Setting up Newsletter
Get the latest plug-in
If you've already installed the Threadloom plug-in, upgrade to the latest version from the Threadloom Portal. If you haven't installed the Threadloom plug-in:
- Create a free account at https://www.threadloom.com/signup.
- Register your forum and select Newsletter when choosing your products
- Download and install the plug-in. See installation instructions here.
Indexing typically runs at about 250-500K posts per hour. You'll receive an email notification once indexing is complete, at which point you can configure your Newsletter settings.
Note: You don't need to use Threadloom Search in order to use Threadloom Newsletter.
Configure your Newsletter settings
Once Threadloom is done building your index, you can configure your Newsletter settings by logging into your Threadloom Portal.
Choose which forum user groups should receive your newsletter. You can also exclude specific user groups or users.
Set active and inactive user group thresholds and choose which activity groups should receive your newsletter.
When you're done choosing your recipients, you'll see an estimate of your total recipients and projected monthly cost.
Threadloom offers two sending options:
- Send from email@example.com
This is the easiest option. It requires no additional setup; you just need to specify a sender name. Any user who replies to this address will get an auto-reply message directing them to your forum.
- Send from an address at your domain.
This option requires some DNS setup to allow Threadloom to send on behalf of your email address. Recipients will get your newsletter from a familiar address and you'll be able to receive replies directly.
If you choose Option 2, Threadloom will provide 5 CNAME records for you to add to your DNS zone records.
- If you are using Cloudflare to manage your DNS records, please disable Cloudflare caching for these 5 CNAMEs.
- If you have HSTS enabled for your main site, please make sure "include subdomains" is turned off, and that HSTS is not enabled for these 5 CNAMEs.
- If you are sending from an email address other than your forum domain.tld, drop us a line.
More info on how to add CNAMEs:
- GoDaddy (you can use a TTL value of 3600 seconds)
- Google Domains
- Note: If you use 1&1 to manage your DNS records, we need to generate an alternate, old-school version because they don't support underscores.
Image, colors, and preview
- Upload a JPG image file for your Newsletter banner image. We only support JPG files for support across browsers and email clients. Recommended size is 1200 x 200 pixels.
- Input hex or RGB color values to style your Newsletter.
- See what your Newsletter will look like in the web preview.
Select which forum nodes you want Threadloom to source content from to create your newsletters.
If you don't want posts from the same thread to appear in back-to-back issues, you can set how many weeks should pass before a previously published thread shows up again. By default, this is set to 0, which means that Threadloom won't exclude threads from past issues. (Regardless of what you set this to, Threadloom will not show the same post in more than 1 issue unless you manually insert it.)
Your schedule determines when Threadloom generates candidate posts for your next newsletter issue, how long you have to score and review your newsletter, and when your newsletter will email your subscribers.
Add email addresses for trusted users who should get notifications to score and review content.
Before you send your first email, here's some information on how Newsletter works.
Threadloom Newsletter runs on the following schedule:
- Threadloom nominates threads and the scoring period opens
- Scoring period closes & review period opens
- Review period closes
- Newsletter sends
You can customize your schedule in the Threadloom portal. You can also modify the schedule for the current issue while you're scoring or reviewing your newsletter.
After Threadloom nominates threads for your next issue, you can either score and review the content before it's published or auto-publish (by skipping scoring).
Scoring threads allows you to designate which threads will show up in your next issue. It also helps Threadloom learn what content you like.
Curators receive the following reminders for each issue:
- Scoring is open (includes a link to the scoring portal, where curators can score content and edit the preview text, subject, and preheader text)
- Scoring is about to close
- Scoring is closed
- Newsletter preview link
The timing of these emails is based on the schedule you establish during setup.
During the scoring period you can also edit your subject line, intro and outro email text, and any of the top threads in your issue. (Note: We automatically add a personalized greeting at the top of each email, e.g. "Hi [%<forum>_user_name | there%]!".)
After scoring closes, you'll receive an email with a preview of your issue. You'll have a period of time (determined by your schedule) to review your newsletter, edit your content, and cancel, if necessary.
If you don't score any articles, emails will automatically go out with the top 10 articles after the review period ends. The subject and preheader text are automatically generated from the top thread. You also have the option to set a sticky subject, preheader text, and intro and outro paragraphs that persist across issues.
Once you've finished configuration, contact firstname.lastname@example.org to turn on Newsletter.
Note: Threadloom warms up new editions to protect your domain and IP reputation. For your first issue, we email up to 50 contacts, followed by up to 500 contacts in your second issue, and 5,000 contacts in your third issue before sending to your target number of recipients in your fourth issue.