Managing Invitation Events
The Invitation Events module is used for creating and managing different types of events and their registrations inside the CRM. For some instances, these events can for example be used for training purposes and thus the module is often also named and used as a “Training” module.
Through this module it is possible to monitor enrollments, cancellations and available/used spare places. Participants can also be invoiced directly from the Invitation Events module.
The actual invitation (email) is not sent out from this module. Only three types of messages are launched through the module. The information these messages provide is collected to the Invitation Events module. These messages are:
- Signup confirmation email
- Cancellation confirmation email
- Spare place confirmation email.
The actual invitation for the event is sent using Target Groups and Campaigns modules. More information about creating and sending the invitation below.
Creating an Invitation Event
A new Invitation Event is created by clicking the Create Invitation Event… button . You will need to determine at least the following information (see also the picture below):
- Invitation Event Name
- Assigned To
- Number of places and Spare places
- In the Schedules section a new schedule is added by clicking the Add button and filling in the fields Subject, Start Date & Time and End Date & Time. If necessary, you can create several schedules for the event, if e.g. the event lasts for two days. According to the schedules, general starting and ending times for the invitation event are updated automatically, and they can be used in e.g. reporting and filters.
Other information that can – and usually should – be determined for the event include:
- Signup email, Cancelled email and Spare place email – emails that are sent automatically for the contact about their sign up status. You can add these as soon as you have created the email templates for them.
- Product – if a product has been linked to the invitation event, the participants can be billed later right from the invitation event.
- Last registration date.
- Last cancellation date.
On the More Information tab you can monitor the enrollments, cancellations and spare place holders. On this tab, the enrollments can also be modified manually. The participants are listed in alphabetical order by group (enrolled, cancelled, spare place), not in the sequence they enrolled.
The confirmation emails for signup, cancellation and spare place are created in the settings of Email Templates (for more information, see the guide Email Templates). When the emails have been created, you can attach them to the invitation event, preferably before sending the invitation.
Sending the Event Invitation
For sending the invitation, you will need a email template for the invitation, and a target group and a campaign. The target group should be created before the campaign, so that you can immediately add the target groups contacts to the campaign.
The invitation of the event will be sent immediately to the target group’s contacts when
- the email template is added to the Send email template field of the campaign and
- the target group is attached to the campaign after that.
The system doesn’t contain a separate button for manual sending.
The enrollment, cancellation and spare place confirmation messages are always sent automatically.
1. Creating an Invitation Template
More information about creating email templates is in the guide Email Templates, but below there are a few remarks concerning especially invitation events.
Invitation event needs email templates of two types: the invitation and the automatic confirmation emails for the contacts. These templates are created into either of the following folders, so that they are available in the right modules:
- Campaign → selected, when creating the invitation. NB: The template must be sent “Immediately”. Make sure, that the template is ready for sending before attaching it to a campaign. When the email template has been attached to a campaign, the email will be sent to the recipients immediately after the target group contacts has been added to the campaign. The system doesn’t contain a separate manual sending button.
- Invitation Event → selected, when creating a signup, cancellation or spare place confirmation emails.
It is important to add a link for signing up to the event in the invitation email, if you intend to manage and monitor the enrollments for the invitation event. You can do this by using the Select field type section in a following manner: Step1 = Invitation Events → Step2 = Choose the event in question → Step3 = Copy the created link to the message (it is recommended to embed the link to text; more information in the Email Templates guide). With the link, the email template will be linked with the invitation event, and as the recipient clicks the link, the enrollment will be registered in the invitation event.
If additional information about the participants is needed, it is possible to add QA links to the templates. More information about the event can also be attached to the template as a file attachment.
2. Creating a Target Group
The target group defines the group of contacts to whom the email will be sent in the Campaigns module.The most important settings regarding the invitation event are described below, see the guide Target Groups for more information about creating target groups.
Fill in the information needed – at least a name – and set the group active in the field Active. Leave the fields “Send email template” and “Automatic email campaigns” empty, since the invitation will be sent from the Campaigns module. Save at the end.
If the target group is supposed to be updated before each dispatch, a separately specified scheduled task must be created (see Scheduled Tasks for more information). Set the scheduled task up to update the target group for example 15 minutes before the email dispatch.
3. Creating a Campaign
After the email template and the target group have been created, a campaign can be created. The most important settings regarding the invitation event are described below, see the guide Campaigns for more information on creating campaigns.
A campaign needs at least a name and an expected close date and it needs to be set active. Select also the correct email template (e.g. in this case the invitation) in the field Send email template.
NB: The template in this field will be sent immediately after a target group is attached to the campaign (after saving). Make sure, that the expected closing date is not in the past, since otherwise the email will not be sent.
After saving, the Manage Target Group tab becomes visible. On this tab the desired target group can be attached to the campaign. The target group is first selected in the Copy or remove target group from this campaign section by clicking the Add button . After this, click the Copy button in order to update the information in the target group. If the target group’s contacts are added to the campaign before the email template has been selected, the email will not be sent.
The More Information tab shows all contacts added to the campaign and there you can also add contacts manually one by one.
The enrollment link of the invitation event was added to the email (e.g. invitation) earlier and it links the campaign to the invitation event. This way the enrollment information will be gathered to the invitation event module.
Registration Confirmation Email
When the email template for the registration confirmation has been selected for the invitation event, this email will always be automatically sent to the contacts, that register for the event by clicking the registration link on the invitation email.
In addition to the contact registering themselves, you can register contacts manually on the invitation event’s More Information tab, by clicking the Select contacts button in the Registrations view. Sending the registration confirmation email for these contacts depend on an additional setting, that either allows or prevents sending the email automatically for manual registrations. This setting is in Settings → Additional Settings → Other Settings section → Send Invitation Event Registration confirmation emails from manual registrations (see the picture below).
When the setting has not been activated, the confirmation email will not be sent automatically. In cases like this, the email can be sent manually when needed. This can be done by clicking the Send Signup email action after the contact has been registered (see the picture below).