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There are several options available for sending email to multiple people to suit a variety of needs.

Which solution best meets your needs?

Requirements/Features Contact Group in your email client Exchange Online Distribution List University Mailing List eMarketing campaign tools
Just for your own use      
Shared list for University users, available in the Office 365 Global Address Book   1  
Can include University and external users
People can self-subscribe/unsubscribe    
Best suited for high volumes of email    
Analytics data for list managers      

1 These can be added to the Office 365 Exchange Global Address Book.

Your email client: personal contact groups

  • Useful when only you want to regularly send to a group of people.

Many email apps allow you to personal create groups from your contacts so that you can email them as a group without having to enter everyone's addresses each time. For example, Outlook lets you create Outlook Contact Groups.

These Groups are personal to you because they are stored in your email client. They can't be shared, and may not be available if you switch to a different client.

Exchange Online: distribution lists

  • Useful when you want to create a distribution list that can be made visible for other Exchange Online users in the University to see and which can receive email from any sender.

This is best used when most of the members of the list are using Exchange Online email because Exchange Online doesn't automatically process bounce messages for entries outside Exchange Online.

Exchange Online distribution lists can be made visible in the University's Microsoft 365 Global Address List (GAL) so that other users in the University's Microsoft tenancy (@cam.ac.uk) can easily find and use them in Outlook's address book.

They can be set to 'visible' or 'hidden'. This controls whether or not they are displayed in the GAL. Whether visible or hidden, distribution lists can receive email from any sender, both internal and external to Exchange Online. The GAL is the source of the University-wide contact information displayed in the address book in Outlook.

Only the list owners can manage the membership of the list.

Users who have access to the Blue Toolkit can create and manage Exchange Online lists there. Otherwise, you need to contact the UIS Service Desk.

UIS Mailing List Service

  • Best suited for when you are likely to have lots of members outside of Exchange Online or wish to allow users to sign-up or unsubscribe themselves.

You can create new mailing lists (and manage your own list subscriptions) via our mailing list service, Sympa.

Third Party Bulk Email Services

  • Best suited for send customized email marketing campaigns and newsletters and/or you wish to gather analytics data (e.g. open rates, clickthroughs, etc.)
ClickDimensions, Dotdigital Engagement Cloud and MailChimp are amongst the third-party bulk email services used at Cambridge. Following a procurement process, the University has negotiated preferential rates to use the Dotdigital platform. For further information, please .

 

Policies

Regardless of which method you use to send bulk email, you should follow the Bulk Email guidelines.

 

Last updated: 20 September 2022

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