Import Unsubscribes and Suppression Lists

Many of our new customers made the switch to ClickDimensions from another Marketing Automation vendor, and they are always excited to start using all of the powerful features of ClickDimensions right away. ClickDimensions makes it easy to make the switch and maintain great deliverability. With ClickDimensions you can easily use the built‐in functionality in CRM to clean up your marketing lists and have a great first email campaign.

ClickDimensions will not send to an email address where there is a matching Unsubscribe record, whether it is linked to the Contact or Lead or not. So importing your old vendor’s suppression list as Unsubscribes will let you pick up where you left off with your old vendor.

NOTE: Creating Unsubscribe records for your preexisting suppression lists members is an effective practice for ensuring that these recipients do not erroneously receive your emails. However, in version 8.2.0, ClickDimensions also added support for suppression lists to Email Sends. If you would also like to import your list into CRM and add it to Email Sends as a suppression list, see our article on adding recipients to an Email Send.

NOTE: Each time you send a bulk email with ClickDimensions, we will query for your entire list of Unsubscribe records so we can be sure not to send to them. If you have many thousands of unsubscribe records, this can add time to how long it take to process your email job. If you have tens of thousands of email addresses to suppress, a method that will make future email jobs faster is to instead set the Bulk Email field on the Contact and/or Lead records to Do Not Allow. This requires a little more work by your CRM partner up front, but will make your email jobs faster later on down the road.

If you have hundreds of thousands or millions of unsubscribe records, you should consider another approach, such as removing the email addresses/contact records from your marketing lists. Syncing this many unsubscribe records for each Email Send is not likely to work, as our connection to CRM will likely time out before all the unsubscribe records are returned from CRM.


Here is what you’ll want to do to make sure your first email campaign has the best results when you make the switch:

Get the Suppression List from your old vendor

Make sure you get the suppression list from your old vendor. They should have maintained this for you and they will usually provide it to you in the form of an Excel CSV file. A suppression list is a list of email addresses that have either unsubscribed from your mailings or are invalid addresses.

importCSV

Import the list as ClickDimensions Unsubscribe records

Using the CRM import tool, you can import the CSV file as unsubscribe records. You may have to do some minor formatting in Excel, such as adding column headers, so CRM knows how to map the data in the list.

Navigate to the CRM Import Data Wizard by going to Settings > Data Management > Imports , and click on Import Data.

Browse to your CSV file and upload it to CRM and press Next.

import-data-wizard

You’ll review the file and press Next.

import-data-file

Then select Default (Automatic Mapping) in the Select Data Map dialogue and press Next.

import-data-map

Then change the Microsoft Dynamics CRM Record Types to Unsubscribe and press Next.

On the Map Fields screen, map the email address column to the Email field, which is the only required field needed to create an Unsubscribe record via importing. You do not need to map the other fields – all we need is the email address. After clicking Next on this screen, you can ignore the warning about the unmapped fields.

You’ll then be able to review the mapping summary. Press Next.

review-mapping-summary

You’ll then see the Review screen. You don’t need to change anything. Just press Submit.

review-settings-and-import-data

The final screen will pop up, just press Finish. Depending on the size of the list and your CRM server’s performance, the import job can take anywhere from 10 seconds to several minutes to complete.

When the import job is complete, you can view the new Unsubscribe records in CRM by going to Marketing > Email Marketing > Unsubscribes.

Helpful Tip:

If you’re using CRM 2011 or CRM Online, the Import Data Wizard has some extra capabilities that will let you actually link the imported Unsubscribe records back to a Contact or Lead.

Note: This will only work if you have Contacts or Leads in CRM with emails that are on the suppression list. See the last step below for what to do when you’re not sure.

Here is an easy way to do this:

Step 1

In your CSV file, copy the column with the email address into a second column. Here it is called Contact:

Step 2

Navigate to the CRM Import Data Wizard by going to Settings > Data Management > Imports , and click on Import Data.

