Many businesses try to send out emails/newsletters to their customers and potential customers from their own email addresses. Big mistake.
If you want to send out emails on a regular basis (from 3 times a year to multiple times in a month) to at least 40 or more addresses at a time, you should use a third-party email service provider. For very little money, you can get a whole lot of useful information (stats) and keep your own email address from being seen as spam.
Once you have signed up with a service, their form can be embedded on one of your site pages.
These services will:
Let you design different “campaigns” in HTML (add color, font sizes, images, banners) and Plain Text (just the plain old text)
Keep the database of your email list
Allow people to subscribe from your site and pick specific categories they wish to subscribe in (i.e.: interests, preferences)
Allow people to update their addresses and unsubscribe if they want
Report which addresses are no longer good
Tell you what percentage of people opened the email and how many clicked through to your site
Divide up your master email list into smaller lists for pinpoint marketing
Let you send out surveys
There are lots of other stats they give you for each email sent out, such as which were opened, which links were clicked on and of what percentage, bounced emails, unsubscribed and more. You can pay a monthly fee or simply as you use the service.
What I usually do for clients when setting up their bulk email provider is:
Start a master list on the email service site with the client’s email list
Complete the master list with all the email addresses or train the client to do it in-house
Set up the templates for each type of email needed
Train the clients to edit the new email campaign, if they want to do it themselves or offer this service for me to do it
Go over the concepts in the stats seen in the service to learn from the results for future campaigns