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How To Send Mass Email In Gmail: A Full Guide



Email marketing has been around for years and no other marketing channel has managed to surpass its effectiveness so far. 

What can explain such a  great success? 

As of 2019, more than half of the world’s population uses email, and the number is still expected to increase on a year to year basis. In the United States, 92% of adults use email and 61% of these email users check their emails every day. What’s more, people increasingly check their emails on mobile devices outside regular working hours, which makes it easier to reach them at a suitable time. Another interesting fact is that 85% of Generation Z choose email as their preferred mode of communication.  

Besides the impressive data on email usage, email marketing has other benefits to offer: 

  • Cost-effectiveness. Email marketing is one of the most affordable ways to reach a target audience and generate a high return on investment. 

  • Automation. It is possible to automate the process of email marketing using specific triggers and workflows.  

  • Clear analytics. Data on the open, click-through and conversion rates is readily available and provides a very clear image of the performance and results of email marketing. 

  • Enticing action. Although not everybody realizes it, email users are trained to do something with an email: respond, forward, click-through, subscribe or even follow the buy link.

  • Personalization. Even mass emails allow much personalization thanks to segmentation, which is often not possible when using other advertising channels. 

All in all, there are many good reasons to use email to reach out to potential clients and retain the existing customers making them active promoters of your brand. Sending mass emails is the most effective way to do this. 

Types of mass emails you can send 

Mass emails allow sending the same message to hundreds or even thousands of users at the same time. There are many cases when this is necessary: for example, to reach out to leads, to make an announcement, to send out an email invitation, or to nurture the relationships with existing customers. Sending all these emails one by one is a long and daunting experience and immediately drives the associated costs. 

Here are five basic types of emails that companies send in bulk: 

  1. Newsletters

  2. Promotional emails

  3. Acquisition emails

  4. Retention emails

Newsletters

Newsletters give general information about what’s new to your company and your industry. They provide insights and guides that might be equally helpful to everyone who has chosen to subscribe. Newsletters do not contain sale pitches and aim to deliver value to subscribers thus building trust and brand awareness.   

Promotional emails

Promotional emails present special offers and deals and contain appealing calls to action. Sales pitches are occasionally sent either to subscribers or to existing customers who are likely to be interested in a specific product.  

Acquisitions emails

Acquisition emails are sent to leads who are in the middle of the sales funnel to convert them into prospects and, thus, clients. These emails may contain samples, case studies, invitations to the webinars, etc. that will help the leads to understand a product or a service better.  

Retention emails

It is important to nurture relationships with clients after closing a deal. It increases customer loyalty and allows setting up effective referral campaigns. Retention emails may re-engage customers, help them get the best value from your product or service, ask for feedback or recommendation, upsell clients to more expensive plans or offer accessories.


All these emails have a great impact on sales and brand awareness. Thus, it is important not to skip them even if the number of your clients is so large that you cannot reach out to them in personal messages. 

Sending mass email in Gmail

Before we provide a detailed guide about how to send mass emails in Gmail, let us emphasize that Gmail has not been created for email marketing and has a number of disadvantages compared to professional email marketing services.  

Here are the disadvantages of using Gmail for sending mass emails: 

Disadvantages

Gmail mass email limit

With Gmail, you can send a maximum of 500 messages in 24 hours. This means sending 500 different emails or sending the same business email template to 500 contacts. This places a great limitation on the number of people you can actually reach with your mass email. 

No statistics

Gmail does not provide any statistics regarding the deliverability or impact of your mass email. This means that you miss a wealth of valuable data that can help you calculate the ROI and improve your email marketing campaigns.  

The chance to reveal sensitive data

If you forget to hide other recipients of the mass message in Gmail, any user will be able to access the emails of subscribers, which is a sensitive data protected by law. No such mistake can ever occur if you use a dedicated email marketing service.  

No interaction-based segmentation 

Modern email marketing apps allow segmenting your audience based on their past opens and click behavior. In Gmail, you can create custom contact groups, but you cannot segment the audience based on users’ interaction with your mass email. 

Not possible to schedule a campaign

Gmail doesn’t allow scheduling email campaigns. Scheduling is very convenient when the emails should be sent in non-working hours or to users living in different time zones. Scheduling of email campaigns is also a common practice if a leader needs to review a mass email before it is sent. 

Personalization only with the help of additional tools

Although it is possible to achieve personalization in Gmail, it requires the use of additional extensions and tools that come at their own price and may further limit the number of mass emails you can send on a daily basis. 

It can make all your emails end up in spam

Contrary to popular assumptions, Gmail does not save from spam filters and does not guarantee high deliverability. On the contrary, deliverability through this method is surprisingly low. Since there is no “unsubscribe” link, users are more likely to report spam. What is more, Gmail recommends sending promotional emails from one address and transactional emails from another. If you mix various content categories, all your emails may be classified as promotional or spam. 


