HOW TO: Feed Your Blog Posts to Your MailChimp List

by Jennifer Wilson on September 23, 2010

You have an awesome blog that you post to on a regular basis. You also have a MailChimp (affiliate link) list of people that have subscribed, to receive useful and informative information from you…now what do you do? Give your list what they want. They want regular updates that include tips and resources about your market. From within MailChimp you can automatically feed your blog posts to your list by setting up an RSS driven campaign.

Let’s take a small step back. Some of you may be wondering what MailChimp is and what these lists are that I’m talking about. MailChimp is a wicked email marketing program that allows you to create, customize, send and track HTML email campaigns. When set up right, this type of email marketing will help you stay in regular contact with the people on your list, by sharing valuable and useful content about your market. The “lists” that I refer to are your subscribers, generated from lead capture forms on your websites and blogs.

What better way to keep your subscribers current and informed, than to share your blog posts with them as you write and publish them, and having it run on auto-pilot.

Setting up your MailChimp RSS Driven Campaign

Step #1 – Create an RSS Driven Campaign

Log into your MailChimp dashboard and from the main page, or the Campaign tab, click on the orange “Create Campaign” button and select “RSS-driven campaign” .

MailChimp1 HOW TO: Feed Your Blog Posts to Your MailChimp List

Step #2Set Up Your RSS Feed

The next screen will ask you for your RSS feed URL. If you are not sure of the url you can simply enter your blog url and MailChimp will try and locate the feed address for you. Next you will want to tell MailChimp the day and time you want the emails sent out. Once complete click the next button.

MailChimp2 HOW TO: Feed Your Blog Posts to Your MailChimp List

Step #3 – Select the List  You Want to Send To

Select the list or segment that you want to send to OR create a new list.

MailChimp3 HOW TO: Feed Your Blog Posts to Your MailChimp List

Step #4 – Configuring Campaign Information

Here you will give your RSS-driven campaign a message subject, a from name and reply to email. You may also decide to give the campaign a name for your own purposes. The campaign name is not required, but it’s a good idea to have one for easy reference later. Included in this step are email tracking settings as well as social media settings and integration you may want to customize or leave the defaults.

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Step #5 – Campaign Design/Layout

This step you will select an email design from the many customizable pre-designed templates that MailChimp provides or you may choose to upload your own custom template.

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Step #6 – Add Content

Once you have chosen your campaign template you will want to add any additional content you want to share with your list. You may also need to set up the RSS Merge Tags to tell MailChimp the information you want pulled into the email from your feed. Sample Merge Tags would be:

  • *|RSSFEED:TITLE|*
  • *|RSSFEED:DATE|*
  • *|RSS:POSTS_HTML|*

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Step #7 – Configure Plain Text Message

This step you want to review how the plain text version of your email will look for those recipients that do not or can not accept html messages. Edit or add content as you see fit.

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Step #8 – You’re Almost Done!

This final step is your opportunity to review your campaign settings, preview your campaign and send a test email before starting your new RSS campaign.

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Step #9 – Start Your RSS Driven Campaign

If you’re sure everything is in order and your ready to launch your campaign, click the Start RSS Campaign button and you will see a confirmation window from MailChimp. Confirm you want to start the campaign and your done!

MailChimp8 HOW TO: Feed Your Blog Posts to Your MailChimp List

If you have any questions or need some assistance with customizing or creating your email template, check with a  Real Estate Virtual Assistant. They would be happy to help out.

If you do not have a MailChimp account, you can sign up for a FREE account and use their Free Forever plan that includes a subscriber list of 1000 and send 6000 emails a month.

WARNING REALTORS® According to the MailChimp Terms of Service they do not allow “Real Estate Prospecting or Listings”. This RSS driven campaign may or may not work for your specific feed if your blog posts include listings. For more information, please feel free to leave a comment or contact us. We would be happy to discuss your options.

  • Lauramonroeva

    Fantastic how to Jen! It's so time consuming to figure these things out sometimes, so how to's like this are so awesome and informative. Bookmarked!

  • http://www.thebarrierealestateblog.com/ Barrie Real Estate

    This is so great. It will really take some time for me to figure this out. I think I should share this with my friends so that they can help me to learn this one. Thanks for posting.

  • Jennifer Wilson

    You’re welcome. Mailchimp is an awesome program and offers a ton of extra features. Sometimes it’s just knowing where to look.

    If you have any trouble with it, let me know. I would be happy to help out any way I can.

    Thanks for stopping by.

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