As a marketing channel, email has consistently delivered results for businesses across the world for over a decade. Done right, it allows you to successfully reach your audience, improve reach, drive sales, and grow your business.
Reaching online audiences is an essential part of modern-day email marketing strategies. As per reports, the number of email users worldwide was 4 billion in 2020 and is expected to reach 4.6 billion by 2025. Naturally, the scope of what email can do for your business is tremendous. In addition, it offers an unbeatable return on investment of $45 for every dollar spent in the e-commerce, retail, and consumer goods industries.
So, here’s the big question: how will you reach a large audience without spending hours sending dozens, hundreds, or even thousands of emails every day to maximize your email marketing efforts?
The answer is mass email. It’s quick, efficient, effective, and easy! What’s more, you can personalize those emails. This article will answer all your big questions on how to send mass emails and more! Let’s begin with the basics.
What Is Mass Email?
Simply put, sending out an email to a large number of recipients simultaneously is called a mass email. Also known as bulk email or email blasts, it is a less personalized form of email marketing compared to one-on-one email. Typically, it is more generic, may not have a segmented email list, and contains universal messaging along with a clear CTA (call to action).
That said, there are ways to personalize mass emails. One of the best ways is mail merge. It’s a type of mass emailing, but it allows you to personalize your emails for each recipient. In the next section, we’ll discuss the different ways to send mass emails.
5 Ways To Send Mass Emails
There are different ways of sending mass emails, each with its own pros and cons. Some options are better suited for specific situations. We’ll explain the five ways one by one so you can pick the best choice for your brand.
If you don’t need personalized emails, then the the following options:
1. Mass Email With Bcc
First, what does “Bcc” mean in email? It’s the acronym for blind carbon copy. Bcc mass email is the answer when you’re looking at how to send a mass email without showing the addresses of the people you’re sending it to.
Whether you are sending emails to two people or 200, this method works and allows you to accomplish mass emailing directly on the platform without needing add-ons or extensions. Some of the common mass email mistakes are forgetting to add an email address on the Bcc space or adding someone in the To or Cc fields by accident. You also can’t personalize emails that you send with the Bcc method.
If you want to send personalized mass emails, here are the four best options:
2. Outlook Mail Merge With Word and Excel
For those who want to automate the process of sending out bulk emails, Outlook mail merge is a possibility. You can compose your email in Microsoft Word and save your email addresses as a list in an Excel spreadsheet.
When it’s time to send out your mail, Outlook can be programmed to use the email body from Word and personalize it with fields (like the first and last name of your recipient) from your Excel spreadsheet.
3. Built-in Mail Merge Feature in Gmail
Gmail’s mail merge feature lets you send the same email to a large list of contacts in the “To” field and one email address each for the “Bcc” and “Cc” fields.
When you use the “To” field to send mail in most email software, recipients see who else you’ve sent the same message to. However, with Gmail’s mail merge feature enabled, the service sends your email without revealing the names and addresses of your other recipients. It’s as if you sent it using the “Bcc” field.
Because of this functionality, you can easily use Gmail’s mail merge for email campaigns, announcements, and newsletters. However, it does have some important limitations you should be aware of, like lack of tracking or inputting incorrect email addresses. There are ways to overcome these though, like integrating your mail merge with a suitable Chrome extension or linking your Google Sheets directly to your Gmail message.
4. Gmail Extension
This way for performing a mail merge with Gmail involves using Chrome extensions like Mailtrack. It allows you to conveniently send and personalize mass emails while monitoring email interactions. With it, you can send and track mass emails to a large list of contacts. By using an extension, you can craft your emails based on how previous emails performed. This data-driven approach will help your emails improve over time, and can also help you connect with your audience in a more meaningful way.
5. Email Service Software
Another method for mass email automation is to use email service software or customer relationship management (CRM) software. These programs allow you to create, send, and track emails to large lists of clients or subscribers. Examples of this type of software are SendGrid, Sendinblue, Elastic Email, and Mailchimp. They usually have pretty extensive features, which can be really helpful if you know how to use them effectively. There’s a somewhat steep learning curve to maximize their potential though.
Now that you are aware of how to send mass emails and the different tools you can use, you need to consider which works best for you. For instance, Bcc mass email could be a decent starting option, but it has quite a few limitations. Outlook offers more possibilities than Bcc mass emails, but the process opens the door to human errors if you miss a step during import. Gmail extensions and email softwares are your best bet. Depending on the maturity of your email marketing, both could fit your needs. It’s important to remember that email softwares usually come with a steep price though.
You need to find the best mass email tools that will help you achieve the results you want. Depending on which works best for you, you can choose from the methods mentioned above. This article takes a deep dive into these methods, so you can make an informed decision.
