Email and Web Forwards
Every student group should have a web presence, including a group email address (not just one of the leaders' email addesses) and a Facebook group/page, or similar web presence. Fortunately, you don't have to be a tech genius to have them - the SSA is here to help! We can provide an email address for your group and simple webpages to help your group have a presence on the web, and allow other students and community members to find the group!
We create an email forward and static web page for every Group Starting Packet request - so if you've requested a packet from us recently, you already have these set up. If you are an existing SSA affiliate and would like to request an email or web forward for your group, go to www.secularstudents.org/getforwards.
Contact us if you have any questions or need to update the information in these.
The SSA is happy to provide your group with an automatic email forward that you can use for a group contact email. The email forwards are usually formatted as "YourSchool@secularstudents.org." The email address automatically forwards anything sent to it to the personal email address(es) you provide us with. There is no inbox to maintain and no password to remember. Plus, we can set it up to forward to multiple individuals, so you could have it forward to all your officers, your president and communications officer, your public relations officer, or whoever in your group needs to receive it. Just make sure that you let us know to update it when you have leadership transitions!
When the time comes that you need to update the addresses that your email forward goes to, just contact us (or look into the Gmail Account Advantage below). It takes us just a few moments to update your information.
SSA staff members will always receive a copy of all emails sent to these addresses. This allows us to monitor our addresses for misuse, disuse, spam, or opportunities where we can help you. The only times we will act on any message is if it becomes clear to us that you are not responding (such as, "Hi, I emailed you three times and haven't heard back! Is anyone there??") or if we see an email that we can help you with - in which case we will email you directly.
Testing Your Address? Because of the way these email addresses are set up, if you send a test message to the @secularstudents.org address from the address it forwards to (usually the address you used to request your Group Starting Packet), you probably won't get a copy of it. This does not mean that the address isn't working! We suggest that you test the address from a different email account - a free Gmail account, your school address, or having a friend try it out for you are all perfectly viable options. Moreover, when we see test emails coming through, we'll be sure to send a reply so you know that it's working on our end. If you don't get a copy of your message AND we haven't sent you a response (remember, we're only here on weekdays!), then feel free to contact us and ask us to look into it.
Gmail Account Advantage
If you have a Gmail account, the forwarding service we offer provides the additional advantage:
If you use Gmail, you can manage your group forward by personally adding and removing members to it on your own time. In order to activate this feature simply email campus organizer and give them your Gmail email. After they confirm your new manager role, you can start adding new members to your group forward. To manage the group, log into your Google account. Click the nine boxed square image at the very top right. Click "Groups" (this should open a Google groups page). Select "my groups" either to the left hand side or on the Google groups home page. You should find the name of your group forward here. Right under the group, there should be a tiny blue "Manage" link to click on. Click that "Manage" button under the group name. Here you can manipulate the roles of the emails of your group and also add new members. To add a new member, select "direct add member" from the "Member" drop down list. Simply enter the email address and click the add button. As you can see, you can even include an invite email with each new add. You can also remove members by going to the "All members" section of the same drop down menu.
The SSA can create a simple webpage that your group can use as a web presence to put interested web browsers in touch with your group. This is ideal for groups that do not have any other web presence, or for groups that primarily use a Facebook page but might not want to put a long, ugly Facebook group URL on all their group materials.
The format for our group web pages is "http://www.secularstudents.org/YourSchool." There are two ways these pages can work: we can either set up a static page listing links for the various ways people can get in touch with your group, or we can set up a page that automatically redirects to another URL. If you're not sure which is better for your group, contact us!
To make changes on either of these pages, email us!
Static Pages: These are simple webpages that can have your group logo, information about your group and links for contact information. This is useful if you want to list several ways to contact your group, such as a website, Facebook group, Twitter account, email address and/or Google Group.
Automatic Redirect Pages: Automatic redirect pages use a snippet of html code to automatically redirect the user to the new URL. These are particularly useful if you use a Facebook group or page for your group's online presence, but don't want to write out the long, ugly Facebook group URL on your promo materials.
To request an email or web forward for your group, go to www.secularstudents.org/getforwards.