If you follow my Twitter feed, you might have seen this tweet:
Here's that same tweet embedded (you can click the link in the Tweet to see the tweet as it appeared to my followers):
My next Art Email Newsletter will be sent in just a few days - subscribe to it without even leaving Twitter: https://t.co/gOHTHmZAwm— Paul Watson (@lazcorp) May 9, 2014
Letting people sign up to your mailing list without leaving Twitter is very useful - it makes it easy by reducing the time and clicks needed. The subscriber doesn’t even need to enter their email address because Twitter feeds it through to the mailing list for you.
The guide on the MailChimp website is a little out-of-date (they’ve changed their user interface a bit since they published the guide) so here’s a quick update:
What you need:
- A Twitter Account
- A MailChimp Account
- An image to be embedded in your tweet (minimum 600px × 150px, maximum file size 1MB)
- About 10 minutes of spare time
Navigate to: Lists -> (the list you want Twitter users to sign up to) -> Signup forms -> Form Integrations
The two pieces of data you need are in the “Twitter” section:
- Submit URL field (a URL)
- ID (a long alphanumeric string)
Make a note of these, or leave this browser tab open so you can copy-and-paste them in a few minutes.
Now sign into https://ads.twitter.com using your Twitter account.
Don’t be put off by the line advising you to enter your credit card details - you don’t need to for this!
Navigate to: Creatives->Cards->Create Lead Generation Card
Now fill in the form - it's fairly self-explanatory and the wizard helps, but there are a few less obvious bits:
- For the “Card Details (Fallback) URL” I’d suggest using the URL of the usual sign-up form on your website.
- Destination URL settings: you can use your homepage and a simple “Thank you for subscribing” message
- Data Settings -> Submit URL: use the “Submit URL” value you looked up in MailChimp, above
- Data Settings -> HTTP method: use POST
- Data Settings -> Custom Key Name for “Name”: type “FNAME” (note: this is case sensitive)
- Data Settings -> Custom Key Name for “Email”: type “EMAIL” (note: this is case sensitive)
- Data Settings -> Custom Key Name for “Screen name” can be left blank
- Finally, in the Data Settings section, add a Custom Hidden Data value. Call it “id” and add in the MailChimp id value you looked up in MailChimp, above
Save your card. You won’t be able to test it unless the email associated with your Twitter account is not yet subscribed, so just click “Yes” to “Did you receive this data”
You can then use the card by clicking “Compose Tweet with this card”. You can re-use this “card” multiple times whenever you need to offer a sign-up link in a tweet.
My only minor annoyance with the way MailChimp have implemented their side of this is that people who subscribe via Twitter are counted as “Imports” rather than “Subscribes”, which feels wrong since by definition only a signed-in Twitter user could have signed up this way. But like I say, it’s only a minor annoyance.