Read on to learn how to send out a mass email that is personalized.
Table of Contents:
- How To Send Personalized Mass Email Without Showing Addresses
- Pros and Cons of the 4 Mass Email Methods
How To Send Personalized Mass Email Without Showing Addresses
While the importance of sending personalized emails is well established, there is another more important factor to consider — the privacy and confidentiality of your recipients. This is why you need to know how to send a mass email and hide recipients.
A generic email that does not conceal recipient addresses sends the message that you don’t care about your audience. That could send them running to your competitor. On the other hand, a personalized mass email with the addresses hidden looks more professional and credible.
So, keep this in mind when you send a mass email from Gmail. Not only is it a good customer relations tactic, but you’re also respecting people’s privacy by hiding their emails from the rest of the people on your list.
Let’s discuss how to send a mass email and hide recipients.
Send Mass Email in Outlook
We briefly mentioned in a previous section what mail merge in Outlook entails. In a nutshell, you’ll need to have Outlook, Word, and Excel installed. You’ll be switching between these programs to perform a mail merge.
Here’s how to send a mass email without showing addresses using these Microsoft programs:
- Create a mailing list on an Excel spreadsheet. Include the personal information you’d like to incorporate into your email. These are usually the email addresses, first names, and last names of your recipients.
- Write your email content in a Word document.
- Save the Word document and click on Mailings → Start Mail Merge → Email Messages.
- Select your email recipients by clicking on Mailings → Select Recipients → Use an Existing List → (filename of your Excel file).
- Personalize your email by clicking on Insert Merge Field from the Menu tab and selecting the relevant header from your Excel spreadsheet.
- Preview your personalized message and review the copy. Remember that an error in the copy will also be sent in bulk so be careful.
For a more detailed guide, read Mail Merge into Outlook: How to Mail Merge with Word and Excel.
Note that mail merge is not available on the Outlook web app but can be accessed on the Outlook Mail desktop app. You also need an Outlook subscription to avail of mail merge. Mail merge is technically free, but the Outlook account is not. The process itself is quite taxing and prone to human error too. A lot of back and forth between Outlook, Word, and Excel can also be irritating and confusing.
Do Mass Emailing With Gmail
When you’re looking at how to send mass emails in Gmail without showing addresses, you can also use Gmail.
Here are two ways you can utilize Gmail for mass email:
- Mass email from Gmail’s Mail Merge
- Mass email with Gmail extensions
Send Mass Email Using Gmail’s Mail Merge
Unlike Outlook, sending a mass email in Gmail using its mail merge feature doesn’t require you to switch between different programs.
1. On your Gmail account, Click “Compose.”
2. Next to the “To:” line, click “Mail merge”
3. Input the email addresses manually in the “To” field or add an existing contact list from your Gmail account.
You can also link a Google Sheet with your contacts by clicking “Mail merge,” turning on mail merge, then clicking “Add from a spreadsheet.” Once you find your spreadsheet, click “Link.” It’s as easy as that! Just make sure your contacts’ information is on the first tab of your spreadsheet.
4. To personalize your email, type “@” for a list of available merge tags. Select the merge tag and press Enter. Gmail will automatically replace your merge tags with the corresponding information in your contact list.
5. Press send.
Before you start using this feature, you need to be aware of a few things:
- If the information in your Gmail address book is incomplete, the program will try to “guess” the data for your merge and fill it with information. As you might expect, this can lead to embarrassing errors that can harm your email marketing campaign.
- Merge tags can’t be inserted in email subject lines.
- You can’t track if the email was opened or not.
Send Out Mass Email Using Gmail Extensions
For a simple mass email through Gmail, the built-in mail merge may do. But if you want more flexibility and to know which emails your audiences are reading and how many times they’ve been accessed, a Gmail extension like MailTrack is your best bet.
In addition, opting for third-party extensions like MailTrack lets you integrate your email software with your CRM, giving you greater control and insights.
To use MailTrack, install it as a Google Chrome extension and connect it to your Gmail account. Then, send a mass email with Gmail and MailTrack by following these simple steps:
- Create a mailing list on a Google spreadsheet.
- Open your Gmail account which is now integrated with MailTrack.
- Compose your email and click on “Campaign” in the New Message window.
- To personalize a mass email on Gmail, click on “Personalize campaign.”
- Write a template with custom merge fields in Gmail and hit the “Continue” button when you’ve finished it.
- Set up notifications for open, click, follow-ups, etc.
- Schedule the campaign.