Browse to your CSV file and upload it to CRM and press Next.

import-data-wizard

You’ll review the file and press Next.

import-data-file

Then select Default (Automatic Mapping) in the Select Data Map dialogue and press Next.

import-data-map

Then change the Microsoft Dynamics CRM Record Types to Unsubscribe and press Next.

import-data-map-record-types

In the Map Fields Window, next to “Contact” choose Contact (Lookup) from the dropdown menu. Then check the Contact box below it. Uncheck the Full Name box, and check the E-mail box. Press OK twice and then Next.

 map-fields

You’ll then be able to review the mapping summary. Press Next.

review-mapping-summary

You’ll then see the Review screen. You don’t need to change anything. Just press Submit.

review-settings-and-import-data

The final screen will pop up, just press Finish. Depending on the size of the list and your CRM server’s performance, the import job can take anywhere from 10 seconds to several minutes to complete.

Step 3

Now, when the Import job is completed, CRM has created the Unsubscribe record and automatically linked it to the Contact that had a matching email address:

 

Step 4 – Helpful Tip

In this case, I had 3 email addresses on my suppression list, and all of them successfully mapped to a Contact. I can repeat the process next and try to match Leads, and then do a third import to get unsubscribe records into CRM even if there is no matching Contact or Lead. To save time and avoid trying to import records you have already imported, go to the import jobs list in CRM (Settings > Imports) and select the import job you just did. You can look at the Failures for the import job, export the error rows, and you’ll have a nice CSV file that contains only the records you need for your next pass:

In the CSV file that you export, change the contact column heading to lead and repeat Helpful Tip steps 2 & 3 above, this time mapping the lookup reference to the Lead’s email address field. Repeat this again if you still have unmatched records, removing the second column, and you’ll get Unsubscribe records without any link to a Contact or Lead.

Step 5:

As a final step, if you want to be extra‐tidy in your CRM data, you can use Advanced Find to locate Contacts that have an Unsubscribe record and use Bulk Edit to update their Do not allow Emails field to Do Not Allow. Or use a workflow to handle this for you. Then have your sales and marketing team figure out if they should deactivate those old Contacts and Leads or if the customer has new contact information for you.

ClickDimensions will not send to an email address where there is a matching unsubscribe record, whether it is linked to the Contact or Lead or not. So now you can start putting your marketing lists together assured that you’ve translated all that hard‐won historical deliverability from your old vendor into your shiny new ClickDimensions solution!

One of the biggest selling points for ClickDimensions has always been the fact that it is built right into your CRM –no need for complicated and costly integrations or manual exports of your CRM marketing lists into your email marketing tool. By following the steps outlined above, you can easily make the transition from your old email marketing vendor to ClickDimensions, and going forward, future unsubscribes and invalid email addresses will be handled automatically!


Here’s what you’ll want to do to make sure your first email campaign has the best results when you make the switch:

Get the “Suppression List” from your old vendor

Make sure you get the “suppression list” from your old vendor. They should have maintained this for you and they’ll usually provide it to you in the form of an Excel CSV file. A suppression list is a list of email addresses that have either unsubscribed from your mailings or are invalid addresses.

Import the list as ClickDimensions “Unsubscribe” records

Using the CRM import tool, you can import the CSV file as unsubscribe records. You may have to do some minor formatting in Excel, such as adding column headers, so CRM knows how to map the data in the list.

Navigate to the CRM Import Data Wizard by going to Settings > Data Management > Imports , and click on Import Data.

Browse to your CSV file and upload it to CRM and press Next.

You’ll review the file and press Next.

Then select Default (Automatic Mapping) in the Select Data Map dialogue and press Next.

Then change the Microsoft Dynamics CRM Record Types to Unsubscribe and press Next.

