I have been using Coffee Cup Software for 4+ years, and it's a great
HTML editor. Since you don't have an extensive background in HTML, you
may prefer another program I found, that has built in HTML templates,
and is compatable with Outlook/Outlook Express. Here is the best one
that I was able to find, that is right in the same price range as the
Coffee Cup HTML Editor ($49.00) :
Title : TemplateZone High Impact Email
Site : http://templatezone.com/hiemail/
Price : $49.95
"...an innovative add-on for Microsoft Outlook and Outlook Express
that makes it possible for any Outlook user to send graphical HTML
emails, newsletters and advertisements in just minutes..."
If you wish to pursue an outside firm, and still have considerable
control over the layout, this company seems very promising. They offer
templates as well :
Title : MailChimp
Site : http://www.mailchimp.com/purchase.phtml#plan
Price : Around 1-2 cents per email
"You're gonna love how easy it is to send HTML email with Mail Chimp.
If you end up not liking Mail Chimp, just quit using it. You won't get
charged for anything, you won't receive "why-not" telephone calls or
The Coffee Cup software does have a WYSIWYG (What you see is what you
get) interface, but I have never used it, so I can not speak on behalf
of the accuracy. It allows you to drag images, move blocks of text and
much more. If you wanted to download the fully functional freeware
version to give it a try, you can do so here :
CoffeeCup HTML Editor Trial Version
This method would require you to design the newsletter in the HTML
editor, and save the file for future use. Doing it yourself is
probably the most rewarding, but for people on the clock and always on
the go (like me;-), faster always seems better.
To answer all of your questions in a quick summary :
It is very easy for you to create your own newsletter in HTML format.
You just need the right software, and a little practice ;-) Here are a
few links that should come in handy when you are ready to try some of
the software/companies that I listed:
About.com Marketing with Email by Judy Litt
HTML Ezines (Articles Intro,I,II,III) by Brian Alt
Sending HTML Email by Jennifer Kyrnin
To help with this answer I used Google to search for :
html emial composer software
Thanks for the great question. I hope this gives you a few avenues of
approach. I think the first program looks very well suited to what you
need. Should you need further resources or require clarification,
please ask before rating this answer. I would love to be of further
Clarification of Answer by
05 May 2003 16:33 PDT
To clarify this answer - you wouldn't really need a higher level
understanding of HTML. The software I linked you to has templates for
you to build upon.
The CoffeeCup HTML editor has the same features, but not an automatic
export tool for Outlook. The HTML would be generated by the
program(s), and automatically generate the right code for you. All the
while, you would be able to learn more HTML, and once comfortable, be
able to produce your own code for use in your email
Sorry if I confused the issue or seemed to lose focus. The overall
objective seems to be ease of use, and beating the learning curve.
Please do not hesitate to ask for clarification of any kind if needed.