In part 1 of our series on segmenting member emails, we talked about how email can help you reduce churn for your membership site.
In order to keep members as paying users of your site, you’ll need to ensure that they consistently get value out of their site memberships, which justifies the cost of renewing again and again. This recurring revenue is key to your growth and sustainability, so keeping members around for the long term should be a priority.
In order to keep offering value, you can provide new content, offer new deals or partnerships, add products to a members-only catalog, or keep members engaged in a community. Regardless of how you continuously offer value to your members, you’ll need to ensure that this value and benefits are communicated effectively, and nothing is better for this than email.
In order to send relevant, personalized emails to members, you can segment member emails based on data like membership type or status using email services like MailChimp.
Since Paid Memberships Pro only allows members to have one membership at a time, I’d recommend using one “members” list in MailChimp for all of your members. This will let you mass-email all members if needed, and you can segment emails to email specific membership levels.
Paid Memberships Pro will add a
PMPLEVEL field automatically to show the level the member belongs to, which will let you segment your emails easily. The larger benefit to using one list is that you won’t pay for subscribers being counted twice when you get to a paid account 🙂 If subscribers belong to more than one list, they’re counted multiple times in your overall subscriber count.
However, it may be useful to have additional lists for promotions, or for members to opt into communication (ie a “Product Testers / Feedback” list). You can both add members automatically to lists, and give them a choice to opt into lists.
Getting your members into MailChimp from Paid Memberships Pro is simple. There’s a free MailChimp integration plugin that lets you automatically add members to lists based on level, or lets you give members the choice to join lists when they register.
Once you install this plugin, you can add your MailChimp API Key to pull in your list data. You can determine if:
- members should be added to an “all members” list when signing up (I recommend this);
- if members should be able to opt into a list (helpful if you have testers or non-level related communication);
- and if members should be automatically unsubscribed when leaving a level / membership.
While the level information is added automatically to member profiles so you can segment emails, you can also add members to specific lists automatically by level as well.
When a member joins your site, they’ll be subscribed to the lists you’ve selected, and the member profile will also include level information so you can segment emails.
Now we’ve got members imported as subscribers along with member data in MailChimp, we can segment an email based on member data. Let’s take a look at examples of segments that we can create to communicate with members.
1. Email All Active Members
Since members can be unsubscribed when they change or cancel a level, you can safely email your “all members” list and be sure that you’re emailing only active members.
“All-member” emails are great for announcing new content or benefits that are available to everyone.
2. Email Active Members of a Plan
You can segment emails based on subscriber data / fields within MailChimp to email only a subsection of your list. In this case, we can email subscribers who match a desired “PMPLEVEL” in MailChimp. When you send an email, you can match subscribers based on if their level is the desired one, and can even email multiple levels at the same time.
Plan-specific emails help you personalize emails for members. You can ensure that members hear about the benefits or changes most relevant to them without sending information they can’t access based on their level.
If you want to create other segments, such as emails based on sign up date or discount code used, then we’ll need more data in MailChimp to do so. This is where a member export can come in handy, as it contains more information about your members.
If you wanted to include more member data in MailChimp, such as the sign up date or expiration date of a member, then you can export a CSV of your members to import into MailChimp, as we did in our Restrict Content Pro tutorial.
Paid Memberships Pro has a built-in member exporter that’s going to be extremely useful for this. This will give us a CSV file of all members on the site, including data about each user’s membership that we can use in MailChimp.
To export your members, go to Memberships &t; Members List in your WP admin. Clicking the “Export to CSV” button will give you a CSV of all members.
Once you’ve exported your member CSV file, you may want to delete some of the fields you won’t end up needing for MailChimp, such as billing address fields. This isn’t a necessary step, as you can skip the extra columns in MailChimp, it just feels cleaner to me this way 🙂
You can determine whatever you want to use in MailChimp, and re-save your member CSV. For example, I’m not going to use the “Discount code” column, but you may want to if members signed up from a certain promotion with this discount code.
You could also sort this CSV by status and only import active members; MailChimp will let you merge the data in the CSV with the subscriber profile to add more data to the existing member data.
This could let you create more advanced emails, such as emails for new members or members who signed up with a particular discount code.
The free MailChimp add-on plugin for Paid Memberships Pro makes subscribing members to email lists extremely simple, and the automatic addition of membership level data also lets you segment emails effectively. You can email all members, or only members of a certain plan. You can also unsubscribe members when their levels change so that your list is always current.
While you may not get all member data out of this plugin into MailChimp, you can also use member CSV exports to update member profiles in MailChimp with other data, such as sign up date, discount used, and expiration date, in order to segment member emails in more advanced ways.