May 16, 2008

Unicode Character Set In MailChimp

After this weekend, MailChimp will support the unicode character set in email campaigns, and in the opt-in process. So our international friends (in Greece, for instance) can now create a better, more local experience for your subscribers.

We’ve always been able to send emails with unicode characters in them, but there were tiny catches (mostly because of our interface). For example, you could send a campaign that used a foreign character set, but not the subject line.
Thanks to the new v3 platform, those little annoyances are gone, and our international friends can use MailChimp more easily now.

Internationalization is something we’ve committed to here at MailChimp, but it’s not as simple as adding a few meta tags to your pages and saying, "we’re global!" There are tons of issues to address (if you want to do it right), so it will take some time for us to get this perfected.

There are product interface issues. There are pricing and transactional issues. There are issues with our review team judging whether or not something is spam (the subtle "implied permission" kind, not the obvious Rolex/Viagra kind). There are spam laws. There are deliverability issues with foreign ISPs (luckily, we’ve got our friends at ReturnPath helping with that).

But we’ve got the ball rolling. We invite all our international customers to try out the new MailChimp, and send us feedback. If you see little bits and pieces that need translation, heck, send us your translation, and we’ll add it to our system!

I’m starting to wish I didn’t take so many years of Latin in high school.  Oh well—it’ll pay off when the Pope signs up for MailChimp, I just know it. Salve Amice!