Feature Friday: RSS-to-Email in Publicaster Edition

Did you know you could be sending an email featuring your blog content? The best part is you set it up once and then don’t lift a finger after that.

Once you set up an RSS-to-Email campaign in Publicaster, it automatically pulls in updated content from your RSS feed. It then sends this email to a list or segmentation of subscribers you’ve already chosen. Set it to send in real time or on a weekly or daily basis – the choice is yours.

If you choose to send in real time, Publicaster will shoot out the email within a couple minutes of your blog being updated. For media and publishing companies, there’s no waiting until tomorrow, to get today’s news. Whatever you decide, each email in the RSS-to-Email campaign will draw in all updated content since the last email was sent.

This tool avoids the need for a third-party application to send these triggered messages. That means you get to schedule the sends when they’re best suited for your needs, and don’t have to wait on someone else to do it for you.

And unlike a third-party vendor, with this Publicaster feature you also have the ability to control the complete look, feel and placement of the feed content in your email. Instead of a generic third-party branding, you can customize your email to fit your brand. By placing the feed content snippet in the creative, you control exactly where in the email the feed content will be rendered. Additionally, you can view campaign reports for these emails, just as you would with regular distributions.

So how do you set up an RSS-to-Email campaign in Publicaster?

First, populate a list or segmentation in the List Manager with the RSS feed subscribers. Create and save the email template in the Creative Manager. The email must contain the [~FeedContent~] code snippet in order to pull in data. The snippet automatically formats the email.

Use the RSS Feed Content code snippet.

If you don’t like the look, you can change it by using custom XSLT when you go to deploy the campaign.

Edit the look and feel of the RSS-to-Email campaign with XSLT.

If you select yes to use a custom template, Publicaster will automatically load the base template that’s used internally, which you can edit to your heart’s content. This allows you to change any aspect of the feed content display in the email including INLINE CSS.

Now you’re ready to set up the campaign to send. In the Campaign Manager, select the RSS to Email dropdown menu option.

Choose RSS-to-Email in the Campaign Manager.

The rest is straightforward: Give your campaign a name; tell the platform where your RSS feed is located; and decide if you want to include a table of contents section.

Fill in the RSS-to-Email campaign information.

Next, enter the day the campaign should begin sending and the frequency with which Publicaster should send (real time, daily, weekly). Select the list or segmentation that will receive the email. Use a suppression list and seed list if necessary. If you want Publicaster to track the email campaign’s metrics for reporting purposes, make sure link tracking is enabled.

Select the date and time and frequency of the RSS-to-Email send.

A few final steps, and then you’re set! Choose the email template, campaign series, from/reply to addresses, and physical mailing address. Finally, scroll to the top and click the “Is Active” box. Hit Save and you’re finished. This campaign will now run on its own until you turn it off, allowing you to send emails subscribers asked for without doing a lot of work.

There’s no use setting up an RSS-to-Email campaign if people can’t sign up to receive it. Setting up a dedicated opt-in form for this email is a must. As with any email you send, make sure subscribers know what content will be in it and how often it will come to their inboxes.

Have questions about RSS-to-Email campaigns? Ping us at support@whatcounts.com.

Joy Ugi
Digital Marketing Coordinator, WhatCounts
Twitter: @ugigirl

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2 Comments

  1. Why is my RSS Feed data only displaying a “N/A” where the content is supposed to go? My RSS feed has data in it.

    Reply
    • Branson, I’m not sure why that’s happening. Shoot our support team an email – they can definitely help you figure it out. support@whatcounts.com

      Reply

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