Set up a subscription reconfirmation email

If you have permission-based subscribers who have not been emailed in some time, it's a good idea to reconfirm their interest before you start sending campaigns.

Checking with recipients to see if they're still interested shows you're treating them with respect. This builds trust with subscribers who choose to stay, and scrubs your list of those who are unlikely to be responsive to anything you send them.

Make sure you have permission first

Before you set up a reconfirmation email, make sure you have permission to contact the recipients. As we state in our anti-spam policy, permission doesn’t age well.

If you email subscribers who gave their permission a while back, you risk spam complaints from those who don't remember opting in. You're also likely to get a few hard bounces from recipients who have changed their email address.

Bounces and spam complaints, especially the latter, damage your sender reputation which affects deliverability, making it harder to get emails to your subscribers who really want them.

If you're not sure, read our guide on what counts as permission to send.

Creating a permission reconfirmation email

Follow these instructions to create a permission reconfirmation link to send in a one-off campaign. Recipients who click the link will be added to a new subscriber list that you will send all future campaigns to.

1. Create a new list for the client

Open the relevant client in your account and click Lists & Subscribers. From there, create a new single opt-in subscriber list, as shown here:

This new list is the list your reconfirmed subscribers will be added to.

2. Set up a custom subscribe confirmation page

You should set up a custom subscribe confirmation page to avoid confusing people who click the reconfirmation link, that you'll build in step three. The link will contain a form action URL which, becaue it's normally used in a subscribe form, will trigger our default confirmation page to display after the link is clicked: 

Because it's not being used with an HTML subscribe form the "click here" link won't work and "return to this site" doesn't make sense in this instance, because the user has arrived here from your email, not your website. 

3. Build a reconfirmation link for the new list

Although you are not creating a public-facing subscribe form for the new list, you need to generate the code for a form so you can grab the form action URL and input field names.

With your new list open, click Grow your audience in the right sidebar then, on the following page, select Copy/paste a form to your site.

This will load the subscribe form editor with the Email field selected. You can use that field only, or select Name and any other custom fields you have set up. Then click Get the code.

When you've got the code, copy the form action URL. It will look something like this:

http://clientname..com/t/1/s/d/

You now have the beginning of your reconfirmation link. Next, copy the input field names from the form code and add those to the URL as well.

The code we generated for this example includes just the name and email fields. Below, we've circled the input field names you're looking for:

The "name" input field name is the same for everyone: cm-name

The "email" input field name is unique; it will look something like: cm-abcde-abcde

Copy those, then string it all together using Campaign Monitor personalization tags for name and email. The full reconfirmation link will look something like:

http://clientname..com/t/1/s/d/?cm-abcde-abcde=[email]&cm-name=[fullname, fallback=]

Remember you need to use the actual parameters from your form code, not those used in our example URL above.

4. Create the reconfirmation email campaign

From the Create & Send section of your client account, click Create a new campaign. Make sure the email clearly explains who you are and includes a reminder for recipients about how you got their email address.

Then you need to add the reconfirmation URL created in step two to the email content. For example, it could be a text link that reads: Yes, I'm still interested.

When a recipient clicks the link, the variables are automatically replaced with the field values from the list you're sending to. To make sure you have the URL set up correctly, see our instructions below for testing the reconfirmation email.

Tip Another, simpler, way you could set up a reconfirmation email is by inserting a link to a hosted subscribe form for your new subscriber list. This does increase the chance of people not confirming because, instead of a one-click reconfirmation they have to enter their details and submit the form, but it is a less complicated option.

Test your reconfirmation email

To make sure you have configured the reconfirmation URL correctly, send yourself a test email using a random recipient's details to test personalization, as explained below.

Important Sending this test email will subscribe the random recipient to your new list. Please be sure to follow the steps for removing the test recipient after you've confirmed the link works.

To send a test email, open your draft reconfirmation campaign and click through to the Quick test page. Then select the option to send a test using a random recipient's details, as shown here:

The email will be sent to your test address. When you get it, click the reconfirmation link to open the subscription confirmation page in a new window. Then check the URL to make sure it has replaced the personalization tags with the field values of your random recipient. For example:

http://clientname..com/t/1/s/d/?cm-abcde-abcde=&cm-name=John+Holtz

Remove the test recipient from your new list

Sending a test email, as described above, will subscribe the random recipient to your new list. So you'll need to delete them from the list before you send the real confirmation email.

Follow these steps to remove the test email recipient from your new list:

  1. Open the new subscriber list you created in step one and find the email address of the person subscribed from the test email.
  2. Click the person's email address. This will open their subscriber snapshot page.
  3. Click Edit <Name> to update the subscriber's details.
  4. From the Status drop-down menu, select Deleted subscribers.
  5. Click Save changes.

After you have sent the reconfirmation email, give recipients a couple of weeks to confirm their subscription – or not. From now on you should only send to the newly opted-in list.