On the “Map Fields” screen, map the email address column to the “Email” field, which is the only required field needed to create an Unsubscribe record via importing. You don’t need to map the other fields – all we need is the email address. After clicking Next on this screen, you can ignore the warning about the unmapped fields.

You’ll then be able to review the mapping summary. Press Next.

You’ll then see the Review screen. You don’t need to change anything. Just press Next.

The final screen will pop up, just press Finish. Depending on the size of the list and your CRM server’s performance, the import job can take anywhere from 10 seconds to several minutes to complete.

When the import job is complete, you can view the new Unsubscribe records in CRM by going to Marketing > Email Marketing > Unsubscribes.

Helpful TIP:

If you’re using CRM 2011 or CRM Online, the Import Data Wizard has some extra capabilities that will let you actually link the imported Unsubscribe records back to a Contact or Lead.

Note: This will only work if you have Contacts or Leads in CRM with emails that are on the suppression list. See the last step below for what to do when you’re not sure.

Here is an easy way to do this:

Step 1

In your CSV file, copy the column with the email address into a second column. Here it is called Contact:

Step 2

Navigate to the CRM Import Data Wizard by going to Settings > Data Management > Imports , and click on Import Data.

Browse to your CSV file and upload it to CRM and press Next.

You’ll review the file and press Next.

Then select Default (Automatic Mapping) in the Select Data Map dialogue and press Next.

Then change the Microsoft Dynamics CRM Record Types to Unsubscribe and press Next.

In the Map Fields Window, next to “contact” choose Contact (Lookup) from the dropdown menu. Then check the Contact box below it. Uncheck the Full Name box, and check the E-mail box. Press OK twice and then Next.

 

You’ll then be able to review the mapping summary. Press Next.

You’ll then see the Review screen. You don’t need to change anything. Just press Submit.

The final screen will pop up, just press Finish. Depending on the size of the list and your CRM server’s performance, the import job can take anywhere from 10 seconds to several minutes to complete.

Step 3

Now, when the Import job is completed, CRM has created the Unsubscribe record and automatically linked it to the Contact that had a matching email address:

 

Step 4 – Power Tip

In this case, I had 3 email addresses on my suppression list, and all of them successfully mapped to a Contact. I can repeat the process next and try to match Leads, and then do a third import to get unsubscribe records into CRM even if there is no matching Contact or Lead. To save time and avoid trying to import records you’ve already imported, go to the import jobs list in CRM (Workplace > My Work > Imports) and find the import job you just did. You can look at the “Failures” for the import job, export the error rows, and you’ll have a nice CSV file that contains only the records you need for your next pass:

In the CSV file that you export, change the “contact” column heading to “lead” and repeat Power Tip steps 2 & 3 above, this time mapping the lookup reference to the Lead’s email address field. Repeat this again if you still have unmatched records, removing the second column, and you’ll get Unsubscribe records without any link to a Contact or Lead.

Step 5:

As a final step, if you want to be extra‐tidy in your CRM data, you can use Advanced Find to locate Contacts that have an Unsubscribe record and use Bulk Edit to update their “Do not allow Emails” field to “Do Not Allow.”Or use a workflow to handle this for you. Then have your sales and marketing team figure out if they should deactivate those old Contacts and Leads or if the customer has new contact information for you.

ClickDimensions won’t send to an email address where there’ a matching unsubscribe record, whether it’s linked to the Contact or Lead or not. So now you can start putting your marketing lists together assured that you’ve translated all that hard‐won historical deliverability from your old vendor into your shiny new ClickDimensions solution!

One of the biggest selling points for ClickDimensions has always been the fact that it is built right into your CRM –no need for complicated and costly integrations or manual exports of your CRM marketing lists into your email marketing tool. By following the steps outlined above, you can easily make the transition from your old email marketing vendor to ClickDimensions, and going forward, future unsubscribes and invalid email addresses will be handled automatically!


Feature Added: Original
Feature Updated: Original
ClickDimensions Version Need: Any