By Shelley Lowery
Autoresponders are one of the most widely used promotional tools on the Internet. They're also known as
mailbots, automatic email and email on demand. They were derived from the very popular fax on demand
and designed to automatically respond to any email message sent to it with an automatic response.
Autoresponder programs vary from autoresponse messages set-up within an email program to a script that
runs on a server. This script may run a web-based autoresponder system that utilizes a web page form or it may run with a pop email account
on a server. It's programmed to automatically send out a pre-determined message when a message is received to a
specified script address or email address.
Not only are autoresponders one of the most widely used promotional tools, but are becoming one of the
most widely abused. While using autoresponders will enable you to put a lot of your daily tasks on autopilot,
autoresponders can also wreak havoc on innocent individuals who may cross their path.
Autoresponder addresses should NEVER be used when submitting your website to Search Engines,
Directories, Free For All sites, or in Classified Ad contact forms. Many of these
types of websites use autoresponders to send thank you or welcome messages to their users. When their autoresponder
sends a message to your autoresponder, this creates what is known as a loop. Each autoresponder will continue to
respond to the other.
When subscribing to an ezine or email discussion group, always use a real email address and NEVER
subscribe with an autoresponder address. Subscribing to these types of publications with an autoresponder
address will get you immediately unsubscribed. Why? For example; If you're a member of a discussion group
and receive many messages each day, your autoresponder will respond to every message
it receives. Not only will the list owner receive a mailbox full of complaints, but they will also receive all of your
Another problem ezine publishers encounter with autoresponder subscribers is locating the perpetrator.
Many times, the "reply to" and "from" address of an autoresponse message aren't the same as the address
they subscribed under. It takes a great deal of time and effort to track the address, which is
time that could have been better spent elsewhere.
Another unethical use of autoresponders is
autoresponders. Let me explain... There are many Internet Marketers now using unethical techniques to subscribe innocent individuals to
their junk mailing lists. They will send a message to an autoresponder address using their subscription address. When
the autoresponder answers the message, the "from" address on the autoresponder will be instantly subscribed. This
technique is not only unethical, but also unprofessional.
Autoresponders can be a wonderful tool for Internet Marketers
and can save you hours of valuable time. However, if not used in a professional manner, can wreak havoc on the Internet
community. Don't be tempted to tarnish your professional reputation by indulging in the abuse of our autoresponder
system. It's just not worth the price.
About the Author:
Shelley Lowery is the Webmaster of Web-Source.net - A complete resource portal for the Internet
entrepreneur. Subscribe to Article Announce: An announcement list providing free content to hundreds of
ezines, newsletters, magazines and web sites. Announce your articles free.