Three Easy Steps To Planning Around System Upgrades

A couple of month’s back our Enterprise Architect, Graham Kent, gave an update on our blog about dotMailer’s new database kit, and why it’s 28 times better.

Having undergone weeks and weeks of testing, we’re now ready to move all dotMailer users onto this new, faster system; which is why we announced our forthcoming system downtime.

We’re working to keep the downtime as brief as possible, but just to be safe we’ve prepared a few tips on how to plan your campaigns so you don’t experience any disruption during the upgrade work.

1. Know your contacts and how they behave

The first step in planning your campaigns should be to reflect on what you already know:

  • When do your contacts normally open your campaign? Do they read emails in the morning? In the evening? On weekdays? At weekends?
  • How long after your campaign send are your emails still being opened and clicked on?
  • Are these figures the same for all your audiences and campaign types?

Once you know what campaigns and send times are likely to be affected, you’re ready to look at your schedule.

2. Look at your schedule

Let’s assume your emails are primarily opened within two days of sending; the only campaigns that will be affected to a great extent will be those sent in the two days leading up to the system upgrade.

Can these campaigns be rescheduled to a few days earlier or later? Remember you don’t need to be at your computer when the campaign is sent, so consider scheduling your campaigns to run as soon as the upgrade work is complete.

Don’t forget ReMails!

If you are using ReMail, dotMailer’s ROI ramping tool to send a followup campaign to non-openers, make sure you know when the ReMail is due to hit; consider changing the number of days you wait before ReMailing if your campaigns are likely to be affected.

3. Consider turn off tracking for critical links

If, even after rescheduling where possible, you still expect users to be clicking on your links during the system upgrade. Then consider disabling link tracking for your business critical links; this will ensure they are not affected by the service interruption.

During our normal upgrade work this is not necessary, however just during this special database upgrade tracked links will not be available for a short period of time (see our FAQ for more info).

Once you’ve got all your campaigns planned and scheduled, sit back and relax ready for dotMailer to come back after the upgrade faster than ever.

During the system upgrade we’ll be keeping you updated through our Twitter feed, using the hashtag #dMmaint; so if you don’t want to schedule and are itching to send out a campaign as soon as we’re done, make sure you stay tuned for updates.