For a deep dive on how to send mass emails in Gmail, check out:
Gmail Mail Merge: The Definitive Guide to Using Mail Merge in Gmail (Step By Step)
How to send an email to multiple recipients individually in Gmail
Send Bulk Emails Using Marketing Software
Some businesses send thousands of emails a day. If that’s the kind of volume you’re looking at, marketing software or email service providers (ESPs) may be better.
There are many ESPs but Mailchimp is one of the most popular. Here’s how to send bulk emails using Mailchimp:
- Create an account.
- Create your mailing list on Mailchimp. You can segment and tag your list for more customized content.
- Create an email template.
- Add merge tags.
- Go to Campaigns → Create Campaign → Email.
- Input the campaign name and click “Begin.”
- Add your mailing list in the “To” section and click “Save.”
- On the “From” section, input the name and email address of the sender.
- Add the email subject in the subject line.
- In the content section, add your message.
- At the bottom of the page, you will notice a bulleted list of things you can include in your email. Check if everything you need is there.
- Click “Send” to immediately send your email or “Schedule your email” to schedule it for a later time.
Dos and Don’ts of Mass Email
When you send a mass email, you need to get it right or your email will end up in the spam folder. If it doesn’t end up in the spam folder, it may go in the trash bin because the recipient didn’t feel the need to read it.
Read the following dos and don’ts of Gmail mass mailing to ensure that your email will be clicked, opened, and read.
✅ Know the Applicable Laws
It’s important to be aware of laws regarding email marketing before you start sending out mass emails to your customers. Study and understand the CAN-SPAM Act of 2003, GDPR 2016, and anti-spam guidelines. Make sure you have permission (implied or direct) to send emails to your recipients.
✅ Determine the Goal of Your Email Marketing Campaign
A big part of knowing how to send a mass email in Gmail is defining the goals of your marketing campaign. This way, your communication is more focused and more likely to reap the results you want for your business.
✅ Optimize Content To Increase Open Rates
What’s the point of sending mass emails from Gmail if people don’t open or read them? To improve open rates, employ best practices such as using interesting subject lines with less than 50 words, email preview texts, covering relevant topics, and more.
✅ Send Your Mass Email at the Right Time
Many experts believe that the best times to send bulk emails are around 10 a.m. and between 3 p.m. and 4 p.m. The logic behind this is that at 10 a.m., employees are settling in at their workstations and reading their emails. In the afternoon, employees are sending out emails for the next day. Some marketing experts also consider bulk emails that are sent on Tuesdays and Thursdays ideal.
With tools like MailTracker, you can easily monitor how your campaign is doing because you can see the open and click rates.
✅ Ensure Your Service Provider Can Handle the Email Volume
Some ESPs may have Gmail mass email limits based on account tiers. Typically, a great ESP allows you to send thousands of emails in a single day.
✅ Update Your Contact List
It’s awkward and off-putting when you receive an email that’s addressed to a different person. Don’t be that sender. Update your contact list and make sure that all the necessary fields have been properly filled in.
❌ Don’t Send Mass Emails in Gmail From New Domains or New IPs
A domain or IP has to be recognized by an Inbox Service Provider so your email won’t immediately go into the spam folder. In other words, the domain or IP has to have an established reputation.
To meet this criterion, stick to your old domain or warm up your IP address by sending regular emails that aren’t in bulk.
❌ Don’t Send Irrelevant Content
Nobody wants to be blocked by their recipients. But if you continuously send mass emails that they aren’t interested in reading, you might find your email address automatically rejected by their mail servers.
Besides, if you want your campaign to succeed, relevant content is essential. It’s also another layer of personalization. Don’t just personalize emails by mentioning the recipient’s name. Tailor-fit content based on the campaigns your audiences opened and responded to as well as any information you have about them.
❌ Don’t Forget To Provide an Unsubscribe Link
Why include a link to unsubscribe from your mass email? The customer should always have that choice. More importantly, it’s a legal requirement that you must include an unsubscribe link. Failure to do so will mean financial penalties from the Federal Trade Commission.
Pros and Cons of the 4 Mass Email Methods
What’s the best mass email method? We’ve established that you can send mass emails through Outlook, Gmail’s mail merge feature, Gmail extensions like MailTrack, and email software services. Each has its pros and cons which we will discuss in this section.
Sending Mass Email in Outlook
Learning how to send a mass email individually or in bulk through Outlook is easy. It may seem complicated at first but after you’ve done it once, you can easily replicate the process as needed. It also allows you to leverage the countless features of Word and Excel for your marketing campaigns such as inserting an address block and greeting line. You can also add an email signature.
With Word, you can create content that is tailor-fitted to your recipient. Meanwhile, an Excel spreadsheet makes it easy to save and manage your contacts so you can further personalize your mass email.
