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Also, you can initiate discussions and share information among fellow ClubRunner users.

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Friday, December 11, 2015

Tip of the week!

We've featured many articles on making bulletin preparation and sending easy and the focus today is on Plain Text bulletins. What is a plain text bulletin? Simply said, it's your newsletter without the images or text styling - it's text only.

Some of your members use email clients that do not render HTML messages. When this happens, their email client automatically displays the plain text version of the newsletter, if one was made available. If there is no plain text version to go along with your newsletter, you run the risk of having readers see garbled HTML code rather than content.
Visually impaired members may also have trouble with a graphically intense bulletin, as it may present a challenge for the text reading software they may use to help them navigate the web.  As such, they require a plain text bulletin, one that contains no images or text formatting.

Another reason to create this alternative text version is that email filters are more likely to identify a image heavy bulletin (one with many images and links) as spam.
To create the plain text version of your bulletin simply click on the Text Version button at the top right of the bulletin editor. This will take you to the Bulletin Text Version editing page, from where you can copy in your text into the editor.

Suggestions to create a nice looking, readable plain text email

While you cannot add colors or change the font size of your text in the plain version, you can still modify the appearance of your text. For instances where you want to identify headlines from the main text, you can use symbols to separate the two:

Volunteers Needed  for our Annual Fundraiser
You can also use these line breaks between paragraphs and articles to break your text up or use lot's of white space to break them apart, so it's easy to scan for important bits and pieces. White space is important as it breaks the plain text version of your email nicely.

If the HTML version of your bulletin contained bullet points, consider using hyphens or asterisks to list your points in the plain text email. 

* Volunteers Needed  for our Annual Fundraiser
- Volunteers Needed  for our Annual Fundraiser

If you'd bolded a few words in your HTML version, you can add an asterisk before and after the word(s) in your plain text email to place the emphasis.

 Volunteers **Needed**  for our Annual Fundraiser

For every link that is included in your bulletin, make sure you copy and paste the links to the plain text version of your bulletin as well. If the URL you want to share is really long, use URL shortening services such as bit.ly or Google's URL builder. Always make sure you label what the link is meant for, so the reader can easily identify the call to action. 

View Available Shifts [www.clubrunner.ca] 

Read More [www.clubrunner.ca]

For help resources or to view more best practices on bulletins, check out our knowledgebase

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