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Creating Your First HTML Ezine

By Maria Marsala
Posted Thursday, January 13, 2005

The Basics

There are two different forms of HTML ezines. HTML = HyperText Mark-up Language - basically it's the language of the World Wide Web. It's there, even if you don't know it's there. The end result of this "code" is a web page you view through your email program.

There are three types of ezines (at this time). Text ezines, those of you who remember typewriters, look like they've been typed. A simple HTML ezine contains color, bold, italics, and bullets and is created right in your email program. More complex HTML ezines contain graphics and are created as web pages. When you receive an ezine that contains color or pictures, that's an "HTML" based ezine.

It's very easy to make an HTML ezine if you know how to code HTML or have a web design program, or have a web design program (or webmaster). If you're designing an HTML ezine for your business, then branding is important. So use your webpage as your template. This way your newsletter and your website look consistent.

If you use an email list hosting service for your ezine, make sure you pick one that "strips" HTML emails. Then individuals can choose to receive "text only" emails from you even though you've sent out an HTML version. The service actually "strips" the HTML codes and graphic codes from your email. Many services offer this stripping feature. However, in order to use it, you have to go to their site and register your email address. Then as part of the registration process, they ask you to choose between text only and HTML.

There are services that will read information from subscribers and automatically set them up for HTML or text only emails based on what ISP (Internet Service Provider) or DSL (Digital Subscriber Line) service they use. For a list of service suggestions (I haven't used all the programs mentioned) go to tap here

The secret about HTML ezines is that all graphics are linked from your website to your ezine and are not attached to your email. The problems with HTML ezines are...

~~ in order for your readers to see the pictures you've placed in your message, they must be on the Internet. ~~ they are not accessible and/or readable to some disabled individuals.
~~ people who have older email programs or computers can't read them.
~~ many libraries use computers that cannot handle graphics. ~~ they take up quite a bit of bandwidth (space) on someone's email server and they take longer to download than text messages.
~~ they take much longer to edit and publish. ~~ some people purposely set their email to not accept HTML mail.
~~ some people have their email set on text only - and don't know it!
~~ for AOL users, if the size of the file is more than 20K, it will be sent out as an attachment. ~~ many people won't open attachments

For businesses, the plusses of using HTML ezines are:

~~ many business owners, who use the internet, and maybe your ideal client have HTML email capacity. ~~ even AOL 6.0 included the use of HTML mail for their users. ~~ readers are more apt to read your ezine because they look "inviting" and "fun"
~~ readers are more apt to tap on the links, too.

Steps To Create Your HTML Ezine #1

1. Create a web page as you usually would and insert your newsletter.

2. Go into the source of your webpage (the HTML code) and make sure that all the links are authentic links. These are complete links and look like this but without the "." in the code:

instead of?

3. Upload your newsletter webpage to your website.

4. Next, open your email program and make sure that the format is set to "HTML" (not as text).

5. Open an email. Put the cursor in the message and tap down a few lines.

6. Go back to the top of the message again and type in a message for individuals who have requested your newsletter, but perhaps cannot read HTML newsletters. The message I use (without the "." in the code) is...

If you cannot see the colors or picture on this email, you can read this newsletter here: (

7. Then go back to your newsletter page on your website. ~~ "Select all" on the page or tap on the control (CTRL) then (A) buttons on your keyboard. ~~ "Select copy" on the page or tap on the control (CTRL) then (C) buttons on your keyboard

8. Go back to your email, a few lines after step #6 where you will "paste" - (CTRL) then (V) your webpage into your email program.

9. Then send yourself a copy to see how it looks. If pictures are missing... it's because the links are not complete links (Step 2)

Steps To Create Your HTML Ezine #2

If your email program allows you to create your own stationary, like Outlook does, tap on help and use your index to learn how to "create stationary". You'll learn to create a stationary template for your ezine. Then each time you want to create your ezine, you pull up this special stationary.

A Few Free Template Resources 4 U

Web Site Kits and Templates from Canada ( >From Jim's World ( >From the UK)

About the Author
Maria Marsala, Business & Life Coach-Consultant. Maria works with successful individuals as they take their success to an even higher level. Subscribe to "Helping You and Your Business Grow" our free weekly online newsletter or download our free business ebook at (