Guide to Effective Custom Fields


Introduction: What are Custom Fields?

Custom fields are an effective way of getting unique information about your contacts. The default fields provided by the system don’t cater for every situation, so you can create custom fields that meet your needs.

Custom Field Options

You can use our default fields to collect a number of details about your contacts such as their name, last name, gender, location, age, and industry. Custom fields are useful when you need a user ID, account number, client code, or other specialised field that is not in the system. You can also use them to gather useful information about your contacts, such as their likes and dislikes.

How Do I Create Custom Fields?

To create your custom field, click Contact Admin > Custom FieldsRemember, you have to create a custom field before you can use it.

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There are a number of fields you can create for your forms:

  • Text: A field for text used mainly to enter basic short text answers. For example; name, surname, city, country, department, company, etc.
  • Large: Use the large text field for feedback from your contacts, allowing contacts to write longer sentences. For example; feedback to complex questions such as "What was your experience of the event?"
  • Whole number: A number only field limited to 10 digits, e.g. client code or account number.
  • Decimal number: Stores decimal numbers limited to 10 digits, e.g. the value of a requested refund.
  • Large number: Stores large numbers greater than 10 digits, e.g. an ID number.
  • List: A dropdown list that lets the contact select only one option, e.g. your contact's country or industry.
  • Date: A calendar pops up, allowing your contact to select a date.
  • Multiple-value: A checkbox that allows the contact to select more than one option. For example, when answering the question "How many of these options relate to you?"

Select the type of field you want to create, and then fill out the following properties:

  • Field Name: This is a required field. Use an easily identifiable name.
  • Visibility: Set whether or not the field is visible when contacts update their profiles. Set to Private to keep it hidden, Public to let users change it themselves.

Click Save to finish creating your field.

Access your custom fields in the following places:

  • Personalisation options during message composition.
  • Filter creation.
  • List Options when filtering an email.
  • Subscription forms.

Where Can I Use Custom Fields?

Subscription Forms

Subscription forms give customers the opportunity to sign up to your mailing list. It only needs an email address but you can set as many fields as you want. Keep the fields to a minimum as too many of them could deter potential contacts from subscribing. If the contacts are already on your list, you can send a subscription form to update their information with your custom field options.

When designing your subscription form, let your contacts know what they are subscribing for, and how often they will be receiving mails from you. Keep the form and design simple while making it stand out. Assure them their email address won’t be spammed. Lastly, thank them for signing up.

Keep your custom fields relevant to your subscription form. Asking your contacts for their home address when they sign up to a newsletter might put them off. Instead run a competition that requires them to fill in specific information to qualify for the prize. Again, assure them you won't use their information illegally.

Filters

You can create a filter based on a custom field, then use the filter to send contact specific emails. To create a filter, click Contact Admin > Filters > Create Filter.

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Enter a name for your filter and a description if you need one. Select the Custom Fields tab to set up your filter. Select your specific field and its condition.

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With your filter created, you can now compose a message. In List Options during message composition, select your custom filter. Now your messages will be sent to contacts who meet the conditions set in your filter.

Google Forms

Our product doesn't cater for surveys, RSVPs, questionnaires and the like. However, you can use Google Forms with Everlytic to update your contact information. follow these steps to integrate with Google Forms:

  1. Create your basic form on Google Forms: https://docs.google.com/forms/u/0/.
  2. Complete the form, and copy the URL and link it to a Call-To-Action in your email.

Most of the fields in Google Forms will be custom fields. Make sure they exist in the system before you import the data. When contacts respond to your form, you can export the data from Google and import it into Everlytic. Alternatively you can use Import From Service and import the data directly from Google.

For more information read our Integration with Google Forms guide.

Why Use Custom Fields?

Segmented Sending

Imagine you are a book publishing house. You have a database of subscribers ranging from bloggers to authors to book reviewers. Without custom fields you have no way of distinguishing between them all when you send your messages. A custom field can segment contacts using filters, allowing you to send relevant, subscriber-specific messages.

Personalisation

Make your emails a little more personal using the contact details you have collected. Send an email with "Dear John" instead of "Dear Subscriber" or any other impersonal greeting. Custom fields also cater for contact properties such as account numbers, product codes, and ID or membership numbers.

If your contact does not have the information required for personalisation tags to work, you can use replacement terms, called Fall Back options, to fill in the blanks.  Use broad, generic terms such as ‘Reader’or ‘Valued Client’ as default options.

Preferences

Find out what your subscribers enjoy with a simple form. You can then use this information to send targeted marketing mails, run specials, or personalise your newsletters. The more insight you have about your contact, the easier it is to cater to their needs and communicate with them effectively.

Feedback

You can use custom fields to get feedback from your contacts. Send a subscription form or a Google Form following an event, session, function etc, asking your subscriber about their experiences. These can be used later to improve those events and develop your marketing strategy.

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