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How to import contacts into iContact CRM- video tutorial!

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Email Marketing and Lead Generation

email marketing

Email Marketing is an essential part of your business growth and a key part of your video marketing strategy. There are a lot of CRM clients on the marketplace today (Constant Contact, Cooler Email, etc.) and a lot of different CRM works similarly.

If you use iContact to stay on top of your email marketing, you’ll be able to follow this training step-by-step. The purpose of this training is to show you how to import your contacts into iContact. This blog is ideal for marketers with a database of existing names and emails and upload them so that you can start emailing those people and converting them to a new lead. This is an essential part of your email marketing and lead generation strategy. 

The video below will walk you through the process but the blog will outline the same steps. Keep in mind that this video is a bit dated and some of the iContact interface will look different.


There are a couple things that you’ll need to set up before we import contacts into iContact. These first two steps generally apply to all forms of email marketing. You’ll need:

1. A Microsoft excel file
2. Your login for iContact

Before you import contacts into iContact

The first thing we’re going do is log into iContact. On your home page you’ll be able to see your account like a dashboard: the last e-mail stats, your list health, a list database, and so forth. So the first thing you’re going to do is to:

Step 1: Create a list.

You can call the list whatever you like. It might be called “New Contacts from Oceanside Networking Group” or “Existing Customers from 2009” or whatever the list is that you’re importing. Lastly you’re going to save that list. This is as simple as logging in to iContact and clicking “Create List.” For more tips on how to build a list, see this blog here. 

Step 2: Add New Contacts

Now the next thing you’re going to do is add your MS Excel file contacts to this list. So mouse to the top of the page and click on “Add Contacts.” You’re going to get 4 different options to choose from:

  1. You can upload your contacts to iContact from a file
  2. You can add contacts to iContact one-by-one
  3. You can copy and paste contacts (and this is really cool because you just past text in here and it will get rid of everything except for the e-mail address).
  4. You can create a sign-up form if you want to create an opt-in campaign.

***It’s important to know that when add contacts one by one or with the sign up form, the people you add will receive your “Welcome Message” (if you have one) so every list probably should have a Welcome Message set up.

Knowing how often to email your list is an essential part of email marketing. You want to have a strategy in place and typically emailing existing contacts a “welcome message” is not wise.

***Contacts added from a file will not receive the “Welcome Message.”

Step 3: Connect the new list to the contacts that you’re going to upload.

What you do first is you choose the list that you’re going to have the contacts added to. Then, choose the file. It’s important that your list is very, very, simple. Below is an example of how your list should look in Excel:

sample ms excel form for icontact email marketing

Your MS Excel file should be formatted like this

*PS- the names, emails, and phone numbers in this image are no longer valid. Happy spamming! 

If your list is not proper then iContact will not accept the list so be sure to use the template that we’ve provided. After you select the list, then click “Upload Contacts.”

Step 4: Sync the fields

Now what you’ve got to do is synchronize the fields with what you’ve uploaded. Here, iContact will show you which fields they recognized and which fields they didn’t so you’ve got to choose from the dropdown menus which fields are correct. Then click “Next.”

Step 5: Spam-Free certification

This is essentially telling iContact that you got permission to contact these people and it’s not a purchased list.  Again, email marketing etiquette is essential to having a good online reputation so be sure you’re doing things the right way. On the side of the page you’ll see 3 more options:

  1. Subscribe these contacts the new list
  2. Unsubscribe these contacts
  3. Do not contact

Since you can’t undo the last two (and since they don’t serve your purpose anyway) you’re always going to want to go with the first option and click “Upload Contact.”

And now they’re processing.

Shortly you’ll get an e-mail back that confirms you did successfully upload your contacts to iContact and you’ll see your new list and all the processed contacts in your database. Now, if you’re looking to add contacts to your database through a sign-up form, create an autoresponder for your email marketing, or if you want to add leads to your marketing system, you want to check out our online webinar on lead generation.

About Owen Hemsath

Owen Video is the CEO of Videospot - an online marketing agency emphasizing video media production and paid ads management for small businesses. He's personally worked on over 1000 web videos for clients all over the country and teaches marketing through his YouTube channel. Owen is a regular contributor to Tubebuddy, GetResponse Email Marketing, and BeLive.TV and he's also the host of The Business of Video Podcast.

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