Transition Automated Programs to Act-On Contacts

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If you are upgrading your contact data from Marketing Lists to Act-On Contacts and the All Contacts page, transitioning your Automated Programs is an important step. Here's how to do it.

Try our Program Upgrade Assistant for an easy walk-through of this process!


Transition Automated Programs to Act-On Contacts with the following steps:

  1. Create Segments in All Contacts
  2. Remove the Marketing Lists and Segments
  3. Add All Contacts Segments
  4. Change the "Copy to List" step to "Append to Segment"
  5. Save & Restart

Create Segments in All Contacts

Review your Automated Programs to determine what type of segments you will need, based on your program's current lists and segments. You can see a list of them in Automation > Automated Programs > (select program) Edit > Build > List & Segments:


Once you know what segments are needed, create those segments in All Contacts. Read more here about how to create segments.

Remove the Marketing Lists and Segments

Automated programs work exclusively with either all Marketing Lists (and list-based segments) or all Act-On Contacts-based segments. To switch over to Act-On Contacts, the Marketing List sources will need to be removed. 

  1. Go to Automation > Automated Programs > (select program) Edit > Report > Steps > Expand all.  This shows an overview of where each marketing list is used. You may want to take a screenshot of this for reference.mceclip1.png

  2. Go to Build > Program Flow to edit any steps that use a source list, removing that list from the step.
  3. Go to Build > Early exits to remove sources from early exit conditions.
  4. Go to Settings and remove the source list.
  5. Go to Build > Lists & Segments and remove all the source lists. 
  6. Save the program (top right). You may see some errors indicating your source lists are missing. Choose Save as Draft.

Add All Contacts Segments

  1. In Build > Lists & Segments, add the All Contacts segments you want to use.
  2. Go to Settings and add the Source segment:mceclip2.png

  3. If your program had early exit conditions, go to Build > Early exits and associate the correct new segment.
  4. If any program steps had conditions dependent on a segment or list, edit those steps to associate the new segment.
    • If your program had any "Change Field" steps when editing this step to associate the new list, make sure that the proper field is selected.

Change the "Copy to List" step to "Append to Segment"

The Copy to List step does not apply to programs based on Act-On Contacts sources. Instead, the "Append to Segment" step will allow you to group contacts in a direct select segment.

  1. Delete any Copy to List steps from the program.
  2. Add the "Append to Segment" step. Choose from an existing segment or create a new segment to identify the contacts who have completed this step:mceclip4.png

Save & Restart

Once you have finished editing your program, save it and restart it.


What will happen to contacts who are currently in the program?   

Contacts who are currently in the program will continue to progress once you restart the program, moving on to their next step. Contacts will remain in the program even if they are not in the new source segment. The new source segment is only used to evaluate new contact entries.

Why should I edit a current program rather than duplicating it or recreating it?

Editing a program is the best way to retain the history of contacts who have previously entered the program, and to manage contacts who are currently in progress. Creating a new program would add complications to ensure that contacts don't repeat, and to manage the transition of new contacts entering the new program while existing contacts continue through the old program.

What if a contact is not in the All Contacts list?

If a contact who is currently in the program is not on the All Contacts list, they will continue through the program. However, they may not be eligible for early exit, a branching condition, or a "Change Field" step that references as a segment in All Contacts. Import contacts from marketing lists into All Contacts if needed.

Why is the "immediately" greyed out on Settings?

Act-On Contacts sources are based on segments and segments are not available for "immediate" enrollment. Please select an hourly schedule instead. For more immediate responses to Form submissions, use the Form submission list as your source list instead.

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