Integration with external email systems like Constant Contact, Mailchimp
Constant Contact just launched AppConnect -- a destination for software providers, and developers who want to integrate or connect an application to Constant Contact. AppConnect gives others access to their web service APIs so they can create tie-ins with their contact and reporting data. Constant Contact gives their service away to many non-profits and chambers of commerce. At present, companies export email lists out of W/A and into Constant Contact. The downside is the extra work involved with moving the data and keeping both data sets up to date; plus the "email history" is being lost from the member's record. The upside is Constant Contact's ability to track deliveries, opens, click throughs, etc. It would be great if it were possible to link the two programs using this new AppConnect capability.
Sorry Meagan, we are not likely to take this on for the time being (if ever) - we feel that investing further resources into our built-in integrated emailing system makes more long-term sense.
How can we move the integration up the que in the development stage for more API integration? for Constant Contact, use with applications like Moodle, etc.?
This is so much more important to us than revamping the email sytem that you are working on....Just our 2 cents.....
I think it is a mistake to try and build your own email system. There is so much that goes into dealing with spam filters and maintaining good standing with spam blacklists. If you want tight integration you could build a UI for sending emails within WA that uses Mailchimp or ConstantContact on the back end.
With Mailchimp it is easy to use their API to add/remove/update list members, and update WA with data about delivery, clicks, etc. from MailChimp.
Agreed. One of the reasons for utilizing W/A is to start to bring all of the needed functionality into a single system. I am working on selling clients on the fact that W/A can replace CC so they can save that money. With email tracking, and the upcoming bounce handling, I think the next important items are:
1) The ability to quickly add a list of the upcoming events (just like inserting the events widget on a web page)
2) Similar functionality for news...so we can simply add news items to the web site and then quickly generate an email that contains each headline with a link to click to read more (again...just like inserting a news widget on a web page)
3) The ability to automatically create an archive of the email and add this link to the email header (i.e. click here to view in browser if you are having trouble reading)
Built in email templates would be nice, but this can be easily done in an HTML editor and then saved in W/A as a template for use later. The actual functionality improvements would be more important to me.
@ stanleyfelix - see http://forums.wildapricot.com/forums/308932-wishlist/suggestions/8825584-generating-membership-cards-and-certificates-6344 thread on badges
On the very next release 4.3 we're adding ability to manage bounces. The next step we plan (as Dmitri mentioned earlier) is to have pre-built email template to select from when blasting newsletter.
Talking about integration with constant contact (or other systems) - this is not something in our nearest plans and again as Dmitri mentioned we are more dedicated to evolving WA tools instead.
That would be a step in the right direction. Having nicely designed templates for users to choose from would be good and maybe an option for importing .html files from other design editors as well.
Ian, thanks for posting, this is our thinking too.
As you have noticed, 4.2 update made a step in this direction with Email log and tracking. In my mind the next two most important things are:
1) Prebuilt nicely designed email templates
2) Handling of bounces
I would appreciate comments.
We also currently use constant contact for email newsletters/marketing etc but would much rather use WA for this.
We would rather see you guys expend your time & effort in improving the email blast facility rather than on CC integration
worthing and adur chamber of commerce
I have another question and this is unrelated to this topic so let me know if you prefer to have it posted under a separate thread.
Is there a way or are there plans to allow admins to print out event badges directly from WA ? I've had a few inquiries about this. I think it would be useful especially for those organizations that take on-site registrations. It would be nice to set up a kiosk where an event attendee could register on a computer and print their badge from within WA. Any thoughts on this ?
Not soon, you're right :(
yes I agree an API would be ideal in this situation and in fact the API is my number one wish list item for WA but I'm not sure that this will be on the product road map anytime soon. Correct me if I'm wrong.
I think that ideally we need to create our own API to get an access to WA data (i.e. member records, event attendees, etc.). Then based on that third-party companies can creates services to sync data between different services - like WA <-> mailchimp, WA <-> constant contact.
thank you for your response. This makes sense from a product development point of view but what about just being able to synchronize records ? Will that ever be a possibility ?
The majority of my clients that are in the events business are engaged in very targeted, graphic intensive email marketing to drive event registration. WildApricot's current offering is good for sending simple email's out to members but still lacks many of the features my clients have grown accustomed to from services such as mailchimp, constant contact etc., therefore I do not anticipate they will use it for marketing purposes. Bottom line if we can't have full integration then perhaps third party data synchronization could be a more reasonable option.
It think the admin community would really find value in being able to sync their member data to third party applications even though this is technically possible by just simply exporting and importing somewhere else but it would be nice to have real-time synchronization.
Please share your thoughts on this.
Hi Stan, thanks for bringing this up.
Frankly speaking, so far our thinking is to keep improving our built-in email functionality (e.g. see improvements we just published in 4.2 - https://help.wildapricot.com/display/DOC/Email+log ) - rather than build the integration. In this way we are able to provide much better overall experience without having people to maintain and pay for two systems and jump between them. Also, the effort to build proper integration (also if we do it, we would have to include at least 2-3 systems) is pretty significant and for now we want to direct all resources to core product improvements.
first off I want to say that you've done an excellent job on wild apricot, it is by far (in my opinion) the best solution out there.
So on to my request..... it would be really nice if we were given the option to integrate with mailchimp or perhaps have an api available to us so that we can then develop a bridge between both products.
Mailchimp has an extensive and well maintained api, it can be found here:
Perhaps this integration is something that can materialize in the near future. Please let me know your thoughts.
My organization would like the Integration with Constant Contact also.
We would really appreciate integration with Constant Contact as we have sponsored emails that need to go through CC for us to receive payment. Right now, we just ahve to periodically export our WA contacts which is a pain.
Our organization (AEP) would welcome the support of Constant Contact's API by Wild Apricot. Keeping email lists up to date in both systems will be a problem but, with WA's version 3.2 released on 10/1/2009, Constant Contact's ability to track deliveries, opens, click throughs, etc. is not a CC upside any longer. AEP wants to distribute newsletters to its members in HTML format instead of plain PDF files. We are not sure yet which way to go for our eblasts: Constant Contact or Wild Apricot. WA's email tracking and custom fields, and the future version 3.3's system email routing, show that WA is quickly filling up the gaps. Thank you for all these goodies!
this is a good idea!
I would appreciate feedback from other users regarding this kind of integration.