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Mail List Double opt in

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CASL (Canada's Anti-Spam Law) seems to have 3 mechanisms to provide permission to email your patrons:

  • Explicit Consent can be either single opt-in or double opt-in mail list with double opt-in being the preferred.
  • Implied consent occurs if a client initiated activity with you and you have up to two years to contact them via email.

In theatre manager this can be implemented using:
  • A single opt in mail list -- simply means the person marks the checkbox online and they are added to the mail list.
  • A double opt-in mail list means that the patron has to agree twice to being on the mail list. They confirm a second time using their valid email address, which has the added benefit of double checking the email address.

    However, it does mean that if a patron does not respond:

    • they are removed from the mail list automatically during the sales posting process based on the retention period in company preferences.
    • Generally that means people will be on the opt-in mail list for 24 hours or more and then removed automatically when the next create sales entry process is run at EOD
    • If they are taken off automatically:
      • the user can still activate the link in the email and they will be added again in confirmed status automatically.
      • but since the patrons are removed from the mail list (until such time as they opt-in), they will not be included in an eblast if that mail list is subsequently used as form letter criteria (i.e. 'belongs to mail list') to identify people for eblasting
  • Implied Consent: means that if a client initiates a contact with you, then you have up to two years of implied consent to contact them back via email regarding the transaction. This includes confirmation of record updates, password changes, purchases, surveys etc. It may also include up to two years from date of purchase for other forms of email (please get your own legal opinion on this).

    You would create a mail list and use criteria such as purchased a ticket in the past two years, had an order dated in the past two years, donated in the past two years, volunteered in the past two years, (or one or more in combination that might be specific to your needs).

What does it look like on the Web for the end user?

When one or more email notification lists are set up to allow people to sign in, they will look like this on the patrons account page. (they also show on the mail lists window).

Setting up a double opt-in mail list that will appear on the web

A double opt in mail list has two key settings on the mail list setup window:

  • The mail list must be marked that the patron can subscribe to it via the internet (i.e. they can add or remove themselves from the list membership)
  • It has the 'double opt in' flag checked.
If both these settings are made, then any patron gets added to the mail list will be sent an email requesting an email requesting confirmation that they consented to be on the list. If the patron
  • confirms the addition by clicking on a link, then they will be confirmed on the mail list with a 'double opt in' status. This also confirms the email address and records when the patron gave consent.
  • does not confirm the addition to the mail list, then they will be removed from the list in approximately 24 hours (based on the value for 'keep unconfirmed mail list').

  1. Open the mail list you want to use for the subscribe online with double opt-in.

    For more information on accessing the mail list window click here.

  2. Click on the Description tab.

    The screen should look like the one below.

    A best practice is to make sure that the 'Double Opt-In' option that is highlighted IS NOT CHECKED when building the list for the first time. If it is, then any patron added to the mail list in any manner will receive an email instantly.

  3. Add Patrons to the mail list in any manner you wish.

    You can use any of the standard ways to get people added to the mail list such as:

    • Using criteria to build a list of patrons of interest (see the picture below for a simple example)
    • dragging another mail list onto the who's in window to add all people in the mail list
    • dragging people from the patron list
    • Using the 'new' button on the who's in window to add a patron

  4. On the Description Tab, click the 'double-opt in' option

    Theatre Manager will tell you that there are people in the mail list that have not received a notification per the image below. It will only consider those that have the mail list source status codes of

    • Added Manually (meaning you dragged and dropped them into the list)
    • Added via a mail list build (meaning criteria was executed to find people)
    • Added during some sort of data import exercise
    The other status codes are ignored. That is because they are considered 'implied consent to email' - like 'added because they bought a show online'.

    Click the opt-in button if you want to start generating an email for the patrons in the list with the 3 status codes above. If you click cancel, then you can still do it again by un-clicking the double opt in' button and saving, then clicking the double opt in button again to repeat the process.

  5. Confirm you want to email to people using the 'double-opt in' option

    You are given a second chance to confirm you want emails to go to patrons having the mail list status codes above. This question is asked ONCE after opening the mail list detail window as a WARNING. After that, the message no longer displayed to you. After getting this once, you can continue to drag and drop other people only the list quickly and emails will be sent without a message.

  6. On the 'Whos's In' tab, view the status of patrons.

    If the patron has an email address, the status of the patron will be 'Internet (opt -in'). That means and email has been sent to the patron and they have not responded to the email to confirm them being part of the mail list.

    Patrons who do not have an email address will retain their original mail list source. If you find an email for them, you can add it to the patron address, and then change the opt in status again to send out the remainder of the emails. People with pending opt-in status will NOT receive a second email.

  7. What the Patron sees in their inbox

    An email will be sent to the patron that looks like below and is from the tmPatronUpdateEmailBoxOfficeOptIn.html web page. It will have your background and CSS stylings. The difference is that if there are 'double-opt-in' mail lists as part of the update, then the patron will see the new text highlighted in red. That is the link they will need to click to confirm the opt-in.

    When they click the link, they will be taken to your web site and see the confirmation page below (tmMaillistVerifyOptin.html)

  8. What the Venue sees in the mail list

    After the patron confirms participation in the mail list through double opt-in, the status of that person's mail list entry will change to 'Double Opt-in'. It also records the date of the opt-in.