I recently helped a customer with a problem that we’ve heard a few times before, so I figured I might post the answer here as well. Here’s the question:

“Many of my e-mail addresses have come from a store website (that I will continue to use) that has a simple single opt-in e-mail signup process. As I convert to Campaign Monitor, I want to move to a complete double opt-in process.

I would also like to put my current list through a second round of opt-in. Is there a way with Campaign Monitor that I can import a list and then send an e-mail that gives the recipient a link to confirm their subscription to the list as well as unsubscribe if they no longer want to get messages from our store?”

First things first, make sure you have permission to contact the recipients in the first place – since this technique is often used on older lists that haven’t been sent to in a while. As we state in our anti-spam policy, permission doesn’t age well and you can’t use Campaign Monitor to email anyone you haven’t contacted in the last 2 years.

You’ve got permission, what’s next?

  1. Create a new list. From this we can build a link that when clicked, will add the subscriber to this new list.
  2. Grab the subscribe form URL, which you can find by going to the ‘Create a subscribe form’ option in your list and locating the URL in the supplied code. This URL will form the base of our link. It should look something like http://clientname..com/.aspx/s/1234/.
  3. Add the recipient’s name and email address to the URL. To do this we add them as parameters to the URL. For the email address, we use the email address field name in the subscribe form code, such as cm-1234-1234. So, the full URL will be:
    http://clientname..com/.aspx/s/1234/?cm-1234-1234=[email]&name=[fullname, fallback=""]

That’s it, we’re done. By adding that link to your subscription confirmation email, the variables will automatically get replaced with the values in your list that your sending to. Give the recipients a couple of weeks to confirm their subscription, then moving forward you should only send to the new confirmed list.

And don’t forget you can test this by previewing your campaign in Step 4.1 when you’re creating a new campaign.

Update: A newer version of this process can be found in our FAQ.

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