How to make an image show automatically in iContact
July 22, 2010 4:35 PM   Subscribe

When sending an html email through iContact, is there a way to make images shows up automatically in the body of the recipients email?

I built an email newsletter in iContact using their HTML builder and included our company logo. However, when I send myself a test email and open it in Outlook, I get the standard red x boxes asking if I want to download the image (the logo). I figured that was that but in the past few days I've received emails from someone using Constant Contact and their images appear in my Outlook automatically without my having to download them.

I called iContact and they said "maybe Constant Constant embeds images differently than we do. Sorry, can't help you". Hmm.. didn't sound right.

So, is there a way to do what I'm trying to do?
posted by gfrobe to Technology (4 answers total)
This is not a particular answer to your question, but Constant Contact does not have a magical method of embedding (or linking in the HTML) images. I use CC frequently, and when I send test emails to my own account I get the red X.

Perhaps in the past you have clicked a link in your Outlook allowing images in emails from ABC company (the one from which you are getting the other emails) to always show up. Something like "Always trust images from emails from ABC Company". There is a similar feature in gmail - since I know that emails from companies to which I subscribe are safe, when I click to "allow" images I can also click to "always allow" images.

Email programs hide images, often by default. For more info, check out this excellent blog post by Campaign Monitor. It should help you with some guidelines on what to do.
posted by kellygrape at 6:51 PM on July 22, 2010

I think kellygrape is correct in that you've told Outlook to always show images from that address. If there was a way to magically override the setting then that would be a bug that Microsoft would probably fix pretty quickly.

Something that that a lot of people don't realize is that showing images is the only reliable way for the sender to know if someone opens their message. When Constant Contact reports on how many people opened your message, they really mean how many people opened it AND displayed images. One of the images will have a unique id in its url which the server recognizes and knows what email address it was sent to. That's the main reason why most email programs give you the option to not show images. It avoids telling spammers that you opened it. I don't think there is much (or any) direct security risk in showing images.
posted by tetranz at 5:08 AM on July 23, 2010

I believe that images attached to the email show automatically, whereas images loaded from a remote server are not.

Attached images aren't a privacy risk, since Outlook doesn't have to connect to anywhere. It's still possible to embed attached images into the HTML body of the email.
posted by Mwongozi at 5:17 AM on July 23, 2010

There is no way across the board to have images display by default. How images display are a user setting and there is no way to change that. You receiving a CC email with images is most likely caused by you allowing that sender's messages to allow images.

Make sure you use image alt tags so that the blocked image will at least give a text description of what is being blocked: "ABC company logo"
Even then though, the alt text may not display across all email systems - but it's a good best practice.
posted by doorsfan at 8:20 AM on July 23, 2010

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