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Martin Cogburn
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    Contact Management Segmentation (Groups)

     

     

    About Groups

    ONTRAPORT uses a database to store your contacts. Unlike a list based system, your contact only needs a single Contact Record in ONTRAPORT, where all their activity is stored. This system is much more powerful than having the same contact listed on several different lists, and has some huge advantages.

    How do you make sure a contact receives the emails for purchasers but does not receive the special discount offer you intend for those who haven't yet purchased in a list based system?  Usually it requires manually deleting the contact from the list of prospects and making sure you have them in the list for purchasers. And what happens if you have an email to all your Contacts in a list-based system, and a contact could appear on any number of the lists?

    ONTRAPORT's database system allows you to segment your contacts using Groups. Groups are dynamic and automatically update when the contact qualifies to be a member of the Group, or no longer meets the criteria for the Group. This article explains how to use Groups to get an up-to-the-minute view of your contacts.

    Think about Groups as if they were 'saved searches.' You're basically setting up a search for all contacts that meet certain criteria, then saving that search so you can go back to it whenever you like. For example, you could create a group of all contacts who live in Canada. The criteria of this group would be based on the country field of the contact record.

    In many businesses, it’s useful to view and market differently to people based on their gender, job title, income, or whether they’re a client, a past client, or a prospect. It’s also very useful to create groups based on the lead source of a given contact. This allows you to communicate distinctly, and in a more relevant way with contacts that come into your system via different lead sources.

    Create a Group
    1. Go to the Contacts collection

      Contacts Collection

    2. Click on the Group pulldown menu and select + New Group



    3. Name the group
    4. Select a group permission to limit who can view or edit the Group.

      Groups Permissions

    5. Set the group condition(s)
      1. Choose a field, condition, and value for each group criteria you add
      2. To add another value to a group condition, click the + Add Value button.

        group conditions

      3. To add another group condition, click the + Add New Condition.
    6. Click Save

    7. Verify your new Group contains the data you want.
    Example - Create a Group based on a Field and a Tag

    If you want to see a list of everyone in your database that’s from Canada or Mexico, and is not a client (and you’ve already tagged all your clients with the tag ‘Client’), set the first row of drop down fields in the group condition to read “Country is equal to Canada OR Mexico” and the second line to read “Contact Tags does not contain Client.” Click 'save,' and you’re done.

    OR and AND conditions

    A contact who lives in either Canada or Mexico and does not have the tag Client will be shown as part of this group. If you have a Campaign Goal (or Trigger) for a contact who purchases something (or any product) or fills out an order form and an Add a Tag action element that tags them with "Client", then the minute the Goal is achieved, at the time of purchase, the contact no longer appears as a member of this group because the Group condition for "Contact Tags does not contain Client" is not met.

    When creating Groups, Field values may also be left blank. For example, if you wanted to find contacts who did not have a Country listed you would leave the value blank. This is useful for creating groups around contacts who didn't fill in a particular field.

    This automation is at the heart of ONTRAPORT, and is designed to save you time, money and segment your database in as many ways as you see fit to target your marketing efforts effectively.

    Perform an Action on a Group

    Group actions are used to perform certain actions such as assigning/removing a tag or subscribing to a sequence, etc on entire groups rather than individual contacts. You also have the option of performing an action on several select contacts at once if you don’t wish to perform it on an entire group.

    CAUTION - if you schedule an email to be sent to a group of contacts at a future date/time, the email will only be queued to contacts who are in the group at the time you create the broadcast. Contacts added to that group later are not included in the broadcast. To ensure all contacts meeting a certain criteria are sent an email in the future use a Campaign. Use a Trigger for the criteria the Contacts need to meet in order for the email to fire, use a Wait element to schedule the email to fire at the appropriate time and use the send an email action element to select your email content.

    List of available group actions

    • Send E-Mail
    • Send SMS
    • Assign Task
    • Add/Remove Tags
    • Add/Remove Campaigns
    • Send Postcard
    • Send Double Opt in Confirmation
    • Change Field Value
    • Export Contacts
    • Delete Contacts
    • Legacy Feature: Add/Remove Sequences (only appears if feature is turned on from Administration)
    • Advanced Feature: Add/Remove Custom Facebook Audiences (only appears if feature is turned on from Administration)

    Perform an action on a group

    1. Go to the Contacts collection
    2. Select a group from the group dropdown menu
    3. Hover over the header row to expose the checkbox, and click it

      Hover and select

    4. The action menu appears with the contacts on the first page selected. Click the link Select ALL items in group? to select all the contacts in the group.

