FeedBurner Users- Save a Copy of Your Email Subscriber Information!

If you are a blogger and use FeedBurner, please take my advice and save a CSV copy of your email subscriber information.  Unfortunately, I have learned the hard way that your email subscriber information can be gone in an instant.

Long story short, because of some strange glitch with FeedBurner {not me}, as of last week, I no longer have access to my email subscription settings, which includes subscriber information.  Because I use the “email branding” feature, this lack of access is a big problem for me.  For help, I searched the internet for more than a week for FeedBurner contact information and was surprised to find out that on July 26th, FeedBurner signed off of their Twitter account.  On that same day, they also signed off of the FeedBurner blog.

I have also found out the hard way that there is no email for FeedBurner support and no one to contact.  I was even desperate enough to call Google Headquarters directly and was told “Google no longer offers technical support or assistance for FeedBurner”.  The only so called “help” that FeedBurner/Google offers is a link to the lovely “FeedBurner help forum”, which is not monitored by anyone with FeedBurner/Google and is nothing more than messages from people like me, aimlessly wandering around looking for FeedBurner technical  support.

I have no clue what’s going on with FeedBurner and I know nothing about this stuff but what I do know {now}, it’s always a good idea to have a copy of your email subscriber information.

***Update on 9/21/12- My email subscribers reappeared a week later.  I am leaving this post up just in case you are having the same issues.  The good news is that the list did finally reappear and I immediately saved a CSV copy****

What I also know is that since Sunday of last week, I could no longer access the “email subscriptions” section of my account.  Instead, when I click on “email subscriptions”, I get this message:

 

{Oh that helpful looking “contact us” link in the message? It does nothing!!}

Because I use FeedBurner’s “Email Branding” feature, I go to that section after every post to shorten the subject line (title) of my emails that go out to my subscribers. In other words, I do not have my email settings set to automatically populate the email subject line for each email with the new feed title. So, without access, every email sent out {after I post} will say in the subject line; “5 Easy Kitchen Updates with Big Impact”. That is the last title that I saved for the subject line before I lost access.  Ugh!!!

The content in the body of the email will be my current post/feed but the email subject line will never change until someone at FeedBurner flips a switch and fixes this glitch. Odds are, my subscribers will probably unsubscribe if I continued to post with same title on the email subject line.

In desperation for help, I emailed other other bloggers via the “help forum” who had posted previously for help on similar email access issues.  All of the bloggers that I talked to told me that they lost access to their email subscribers permanently and had to start all over {someone hold me now}… It sounds like this “Trouble at the Mill” message is likened to the blue screen of death for PC’s.

So why is it important to have a copy of your email subscribers? If I had saved a copy of the subscribers file, I could have simply transferred my feed and subscribers last week to another account and everything would be just fine.  But because I never saved a copy, it appears I will probably have to deactivate my current FeedBurner account this week and mitigate to something new, which means saying goodbye to my current email subscribers forever. It frustrates me more than anything that I could have had the solution in my hand had I saved a copy…

It’s not the end of the world, everybody is healthy but the thought of losing email subscriber information that has accumulated over the last 3 years, breaks my heart. The only thing at this point that I can do is to help make sure that this doesn’t happen to someone else and encourage others to download and save a copy of email subscriber information, just in case something happens.

So how do you export/download and save a CSV of your email subscribers in FeedBurner? It’s easy! I’m using images from a friend’s account to show you how to do it:

1) Open your FeedBurner account

2) Click on the “Publicize” tab at the top and then click on “Email Subscriptions”, which will then take you to the Email Subscription/Subscription Management page:

3) Click on the blue “View Subscriber Details” hyperlink, which will drop down additional options that you can see below, including the link to “Export: CSV”:

Once you click on the blue CSV hyperlink, a copy will be immediately downloaded to your computer.  When you go to open the file, it looks just like a spread sheet {my computer automatically saved it to Microsoft Excel}.  You can the rename the file. Saving this file every couple of months will ensure the information stays updated.  If you need more help, you can see this  YouTube video tutorial here.

Moving forward, I’m going to have to do something about this next week because I can’t keep sending out that same email to my subscribers.  I guess I would rather abandon them then to have them unsubscribe in droves thinking that I am some crazy DIY blogger obsessed with kitchen makeovers and the never ending list of “5 Easy Kitchen Updates with Big Impact”.

If you have any technical knowledge in this crazy-rss feed- area and have a suggestion for my next move, I would greatly appreciate any thoughts or ideas.  I do know that I will have to have a new email subscriber account because I don’t want new people to keep subscribing to a list I will probably never have access to.  If there is a way to keep this current account open while starting a new email subscriber account, just in case I ever get access back in the future, I would love to know how to do that.  I guess I’ll start researching that this week…

In the meantime, if you’re an email subscriber of The Creativity Exchange, please follow on my Facebook page here.  I will post an update on that page when I have the new email subscription account set up.

Thanks you guys for listening to me and I really hope you will save your files.

Cheers!

Cyndy

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20 Responses to FeedBurner Users- Save a Copy of Your Email Subscriber Information!

  1. Candee says:

    I’m not going to abandon you! I can start reading your article and see it’s different…it’s not the subject line that hooks me it’s seeing the email is from The Creativity Exchange. I bet others will feel the same way.

    • Cyndy says:

      Thank you Candee for your sweet message! This has been so frustrating and breaks my heart. I really hope that subscribers open and read the email. Your note made my morning, thank you so much!
      Cyndy recently posted..FeedBurner Users- Save a Copy of Your Email Subscriber Information!My Profile

      • zeghsy says:

        I wondered why it was the same topic, but then not. Good to see I wasn’t just losing my mind. Again. I’ve liked your FB page so I can keep up.