Having considered the disadvantages of sending mass emails in Gmail, you might have come to the logical conclusion: you can use Gmail to send mass emails individually, but probably you shouldn’t. 

So is there any rationale for sending mass emails in Gmail at all? Obviously, it can be a good idea to send a mass email in Gmail if:

  • you have just a limited number of leads who already communicate with your sales reps using Gmail. In this case, it resembles using templates for messaging your Gmail contacts but speeds up the entire process. 

  • you do not do email marketing in the full sense of the word. For example, you only create a mass email to congratulate all your contacts with Christmas or Easter, tell about important company changes or distribute a security alert.      

How to send mass emails in Gmail

Here are the steps you should take to create and send mass email in Gmail

  1. Create a label

  2. Add contacts to the list

  3. Send a mass message

Create a label

Go to Google “Contacts” and choose a “Create a label” option to create an email list in Gmail comprising recipients to whom you want to send mass emails. Give the label the name you will easily recognize.  

Add contacts to the list 

If the users that you want to send mass messages to are not on your contact list, start with creating new contacts. Click a large “Create contact” button and fill the fields with the necessary information like name, email, company, job title, phone, and notes. 

Then, from the list of Contacts, choose those you want to add to the group and click the “manage labels” icon. Choose the label you have created and it will be automatically added to all the selected contacts.      

Send a mass message 

There are two variants to send a mass message to the list you have created with the help of a label. 

Variant 1: 

Start with Google Contacts. Select the necessary label and tick some or all contacts in the list. Then, click a “send email” icon (an envelope). When you do this, a new browser window looking exactly like Gmail’s “New Message” box will pop-up. This is where you create your mass message and send it to all the previously ticked recipients.   

Variant 2: 

Use your Gmail Inbox. Click “Compose” to create a new message. In the “To” field type the name of the label you want to send to. All the labeled emails will automatically pull up. Be sure to use Bcc to protect the privacy of recipients (explained further). Thus, create and send your message as usual. 

Why use bcc when sending mass email in Gmail

If you add many emails in the regular “To” field, everyone on the list will be able to see other emails and potentially reply to the whole list of email addresses. This violates the privacy of users. Bcc or “blind carbon copy” resolves this issue by hiding other addresses from each individual email recipient

To use this function, simply click Bcc in the upper right corner of your message box and add the list of emails into the Bcc field. Note that recipients will see that you have added their email using Bcc, so they may suspect that the email was sent to other emails too. Still, they will not be able to see other emails you have added. More than that, not all recipients will know such details about using Gmail.     

Using Google Groups to send a mass email

When Gmail says you can message a group, it means creating a group with the help of a label as we have shown earlier. Google Groups are different from Gmail’s contact groups and can be created only from groups.google.com. Creating a Google Group and sending mass messages to it can be an alternative way to send mass emails in Gmail. The obvious benefit of it is the embedded method to unsubscribe, which reduces the chances for a mass message to be flagged as spam.   

Here are the steps you should take to create a Google Group and send a mass message to it: 

  1. Create a Google Group

  2. Invite members

  3. Send a mass message

Create a Google Group

Use a red “Create” button to create your group. Give it the name and set up basic Group options.  

Invite members 

Click on your group and choose “Members”, then “Invite members” from the menu. Thus, you will be able to insert email addresses of everyone who you would like to add to the group and create a custom invitation message that will be sent along with the “join the group” link. 

Members can also opt-in themselves if you embed your group on an external web page (copy and paste the provided iFrame HTML in the HTML source of the web page). 

Send a mass message

When you want to send a message to your Google Group, simply create a “New Message” in Gmail and send it to the group’s email address. This email address is coined on the stage of creating a group and looks like nameofthegroup@googlegroups.com. If you do not remember it, just go to the list of your groups and view the “About” page of the group you want to send to. 

 

Note that if anyone posts or replies to the Google Group, a message will be sent to anyone in the group prompting them to have a look. 

How to send personalized mass emails in Gmail 

To send personalized mass emails in Gmail, it is necessary to install particular extensions or add-ons that will allow email merge with Google Docs and Spreadsheet. In the spreadsheet, you create a list of all contacts and attributes like name, job title, company, etc. 

Thus, you insert a macro, for example, {{first_name}} into your emails, and a corresponding value will be pulled up from the file you have created. For this purpose, every value should be placed in a separate column, like this:

First name 

Last Name

Company

Title 

City

Margaret 

Hamilton 

Hamilton Ltd.

