Events are activities that a contact engages in outside your emails that you want to track or monitor. Use our Events endpoint to transfer contact activity from another app into Mailchimp. Events are customizable, so you can create them to meet your needs. You can then use the behavioral data you collect to segment your audience and send marketing emails.
In this article, you'll learn how to use custom events to segment your audience and send targeted marketing emails.
Before you start
Here are some things to know before you begin this process.
- The Events API endpoint is available to all Mailchimp users for event-based segments and event property merge tags. Paid marketing plans have access to the Event API starting point for Customer Journeys. To learn more, check out our pricing page. To change your plan type, visit the plans page in your account.
- Before you use this endpoint, you must add contacts to your audience.
Custom events provide up-to-date insights about your audience. After you or your developer create a custom event, you can track interactions that help you market to each person’s specific needs. We recommend that you create custom events for the key events you want to track, then use event data to create segments or start a Customer Journey.
When you create and name your event, you can also add properties to that specific event to gather extra context. Properties provide more detail about how your contacts interact with an event, which makes the information you collect more valuable. For example, you could use properties to specify the account type that a user signed up for, or the physical location where they attended a conference.
Create an event with API or a merge tag
If you’re familiar with our API or have access to a developer, you can use our Events endpoint to create custom events and add properties as needed. You can also use the
*|EVENT:PROPERTY|* merge tag to display a specific property value of an event. For example, let’s say you set up an automation triggered by the event meetup_registered, which has location properties for each city that hosts a meetup. If your content includes “Get ready,
*|EVENT:location|*", recipients who registered for a meetup in Atlanta will see “Get ready, Atlanta.” To learn more about events, check out our Track Outside Activity with Events article.
Create an event with Zapier
If you aren’t familiar with our API and don’t have access to a developer, you can use a third-party integration like Zapier to connect another app to Mailchimp and create custom events for things that happen in that app.
When an activity occurs with one of your contacts in another app, Zapier will create a new event as long as an email address is collected. Use those events to create segments within your audience, or set up a pre-built journey map that adds contacts when events are created.
Keep in mind that Zapier is a third-party integration. For technical assistance, reach out to Zapier Support.
To create a custom event with Zapier, follow these steps.
- Log in to Zapier and click Create Zap.
- Choose the app you want to connect to Mailchimp and the event that you want to trigger a Zap.
- Choose an existing account for the third-party app, or choose Connect a New Account to register a new one.
- Click Continue.
- Choose Mailchimp as your app and choose Create Custom Event as your action event. You may need to sign in to your Mailchimp account and allow Zapier access.
- Click Continue.
- Click the Mailchimp account drop-down to keep the default account, or click + Connect a new account to add a new account.
- Click Continue.
- Now you’ll customize your event. Choose the audience, the email address collected from the app, the custom event name, and any event properties you want added to the event.
- Click Continue.
- Click Test + Continue to send a test custom event, or click Skip Testing. When you’re done, click Done Editing.
Well done! After you configure your action settings and turn on the Zap, your connected app will create custom events in Mailchimp.
When an event occurs for a contact, you can view it on the activity feed of their contact profile.
To view events, follow these steps.
- Click Audience, then click All contacts.
- Click the Current audience drop-down and choose your audience.
- Click a contact's email address to open their contact profile.
- On the contact profile page, scroll down to find the Activity section. Use the drop-down menus to select the date range and activity type.
Create and send campaigns to a segment
Build an audience segment based on event data and use it to create targeted emails and postcards. Custom event data can be used for segmenting up to 30 days after the event occurred for Free and Essentials accounts. Standard accounts keep event segment data for 3 months and Premium accounts for 18 months. Event property conditions are available with advanced segments only.
To create and send a campaign to a segment, follow these steps.
- Click Audience, click All contacts.
- Click the Current audience drop-down to choose your audience.
- Click the New Segment drop-down.
- Click the Advanced Segment option from the drop-down menu.
- Choose a name for your advanced segment.
- In the Find drop-down menu, select a subscription status.
- In the next drop-down menu, select whether you want to match any or all contacts for the conditions you set.
- In the conditions section, select the first drop-down to set your condition. Use the second drop-down menu to select how the condition is met, and use the third drop-down to provide additional information.
- Click Save and View Segment.
- Click Edit segment to make any changes.
- Click Rerun to run the segment again.
Success! After you've saved your segment, click Send Campaign to send an email campaign or Postcard.
Create an event-based Customer Journey
Create a Customer Journey that kicks off for a contact when an API call with the event name posts. Accounts on the Standard marketing plan or higher can create multi-step journeys with an Event API starting point. Accounts on the Essentials marketing plan can use the same starting point with a single-step journey.
To create a Customer Journey that adds contacts based on a specific API event, follow these steps.
- Click Automations, then click Overview.
- Click Build from scratch or Choose pre-built journey and choose Add contacts to journeys using the Mailchimp Event API.
- Enter a Customer Journey name and select an audience from the drop-down menu.
- Click Start Building.
- Click Choose a Starting Point.
- Click API & Integrations.
- Click Event API.
- On the starting point modal, enter your Event name. Make sure the event name matches the name field you entered when you created the event. The API endpoint example provided shows the information that you’ll need to supply in your API call to trigger this event.
- Click Save Starting Point.
Compare marketing plan Event API permissions
Here are the custom event actions that are available with each Mailchimp plan.
|Events in contact profile|
|Event data availability (for segmenting)||30 days||30 days||3 months||18 months|
|Event-based single-step Customer Journey|
|Event-based multi-step Customer Journey|
|Event property merge tags in Customer Journeys|
|Event property segments|