Managing Your Elastic Email Contacts

Friday, November 4, 2016

Your contacts are arguably the most important part of your email marketing strategy.  Without your subscribers, you wouldn't have an audience for your email campaigns.  Knowing how to manage them properly can take some practice and requires the right set of tools. Elastic Email has those tools and the expert advice you need to manage your contacts effectively. 

Advanced Tools

The tools that you have access to are determined by whether you have chose to enable or disable Advanced Tools on your account.  Enabling Advanced Tools unlocks a wide range of features on the account.  A full list of Advanced Tools features can be found here

When Advanced Tools is disabled the tools on the Contact Screen are limited to the overview graph, adding contacts, showing all contacts, viewing contacts by status, viewing limited general contact info, and creating web forms.

When Advanced Tools are enabled the full capabilities are unlocked.


Adding Contacts

There are several ways in which contacts can be added to the account. 

1.  Send them an email via SMTP Relay or HTTP API.  Even if the account is setup to be used only via the SMTP Relay or HTTP API, and Advanced Tools is disabled, every contact that is sent to is added to the account and can be viewed here.  

2.  Upload a csv file of your contacts directly to the account.  This method is a the best way to add contacts to your account in bulk.  The upload tool will guide you through the process.

3.  Use the Quick Add tool to add contacts to the account one at a time.

4.  Build a web form.  Contacts that use the web form will automatically be added to the account.

Lists vs Labels

"Labels" are static sets of contacts while "Lists" are sets of contacts that dynamically change based on the List's query.

An example is when a .csv file is uploaded, it is added to an existing Label or a new one.  That particular set of contacts does not change and remains static under that Label.

A List is completely dynamic and only ever contains the contacts that match the List's Query.  A simple example is the "Engaged Contacts" List which is available by default on most accounts.  This List only ever contains contacts with an Engaged status (the contact has clicked or opened your email within the last 6 months).  

This is what the query looks like:  Query: Status = 'Engaged'.  

This is an extremely powerful tool that allows sophisticated segmenting of contacts based on a wide range of attributes.

Lists Drop-down & Graph

At the top of the Contacts Screen on the left there is a drop-down labeled "Lists".  This will allow you to select which lists you want to display as a graph.  Because Lists are dynamic, they can change over time.  The graph gives a visual representation of the List changes over the last 30 days.

Web Form

Using a web form to gather subscribers is one of the ways to add contacts to the account.

Use the "Create" drop-down and select the "Web Form" option to start building one.  A more in depth guide to the Web Form builder can be found here .

Randomized Label Tool

The "Randomized Label" tool will create a specific number of random contacts from any Label or List.  

The tool will allow you to specify the name of the new Label being created and the number of random contacts to be added to it from the Label or List that is currently selected.  There is an option to "exclude blocked contacts" if you only want Active and Engaged contacts in the new Label.

Nth Selection Label Tool

The "Nth Selection" tool is very handy if you need to evenly break up an existing Label or List.  

The tool will evenly distribute contacts into a specific number of different Labels.  The tool will allow you to specify the name of the Label Series and specify the number of Labels to be created.  

As an example, lets say you have a List named "List A" with 100,000 contacts in it and you would like to break that up into 10 Labels of 10,000 contacts each.  You would use the Nth Selection tool.


"Show Contacts" will view the Label or List directly and display the first 20 pages of contacts.  

The "Status" drop-down offers status filters that show only the contacts with the particular status(es) that is selected.

"Inactive","Invalid","Unsubscribed", and "Complaint", statuses are "Blocked" statuses.  Any contact with one of these statuses is blocked from receiving email through the account.  "Engaged" status means that the contact has opened or clicked an email in the last 6 months.

Other Tools

For any Label or List you have the option to export contacts, copy contacts to other Labels, or delete contacts from the account.

 For Labels specifically, there is an option to simply remove contacts from that Label but not delete them from the account.

When viewing the contacts for a particular List or Label you can use the "Select All" option which will select all the contacts in that List or Label that also match the status filters currently applied and will provide a modal of options that are available for those contacts.

Need any help managing your contacts? Contact our expert Support Team for advice. 


We think sending email should be easy.

Elastic Email is a simple, fast email delivery service for your transactional or marketing email.

No monthly committments, no minimums, no limits.

Pay for what you use for as low as  $0.09 / 1000 emails

Start Sending

User Friendly Marketing Tools

Upload contacts, manage subscribers and send newsletter campaigns through our fully featured, online email marketing software.

Learn More

Developer Friendly API or SMTP Relay

Connect to our API or SMTP relay to send and track transactional or marketing email from your own software or application.

Learn More