Configuring a Campaign
- The drip configurations section is where you specify individual drip campaigns. These are centered around calendar records.
- To create a new drip campaign, enter a name for it in the text box at the bottom of the “Drip Name” column and click the “Add” button. This will create an empty campaign with the specified name which will appear in the list of existing campaigns. You can configure your new campaign by clicking the “edit” link in the leftmost column next to your campaign.
- Please note that all campaigns are created with their “Status” set to “Off” (so that they will not begin running while you are still in the process of configuring them). Make sure to enable your campaign by clicking its status to toggle it “On” once you have finished configuring it; otherwise it will not run.
Conditions and Trigger Stages
- The Appointment Editor shows Conditions and Stages for a campaign. To configure a condition, select the field whose values you wish to track using the first two drop down menus, then select the Comparison Operator you wish to use in the “Compare” column. Finally, enter the comparison value in the text field all the way to the right and click “Add”. You have now constructed a logical query based on the value of the selected field. You can add as many such logical statements to this campaign as you wish; when ALL of the statements Evaluate to “True” for a given record, the campaign’s stages will run.
- Note that since the module revolves around confirming calendar events, conditions that check field values in other modules (such as Contacts or Organizations), are only relevant to the extent that there are calendar events that can be linked to those modules. For example, if you create a condition that checks the “Lead Source” field of “Contacts”, the module will ultimately be looking for events which are linked to a “Contact” that has a “Lead Status” value that matches the query condition. Even if there are Contacts which match the condition, the Appointment Confirmation module will not take any action unless there are events linked to that Contact.
- The “Trigger Stages” portion of the Conditions table determines when Stages (see below) will be executed. If the “Immediately upon appointment creation” radio button is selected, any Stages the campaign has will be executed as soon as an event matches the user-specified Conditions (see above). (Note that the “Run on Day” value specified within a Stage may nonetheless delay the actual running of the Stage if a nonzero value is specified there; additionally, Stages will not be run until the invoking cronjob runs, which may delay execution by a few minutes).
- If the “When there are (x) days until appointment” radio button is selected, Stages will not be executed until all of the user-specified Conditions are met AND there are exactly the number of specified days remaining until the event. This, in effect, creates an additional condition relating to the date of the event. Note that the number of days remaining until the event must match the specified value exactly; it does not test for the specified number of days or fewer.
- After selecting your Trigger Stages options, click the “Save Trigger” button to save your Trigger Settings (which are saved independent of Conditions).
“Appt Confirm Status”
- Because the goal of the module is to streamline the confirmation of appointments, the module only concerns itself with appointments which are currently “Not Confirmed.” Once an appointment has been confirmed, the module will no longer act upon that appointment. The appointment’s confirmation status is tracked in a custom field (which the module creates during installation) called “Appt Confirm Status”. When looking for activities that match the conditions set in the campaign, the module only searches for activities with an “Appt Confirm Status” value of “Not Confirmed.”
- Stages of a campaign can take three forms: Email, Activity, or Field Update. Email stages send a email messages to a either 1) the matching event’s Assigned User, 2) the Contact or Lead who is linked to the event, or 3) a user-specified email address. Activities stages create new calendar events which can be scheduled for Vtiger users. Field Update stages allow users to change the value of any of the event’s fields.
To Configure an email stage, select “Email” from the dropdown menu on the under “Stages” and click “Add Stage.” You need to enter a valid name for this stage in order to save it. “Run On Day” allows you to delay sending the email for the specified number of days after the conditions for this campaign become true (for example, you might choose to send a followup email to a Sales Order 2 days after lead Sales Order becomes “Active”).
You also have the ability to use mail merge fields from the Vtiger database, similar to Vtiger’s default Email templates. To use these, select the field you wish to merge from one of the drop down menus (all standard and custom fields from the module should be available, the bottom dropdown contains fields from related modules). Copy and paste the text that appears in the text field to the right into the body of the message; when the email is generated, this double bracketed string [[example]] will be replaced by the value of that field from the active record.
- There is a special merge field labeled “CONFIRM_LINK.” Merging this field into an email by including CONFIRM_LINK in the email body will produce a link in the email saying “Please click here to confirm your appointment”, which the client can click to automatically confirm their appointment.
- After clicking the link, the appointment’s “Appt Confirm Status” will automatically be set to “Confirmed” in Vtiger and the client will be taken to a splash page thanking them for the confirmation and displaying their appointment date and time.
- Activity stages give you the ability to automatically schedule Vtiger calendar events based on the conditions configured in a campaign. To configure an Activity stage for a drip campaign, select “Activity” from the dropdown menu under “Stages” and click “Add Stage.” You need to enter a name for this stage in order to save it. “Run on Day” allows you to delay scheduling the calendar Activity for X number of days after the conditions for the campaign become True.
- You also have the ability to merge fields from Vtiger in the Calendar activity (similar to the function for email stages). To do this, select the field you wish to merge from one of the drop down menus, then copy and paste the double bracketed text that appears in the field to the right into either the subject or body fields below. When the activity is scheduled, these will be replaced with the values of those fields in the Vtiger database.
- Field Update stages give you the ability to set a selected field to a specified value when the stage is triggered. To set up a Field Update stage for a drip, select “Field Update” from the “Stages” dropdown menu in the workflow editor view, and then click “Add Stage.” You are then brought to the stage editor, where you can configure the settings of the Field Update stage.
- From the stage editor view, select the field that you wish to have updated from the “Field” dropdown menu (which shows all available fields from the Calendar module) and then specify the value that you wish to set that field to in the “Value” input box. You can use the “Select Field to Merge” dropdown if you wish to set the field value to include a merged value from another field. To do so, simply select a field to merge from the dropdown and copy the code that is provided in the “Copy/Paste this Code” text box into the “Value” text box.