Professional Discussion Groups And ESP Reviews

Dear Email Diva,

In your response to Mr. Einstein last week , who was searching for an Email Service Provider, you tell him to "look to professional discussion groups" for recommendations. Where can I find such groups? In the six months I've been involved in email marketing, I have yet to find groups other than insiders groups (like Email Insiders and Old Timers), which don't offer membership to newbies like me.

Chris Harris
Email Services Specialist
Blackbaud, Inc.

Dear Chris,

Thanks to social networking sites, everyone can be part of an insider or professional discussion group.

LinkedIn has an "Answers" section. Members can post a question or answer. A search for Email Service Providers turned up twelve recommendations . One can rate an answerer on the value of the content posted and view all answers posted by an individual, establishing the professional reputation of the member.



General Q&A features are available on Amazon's Askville and Yahoo Answers], but, unlike LinkedIn, the site caters to a broad audience rather than a business-oriented audience.

Plaxo has groups that members can join and post messages to those within the group. There is a group called "@ Email Marketing @." Members can post on any topic, so the interaction is less focused than a Q&A section, but could be of value to you as well.

Facebook also has groups that facilitate posts to members on any topic. The Email Experience Council has the "The 'unofficial' Email Experience Council Group" network at your disposal.

Tamara Gielen created the Email Marketer's Club on, which has an international audience and a presence on Facebook as well. One has to be approved to join -- but since the Email Diva got in, the membership requirements do not appear to be too stringent.

My only question is: how do people find time to participate in all these great networking/show-off-your-expertise opportunities?

Correction on last week's article from Nancy Darish, director of marketing at eDialog: "JupiterResearch last published their E-mail Marketing Buyer's Guide in 2006, not 2005 as noted. This report does in fact contain information for small and mid-sized businesses. Jupiter publishes this report every year, and the 2007 ESP Buyer's Guide will be out the week of Dec. 17."

Thanks, Nancy. May we all have colleagues who have "got our backs" and take the time to share, via email, blogs and social networks.

Good Luck!

The Email Diva

Send your questions or submit your email for critique to Melinda Krueger, the Email Diva, at All submissions may be published; please indicate if you would like your name or company name withheld.

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