      Contact actions select all in Group

    5. Select an action to perform.

    Example: Remove a Tag from a Group

    To do this, work your way through the steps above and then for step 5, select Add/Remove Tags. A window will then pop up in which you will have to select from a dropdown which tag(s) to remove from your contacts. Then click Submit and that action will be performed.

    Example: Assign a group to a Campaign that grants membership access to your WordPress site

    1. Integrate your WordPress site with ONTRAPORT
    2. Create or Edit a Campaign
    3. Add a Goal (or Trigger) + Add Goal button. Click the + Add Goal button and use the dropdown to select "Contact submits a Form". Select the membership order form. Use the drop down next to & order to select is successful.
    4. Add a Give WP Membership Access advanced element below the Goal (or Trigger) element. Select the website and membership level to give access to.
    5. Below the Give WP Membership Access element, add an email action element. Create an email and insert the merge fields for Username and Password for your integrated Wordpress site. Hyperlink the URL where members can login.
    6. Publish the Campaign.
    7. Perform step 1 - 4 of the group actions process
      1. For step 5, select Subscribe/Unsubscribe Campaign
      2. In the pop-up window, select the Campaign that you created from the dropdown
      3. Click Submit

    The contacts will then be subscribed to the Campaign which in turn will give them membership access to your WordPress site.

    Add Contacts to a Group

    Contacts are automatically added to groups when any data or field in the record of a contact matches the criteria of the group. You don’t drag and drop or add contacts manually to groups as you would in a lot of list-driven programs. Deleting a Group - the "saved search" - does not affect any of your contacts. The distinction is important because deleting a Contact Record really does delete that contact! Click here to learn how to create a Group.

    Segment Contacts by Products Purchased or Amount Spent

    Segment a list of contacts that bought something

    1. Go to Contacts
    2. Click on the Group pulldown menu and select + New Group
    3. Name your group "Customers"
    4. Click the + Add New Condition link. Select "Spent" for the Field. Select "Not Equal To" for the Condition and enter 0 (zero) for the Value.



    5. Click Save.

    The group called "Customers" shows any contact who spent any amount greater than $0.00 in your ONTRAPORT account. Tip: You could also adjust this group to find contacts who have spent greater than x amount.

    Segment a list of contacts that purchased particular product(s)

    1. Go to Contacts
    2. Click on the Group pulldown menu and select + New Group
    3. Name your group "Purchased [product name]"
    4. Click the + Add New Condition link. Select "Products Purchased" for the Field. Select "Contains" for the Condition and use the dropdown menu to select the name of the product.



      To add multiple products, hover to the right and click the + Add Value link. Use the dropdown menu to select additional products.
    5. Click Save.

    This group called "Purchased Product X" shows any contact who purchased any products listed in the group.

    Segment by Contacts Who Unsubscribed or Hard Bounced

    Contacts who unsubscribed or hard bounced (email address was invalid) cannot be mailed marketing email from ONTRAPORT in broadcasts or Campaigns. Contacts who unsubscribe have the Bulk Email Status of "Transactional only". This means the contact requested to be unsubscribed from all future promotional mailings. Hard bounced means the email address is invalid or it received 4 consecutive soft-bounces.

    Some ONTRAPORT users clean their lists by updating misspelled email addresses (eg gmial vs gmaill), deleting the contacts or making a last attempt to communicate with them in a one-off message from the contact record, making a phone call or sending a postcard to get updated contact information.

    1. Go to Contacts
    2. Click on the Group pulldown menu and select + New Group
    3. Name your group "Transactional only/Hard Bounced"
    4. Click the + Add New Condition link. Select "Bulk Email Status" for the Field. Select "Equal To" for the Condition and select "Transactional only" in the drop down for the Value.

      Hover to the right and click the + Add Value link. Use the dropdown menu to select "Hard Bounced", adding another value to your group criteria.



    5. Click Save.

    This group called "Transactional only/Hard Bounced" shows any contact who has either unsubscribed from receiving promotional email communications from you OR has an invalid email address.

    Segment contacts who are pending list approval

    All list imports are subject to approval by our Email Delivery team to ensure compliance with our anti-spam policies. To see if your contacts are in pending review, create a group using the instructions below.

    1. Go to Contacts
    2. Click on the Group pulldown menu and select + New Group
    3. Name your group "Pending Approval"
    4. Click the + Add New Condition link. Select "Bulk Email Status" for the Field. Select "Equal To" for the Condition and select "Pending Review" for the Value.



    5. Click Save.

    This group called "Pending Approval" shows any contact who is not able to be emailed due to list import review. This status should not be in place long, as our Email Delivery department approves or denies Contact Record imports within one business day.

