How are E-Cards Delivered?

E-cards are delivered using an e-mail delivery service. E-mail Delivery for e-cards is simply the distribution of your e-card through e-mail clients or systems. Whether you’ve created a static image e-card, or a complex animated one, your corporate e-card will need to be shared with your clients and colleagues. And while some businesses simply post the e-card to their website, if you want your e-card to reach its largest possible audience, the best option is to send it to your contacts by e-mail. E-cards can be delivered by e-mail in one of two ways: either by embedding it within the body of the e-mail, or by providing a clickable link that launches the e-card in the recipient’s web browser. In both cases, the e-mails will then need to be distributed to their intended recipients, in most cases by an E-mail Delivery System.

Simple static image e-cards can be embedded directly into the body of any e-mail, as they are usually in the .jpeg, .gif, or .png format. These image formats can easily be handled by e-mail clients. As your greeting message is most likely present on the e-card image, additional text other than a simple salutation and sign-off is required (“Dear ____” and “From _____”). Dynamic e-cards, such as Flash animation and video, cannot be embedded within an e-mail as e-mail client software does not yet support these rich-media formats. Instead, these e-card types are first hosted online at a domain of choice, and their accompanying URL is pasted within the body of the e-mail (ie. http://www.companyxyz-happyholidays.com). Alternatively, an embedded e-mail graphic that links to the domain can be used in place of the URL, allowing the recipient to click the image to launch the e-card. A short greeting message giving the recipient instructions on how to launch the e-card typically accompanies the link.

Once the e-mail content has been set up, the e-cards are ready for delivery. For a small number of recipients, this can be done through an e-mail client, such as Outlook. But in most cases, this will be accomplished through the use of an e-mail delivery system. These systems allow you to upload an assembled e-mail list that contains the e-mail addresses of your e-card recipients, and then delivers the e-mails either in batches, or a single blast, at a time and date that you schedule. Most e-mail delivery systems provide statistics letting you see who viewed your e-mail or e-card. Many businesses have internal e-mail delivery systems that will be perfect for this task. If not, 3rd party options are available, and most e-card vendors provide e-mail delivery services.

For additional information on e-mail delivery, be sure to check back in the coming weeks for our 2-part series on creating an effective e-card delivery campaign.

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