One of the questions about email marketing we often get asked about is how to share calendar events through emails. The goal of course is to get subscribers to book them and convert them into alerts on platforms such as Apple’s iCal, Microsoft Outlook and Google Calendar, resulting in leads and real prospects. This is especially valuable if you have a party, webinar, upcoming exclusive sale or other event you want your email subscribers to be aware of.
If you’re lucky, you just may be using an event management app to keep everything under control. If not, you’ll have think about the best way to share calendar events. The only problem with this is that there really is no such thing as the ‘best’ when it comes to sharing calendar events, as it all boils down to user preference.
The most prudent decision would be to look at the platforms/file formats with the largest market share. For now that would be iCalendar and Google Calendar.
Considerations for .ics
Care must be taken when using .ics, which is often confused for .vcs (vCalendar). To cut a long story short, “ics” is superior to the latter and is more widely supported across major calendar apps. Hosting .ics files on your server is also another factor to take note of, as it will only work on servers that support WebDAV. Of course, there’s always the option of users just downloading the file from their email clients, but that’s not too intuitive.
This brings us to why Google Calendar seems to be a better choice, at least for email marketers.
Considerations for Google Calendar
Google Calendar is so easy to use that virtually anyone can just refer to the search engine’s Event Publisher Guide to create calendar events, which can be added to Google’s web-based app. You essentially get a code, which can be directly copied into an HTML email. Of course, you’ll have to deal with the fact that not everyone in your subscriber list has Google Calendar.
The point is to offer these two options to get the best of both worlds and Automailer can be used to deploy calendar events of any standard. For more information on the subject, contact the Enform team to get more detailed tips and instructions.