Hi...we'd like to transition our in-house mailing list to Constant Contact. We send one e-mail message each weekday to approx. 5,000 recipients, and the content of the e-mail is derived from our database (it's a new science fiction story every day, so the e-mail content is dynamic).
I've just set up and performed some CC API testing, and have been able to successfully execute basic commands. It looks like we'll be able to manage our contact list using the API.
What I'm wondering is what you'd suggest as a general approach for what we're trying to accomplish with the daily e-mails...is this possible using the API? Would we set up a single campaign with custom HTML code, and then use the API to change the e-mail content of the campaign before it's sent each day?
And is it possible to schedule the campaign to send each weekday at some specific time after the content is automatically updated, so that campaign sending doesn't have to be done manually? I assume that we'd use a cron script on our end to push the new e-mail content to the CC server via the API prior to the campaign sending each day.
Yes, you could certainly utilize our API to send out campaigns, but you would need to write the code that pulls the dynamic content for the email, and write the code that decides when to schedule the email through our API (once a day for you, it sounds like).
You would create custom HTML code for your email, update it with your new content on your side, and then schedule the email to be sent using our API. This page shows you what the XML for your email should look like when sent to Constant Contact.
The way I would go about doing this is create the HTML code for your email that won't change, and pull your dynamic content into the HTML code before you schedule it to go out via the API.
I hope that helps!
API Support Engineer
On additional point to make, our scheduling API that allows you to send those HTML email campaigns is special permission only. You'll need to email our API support team (email@example.com) in order to obtain that private access. From the sound of your integration plan above, we should definitely be able to get you that access. Please let the support team know your API key you're using and your username so they can get you access as quickly as possible.
As a developer, I would have preferred my marketing team build static text and layout and then my API calls only update specific dynamic sections.
Is it still the case that I have to send the entirety of a email body when updating a campaign via the API?
At this time, it is still only possible to update an email campaign by sending the entire campaign body.
We are working on long-term development to better integrate our APIs with our web-based editing experience so that functionality closer to what you are describing can be acheieved. We do not yet have a timeframe for when this will be available, but we do recognize the need and are working to accomodate it.