        • Cyndy says:

          Oh I’m so glad you looked!! I’m sure you were wondering what was going on! LOL! Thank you so much for going over the FB page! Everyone else has been doing that all morning and it has really warmed my heart in this big mess. My web guy and I are working on the new set up and hopefully we will have it ready to go shortly. I will post several times on the FB page when its ready. Thank you so much for your note, you guys have made me feel so much better!

  2. Stephanie says:

    Thank you for this post! I just saved all my subscribers and I think I am going to upload them all to mailchimp and then cancel my feedburner and not mess with it.
    I lost a lot of subscribers when I switched from blogspot to wordpress. I feel your pain!

    • Cyndy says:

      Oh I’m so glad that you saved your subscribers Stephanie. I would just hate for this to happen to someone else. I’am sorry to hear you too lost subscribers with the WP switch. There are a lot of people on the feedburner help forum with that same issue! Thank you so much for stopping by and leaving me a note!

  3. A quick suggestion – when you DO migrate your feed, why not run a big marketing push to encourage readers to re-subscribe. Here are some suggestions of incentives
    1 – Have a huge contest giveaway – draw the winner from the NEW subscriber list and everyone on the list is automatically entered. [FeedBlitz has a great feature where you can pick a random subscriber]
    2 – Add a light box to this blog which pops up after 20 seconds of a visit reminding the visitor to subscribe to the new list.
    3 – Use Facebook advertising for a limited time to promote the contest and the new subscription list
    4 – Have your best joint venture partners also mail their list to let readers who are already interested in your space know that you’re running a contest (and maybe offer prizes from the JV partners in the mix)

    Good luck with the move.
    Rebecca
    Rebecca Caroe recently posted..Cheat Sheet: 8 Ways to Build a better Facebook Presence, part 2My Profile

    • Cyndy says:

      Wow Rebecca!! Thank you SO much!! These are great ideas and I had never thought about a contest/incentive to get my subscribers to mitigate.. Good thinking and again, such great ideas! I really appreciate your kind words and I think this is exactly what I’m going to do.

  4. Phil Hollows says:

    We at FeedBlitz have a FeedBurner migration guide – we are the only alternative to offer nbith RSS serving and email distribution. Cyndy, I know we may not be able to help given the problems you’re having with Google’s user interface, but we CAN help convince those subscribers to resubscribe to your new feed and mailings.

    Free e-book on migrating safely away from FeedBurner here: http://www.feedblitz.com/the-feedburner-migration-guide/

    • Cyndy says:

      Thank you so much Phil and thank you for all of your help this last week! I am going through the mitigation guide! Thanks so much and thank you again for all of your help!

  5. So sorry this happened to you :/ Looks like Google is abandoning us all on Feedburner, so I recently switched to Feedblitz and it’s the best move I’ve made!
    Kendra Fletcher recently posted..Facebook, Lots of Resources, and a Contest, too!My Profile

    • Cyndy says:

      Thank you so much Kendra! I agree, I think nobody is home at FeedBurner and the writing is on the wall. Thanks for the info on Feedblitz and thank you again for your note!

  6. Shar Simms says:

    Thanks for this information! I lost all my email subscribers today. It’s totally frustrating! I’ve worked hard to build up email subscribers. Ugh…guess I’ll have to start over but this time I will take your advice and copy the email list.
    Shar Simms recently posted..The Burning Seal by Jenna StormMy Profile

    • Cyndy says:

      Oh I am so sorry to hear that Shar! If it makes you feel better, mine came back a week later- only hours before I was going to start a whole new feed. I’m not sure what happened but they just reappeared one morning, thank goodness. Hang in there and try to wait it out before you resign yourself that they are really gone. Sorry Shar. I hope everything works out. Cyndy

  7. Thx for the helpful post … I lost my subscribers but I’m crossing my fingers that it might come back before the end of the month.
    CJ at Food Stories recently posted..What’s Your Food Story? TMMy Profile

  8. Tina says:

    Hi Cyndy,
    Same story here…lost all my subscribers last month and they have not reappeared.
    I’ve only been blogging a year, but I was so upset. Thanks for all your helpful info, as I got no help from Feedburner, either.
    I can’t believe that I didn’t have a copy of the list, so I’ll definitely copy one every few months in the future. Lesson learned!
    I’m so glad your list reappeared.
    ~Tina
    Tina recently posted..SophieLou’s Punkin’ChewsMy Profile

  9. Stephanie says:

    I see you are still using feedburner? I’m having some issues and wanted to switch and came upon this article. Thanks for the info. Was wondering if you were planning on switching and if to what service?

    • Cyndy says:

      Yes Stephanie, I’m still using feedburner but I save a copy of my subscriber list every week. I have no doubt that when it does go away, we may not get any warning from Google like they did in Japan. I will eventually transition but probably not for a couple of months. Thanks Stephanie for your note and good luck on your search.

  10. Kathleen says:

    I’m a follower by email and all of a sudden this past week I stopped receiving new post updates by email for the blogs I follow. I’ve searched and searched all over the internet and for the life of me I can’t find any information or help? I got to this posting by doing a search for contact information for feedburner. I was hoping you could help? To test feedburner out I signed up for email subscriptions under a different email address and I received an email with a new posting but still nothing under the old email. Weird and I don’t know how to fix this and it’s driving me insane :(. I’m really hoping you can help! Thanks!!!

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