Posted 02.18.2015

How to Segment your MailChimp List into Groups


The “Problem”

I know that I have a variety of interests and (for now) I want to blog about all of them in the same place. However, I’m not so naive as to believe that everything I’m writing about, is something you’re interested in too. I want to make sure I don’t bother you with content that’s not useful and interesting to you.

So…you may have noticed, if you sign up for my email updates, you have the ability to pick which categories you’d like to receive updates for.

Sign up for Email Updates

If you’re intersted in implementing a similar solution on your site, I thought I’d explain how I accomplished it on mine.

Publishing within WordPress

Categories within WordPress

  1. Each section (Photography, 101, Design, Programming, My Life, and Finder’s Keepers) is set up as a category within WordPress. When I’m posting, this makes it easy enough.

Creating a List within MailChimp

  1. Within MailChimp I have a single list for updates. Inside the list, I’ve created Groups for each category. To do so, go to the Lists page and click on the Create List button.

Create a List within MailChimp

  1. Fill in the form appropriately. (Note: You will probably be asked at some point to confirm that you have access to the Default “from” email so make sure it’s an inbox you have access to.)

Create a MailChimp List

  1. Next, under the Manage Subscribers dropdown, select Groups.

In MailChimp Manage Subscribers

  1. Click on the Create Groups button.

MailChimp, Create Groups

  1. As you can tell from the form options, there are several ways you can implement groups on your signup forms. Obviously, I went with checkboxes. Then, just fill in the details. When you’re done, click on the Save button.

Create a Group in MailChimp

  1. I didn’t have any addresses to import, so I clicked the Done for Now button.

MailChimp Groups, Done for Now

Creating a Campaign within MailChimp

  1. Then, within Campaigns, I have a Campaign set up for each category. On the Campaigns page, click on the “Create a Campaign” Button

MailChimp Create a Campaign

  1. Select an RSS-Driven Campaign from the menu

Choose a Type of Campaign within MailChimp

  1. From WordPress, I’m using a separate RSS feed set up for each category. This functionality is actually built into WordPress by default. It’s just a matter of figuring out what your URL is.

    Once that’s been determined, enter the the feed URL into MailChimp. Choose when you want to send out updates and on what days. Then, click the next button in the bottom right.

MailChimp, Create a Campaign

  1. Select the list you want to send to. Select Send to a new Segment. Then, select Group: Categories from the dropdown (NOTE: Instead of “Categories”, it may say whatever you labeled it as within the Campaign) and whatever category you want to send to. Click the next button in the bottom right.

Send to a MailChimp segment

  1. On the next screen, name your campaign. There are several other settings you can modify, I tend to keep the defaults. Then, click the next button in the bottom right.

Modify MailChimp Campaign Details

  1. Select the Theme you want to use. I won’t go into email templating here, but there’s a good Basic RSS theme that accomplishes our purposes just fine. Click on the next button in the bottom right.

Select a MailChimp Theme

  1. Make any tweaks to the design and content you want displayed. Then, click the next button.

Modify the MailChimp Design Template

  1. On the last screen, make sure your settings are correct and there are no issues. If you’re good to go, click Start RSS button in the bottom right.

MailChimp Start RSS

Getting the Embed Form

  1. Within MailChimp, go back to the Lists page, next to your list, select Signup Forms from the Dropdown form.

MailChimp List Signup Form

  1. I typically go with the Embedded Forms option.

Embedded MailChimp Form

  1. Make any changes to the form being displayed, then, copy and paste the code onto your site.

Embedded MailChimp Form

Badda-Boom! Badda-Bing!