Introducing Tout Groups: 50 Person Distribution Lists

Jun 19, 2011, by Tawheed Kader (TK), Founder and CEO

Ever since we started Tout, we’ve always been asked “How do I send an email to more than one person at a time?” The answer was always: “You can’t. Thats not really what we are about.”

That still holds true today, if you’re looking to send an email to your list of 10,000 contacts, you should be using MailChimp, Constant Contact, MadMimi or one of the other great email marketing services out there.

However, if you are looking to save time and gain valuable insight on your day-to-day repetitive emails, thats where Tout comes in.

The case for Tout Groups

However, as we talked to more and more of our customers, we started picking up on a different use-case.

“I just want to send a templated email to a small group of people… and while I’m doing that, I don’t want to mess with campaigns, or mail merge fields or anything complicated like that.”—Matt Shampine, one of our advisors.

I resisted these type of requests for months, that is until recently when I started to feel the need myself. Matt (and others) were right. We all have these small “contextual” groups of people in our lives and the ability to fire off emails to them (templated or not) without having to fumble with CC and BCC was crucial.

Tout Groups of 50 people

So today, we are introducing Tout Groups. You can now create a “group” of up to 50 people in Tout, and quickly fire off emails to them. The emails can be templated or can be written from scratch, and just like normal Tout emails, we’ll provide View and Click tracking for each person emailed int he group.

Why 50 people?

Tout Groups is meant to be made up of people that know you and are expecting email from you. With that definition, we’d be shocked if you needed more than a small handful of 50-person groups. We’re using this number as a natural forcing function and also to make sure people “get” the difference between a Tout Group and a Mailchimp list.

How I’m using Tout Groups

I’ve been using Tout Groups for the past month or so, and it has been fantastic for my productivity. Here are the Tout Groups I’ve created for myself:

 

  • Active Investors - I try to send out “Status Updates” around the company to my investors every month to month and a half. These updates follow roughly the same format (I have a Tout Template for it) and I send it out to the Group. It also allows me to actively track which Investor is actually viewing my update and clicking on the additional links (helps me gauge interest and engagement).
  • AngelList Intros - ToutApp was one of the hottest companies on AngelList a few weeks ago. But, we also happened to be done with our current round. So, I quickly responded to people asking for intros with a Tout Template (saying we were oversubscribed) and that I’d be adding them to a list so that I can follow up with them in a few weeks with details around our next round. BOOM.
  • Press - Gearing up PR and Marketing has been an explicit goal of mine (as a CEO). So I’ve been trying to make contacts, getting intros and building relationships with members of the press so that I can keep them up to date on company announcements. I put the ones that I know I can email on my Press group and send them an email whenever we have something interesting to share.

 

The beauty of a Tout Group is that while you are sending to a “Group” of people, each person gets a personalized email from you all with its own Tout tracking. What a huge productivity boost!

How do you plan to use it?

I think my list is just the tip of the iceberg. There are probably a lot more interesting cases for using Tout Groups. Give it a try today and let us know what you think!

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