Our upcoming release includes a number of new Communication features—they're even gonna get their own tab. In addition to upgrading existing features like Mailing Lists and Email Templates, we're also adding some new items, like Printed Letters and Custom Page Layouts.
And, the centerpiece of Communications: Communication Plans. These gather Email, Printed Letter, and To-Do templates into a series of automated events that structure how you correspond with your contacts.
Say you're in touch with a prospective student. On his profile's Activity Feed (another new feature), you add a Communication Plan, and a whole series of emails, letters, and tasks are instantly scheduled. On Day 1 of the Plan, it sends an introductory Email. On Day 2, a Printed Letter goes out (via the new Print Queue), accompanying some additional materials about your college. On Days 7 and 14, follow-up phone calls hit your To-Do list. And so on. Plans help ensure that all the steps get covered, that no student falls through the cracks, and that your communications stay consistent and focused.
While we built them with the admissions process in mind, they'll be just as useful when you're working with donors, current students—or anyone else you can think of.
Two other things coming up in Communications: Mailing Lists will keep a history of what you sent to them (Emails and Printed Letters), including stats on how many people opened a particular Email. And Page Layouts will let you upload an Open Office template so you can customize the look and feel of your Printed Letters. You'll be able to upload templates for normal documents, mailing envelopes, and mailing labels.
These features are just around the corner. We think they'll make Populi even more useful to your college.