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Lesson 5 – Part 3 – Configure Autoresponder and Emails for Free Registration

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Now that we’ve actually talked about what the system looks we are going to actually do it in AWeber. We’ll move on then to configuring the autoresponder and emails for your free registration.

Create a Membership Website – AWeber Configuration, Free Signup

Here I am at my AWeber dashboard and this is the AWeber account I use for teaching. We are going to just start off by creating a brand new list because that’s the very first thing you need. So I have two lists that I already have created for other lessons. I’m going to create a new list for this lesson and we are going to call it BYOBtut-free. These names need to be unique and it’s going to do a little test for you here to make sure that it’s available.

The list description is for registration for free membership. Here I’m going to keep my from name Rick Anderson and I want to be notified anytime someone is added to my list, again I’m going to put that down here. So we have those and I’m just going to say Add That. You could theoretically add somebody else to be notified when someone is added to your list if you have help from somebody setting your system up. But we go ahead and save our settings and now we have created our list.

So once we’ve created this list, the basic settings are completed and now we go to personalize the list. And in this case what we are going to do is put the company name which is Our website URL in this case is going to be and the email signature I’m going to put Rick Anderson, WordPress Trainer, and then my Skype contact information there. Tailoring the Web is my Skype address and I’m going to put my phone number there too 206-801-5209.

This email signature is going to go on the bottom of each of these emails. I want people to know how to contact me. And we are not going to add any branding; we’ll leave styling of this stuff for later. Actually everybody who is with us right now is a member of the site and I do have videos on the site about how to style this so I just look there for this information. And then you can decide whether or not you want to share this with Twitter and this sort of thing. The answer in this case I believe is no and we are not going to use any globe text snippets so we are just going to say save the settings.

And you can see down there there’s a wizard telling you how close you are to completion of setting this up. And when you get totally tired of it, you can just go ahead and close it but we’ll leave it open for the time being. So this says confirm your subscription. I want to pick their first name. So confirm your subscription and what I really want to do is I want the “confirm your subscription to Thesis eMember”.

This is the field that comes off of the registration form so this will give their first name. And then you say “confirm your subscription to”. Next, we can enter or edit this information so I usually change this first sentence by saying “I received your request to signup for our free course” and then “before we begin sending you the information you requested we want to be certain that we have your permission”. We could even make this more specific with “Install WordPress and Thesis”. So now we have our little introductory paragraph for this and we are going to go ahead and add this.

We are going to enter our signature which we did before and then above that we’ll say “thanks for signing up for our course”. In this case we are going to have the required opt-in turned on and now what we want to do is create this redirection. Remember that what happens is you click this opt-in and it takes you to the thank you page. So what we need to do is create the redirection here for that. So we will do that; we go to our dashboard and we go to our pages and then we look for our thank you page and here’s our thank you page.

So if we view the thank you page we can grab its URL and place the URL right there. That takes care of all of that, and then we save our settings. We are 75% complete with this setup. In fact we aren’t going to the thank you page here with our free setup; we really want to go to the free thank you page which was “thank you for trying us out”. I signed us up for this one down here. This one is actually going to be the receipt page so it’s not a good one for a free thank you page.

So we are going to go ahead and view thank you for trying us out and put it in this place instead. Now when somebody successfully opts-in to the free member list they will be taken to the functional equivalent of the thank you page except it’s just the thank you page for the free list and it doesn’t contain any receipt information for a purchase.

Create a Membership Website – AWeber Templates, Free Signup

Then the next step is to configure our opt-in form so we go over here to Web Forms and we select Create a New Form and the easiest way to do this is just to scroll through these templates and see what templates are available.

Some of these templates you’ll see are very familiar. This template I see all the time. I think what we’ll do is we’ll look for a template that says Subscribe. Let’s just go ahead and grab this one because I think we can customize this one enough. Signup is fine so if we edit our header we can add the text here “register for our free course here” and we are going to hit Save. What we really want in this is we need to create a new field and what I want is first name, last name and let me actually remove that for a second.

What we are going to do is we are going to edit this; we are going to do first and last names here. It used to just say name, now we chose first name and last name instead of full name and we’ll hit Save that’s what I want. First name, last name and email and otherwise I think we are good. So we’ll save that web form.

There are lots of web forms here that are available. If you look at the generic form for a moment, even in this example I think you can change up your colors so you can pick different colors. And in fact you can also change your own color if you want. Nevertheless you can totally customize this yourself and you could also very easily use essentially a totally plain form and then style it however you may want to as well. So you have a lot of flexibility here.

Create a Membership Website – Use of “I” vs “We”

Somebody asks about switching between the first person and second person. Our little business employs four people fulltime and much of the work you see on the site is actually done by somebody other than myself. So saying we about it is accurate and it does reflect the fact that it’s a serious business. On the other hand I’m the person that everybody has contact with and that everybody knows. So I do have a tendency to personalize by doing this in the first person.

Although I can’t say that we do it consistently across the site. It’s probably the case some times, in fact I don’t know how often this happens; whether we say we across the entire site or I say I every once in a while when I think about it or the other way around. But it’s just a stylistic thing I don’t know that there is specifically a strategy. I think I say we maybe as default even if I am just a one-person business.

I say we because it sounds maybe more professional but because I’m trying to make this site into a learning community and the important part of that community is personal interaction between its members I try for the I instead when I talk about it. I don’t have a strong feeling about it one way or another other than just to say that’s just the rationale that goes on in my mind as I say these kinds of things.

