The CoachAccountable Blog

What's new with the CA platform, tutorials on using it, and customer spotlights.

System Email Addresses

“I love having messages to my clients captured in CoachAccountable.  It would be nice if I could just send a regular email without having to log in, and have it show up in their file.”

– Like, a dozen coaches.

CoachAccountable messaging is nice, a quick way to fire off messages between coach and client, affording tidy, on-topic comment threads and becoming part of The Record of the coaching process.  But traditionally, messages sent via CA had to be send from within CA.  Wouldn’t it be lovely if you could post a message to your clients from right within your usual email?

Introducing CoachAccountable System Email Addresses

CoachAccountable now supports posting messages right from your usual email program, no logging in required.  As coach, you can find a system email address for each of the clients you are coaching.  This magic email address is tied to a specific client, and routes through CoachAccountable.  Sending an email to this address is equivalent to posting a message to the corresponding client from within CoachAccountable.

To do this coach need only find the system addresses for his or her clients, and (probably a good idea) add those addresses to his or her email contacts for easy reference later.

System email addresses are found under My CA >> My System >> System Email Addresses.

Lots of goodies here.  For now, System Email Addresses is what we're concerned with.

Lots of goodies here. For now, System Email Addresses is what we’re concerned with.

The System Email Address page offers a listing of all of your clients and their respective, magic email addresses:

You could do a bunch of copy-and-pasting between here and say your Outlook address book, but there's a quicker way. :)

You could do a bunch of copy-and-pasting between here and say your Outlook address book, but there’s a quicker way. :)

To make getting these magic addresses into your email address book easy, you can have CoachAccountable send you emails from each of them, putting you two clicks away from adding the right “from name” and address for each.

Add To Contacts

Having the “via CoachAccountable” (or whatever suffix you tell the system to send with) makes it easy to keep system email addresses separate from an individual’s regular address: one will route through and be recorded by CA, and one won’t, so you’ll want to be sure you’re sending to the right one.

Once added to your contacts, addressing a message to your client to be sent via CA is a simple matter:

Type a few characters and the system email address pops right up.

Type a few characters and the system email address pops right up from your contacts.

Then compose an email as you usually would, and send:

Just like sending a regular email, because, um, it is.

Just like sending a regular email, because, um, it is.

Within a minute, this email is received by CoachAccountable, posted as a message in your client’s stream…

Email posted as client message

…and sent along to your client via email as usual:

Forwarded email

Want to add a little formatting to your email, perhaps even a picture?  No problem, just put it all into your email as you normally would and CA will handle it:

Ponies.

Ponies.

This goes right into CA as you’d expect it:

Posting inline images

Finally you can also share files this way.  Attached files will be stored by CA as shared files under the Files tab:

Attach one or many, they'll all be stored.

Attach one or many, they’ll all be stored.

The email your client receives comes with links to the file or files you shared.  This is nice in that this way you’ll be able to see if (and when) they viewed the file, and the file will be delivered in embedded fashion when applicable:

Shared files emailed to client

And of course these files will be accessible from the recipient client’s Files tab:

What do you mean Ron hasn't accessed these yet, I sent 'em like 3 minutes ago?!

What do you mean Ron has never accessed these yet, I sent ’em like 3 minutes ago?!

There’s one other trick to using System Email Addresses: if you just want to share a file and don’t necessarily want to post an actual Client Message, you can do so with sending a specially crafted message: have the subject line start with exactly “File:”, and attach exactly one file.

This example illustrates:

The subject line prefix "File:" is the key.

The subject line prefix “File:” is the key.

Files shared in CoachAccountable have both the file name (e.g. “CALetterheadMast.png”) and a title (e.g. “CoachAccountable Letterhead Mast”).  A title is nice in that it can be a more descriptive label than just the raw file name.

Shared files also can have a description, a simple blurb about the file.

Unlike when posting files as attachments to a regular message email, sharing a file in this way allows you to set both the title for the file (which otherwise defaults to the file name) and a description (which otherwise defaults to blank).  The title will be whatever follows “File:” in the subject line, and the description will be the body of the email itself.

Here’s what the file from the email above looks like captured in the Files tab:

Note the title as found in the subject line, and the description which matches the email body.

Note how the title derives from the email subject, and how the description matches the email body.


So system email addresses allow coach to post, from their regular email program, messages and files to each of their clients.  What about the other direction, clients posting to their coach?

The process works just the same in reverse: clients each have a system email address by which they can post a message (or share a file) with their coach.

Much like you can have CA send you all the email addresses for easy adding to your address book, you can have CA send to each of your clients a message that gives them the magic address by which they can post messages to you.

The System Email Addresses page as found under My CA has a tool for exactly this:

The email your clients receive will allow them to get the magic address to post to YOU.

The email your clients receive will allow them to get the magic address to post to YOU.

System Email Addresses are another way to empower communication between coach and client in a way that is seamless and in the natural work flow of all parties, while getting the full benefit of CA for managing, tracking, and documenting things.  Enjoy!

6 Comments »

  1. David McQuarrie said,

    March 10, 2015 @ 6:35 am

    Very cool feature. Will this work with all emal applications, such as Apple, or Google, or strictly Outlook?

  2. Michael said,

    March 10, 2015 @ 6:43 am

    Awesome new feature, John. Thanks!

  3. John said,

    March 10, 2015 @ 8:51 am

    Hi David, good question. This will work for all email applications. Though each will vary in the mechanism by which it handles adding and using addresses stored in the address book, what this ultimately comes down to is sending a message, like usual, to a specific email address, like usual.

  4. Twila said,

    March 10, 2015 @ 12:48 pm

    This is great! Capturing those extra communications will be very helpful indeed.
    Thanks for all your hard work John!

  5. Jason said,

    March 10, 2015 @ 2:16 pm

    Awesomeness. The best feature of CA is actually your desire to continually improve its usefulness. :) No joke.

    Keep up the greatness, John.

  6. Damian said,

    March 11, 2015 @ 10:36 pm

    Great feature John. Very handy!

    And yep, very well said Jason :)

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