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Campaign Automation: Updating and Confirming Subscription Preferences

In a previous blog post, we outlined how to set up a double opt-in subscription management campaign automation. If you are preparing to move to double opt-in subscription management, you may also want to include a way to encourage current subscribers to confirm and update their preferences and acknowledge that they have read your terms of use for receiving emails and collecting personal data.  You can add a few steps before the double opt-in to prompt a response if you have a deadline for compliance.

Here are the steps you would need to add before the submitted form:

  1. Entry Point: You can use multiple entry points to send marketing list members through this campaign automation. If you use both lead and contact records, use two different Added to List triggers, one for each. These lists will contain all your current contacts and/or leads that you have permission to email. If you have large numbers of leads and contacts in your system, you can add more lists, sub-dividing members. Just make sure not to use the same lists as you have tied to your subscription lists, or members may be re-added to the Campaign Automation again after they submit their preferences. Instead, clone the marketing lists related to your subscriptions to use for the entry points. You will add a step at the end of the last series to remove members from these entry point marketing lists.
  2. First Series: This includes an email template that will encourage recipients to confirm their contact information and subscription preferences. You can provide a deadline and a note that anyone who does not submit both the contact info and subscription preference by that cut-off date will be removed from their current subscriptions. You will include a direct link to the profile management form. To do this, you will use the hyperlink manager’s Web Content tab to pick the correct form.
  3. Submitted Form: This provides the first opportunity to submit the profile management form. The first name, last name and email fields will likely be pre-filled automatically if you have added these fields under contact and lead attributes so that it pulls from these mapped fields. They will still need to check the required Terms of Use checkbox to acknowledge that they agree that you can collect their personal data and continue to send emails to this email address. You can set a time to wait before people are sent down the negative path, such as two days. This should be plenty of time for people to receive the email and submit the form.
  4. Positive Path: After the profile management form is submitted, the email containing the link to the subscription management page can be sent. Once the participant submits their subscription preferences, they will be added or removed from the corresponding Marketing Lists. Remember to include a Remove from List action in each of the series following the decision node.
  5. Negative Path: If someone misses the two-day deadline to submit the profile management form, you could set a Date Timer or Wait Timer before sending a reminder email closer to your compliance deadline to prompt them one last time. After that email, if they still don’t follow-up by submitting their form, they will be sent to a final series where they are removed from the marketing lists.

Maintaining Subscription Preferences after the Double-Opt In

Once most of your existing subscribers have double-opted in, you can create a separate campaign automation that will let people update their subscription preferences. In your email templates, instead of only including a global unsubscribe link, you can choose to link to your subscription management page. But there’s a catch: if you are already using a subscription management page for the double opt-in process, you will want to use a different one for this campaign automation. Otherwise, people will be sent through both campaign automations when they reach the submitted subscription step of the double opt-In campaign automation. To save yourself some time, you can clone the original subscription management page and use the cloned version in this campaign automation.

Your subscription management plans may necessitate including other elements to achieve your goals, but the above suggestions are a springboard to get you started. You will want to consult with local rules and regulations, as well as your own company policies to guide your decisions.

Of course, as we advise with any campaign automation, be sure to test thoroughly before implementing them with your contacts and leads by running yourself and colleagues through multiple times to test all the variables.

About the Author:

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Veronica Kyle is a ClickDimensions Marketing Success Manager.

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