Integrate Mailchimp with WordPress; 5 considerations + 6 options
There are many reasons to integrate Mailchimp with WordPress. A visitor that’s ready to share his or her email address grants permission to build a relationship. That’s a valuable moment! So integrating your WordPress website with your Mailchimp account is a must for any B2B marketer working with these tools. But the integration can be done in several ways, and the option you choose impacts your marketing capabilities. So what are the main considerations before choosing your integration option?
5 Considerations when integrating Mailchimp and WordPress
For B2B marketers that focus on generating leads on a WordPress site and nurturing these leads in Mailchimp, the 5 considerations below should be reviewed:
Consideration 1: Grow your subscriber base
Obviously, the key objective of your integration is adding opt-in subscribers to your Mailchimp Audience. As this is the baseline scenario, any integration option will enable you to realize this objective in a technical sense. But a sign-up form to your blog hidden somewhere on your website will have a very low conversion. So it needs to stand-out and the advantage of signing up should be clear your visitors. Consider the position of your form, using pop-ups and offering some free content.
Consideration 2: Integrate a sign-up option in download & registration forms
Each time someone converts on your landing page represents an opportunity to ask for an opt-in to your newsletter(s). So every form you publish on any landing page should include a checkbox to opt-in to your newsletters. So the forms you use for free white papers or e-books and the registration page of your webinar or event, should also contain a sign-up option.
Consideration 3: Trigger nurturing in Mailchimp
Generating qualified leads can be a though job! So each time a visitor of your WordPress website turns into a lead, is an opportunity to nurture this contact using a Mailchimp Automation (a series of automated e-mails). By providing relevant follow-up messages and content, you can turn fresh leads into qualified leads for your sales team. So your WordPress integration with Mailchimp should feature an option to trigger Mailchimp Automations based on any form submit and capture lead behavior and characteristics.
Consideration 4: Unified lead profiles
When integrating WordPress and Mailchimp you should also think about where to store your lead profiles. Mailchimp typically tracks; email sends, bounces, opens and clicks, for which engagement is measured in ‘Stars’. But your WordPress landing page tracks page visits, refer information and form submits. So both online channels gather relevant profile information. Where does it come together? Look for a solutions that provides a ‘unified lead profile’ of leads in which every piece of data you collect is stored at the individual level in a lead profile.
Consideration 5: Lead scoring
Lead scoring is a way to measure the likeliness of a commercial opportunity for a potential customer. The system that stores your ‘unified lead profile’ is typically the place where lead scoring should take place. By awarding points to both behavior and demographic characteristics you can filter out the best leads to transfer to your sales team, or trigger the next Mailchimp Automation. Think of how you can set up lead scoring when you work with both WordPress and Mailchimp.
6 Options to integrate Mailchimp with WordPress
After considering what you need from your integration between Mailchimp and WordPress you can evaluate the 5 options below. Some of the options meet all of the considerations above, but most only some.
Option 1: Use the default MailChimp block
In your WordPress website the default Mailchimp block is already waiting for you in the block editor. Open a post or page, add a new block, and either search for “Mailchimp” or select it from the list of available blocks. It’s a basic way to add new subscribers to your Mailchimp Audiences and doesn’t add much more functionality.
Option 2: Use Manceppo
Manceppo is optimized for B2B marketers that work with WordPress and Mailchimp and enables all of the above considerations in one easy to use platform. It features an easy to use form builder, full (both ways) integration with Mailchimp for both growing your list and nurturing leads based in behavior on your WordPress website. The full Mailchimp profile (including email sends, opens and clicks) is combined with the WordPress profile (like page visits, refer information and form submissions) into a ‘Unified Lead Profile’. Based on this profile and/or based on lead scoring, Mailchimp can be triggered. For instance by adding contacts to Audiences and adding tags to Audience contacts to trigger Mailchimp Automations.
Option 3: Use advanced opt-in plugins
Focused on growing your Mailchimp Audiences there are many advanced plugins focusing on this job, including ‘OptinMonster’ and ‘MailChimp for WordPress’. These plugins typically feature an broad range of options to build drag ‘n’ drop sign-up forms and publish them in-line on a page, in popups or floating bars. Advanced opt-in plugins are especially powerful in presenting a customized sign-up option at the right moment, based on visitor behavior. The profile data is typically focused on email addresses and basically syncs these with your Mailchimp account. The ‘MailChimp for WordPress’ plugin also allows to integrate with other forms and plugins, enabling a ‘sign-up for your newsletter’ option to a download or registration form. Opt-in plugins do not build unified profiles like Manceppo, nor do they enable lead scoring.
Option 4: Use form builders like WPForms
Form builder plugins focus on building great custom forms on your WordPress website. These forms can for instance be used as contact form, opt-in form or registration form. The functionality is especially focused around building a custom form with all the form field you like to use, even adding features like conditional logic. So these tools provide a lot of flexibility and offer more than just an email address and name like many sign-up plugins do. The contact data is typically captured in a simple contact database, which is a one way street. Data comes in from your website and can be send to your email platform. So lead scoring and triggering events based on behavior across Mailchimp and WordPress is not possible.
Option 5: Use landing page solutions like Unbounce
There are also many tools focused on creating landing pages. In essence these integrations with WordPress are a combination of advanced opt-in plugins and custom form builders. They offer many ways to present and optimize landing pages with features like A/B testing and triggers based on visitor behavior. Contact information is again typically synced to Mailchimp and can be based on some segmentations. But again, data comes in from your landing page and can be send to your email platform. So lead scoring and triggering events based on behavior across Mailchimp and WordPress is not possible.
Option 6: Use your CRM as middle man
finally many CRM systems feature a plugin to add subscribers to a newsletter list, managed by the CRM system. The sign up form options of CRM systems are normally limited. After a sign-up the CRM should push new contacts to your Mailchimp Audience, so it needs to integrate both ways. When you choose the CRM route, be aware that CRM applications are primarily designed to capture data about prospects and customers in the sales process. Marketing often plays a minor role within CRM. The customer contact record normally shows characteristics of the customer segment, newsletter registrations or participation in events, but the campaign management takes place in systems outside the CRM and it is not set up to trigger campaigns in those other systems.
Overview of integration options and considerations
The table below summarizes the options and considerations when integrating WordPress and Mailchimp discussed in this blog.
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