The downside of using Outlook is you can only use mail merge if you have subscribed to the paid account. There is also a limit to how many emails you can send in a day. This can be restricting especially if you need to send a significant amount of emails a day. In addition, it has no email tracking or analytics to provide you with insights nor does it let you preview your emails. There is no email preview either.
Sending Mass Email via Gmail’s Mail Merge
Gmail is the most popular email provider, so it may be easier for people to use a tool that they’re already familiar with. Gmail is also easy to personalize and you can create mailing lists in Google Contacts for your mail merge.
All options have daily sending limits. Gmail has a pretty high limit and it’s free. In contrast, only Microsoft 365 subscribers can avail of higher sending limits. Gmail also has an automatic unsubscribe link, ensuring that you remain compliant with the law.
A disadvantage of Gmail’s built-in system is that it’s quite lightweight for serious marketers. While it has a personalization feature, it’s rather limited. For example, it does not allow you to personalize your subject line and other elements in the body of the email. Another downside is you can’t choose where or how your unsubscribe link appears.
Sending Mass Email Through a Gmail Extension (Like Mailtrack)
Knowing how to send a mass email through Gmail extensions like MailTrack is a competitive advantage because of the reports the tool provides. MailTrack lets senders know when emails are delivered, read, when links are clicked, and when PDF attachments are opened or downloaded. Data from these reports are vital so you can know how well your campaign is doing and how you can improve.
Not only that, but it will also let you know how many times your recipient reads your email. It helps that the extension is user-friendly. You can send up to 1,000 emails in one go but the total will be capped at the daily limit of Gmail.
The benefits that marketing software or ESPs provide come with a price. They are generally the most expensive mass email method.
Using a CRM to Send a Mass Email
There are a lot of advantages to sending mass emails with a CRM like Mailchimp. The first is clear – you have complete control over the email’s design elements. CRMs usually offer highly customizable email templates that you can use without any coding. They also have quite a bit of flexibility when it comes to adding merge fields in the content of your email. And, most importantly, you can send to a huge list with the click of a button.
The advantages of CRMs are pretty clear, but the cons may be a little more difficult to consider if you don’t know what you’re looking for. While these services offer a wide range of customization methods, you need to first learn how to use them. That can be a pretty steep learning curve. It can also take up a lot of your time. The other con is that CRMs are usually a lot more expensive than the other options on this list. If you don’t have a genuine need for all the bells and whistles of a CRM, why pay so much for one?
4 Mass Email Methods Comparison Table
|Mass Email Method||Ease of Use||Personalization Features||Mail Tracking||Mail Preview||Reporting and Analytics||Free Trial Plan|
|Gmail’s Mail Merge|
Sending mass emails is a necessary marketing activity. Sometimes, you need to send thousands of emails to announce or promote products or activities. There are a few ways to simplify sending emails to a large number of recipients. You could send them through Outlook, Gmail’s mail merge method, Gmail extensions like MailTrack, and email software. Each of these options has pros and cons. Now that you know about the strengths and weaknesses of each, you’re better positioned to select a method that works best for your needs and those of your customers.
Mass Email FAQ
How do you send mass emails and hide recipients?
Bcc (blind carbon copy) is one way to send mass emails while hiding the email addresses of your recipients. However, there are more efficient ways, like using a mail merge in Outlook or Gmail, using a Gmail mail merge extension like Mailtrack, or using an email software like Mailchimp.
How do you send mass emails individually?
Though the Bcc feature can work, it is not ideal due to its limitations. The best way to send mass emails individually is through Gmail using MailTrack. You can click on “Compose” and choose the “Campaign” option. Add the email addresses in the “Recipients” field and each address will receive the email as if they were the only recipient.
How do you send mass emails in Outlook without showing addresses?
When you create a new email on Outlook, click on the Options tab. Select Bcc. Select “recipients” from your contact list and they will immediately be added to the Bcc list. When the recipients receive the email, they will not see the other email addresses.
How do you send mass emails in Gmail without showing addresses?
There are two options. First, you can input the email addresses in the Bcc space. Bcc stands for blind carbon copy, which means recipients cannot see the other recipients’ names and email addresses. The other option is to use the Mailtrack extension for Chrome.
How do you send mass emails from Excel?
Excel is a spreadsheet that saves the contact details of your recipients. Sending mass emails is done on Outlook or Gmail using mail merge.
When doing a mail merge from a Word document, click on the “Mailings” tab and go to “Select Recipients.” Click on “Use an Existing List.” From there, you can select the Excel file with your list of recipients.
What is the Gmail mass email limit?
Individual Gmail accounts can send up to 500 emails per day but if you have a Google Workspace account, you can send up to 2,000 emails daily. For mail merge emails, the cap is 1,500 emails per day.