ActiveCampaign Features

TAM 042: Tactical 20 – New ActiveCampaign Features

In episode 42, I outline 3 new ActiveCampaign features that might make you marketing life easier.

Email HTML Element Block

Email HTML Block

ActiveCampaign blog article

Personalisation Tags In Deal Titles

Personalize Deals
Personalization tags in Deals

ActiveCampaign blog article

Wildcards In URL Page Visit Triggers

URL Wildcards
URL wildcards

ActiveCampaign blog article


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Links Mentioned In The Show

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Barry: Hi, it's Barry Moore back with another Tactical 20 Podcast.

Announcer: Welcome to the Active Marketer Podcast where we talk about how to design, automate, and scale your business to the next level using sales and marketing automation. You can find out all the tips, tactics, and techniques you need to get more customers and sell more stuff over at Now here's your host, Barry Moore.

Barry: Hi, I'm your host, Barry Moore, and this is going to be another Tactical 20 Podcast. The Tactical 20 Podcasts are all about give you an actionable tip, technique or tactic that you can take away and implement in your business in less than 20 minutes. In this week's Tactical 20 I'm going to highlight three new features that have just dropped for Active Campaign that you might not be aware of yet. If you're not an Active Campaign user or using something else this episode's probably not for you. If you are an Active Campaign user three things have just been released by Active Campaign, three new features, three new updates enhancements, all of which are pretty cool but one of which will make your life dramatically easier if you are using external shopping carts to process orders and things like that.

The first feature we're going to talk about is in their new email designer. They released a new email designer a few months back and it's really cool. It's nice, it's slick, it's a very visual drag and drop interface similar to kind of something like Canva or the like. However, it met with a little pushback from kind of more advanced marketers because you couldn't customise it enough, you couldn't add certain elements into, HTML type elements into your emails. Well, now the new email designer has a customer HTML element block. You can drag the HTML block into your new look email designer template and you can add your own custom HTML inside the Active Campaign email template.

Where this can be really handy is if you want to include an image but you don't necessarily want to upload that image, you want to refer to that image with a URL. They have that image hosted on an image server somewhere. If it's somebody else's image you want to be able to just put the HTML image tag in there and the URL reference and pull that image in rather than downloading it, uploading it to Active Campaign, putting it into your email. The other way this can be handy is if you have some scripts that you want to put into your email. One popular script among marketers is kind of a countdown script in your email. If you want a countdown time where you're sending out an offer you say this offer is only good for the next 10 hours and then you've got the timer counting down from 10 hours. That's a custom script that you can embed with the HTML element right into your email. Lots of clever uses, lots of useful ways to incorporate the HTML element into your emails. Check out the show notes for a little bit more information.

The second new feature that was released recently is the ability to use personalization tags when creating a deal. If you have the plus level of Active Campaign and you're using the CRMs in the pipelines you can now use tags, personalization tags to customise the title of that deal. Why that's relevant is a lot of the time you'll be using an automation to create a deal. Maybe someone hits a certain lead score, someone's downloaded a certain inquiry form or filled out a certain inquiry form, downloaded your PDF and you want to get back to them to upsell them to a condo or apartment or some high ticket item that needs a personal touch. You want to be able to track that deal all the way from inquiry to closure.

If you're creating that deal from inside an automation … Let's take our sales example. There's a form on your website, please inquire if you're interested in real estate in the Sydney area. People type in their email address, their name, their phone number, their details, they hit enter. That form gets submitted then you might have an automation in the background that creates a new deal in your sales pipeline. Since it's an automation creating the deal it's going to give the deal the same title every single time. If you've had 40 people fill out your inquiry form you're going to go to your deal pipeline and you're going to have 40 deals with exactly the same name in there.

Not great, still usable because the next line down kind of tells you who the contact is. It would be much more useful to me as a salesperson if I could see that person's name or I could see that person's company or some other kind of unique detail so that each deal got a unique title to it rather than all the deals having the same title. Now you can use personalization tags when you create a deal. If you don't know what personalization tags are go back and listen to Episode 40 where we talk all about that. Now you can have that very same automation.

Instead of creating the standard generic deal title for every deal I can put that … Whoever's filled out my form I can put that contact's first name, the last name, the company they work for. Whatever fields I happen to be gathering inside Active Campaign I could put those into the title of the deal. When I go to my CRM page in the morning and I look at my 40 inquiries it's going to have people's name there that says, new deal for Barry, new deal for whoever. It's going to have their name there so I can instantly tell whose deal belongs to which and I can keep track of those deals a little bit more effectively. That's a helpful and useful item if you're using the deals feature.

Now, the really big kind of game changer is the third new feature I'm going to talk about and that's being able to use wildcards when specifying a URL trigger. A little bit of background here. In Active Campaign once a contact's on your list you can track pretty much everything that they look at so whatever pages they look at, whatever emails they open, whatever links they click on all that's tracked. If you have a tracking script on your website you can keep track of what pages each contact has had a look at. Barry comes to your website, he's looked at this page, this page, this page. He's looked at this article on nutrition, this article on fitness, he's downloaded this PDF. All those individual page visits can be a trigger inside an automation so you can start an automation based on a page visit.

