Mar 21, 2012

Instagram Integration

Update (3/4/15): MailChimp’s Instagram Chimplet has been discontinued. If you’d like to integrate your MailChimp and Instagram accounts, we recommend InstaChimp.

Instagram is ‘a fast, beautiful and fun way to share your life with friends through a series of pictures.’ After launching only 2 years ago, Instagram has grown incredibly fast, with a staggering 27 million users worldwide on Apple’s iOS platform alone, with an Android app on the way and currently in beta testing. In response to this rising popularity, we’ve developed an integration that allows you to share your Instagram photos with anyone on your MailChimp list via an RSS campaign. (That’s right, now your grandma can subscribe to your never-ending stream of cat pictures.)

To get started, head over to our Ink Chimplet. Now here comes the cool part.

You will find that not only can you choose to create your RSS campaign from your Instagram username, but you can also create a campaign from a common hashtag, like #pugs.

If your company doesn’t already have an Instagram account, consider setting one up. It’s been a valuable (and free, I might add) service for MailChimp. Posting big detailed blog posts about all the silly pictures we take around the office would be overload for most of our readers, and Instagram is a nice, efficient way to post those pictures for the people who are interested in that kinda thing.

Now let’s say you’re managing your company’s Instagram account. You’d like to send a campaign using not only your company’s images, but also all of the images taken by other users who have tagged your company’s account. You can do that, too! Just select "Include photos uploaded by or tagged as this hashtag" and enter your company’s Instagram username.

Once you’ve decided which photos you’d like to send, click on that big red "Create Campaign" button. If you only have one MailChimp list, your campaign has been created! If you already have a few lists, you’ll be given the option to choose one. Choose your list, select ‘Done’, and now you will see that your campaign has been created. If you’re feeling lazy, or if you’re ready to get that campaign rolling, you can just hit the ‘Go to MailChimp’ button. You can also choose to start over and create a whole new campaign. Any campaigns you create will be saved and waiting for you in the MailChimp app.

By default, your campaign will send to the entire list you’ve selected on a weekly basis. If you’d like to modify the frequency of your campaign, or if you’d like to send only to a specific segment of your list, you can do so by going back through the campaign builder process and making the changes just as you would in any normal RSS-to-Email campaign.

In keeping with the nature of Instagram itself, we’ve built these templates with mobile devices in mind. Whether your subscribers are viewing your campaign from their home computer or on the go from their smart phone or tablet, they’ll see one simple stream of images. Of you and your cat.