The College of Arts and Sciences has set up a HTML email newsletter system that can be used on any wordpress powered website, or just set up as a stand alone newsletter site. The following document will help you get started.
Below is a video overview of the written directions at the bottom of this document.
NOTE: If you have any problems with the steps below you can get help by going to the web.unc.edu support forums and post your questions there.
1) Setup a WordPress Website.
If you do not have a wordpress website already you will need to set one up by going to http://web.unc.edu/getting-started and following the directions there. If you already have a wordpress website skip to step 2.
2) Activate the WYSIJA Newsletter Plugin.
After you have created your site you can log into the Dashboard and active the plugin by going to “Plugins” and scrolling down to “Wysija Newsletters”. Hover over the title and click the “Activate” link.
You will now see a Wysija link on the left hand side of your dashboard. You can click on it and watch an introduction video to using Wysija. You will click the “Take me to Wysija” button under the video to get to the other settings and start using Wysija.
3) Configure your Email Basic Settings
Go to Wysija – Settings on the left hand side navigation. By default you will be in the “Basics” tab at the top. Enter your unit’s address, choose what email notification options you would like and your from name & email address. Click the “Save Settings” button at the bottom.
4) Configure the Activation Email
We recommend you send users an activation email when they subscribe to your list. This is to help make sure you do not end up with spam on your list. Click the “Activation Email” tab at the top of the Wysija – Settings page and configure the activation email.
5) Configure the Sending Method
Click on the “Sending Method” tab at the top of the Wysija – Settings screen. Click the “SMTP” button on the far right and enter the following information.
SMTP Hostname: relay.unc.edu
SMTP port: 25
Secure connection: No
Leave “Login” and “Password” blank. You can then click the “Send a test mail” button to and it should send a test email to the email address listed as the administrator of the site.
At the bottom you should set the send option to be no more than 200 emails every 5 minutes.
6) Setting up Subscription Lists
Click on Wysija – Subscribers to get to the subcribers lists. By default there is a “Synced WordPress” list which takes all those that are users on your site and adds them to a list. You will probably want to set up a list for those that you will be sending newsletters out to. You may only need one, but you could conceivably create as many lists as you need.
In the Subscriber page click the “Add List” button at the top. Give your list a name (i.e. Monthly Newsletter, Weekly Newsletter, etc.). This name will show up to subscribers when they sign up.
Click the “Edit Lists” button at the top and remove any lists you are not going to use (‘My first list’ is a default list that is installed the first time you activate the plugin).
If you have an existing list you can click on the “Import” button at the top of Wysija – Subscribers to import users into a list. Please do not subscribe people who have not already asked to be subscribed to your lists.
7) Creating a Subscription Form
You now need a way for users to subscribe to your lists. You do this by going to Appearance – Widgets. On the left you will find a “Wysija Subscription” widget. Click and drag the title over to the right hand side and put it in one of the widget areas. If you are using this website and you want to put it in a sidebar be sure to put it in the sidebar you want the subscription to show up on. If you are going to embed the subscription form on another site you can just put it anywhere.
Configure the widget and click the Save button at the bottom. After you have saved your widget you can view your site to see how it looks.
If you want to embed this on another site click the “iFrame version” link at the bottom and copy the code and put it on your site.
8) Example Newsletter and Duplicating Newsletters
Everything is configured now and you are ready to create your first newsletter. Wysija comes preconfigured with two themes. You can go to Wysija – Newsletters to see an example newsletter. We suggest leaving that one there for your reference and hovering over the title and clicking the “Duplicate” button before playing with anything. That way you will always have that example newsletter there.
When you duplicate a newsletter it allows you to select the group it is going to go to when you are done. Once you get into the newsletter it is set up as a experiment to guide you through using the tool. It will take about 15 minutes to read through it and do the different things listed there. I would highly suggest taking that time as it will answer a lot of questions you have.
9) Installing the UNC Theme based newsletter.
OASIS has created a UNC themed e-newsletter you can add to your site. Download the UNC E-Newsletter theme here.
You can use this theme on your newsletter by going to Themes on the right hand side of a Newsletter creation page. Select the “Add more themes” button. In the pop up dialog select the “Upload Theme (.zip)” button. Browse to the .zip file downloaded above. Once it uploads you will get a confirmation “The theme has been installed on yours site.” You can close out of the upload screen by pressing the X in the top right hand corner.
NOTE: Right now there is a bug when uploading the newsletter that makes it so it does not immediately show up in your themes after upload. If this happens to you scroll to the bottom of the compose screen and select “Next Step” and then once you are in the third step click the “go back to design” link at the bottom of that page. Your theme will now show up in the themes tab on the right.
10) Modifying the header image on the UNC Theme
The default UNC header is a placeholder with a Unit name and the college logo. Here is a .zip file with a few UNC Template headers in photoshop format. Included is:
Once you have customized the header you can upload it in images and insert it into the header to replace the default header.
11) Default Content
The Wysija newsletter currently does not allow you to create default content in the theme. Here is an example of a default newsletter with some ideas about what you could put in it. If you are in the College of Arts and Sciences you can submit a request here and we will set this template up for you on your site.
After it is set up you can use the duplicate button (see step 8) to create your newsletters.
12) Sending your Newsletter
Once you have created your newsletter you can send it by clicking on the “Next Step” at the bottom of Step 2. This will bring you to a final configuration screen where you can set the subject line, select what lists this newsletter will go to, email setting and then send it. When you are ready to send it you can click the “Send” button at the bottom of the screen.
NOTE: If you have any problems with any of the steps above you can get help by going to the web.unc.edu support forums and post your questions there.