While mass email can be an effective way to communicate with internal audiences, knowing how best to use it, when, and with what tools can sometimes be confusing. The following provides a brief explanation of resources available to University of Minnesota communicators and guidelines for effective use of internal mass email.
As with all communications, proper planning is essential to ensure the success of internal mass email. Communicators and others often spend a great deal of time planning and producing print pieces, but the same amount of rigor is sometimes lacking in email communications.
The University's mass email tool, Lyris, is transitioning to ExactTarget. With this new tool, each mass email will incur a charge for each email address a message is sent to. This cost, combined with our internal audience's perception that they receive too much mass email, makes it more important than ever to carefully weigh how we communicate internally.
Consider the following before deciding your communication must be done via mass email:
If you would like to send a mass internal email to a large audience (e.g., all students, faculty, and/or staff, your request must be approved by a University vice president or vice provost.
Contact your office or unit's communications staff to initiate this request. If it is determined by your staff communicator that a mass email is appropriate, that person will fill out the Mass Email Request Form (MERF) to schedule your email. At least one week's notice is required to process your email request.
Use of the University's mass internal email system is governed by the following principles:
The Administrative Email List is, built using job code queries and is designed to be an effective way to communicate with University administrators, deans, directors, and department heads. The list is regularly pulled from job codes to ensure that it t is current.
University Relations manages most emails to the AEL list. If you would like to send to the AEL, work with the senior communicator in your college or unit to make the request to University Relations.
If you have questions about the AEL, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Using UM Reports, units can create their own campus mail or email lists. This tool gives units the ability to customize a mailing list to best suit the individual needs of each mailing; e.g., campus, active appointments only, specific colleges, full/part time, employee group, appointment term exclusions, etc. Please refer to HRMS Business Process: Custom Campus Mailings & Email Lists (PDF) and familiarize yourself with the restrictions of the tool and the University guidelines for producing mass communications.
For questions about mass internal email contact email@example.com.
Each campus has targeted email newsletters that may be a better place for your message. Consider the following before sending your own mass email.
Currents (newsletter for faculty and staff)
Send all requests for news articles, news releases, Currents social media, and to be included in the UMD section of Brief to firstname.lastname@example.org
Contact Cheryl Reitan, External Affairs, email@example.com, 218-726-8996
Bulldog Update (weekly digest of campus activities for students)