MailChimp

Custom Fields

When you create a campaign in SparkLoop a bunch of custom fields are automatically added to your MailChimp list:

  • RH_SUBID Subscriber's ID.

  • RH_CODE Subscriber's referral code.

  • RH_REFLINK Subscriber's referral link.

  • RH_ISREF Whether or not the subscriber has been referred. "YES" or "NO".

  • RH_ISSHARER Whether or not the subscriber has shared the link. "YES" or "NO".

  • RH_TOTREF Subscriber's total number of referrals.

  • RH_LASTREF Date of the last subscriber's referral.

Using SparkLoop's custom fields in your newsletter

A common need for people is to add a section in their newsletter (usually at the bottom) with each subscriber's referral link and number of referrals. Here's an example from The Morning Brew:

Achieving the same result in your newsletter is trivial. You just need to use the corresponding merge tags, like this:

When you send your newsletter the merge tags will be automatically replaced with each subscriber's total number of referrals and referral link.

How to set up your referral program email automations

Send reward emails through MailChimp

As your subscribers refer their friends and win rewards, it's important that you notify them via email. After all, what's the point of setting up an ambassador program if you don't tell your subscribers when they have a won a reward?

Luckily you can set these emails up using MailChimp automations in a few minutes.

Step 1: Log in to your MailChimp account

Step 2: Go to the Campaigns page and click on the "Create campaign" button.

Step 3: In the popup choose Email then switch to Automated and click on the Custom button.

Step 4: Give the automation a name, select the right audience and click on Begin.

Step 5: Click on the Edit link to edit the trigger of this automation.

Step 6: Click on Change trigger

Step 7: Under Audience management choose Changes in a subscriber’s audience field

Step 8: In the "Delay" section you can specify the delay between the moment a subscriber wins a reward and the moment the email is sent (you can set this to "immediately"). The "Settings" section is the important one. From the dropdown, select the RH_TOTREF and set the value to the number of referrals needed to win a reward. For example, if you want to send this email when a subscriber wins a reward that requires 5 referrals, set the value to 5. Remember to save the changes by clicking on the "Update trigger" button.

Here's what's happening: we are setting up an automation that is triggered when the custom field RH_TOTREF of a subscriber (which stores the number of referrals) changes to a specific number (e.g: 5). SparkLoop automatically updates the RH_TOTREF value every time a subscriber gets a new referral.

Step 9: Now it's time to design the email. Make sure to congratulate the subscriber for winning the reward and add any information to redeem it.

Step 10: Done. Review and enable the automation.

IMPORTANT

Remember to create an automation for each reward!

Segments

SparkLoop makes it easy for you to segment your subscribers and send them targeted messages, for example:

  • send a message to all subscribers who have been referred

  • send a message to subscribers who have 3 or more referrals

  • send a message to subscribers who haven't referred anybody in 2 months

You can set up these segments very easily using SparkLoop-generated custom fields, in particular: RH_ISREF, RH_TOTREF and RH_LASTREF.

How to create a segment in MailChimp

In this example, we are going to create a segment of subscribers who have 3 or more referrals, but the same process can be used to create any custom segment.

Step 1: Go to your MailChimp's dashboard > Audience, choose your audience and click on View contacts. Click on New Segment.

Step 2: Here you can decide which criteria to use to create your segment. For our example, we are going to choose RH_TOTREF is greater than 3.

Note

You might want to use multiple conditions for your segment. For example, you might want to create a segment of super-engaged subscribers, people who have referred 3+ people and whose last referral is less than 1 week ago. In that case, you simply need to click on Add and add an additional condition.

Step 3: When you've added all your conditions, click on Preview segment. MailChimp will show all the subscribers that currently match your conditions. Click on Save Segment to save your segment.

How to use a segment in MailChimp

Ok, you've created a segment in MailChimp. What do you do with it now?

Now you can target specific segments with targeted emails and/or automations. For example, you can:

Conditional blocks

MailChimp's conditional merge tag blocks is one of their most powerful features. In short, it allows you to insert dynamic content into your email campaigns so that you can show different content to different subscribers based on their custom fields.

When you run an ambassador program, you might want to display a different message to your subscribers depending on some conditions, like how many referrals they've got. Doing so is a great way to show targeted copy and foster greater engagement.

Imagine this scenario; you have two rewards:

  • an exclusive report for 2 referrals

  • a 50% off for a conference ticket for 5 referrals

In this example, we are going to show a different message to our subscribers depending on how many referrals they got:

  • if they have 0 referrals, we show them a message of encouragement

  • if they have 1 referral, we tell them they are just 1 referral away from the exclusive report.

  • if they have between 2 and 4 referrals, we tell them they are very close to the 50% discount for the conference

As you can see, the goal is to increase engagement by focusing only on their next step.

Step 1. Familiarize yourself with MailChimp's conditional merge tags blocks. Click here and read this support article.

Step 2: Go to your newsletter template and add the following text in a text block:

*|IF:RH_TOTREF = 0|*
You have 0 referrals... for now. But every long journey starts with one small step.
How? Easy: grab your referral link below and send it to a few friends or colleagues you think will like the Brew. Trust us, they will love you for that!
*|ELSEIF:RH_TOTREF = 1|*
You have 1 referral. You = Amazing. But did you know you'll get our exclusive XYZ Report if you invite just one more friend? Grab your referral link below and send it to a few friends or colleagues.
*|ELSEIF:RH_TOTREF < 5|*
You have *|RH_TOTREF|* referrals. That is HUGE. But you know what is even cooler? 50% off our exclusive conference in Chicago (worth $700). You're just a couple of referral away. You can do this 💪
*|END:IF|*

Obviously, feel free to update the copy but pay attention to how the conditional merge tags are used. When you're done the "Refer-a-friend" section in your newsletter should look like this:

Step 3: It's very important that you test your conditional block with all the possible scenario. In our case, we want to test these scenarios:

  • subscriber has 0 referrals

  • subscriber has 1 referral

  • subscriber has between 2 and 4 referrals

You can send a test email to yourself and change the value of the RH_TOTREF custom field in your test subscriber's profile each time.

However, the easiest way to test this is to preview the email by entering Preview mode and enabling Live merge tag info. As you switch between subscribers with different RH_TOTREF values, you should see the conditional block changing. An easy way to do this is to change the value of the RH_TOTREF custom field for a couple of subscribers.

If your conditional block does not work as expected, check out MailChimp's troubleshooting stepsand if the problem persists, get in touch and we'll fix the problem for you.