Owner 

Huston 

Mark

Clerk  

Clerk&Clerk

CEO

New York

Mathieu 

Picard

Anyleads

CEO

San Francisco


Merge tools vary in the features they provide. For example, Yet Another Mail Merge provides statistics on email campaigns and allows sending a mass email to a maximum of 100 users per day. Contact Monkey, an alternative tool, allows personalization, email tracking, email scheduling and integration with Salesforce. Gmail Mail Merge has personalization, scheduling, tracking of email opens, and supports email aliases so that a secretary or a virtual assistant can send mass emails on behalf of a manager. Meanwhile, more advanced users can build their own mail merge tool using Google Sheets and Gmail following this Google tutorial.

While merge tools allow expanding the functionality of Gmail, they still lack many useful features only dedicated email marketing platforms can provide.          

The best way to send a mass email 

The best way to run an email marketing campaign is by using proper software designed specifically for this purpose, such as Anyleads prospecting

Using Anyleads, you can easily import your Gmail contacts or even connect Gmail as a sender in one click. This way, you will be able to target and expand your Gmail audience enjoying advanced features with a direct impact on mass mails effectiveness and conversion: 

  • Emails verification: Our email verification tool allows quick detection of all duplicate and non-valid emails so that you can maintain good housekeeping of your contact list. 

  • Personalization: Adding personalization in your mass emails is just as easy as choosing a relevant macros from the extensive list of options. What is more, there is a tool to help you enrich your base with lacking information.  

  • Unlimited contacts and custom attributes: You can import an unlimited number of contacts and create your own attributes if you need them for personalization. You are free to export this data from the system anytime. 

  • Email automation: Create your own sending scenario using intuitive drag and drop editor. Among other things, it allows sending certain follow-up messages after the cold email was open, not simply sent. This can have a dramatic effect on email marketing success. 

  • Templates: Use ready-made templates for cold and follow-up messages with high effectiveness and conversion potential. 

  • Best time to send: The system will analyze your campaigns and prompt you on the best time to send further mass emails. 

  • Statistics: Get clear stats on opens, clicks, replies and conversions to measure and increase the effectiveness of email marketing.    

  • Scoring and segmentation: Achieve a deep understanding of the interests and engagement of your audience based on their actions. 

  • Sentiments detection: Anyleads will analyze your leads' replies so that you can quickly act upon any positive response or a request to call. 

To discover Anyleads and assess the benefits of professional email marketing, start a free trial.  

7 best tips for mass emailing 

Before you consider sending mass emails to your target audience, consider the best practice that will help you achieve better results with each and every campaign.  

  1. Personalize

  2. Create a compelling subject line

  3. Don’t overdo on media

  4. Encourage action

  5. Optimize for mobile

  6. Test before sending

  7. Take care of your reputation

Personalize the right way

The vast majority of marketers agree that the personalization of mass emails increases open and click-through rates. Thus, make your best efforts to include personalization. At the same time, be careful to include an alternative that will be inserted when you don’t have corresponding information, for leads not to receive an ugly “Hi, {{name}}!”     

Create a compelling subject line

Pay due attention to your email subject line. If you insert a coupon or an invitation, it is better to tell about this straightforwardly. In other cases, try to intrigue your readers to make them want to open an email. Avoid exclamation marks and all capitals - email services consider this a sign of spam. 

Don’t overdo media 

A lot of images and videos slow down the loading of an email and may cause display issues. In addition, many subscribers set their systems not to display images. For users not to get an email with just white space, use a sending platform that also creates text-only versions of your emails. Instead of sending attachments in emails, upload them to your website and send a link. Such a solution guarantees better loading and action tracking.     

Encourage action 

Know what you want to achieve with each mass email. Even if you choose not to offer a sales pitch right away, it is important to train your audience to take action: to subscribe to the social media, to tell about their experience, to read the insights you have just written, etc.   

Optimize for mobile

Now, when so many users check their inbox on the mobile devices, it is vital to work with responsive templates and optimize mass emails for a mobile view. Remember that the display issues harm not only your message but also your brand.   

Test before sending

To avoid any issues, it is necessary to spell-check and test a mass email before sending it. A good practice is to send a test email to your own email address. Often, viewing an email as a recipient gives much insight into the design and the language of your message.  

Take care of your reputation  

Before sending an email campaign, make sure your IP or domain is not blacklisted and remove it from the block if it is. Check whether your email list is valid and if it has any duplicates. Further, regularly clean-up the subscribers that no longer open or click your emails. All this is very important for maintaining a good sender’s reputation.  

Our overarching tip is to use mass emails to build relationships with your audience. This is a long process that cannot be reduced to a single email campaign. Sending mass emails in Gmail can help you nurture these relationships only if you use it once or twice a year to send out invitations or Christmas wishes. Using Gmail for email marketing is both inappropriate and ineffective way to build relationships with customers.

 

 


Author

Mathieu Picard

CEO, Anyleads, San Francisco

We are the leading marketing automation platform serving more than 100,000 businesses daily. We operate in 3 countries, based in San Francisco, New York, Paris & London.

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