June 20, 2024
Getting started with ConvertKit, Part 2: Adding Subscribers

In our last ConvertKit blog post, we looked at how to set up your account, get your email settings correct and configure your DNS records. This time we’re going to explore how to add subscribers. 

Before you can actually use ConvertKit*, you need at least one subscriber. This is because to test the fancy stuff you need somewhere to send it. Also, you need at least one subscriber so you can set up things like custom fields (more on those later).

Let’s get started…

Add subscribers to your list

You have three ways to manually add subscribers to your list. (The automated way for people to get on your list is when they sign up via a form or landing page — but we’re not there yet!)

Option 1: Add individual subscribers

On your dashboard, go to “grow” and click on subscribers in the dropdown sub-menu:

You’ll be taken to this page:

Now, before you can add any subscribers, you need somewhere to put them. You have the choice of adding them to a form, a sequence, or a tag. For now, to keep things simple, let’s create a tag.

Scroll down the page until you see the gray options under the “Add Subscribers” button:

Click on “Create tag” and you’ll get this popup:

Call your tag something simple but descriptive — “added manually” would work well at this stage.

Now you have a place to put them, it’s time to add someone to your list.

Click on the red “Add Subscribers” button:

and a pop up like this will appear:

I suggest you just add yourself so you can check your systems work as you go. Click on “Add a single subscriber.” You’ll get another pop up like this:

Input the subscriber details then click on “tags.” You’ll see your newly-created tag there. Click on the check box to add this tag to your subscriber, then hit save. This will take you back to your subscriber dashboard, which should now look something like this:

(If it doesn’t, try refreshing the page.)

Option 2: Add subscribers from a CSV file

If you already have a mailing list of people who have agreed to receive emails, you can bulk add them from a CSV file. You might need to Google how to get them from your email marketing platform into a CSV file but it’s generally not complicated. 

Make sure you only have the columns/data you need — it’ll keep the import process clean and easy. You can find out more about formatting your CSV file here. Once you have your file, you’re ready to go.

Again, you need to make sure you have somewhere to put your subscribers before you start. At this stage I suggest creating a tag with either your import date or where they come from originally. Once you’ve got your location, we can move on.

On your subscribers’ dashboard, hit “Add subscribers” to get to this popup:

This time choose Import from CSV. You’ll get a popup like this:

Select your tag and then drag your CSV file in to upload. You’ll then be asked to map the columns to fields. 

You may find you have columns in your CSV file that don’t appear in your ConvertKit Fields list. ConvertKit only has two standard fields: first name and email. If you want to include other data columns (family name, dog’s name, etc.) you’ll need to add them manually as Custom Fields.

Your mapping should look something like this:

Finally, hit “Import Subscribers” at the bottom of the pop up to add them to your subscriber list. If you now look in your new subscribers list, you should see everyone you just added. You’ll also receive an email confirming your subscriber import has been successful.

Option 3: Import from another provider

If you’ve been using a different provider before moving to ConvertKit, it can be simple to move your list.

From your Subscriber dashboard, hit the “add subscribers” big red button, but this time choose the third option: “Import from another provider.” You get this popup:

If your provider is there, choose it and just follow the prompts. 

Now that you’ve got some subscribers signed up, it’s time to design your emails. We’ll be covering that in the next post in this series — stay tuned!

*This link is an affiliate link. An affiliate link is a link that is traceable, so the company you are purchasing the product from knows that I referred you to them. They then compensate us for having made the referral — but you pay the same price, or a discounted price, depending on the company.


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