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Mailchimp Integration 101

Learn what the integration does behind the scenes and how to test and troubleshoot it

Fivos Stergiannis avatar
Written by Fivos Stergiannis
Updated over a week ago

Once the Mailchimp integration is connected, it provides a two-way connection of your Viral Loops campaign with your Mailchimp audience.

Here's how it works.

Viral Loops ➡️ Mailchimp

Any new participant in your campaign will be automatically added to your Mailchimp audience. If the contact is found in the audience, they will simply be updated and will get their own sharing link.

How to test this

Add a participant in your Campaign (from the Campaign Dashboard or any page or widget where people can join your campaign).

You should be able to find them in Mailchimp and see their personal sharing link in their Profile Information:

Mailchimp ➡️ Viral Loops

If you are using multiple forms to get subscribers to your audience, some of them might not be joining from an embedded Viral Loops widget so they are not automatically becoming campaign participants.

To ensure all your subscribers have a sharing link, each new subscriber to the audience you have connected is automatically pulled in the Viral Loops campaign. That way, they too get their personal sharing link and can invite their friends.

How to test this

Add a subscriber to your audience in any way you want. For example, you might use a landing page from Mailchimp or a standalone Mailchimp form. You could even simply add them from your Mailchimp dashboard.

Moments later, go to your Viral Loops Campaign Dashboard. You should be able to find there the subscriber you just added.

Back in Mailchimp, you can verify that the newly added subscriber has their own sharing link, by checking their Profile Information.

Mailchimp Unsubscribe ➡️ Campaign Unsubscribe

If someone unsubscribes from your Mailchimp audience, the integration will mark them as unsubscribed from the Viral Loops Campaign so they will stop receiving any related campaign emails.

This does not delete the subscriber from the campaign! It simply means that they will not be receiving campaign-related emails for this campaign (such as the Welcome Email or the Milestone Emails).

This only syncs from Mailchimp to Viral Loops which means that if someone unsubscribes from your Viral Loops campaign, they won't be unsubscribed from your Mailchimp audience too.

Merge Tags

When the integration is connected, any new Viral Loops campaign participants will be getting added or updated in the Audience of your choice, along with the following merge tags:

  1. *|EMAIL|*: The participant’s email address

  2. *|FNAME|*: The participant’s first name (if it has been submitted to Viral Loops)

  3. *|LNAME|*: The participant’s last name (same)

  4. *|REFCODE|*: The participant’s referral code

  5. *|REFSOURCE|*: The participant’s source (from the sharing URL that got them to join the campaign)

  6. *|REFEMAIL|*: The email address of the participant’s referrer (if there was one)

  7. *|REFFNAME|*: The first name of the participant’s referrer (if there was one)

  8. *|REFLNAME|*: The last name of the participant’s referrer (if there was one)

  9. *|REFERRALS|*: The number of referrals of the participant

  10. *|SHAREURL|*: The unique link of the participant

Custom fields (as the ones captured in the Popup) are not yet synced to Mailchimp.

To use the merge tags in your Mailchimp emails, simply type them in the content of your email, like this: This is your unique link: *|SHAREURL|*

Or use the dropdown menu in the content editor in Mailchimp:

Troubleshooting the MailChimp Integration

If the MailChimp integration is not working as expected (as described above), you can follow the steps below to restore it.

Before proceeding to the several symptoms listed below please check the following:

  1. Have you tried disconnecting the integration and reconnecting it? Sometimes an error during connection might affect the syncing of contacts.

  2. Have you connected the right MailChimp account and audience? If you have multiple audiences, maybe the Viral Loops integration is trying to write to a different audience than the one you want.

If none of these help, please find some more troubleshooting instructions below.

Symptom: New Viral Loops participants are not added to MailChimp

If participants are joining your campaign but not appearing to your connected MailChimp audience, it is possible that Viral Loops can't write the participants to the audience because of required audience fields that are not submitted to MailChimp.

To check for required fields, go to your Audience Dashboard and select Manage Audience --> Settings.

In the Settings Page click on "Audience fields and *|MERGE|* tags".

By default, only the email address of the participant is a required field in MailChimp but if other fields have also been made required, Viral Loops might be unable to write to the audience.

If the first or last names are also made required, make sure that you are capturing them for you Viral Loops participants, eg. by asking for them when a participant joins the campaign.

However, if there are also other fields that are required (aside from email, first name and last name), then the integration will fail ⚠️

This will be a problem:

Once you have made the extra fields not required, then the integration will be able to write to the MailChimp audience as it should.

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