But whether there’s a right way or wrong way to do it I don’t know. So this form is ready to go as it is so we’ll save the form then we go on to step two.

Create a Membership Website – Free Signup with Smart Video Registration

Step two is giving it a full name and I’m going to say “Free Registration Signup”. On our thank you page actually I want the smart video version. Now I’m going to play the smart video version for you. That’s the nice thing about this little thing it just reminds somebody when they get this email what to do with it.

Let’s go to advanced settings. These people are going to be immediately directed to the Registration page once they confirm this. It’s not a thank you page it’s a custom page that they are directed to. No, we are going to use the smart video version of this because what happens once they hit Submit it’s going to remind them to look in their email box for the email for them to confirm.

We are going to use the smart video version so they get the little audible note to do this. We’ll open it up in a new window and we’ll just let it go from here. We are going to go ahead and save the form. We are going to go to step three and now what we do is we publish this form. And in terms of publishing the form we have a variety of choices here. The choice I like is “I Will Install My Form” and the easiest way to install the form is to do it with the java script snippets so that’s what I do.

So all you need to do now is take this piece of Java script, copy it there and then come back over to your page where you want it displayed. We go to our dashboard and our pages and we go to our free registration page. So register for our free course, you select Edit, and HTML view and paste it. We want it to be in the HTML view, select Update and now if we view this page, there’s our little “Register For Our Free Course here”. They put their first name and last name and their email address in this so Rick Anderson and I’ll put hit Signup, there you go. So that’s what happens when they do that and we have the free membership now configured.

Create a Membership Website – Free Signup, Welcome Email

We still have a couple of things left to do here, we’ve placed this on the page, and we’ve tested the form. If you come back over to this, now we need to create our welcome email. So that’s our first follow up email; we do that step and it is “welcome to” and then you just put your welcome text in here. The purpose for this is to give them an introduction to the site. So you would type some introductory text in here.

Let’s a look at what I send out. Go to AWeber again and we’ll go to my real account and if we go to my free and look at follow up messages, I have four follow up messages that I send out when somebody joins. They get the first the moment they join, the next day they get the next one, the next day they get another one and the next day they get the last one. Each of these introduces something else about the site.

If we open up the first ones this is pretty much what I do. In fact, we could just take all of that and paste it here. So this is essentially about logging into your account, looking around, etc. Now this is your HTML version of this. The next version is a plain text only message for those people who use that. So I just paste that same thing here and then I say wrap long lines so it breaks it down. Then what I do is add a couple of asterisks to these things that used to be headings but aren’t headings anymore because there are no headings in plain text email.

We can take a look at the preview of it. That’s what this is going to look like. And then we can save this message. So now this is in place and if you want to see what it looks like we can hit Test; and then, send number one, name is Rick, send test and then you can see what it looks like here. Email is sent, so close it so you can see what the thing looks like. I definitely recommend you double check this before you get too far down the road. So here’s the email, welcome to the Thesis Rick thanks for joining and so on and so forth. So there’s that your first follow up email.

Now you notice down here on this thing, we’ve already done that step, we put our form on. Now you can see that this thing is 90% complete. It will become 100% complete tomorrow after it checks what happens when I did that initial signup for the opt-in form. The opt-in form has to go through one cycle of accurate cycle of signup and then 24 hours later the setup will show that’s it’s been completed. So we are as close to completion as we possibly can be at this time in the process.

I want to look at the checklist here with you very briefly. Mostly what we’ve done is this part of the checklist where we created our list, we’ve configured the opt-in form, we’ve configured the redirection, we’ve configured the opt-in confirmation email, and the follow up email.

These two pieces here create an aggregate list in creating an automation rule we’ll talk about in the next piece of it. But this is pretty much what we’ve already done. This part here on the website creating our free registration page, creating our thank you page, our membership dashboard page and our main registration page, we built those here I think in week 2 so these pages have already been done.

So we’ve pretty much gotten all the way through with this part of the checklist. What we are left with is creating our membership level which we have done and then configuring our two emails. In particular we are going to create a registration complete email and we are going to configure our site wide autoresponder settings in WP eMember.

Create a Membership Website – Free Signup, WP eMember Configuration

So now let’s configure these emails inside of our site. So we go back to our dashboard and to WP eMember, settings. And we are configuring the free one first. We’ve already created a membership level so now we need to create our registration complete email. So we go over to email settings under WP eMember.

We don’t have a prompt to compete for free memberships so we can skip that one for right now. But we do have “your registration is complete”. In fact I’m going to take the first name, copy that and say “your registration to the course is complete”. And then we can change this because it now says “dear first name and last name your registration is complete” and then it gives your username and password and says “please log in to the member area at the following URL, thank you”.

What we are going to do is add “please keep this information for future reference”. And then you can put your signature, so Rick Anderson and I’m going to bold this part. So you can also use regular HTML for this. So Rick Anderson, WordPress Trainer, Skype: Tailoring The Web and then 206-801-5209.

And then we want to make sure we get the notification so this is where we do that. And then sometimes we will sign somebody up ourselves. When we do that we should send them a note too. So we’ll just click both of those boxes. Then we can say Update and we will have configured our registration completely now.

Now what we want to do is hit our autoresponder settings here. And actually we aren’t going to use this. We aren’t going to use this global autoresponder setting at all because we are going to sign up members to AWeber independently of WP eMember. We are going to sign them up through WP eStore. So we can go ahead and leave this part blank and that wraps up everything on our checklist for setting up our free registration. We’ve got a website which is already created, we’ve got our AWeber stuff and we’ve got our WP eMember stuff.

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