involved mapping of corporate structures in the hierarchical account array. Thus branches can react independently to local market requirements in choice of topics and products. Placing these accounts under a master account enables regional managers to keep an overview and furthermore provide the branch accounts with shared content.

Data Collection, Contact Fields and Personalization

a) Subscription and Data Flow

First of all, written consent (permission) of the recipient is a precondition for sending newsletters. The way of obtaining this is plays a major role. Hurdles are high for subscribing via Double Optin procedure, but this method is legally unambiguous – as opposed to the Single Optin procedure which enables immediate subscription, but no inference about the subscriber’s identity. The registration form has to contain data protection notes and can only contain mandatory fields which are imperatively required for mailings. In general, this applies only to the email address. When intending to approach the reader in a more personal way, however, it is recommended to include information like first and last name or gender as optional fields in the form. Another consideration is where the data will flow. Many companies operate databases of their own in addition to the XQ:Campaign address pool. There are several options for avoiding inconsistencies between these systems:

Data flow into both systems, XQ:Campaign and own databases

Data flow into XQ:Campaign only and will be exported from there.

Data flow into own database only and will be imported prior to each mailing.

The latter is a rather risky option, since the XQ:Campaign system not only stores subscriptions but also contact field and unsubscribe data. The danger of overwriting legally relevant data can not always be excluded. In order to avoid duplicates (dupes) you should make an early decision on the primary key to use: the email address or a unique customer number. Per default the email address is set as primary key. This way you avoid multiple dispatch to one recipient; furthermore the unsubscribes will be non-ambiguous If you wish to enable the recipients to modify their addresses you need to provide them with a profile page where they can administer their data and interests – or you make the internal customer number the primary key. This key must then be included in each data import in order to ensure an unambiguous correlation.

b) Contact Fields and Personalization

The scope of information required from the recipient depends on how far you want to go in personalizing your mailing (see below). For personalization of salutation or subject only, first and last name will suffice. You will only need a neutral salutation as fallback for missing entries. If you wish to deliver local or tailored offers to the recipient it will be necessary to collect additional data at an early stage; these can be ZIP codes or personal areas of interest. The additional data can already be collected upon subscription or later on in surveys. The earlier you collect the data, the more complete future datasets will be.

The Principle of Data Avoidance according to the BDSG (Federal Data Protection Act) must be adhered to all the time.

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