For example, if you had a landing page that landing page could be the trigger for a follow-up sequence. Say someone … Here's a perfect scenario. Someone comes to your landing page for your product, they don't buy. We want to follow them up with an upsell sequence to try and get them to come back and buy that product. If I've got landing page X and my contact hits landing page X that visit to landing page X can fire off on automation. The way it used to work is that has to be an exact match URL. Which isn't a problem for your landing pages but where it becomes a problem a lot of time is your post-purchase pages.

Say that person's come to landing page X, they've decided they want it. They bought product X from PayPal or they bought product X from Stripe or One Shopping Cart or Sam Cart or whatever it is, whatever it is that processed that payment. Ideally, we'd like to stop that upsell sequence that was triggered by their visit to the landing page. We don't want to keep trying to sell them a product they've already bought. I'm sure it's happened to you before and you get kind of irritated. Like, “I've already bought your product, stop sending me your marketing.”

In the automation you'd want to have another automation there that's triggered on a checkout. If Barry buys product X and he checks out I want an automation there that says stop the upsell sequence. Post-purchases automation, stop the upsell sequence and add him to the onboarding sequence so I start getting all the post-purchase onboarding emails for that product. Now, the problem typically lies … You could do that with the URL trigger theoretically but the problem lies in the fact that a lot of those shopping carts will append variables to the URL. You might get checkout product X question mark, transaction ID equals 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10. Everyone's going to have a unique number in that transaction ID.

Essentially is what happens is every purchaser has a unique URL, it's not an exact match URL anymore. Now if they visit that thank you, that post-purchase thank you page everybody gets a unique URL and I can't use that as a page trigger anymore. Well, now Active Campaign has introduced the concept of wildcards in URL triggers. You can specify what part of the URL is to remain static and what part can be a wildcard. In our example you could have the post-purchase thank you page that says check out product X, transaction ID equals 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. Everything after that equal sign can be a wildcard so everyone's unique transaction ID no longer breaks our page visit URL script, so our page visit URL trigger. I'm saying, “Everything up to the equal sign it needs to be this.” Then if they visit that page trigger the URL visit that fires off the automation. Everything after the URL sign can be unique or different, I don't really care.

You can now use, you're not limited to exact match URLs anymore, you can use wildcards in your URLs. Another example of this, say your personal trainer, whatever are on your blog. You've got three different categories of topics. You've got fitness, nutrition, mindset for example. What you can do is if your URLs are set up properly you can trigger automations based on whatever topic category they've looked at. For example, say your URLs are and then the name of the post or name of the post. What you can do with those wildcard URLs is you can say everything up to the point where it says nutrition, so star, wildcard, anything after that means it's a nutrition related post. I can tag that person with a topic tag that says they're interested in nutrition and potentially follow them up with some nutrition related emails.

If they visit the fitness part of the blog I can tag them with a topic tag for fitness because now all my fitness posts start with the same URL. They have a unique bit for each article but they all start with /blog/fitness, and then I can just put a little star and asterisk after that and say match the URLs for this to a topic tag for fitness. Anytime somebody reads a fitness blog post they get a topic tag to tell me they're interested in fitness as opposed to nutrition. Wildcards make that URL trigger. That was very static and locked in before, exact match only. Now it can be wild carded so that it can be more flexible. You can use it for unique URLs that might come from a post-purchase shopping cart or you can categorise your blog post and you can fire automations based on a category visit for example.

Very flexible, really kind of a game changer if you're trying to track visits and trigger automations based on page visits. Those are the three new features out there for you. Head over to the blog post accompanying this episode. The show notes will be at for episode 42 and you can see examples of all these new features there. I suggest you check them out and see how you can use them in your marketing. Thanks very much for joining me on the Tactical 20 Podcast, we're back next week with an interview format. If you have any questions, comments, thoughts, leave them in the show notes for Episode 42, you can send me an email directly. Don't forget to join us over on our Facebook group, Automation Nation. Just head over to Facebook. Type in Automation Nation in the search bar and you'll find us. Tell us you heard about it on the podcast, we'll let you into the private Facebook group where we talk all about sales and marketing automation. See you next time everybody, thanks again.

All right, that's our Tactical Podcast for this week. If you have any questions or any topics you'd like to see covered on future Tactical 20 Podcast you can always send me an email at and let us know what you'd like to see. Also, if you head over to the show notes for this episode and just leave a comment or leave a comment in any of the episode show notes, tell us what you'd like to see, we'll make sure we cover it on an upcoming episode. Get out there and design, automate, and scale your business to the next level using sales and marketing automation. See you next week everybody.

Announcer: Thanks for listening to the Active Marketer Podcast. You can find the show notes and all the latest marketing automation news over at

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