4 Replies Latest reply on Jan 10, 2010 3:34 PM by wideEyedPupil

    Email newsletter creation in FW. Not previewing in Mail (mac app).Ipreface

    wideEyedPupil Level 1

      I'm total newb to Fireworks (but have extensive print design experience) so apologies if this is a silly question. I am required to produce an email newsletter and am using the exercise as a way of introducing myself to FW and DW and web design. My idea of the easiest way to do this (for me) was to produce something I could get into Safari and then use it's (nifty) Mail Contents of this Page… command to create the email in Mail Application.

       

      If I import the content to FireWorks, it previews in Safari AoK but when I use Mail Contents of this Page… I get an email message full of image placemarkers with question marks in them (plugin style icons).

       

      I know this feature (Mail Contents of this Page…) works for a lot of content I've tried it with including Dreamweaver content. I've tried a dozen or so work flows including exporting HTML and images from FW and opening that in Safari.

       

      My workflow was InDesign --> export as flattened PDF (with layers) --> open in Photoshop and cut into individual images and Save for Web… --> import images from PS or  whole flattened PDF direct to FW --> make slices over images (almost all the text is in spec fonts so is rendered out as images)

       

      Any ideas for a sure-Fire(works) workflow to produce a glossy (X)HTML newsletter?

       

      Any idea why the export from FW looks good in Safari but fails as a Mac Mail HTML message?

       

      For now I'm emailing a link to the online PDF to ship on time but I very much wish to master HTML emails and an efficient workflow.

       

      Cheers and thanks in advance.

        • 1. Re: Email newsletter creation in FW. Not previewing in Mail (mac app).Ipreface
          pixlor Level 4

          Fireworks is not an HTML authoring environment. Let me repeat that. Fireworks is not an HTML authoring environment!

           

          The HTML export feature of Fireworks is so that you can produce a mockup of a Web design for approvals and such. The HTML is not robust. Couple that with the problem that email clients support a limited set of HTML and CSS and you have a recipe for disaster. When you write HTML newsletters you need to go about them in a slightly different way. But you still need to know your HTML.

           

          HTML newsletters are tricky things. You can't expect a graphics program to produce something that's going to work. You can use Fireworks to design your newsletter. You can slice the design and export the items that will be graphics. But then, you should use Dreamweaver or a plain old text editor to write the HTML and CSS that will work well for email clients.

           

          There are two HTML mailing services that also have lots of info on writing HTML newsletters. Check out the info they have on best practices and the limitations in clients:

          CampaignMonitor: http://www.campaignmonitor.com/resources/

          MailChimp: http://www.mailchimp.com/articles/

          • 2. Re: Email newsletter creation in FW. Not previewing in Mail (mac app).Ipreface
            wideEyedPupil Level 1

            Thanks so much for the succinct summary of my errors and the way forward. (Never was sure what FW was for exactly! Accept that it shrinks to jpegs smaller than PS… according to Adobe 50%KB for same quality which I haven't been able to confirm)

             

            I do know some HTML (as in the tags etc) but wouldn't say 'I know my HTML' because I have little experience with all the various browser interpretation issues and so on. I never found a bulk emailer that was genuinely free for 500 addresses so thanks for the second link especially. Both look good clients — if a little pricey for my clients with thousands of contacts and regular sends, guess I need to forget internet is to be free.

             

            Best Wishes

            Alastair

            • 3. Re: Email newsletter creation in FW. Not previewing in Mail (mac app).Ipreface
              pixlor Level 4

              wideEyedPupil wrote:

               

              ... I never found a bulk emailer that was genuinely free for 500 addresses so thanks for the second link especially. Both look good clients — if a little pricey for my clients with thousands of contacts and regular sends, guess I need to forget internet is to be free.

               

               

              If your clients have thousands of contacts, then the cost of their bulk mailings should be included in their advertising budgets. In any case, I don't see why CampaignMonitor or MailChimp should provide their services for free. They've done the research on what HTML works in numerous email clients, they've developed templates you can use (some free), they pay for their own hosting and bandwidth. They've done work that others either don't have the time or the desire to do.

              • 4. Re: Email newsletter creation in FW. Not previewing in Mail (mac app).Ipreface
                wideEyedPupil Level 1

                pixlor wrote:

                 

                If your clients have thousands of contacts, then the cost of their bulk mailings should be included in their advertising budgets. In any case, I don't see why CampaignMonitor or MailChimp should provide their services for free. They've done the research on what HTML works in numerous email clients, they've developed templates you can use (some free), they pay for their own hosting and bandwidth. They've done work that others either don't have the time or the desire to do.

                 

                I agree. Was just a comment on price per email at "bulk" rates.

                 

                Gmail has a much larger bandwidth as do Vimeo and YouTube but just have different business models to pay for it. I tried a bunch of bulk mailer apps (OS X desktop apps) last year and none were what I'd call fantastic. These two providers seem pretty good. Some of my clients get free/very-low-cost bulk emailer apps from hosted by their ISPs but I've yet to find one that supports HTML emails.

                 

                Thanks again for the help and links to the browser functionality tables.