Unsubscribe Link Point to Our App?

Is there a way to have the unsubscribe link point to our application's privacy settings. We interact with CM for all our subscriptions via the API to add/remove subscribers based on their privacy settings. It seems only natural then when they decide they no longer want emails to go there and change it so the change happens on both systems at once, and not just at CM's side of things.

The other option is syncing our subscription lists we keep internally with those on CM but that seems like such a disconnect, especially if one of our users unsubscribes via a CM email and then, before the sync runs, sees they are still "subscribed" according to our site.

Dave Dave, 9 years ago

Hey mrpunkin, welcome to the forums. There is actually an easy way for you to sync unsubscribes with your own database as they happen. Check out this quick tutorial for the details:


mrpunkin, 9 years ago

That seems great Dave.... The question I have though is can we use other custom fields in the url? We host our app across multiple domains so sending them back to the right domain (which is included in the custom fields for a subscriber list and each subscriber). If email is the only option available to our unsubscribe url then we won't be able to control it though our website the way we want. Please let me know.

Edit: I think this is still doing the wrong thing. We don't want to have them change it on our end AFTER being unsubscribed on your end because the page we send them to is a list of subscriptions, which they would just be un-subscribing from one of many and doing the same work again over. What we would like is to bypass your unsubscribe link altogether and just insert our own that links back to our website. That way all subscriptions are controlled ONLY through our UI. Let me know if this can be done.

Mathew Mathew, 9 years ago

Hi Bryan,

It's actually a requirement of Campaign Monitor that you do use our unsubscribe link. So you will need to work with that process, where they are unsubscribed first at Campaign Monitor and then you can sync it back.

The API is probably your best bet, because in the method Dave mentioned you can only use the [email]tag. Perhaps a process of checking unsubscribes via the API before you send a campaign?

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mrpunkin, 9 years ago


thanks for the response. I'll have to find a way to do it. The thing that is just crummy is we have a visual representation of which lists they subscribe to (used to be all internal, but now we use CM for some of it) on their privacy page and I don't want that to ever reflect different data post-unsubscribe. The alternative then is to sync that subscription / user for each in the list when the profile page loads, which is just taxing having to call another service for that info... but if its the only way we can do it then it's what we will have to do.

kingbeastie, 9 years ago


Could you not set the unsubscribe confirmation page to a script on your server that will just delete the email address passed in the URL ( http://www.mysite.com/goodbye.php?emailaddress=johnsmith@aol.com ) and then have this forward to your reporting page which be that point should be up to date?

Just a thought.  Best of luck.

Let us know how you get round this.



snowman18, 9 years ago

Hi, I agree with the above post. You should be able to do everything on the unsubscribe page and do a redirect to the page you are showing your clients. This is the way we do quite a bit of stuff. Alternatively, you could embed some ajax in the unsubscribe page and it would not have any redirects showing.

bc173, 9 years ago

I would like to do exactly what mrpunkin describes but it seems there is no real work-around for this. I only see one option – but it’s an ugly one – which is setting the unsubscribe text to a dot and hiding this dot with CSS (white text on white background) and adding your own unsubscribe link. I understand this is against the rules of CM, but I think it’s necessary that a newsletter is highly integrated with its online application. I understand that dropping the unsubscribe link would create room for abuse, but maybe a manual verification process (with a small fee) could be introduced to make it work? Or fake (and hidden?) verification users in each list so the people from CM can do random tests to see whether the unsubscribe links works?

kingbeastie, 9 years ago


If you just want to unsubscribe a user from your own app/database then in Campaign Monitor set the unsubscribe confirmation page to the page you would like displayed on your server and include the email address as a URL param.

For example set your confirmation page to be:
http://www.your-site.com/confirm_unsubscribe.php?emailaddress=[email]Then on this page include your php (or whatever language you prefer) code to run an SQL query which will delete the appropriate details from your DB.



$email_to_be_deleted = $_GET['emailaddress'];

$sql = "DELETE FROM table_name
            WHERE 'email' = $email_to_be_deleted";

do the rest of my function...


Hope this helps


julio, 9 years ago

I have the same issue.

I'm trying to design a central subscriber management system for large corporate who uses lot's of different email marketing systems and has lots of different lists across lots of different business units.  In the process I'd like to get them using mailbuild in one of their business units. 

Where possible (e.g. mailbuild) users subscriptions would be sync'd via the API ...otherwise (for other email systems) we'd still be able to centralise subscription statuses at the company level.  It is imperative that this company meets Australia's anti-spam legislation - which I understand must provide the user the opportunity to easily unsubscribe from all of that organisations email marketing activities. However, our goal is to make sure the subscribers are aware of their actions and give them the opportunity to unsubscribe from only some business units/areas of interest ...rather than all of them without realising.

This is pretty lo-fi but I was thinking of tailoring the unsubscribe instructions to try and simply encourage subscribers to use our list management interface rather than the mandatory mailbuild unsubscribe. e.g.

(more prominent)
Change your ACME subscriptions at http://email.acme.com

(less prominent)
...or unsubscribe from 
all ACME emails

We'd then use the API to do the unsubscribing.

I assume that is acceptable to freshviews polices?

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