    Segment contacts who have not confirmed their double opt-in subscription

    If you have selected double opt-in required or optional on your form settings, ONTRAPORT will send an email asking the contact to confirm their subscription. For those that do not click on the link, you may wish to resend the double opt-in confirmation email. To see who has not confirmed their double opt-in status, create a group following the instructions below.

    1. Go to Contacts
    2. Click on the Group pulldown menu and select + New Group
    3. Name your group "Double opt-in: Unconfirmed"
    4. Click the + Add New Condition link. Select "Bulk Email Status" for the Field. Select "Equal To" for the Condition and select "Unconfirmed" for the Value.



    5. Click Save.

    This group called "Double opt-in: Unconfirmed" shows any contact who has not clicked on their double opt-in confirmation link. You can resend a double opt-in confirmation email from the group actions menu.

    Segment Contacts by Email Opened or Not Opened

    Segment a list of contacts that opened a particular email message

    This is best done from the Messages collection.

    1. Go to Campaigns > Messages
    2. Locate the desired Message
    3. Hover to the right and locate the column titled "Opened"
    4. Click on the "Opened" number





    This group shows all contacts that received and opened the email. For the most recent statistic, go back to the Messages collection and repeat the steps above.

    Segment a list of contacts that did not open a particular email message

    This is best done from the Messages collection.

    1. Go to Campaigns > Messages
    2. Locate the desired Message
    3. Hover to the right and locate the column titled "Not Opened"
    4. Click on the "Not Opened" number



    5. A group of contacts automatically opens with the contacts contacts



    This group shows all contacts that received but did not open the email, at the time you clicked on the messages no opened email statistic. For the most recent statistic, go back to the Messages collection and repeat the steps above.

    The industry standard for tracking email opens involves injecting a tiny 1x1 transparent pixel into your message. Attached to that pixel is a unique URL - so if you open the email and display images our system can see that you've downloaded the image and we can safely assume the email has been opened. However, if a contact opens the email and doesn't display images, the pixel will never be downloaded and we won't know the message has been opened. Because of this we can only track emails with roughly 75% accuracy.

    Segment Contacts using Relative and Rolling Date Ranges

    ONTRAPORT includes 25 past or future dates that can be set relative to other date fields. Yesterday, tomorrow, 30 days in the past, and 30 days from now are examples. You can further define the dates or date ranges using conditions like greater than or equal to and less than or equal to.

    past and future date ranges are provided

    This criteria will create a Group of Contacts with their credit card expiring in the coming 30 days:

    date comes in next 30 days

    Each time you display the Group the calculation is renewed so that all Contacts with a card expiration date in the next 30 days is included.

    Note: Date ranges in the past can be confusing when combined with a Condition like "Greater Than" or "Less Than". Greater than dates are always later in the calendar so a date in 1950 is less than a date in 2010.

    Common Group Errors

    Using Multiple Negative Conditions ("does not contain", etc.)

    The example above works logically and you get the results you expect with the "does not contain" Tag. But if you stack multiple negative conditions in the same statement it actually reverses the meaning. Each line of the Group's Conditions is evaluated as "True" or "False" for each contact in standard "boolean logic" fashion. The following example uses "does not contain" for two tags, Gold and Silver.

    Using OR with negative conditions

    This Condition evaluates as "True" for any of the following contacts:

    • Contact does not have either Gold or Silver tags
    • Contact has Gold but not Silver - the statement is "True" because the contact doesn't have Silver
    • Contact has Silver but not Gold - the statement is "True" because the contact doesn't have Gold

    The intention was to show only contacts who do not have the Silver AND do not have the Gold Tag. But configured this way a contact who has Gold but not Silver will be included in the group. And so will a contact who has Silver but not Gold.

    When using a negative condition such as "does not contain" separate the criteria into separate lines so the criteria uses "AND":

    Negative conditions with AND

    The contact must not have the Tag "Gold" AND the contact must not have the Tag "Silver" to be part of the Group.

    FAQs

    Q. Can I create a Group of contacts that do not have any tags?

    A. Yes! In the Group conditions just use "Does Not Contain" and select "Any Tag" as the value, as shown here:

    Create a group using the condition does not contain any tags

    Q. Can I create a Group of random contacts for split testing?

    A. Yes, you can use the Contact ID field and set the criteria that the Contact ID ends with "0" to create a Group representing about 10% of your total contacts. Adding additional numbers using OR will increase the size of the group. For additional ideas: For Split Testing How Do You Split Your Existing List?

     

     

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