Common Problems with MailChimp

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I use Google Apps to login to MailChimp, how can I connect my account?

If you use Google Apps to access your MailChimp account, you'll need to set up a username and password with MailChimp. Here's a link to their guide on doing so:

After you have a username and password, you'll be able to log into your MailChimp account when trying to connect it to Zapier to ensure that connection is made.

Don't Type Email Addresses!

You'll never want to actually type an actual email address into the forms Zapier gives you. The magic of Zapier is pulling data from the trigger application and putting that data into the forms via our handy variable insertion:


Don't do this!


Do this instead!

My Mailchimp Signup Form Fields Are Not Showing Up

Click the "Refresh Fields" Button for the other fields to appear

gif showing "refresh fields" button being clicked and fields appearing after

Subscribers won't show up in list immediately if you have double opt-in

If your MailChimp list has double opt-in enabled, you won't see any subscribers added by your zap until after that new subscriber clicks through the double opt-in email. However, your task history will show a successful task immediately, even if the subscriber does not confirm the double opt-in email.

My tasks show a "halted" status

MailChimp checks for duplication based off email address, so any email addresses your zap is trying to add that already exist in that list will have a "halted" status in your task history. If you want to update the subscriber, you need to change the Updated Existing field to "Yes."


My subscriber isn't triggering the Zap

If someone was subscribed to a list, then unsubscribed, and later was added back to the list, the zap will not trigger as it sees it as a duplicate from the first time they subscribed. Unique email addresses will only be sent once.

Another instance where your Zap may not trigger as expected is where subscribers are imported into Mailchimp. To work around this, you can use our Import/Export workaround in order to trigger on these subscribers.

Error: "You must specify an apikey value"

MailChimp sometimes will return an error requesting an API key value when operating on lists. This often is not because MailChimp actually needs an API key, but rather that a different error has occurred. Most frequently, this is due to the email provided to MailChimp containing invalid characters (newlines, quotes, etc.)

  • BAD: ""
  • GOOD:

Error: "This list does not have interest groups enabled" or "You must specify a apikey value for the listSubscribe method"

If you are seeing this error it means you don't have interest groups enabled. See this tutorial on how to get enable it.

Error: "ADDRESS must be provided - Please enter a complete address"

MailChimp requires that you put two spaces between each component of the address field. It should look like this:


Error: Required field "email" (email) is missing

If the field is mapped, this likely means that the sample record from your trigger data didn't have anything populated in the email field. While the field is mapped correctly, there is no data being sent in the email field, which causes an error.

For example, if you are using the Pipedrive New Person trigger but the person pulled into your trigger sample doesn't have the email filled out, you'll see this in the trigger data:

To fix this, go into Pipedrive and create a brand new person with an email filled in. Back in Zapier, click "Re-test Pipedrive to get another person" and then finish testing the MailChimp action. Same thing would be applicable to a different app and trigger.

How to create and send a campaign

It takes two Zapier action steps to accomplish this. First, add a Create Campaign action step to your Zap and follow the instructions to set it up. Then, add a Send Campaign action step to your Zap. For the "Campaign" field in this step, select "Use a Custom Value" and then pass in the ID that was returned from the Create Campaign step.

How to use custom values for MailChimp Groups

Given MailChimp's current action template, you are currently required to choose a Group when setting up a New subscriber action.

To get around this, you can use Custom Values. In order for this to properly work, You'll need the Group to match exactly what's in the dropdown from Mailchimp

For example:

So if the Group name is Vanilla, your trigger app can't just provide the word Vanilla as a custom value

You will need to be able to provide Ice Cream flavors->Vanilla as the custom value here

To ensure that you provide MailChimp with the proper data, you can employ a Formatter step here that uses a Lookup Table transform:

The transform app would convert the group name to a properly formatted one. For example, the input here would be Vanilla. The output would be Ice Cream flavors->Vanilla

You can then map out the output of the Formatter step and use that as a custom value for the MailChimp Groups.

Once you are able to pass on data in the proper format, the Zap should proceed properly and dynamically place people on the groups.

Subscribers are being added to the list and they shouldn't be

MailChimp has a lot of native integrations, so sometimes you may think something came from Zapier but it really came from a different source. You can validate if a subscriber was added via Zapier by taking a look at the subscriber record in Mailchimp. Subscribers added by Zapier will have a Source of Zapier:

If you see this:

It probably came from a different integration.

What are the options for "Replace Groups"?

When using the action "Create/Update Subscriber", there's a setting that lets you specify how groups/interests should be handled if the subscriber already exists in your list.

  • Add Only - any groups/interests specified by your Zap will be added to the subscriber.
  • Replace All - all of the subscriber's existing groups will be cleared, and only the groups selected within your Zap's setup will be added.
  • Replace Matching - clears/replaces only the groups that are specified by your Zap.

For example: if a MailChimp list had these hypothetical groups/interests:

  • Pizza Toppings: cheese, pepperoni, sausage
  • Ice Cream: vanilla, chocolate, mint

Suppose an existing subscriber within the MailChimp list has the following/existing interest groups:

  • Pizza -> cheese
  • Ice Cream -> mint

A Zap is configured to add the group/interest "Ice Cream -> chocolate".

Here's what would happen for the three possible settings for "Replace Groups":

  • Add Only: Results in "Pizza -> cheese", "Ice Cream -> mint", and adds "Ice Cream -> chocolate"
  • Replace All: Clears the subscriber's groups, and results in just "Ice Cream -> chocolate"
  • Replace Matching: Clears the subscribers "Ice Cream" groups, and results in "Pizza -> cheese" and "Ice Cream -> chocolate")

Error: Invalid Resource - Please provide a valid email address

The reasons why this message appears comes down to a few things:

  • The data inputted isn’t in an email format
  • More than one email address gets put into this field, only put in one email address can be placed
  • Role-based emails such as admin@, info@ or billing@ will be automatically rejected. If you need more information how to add a role based email as a subscriber, more information can be found on MailChimp’s docs here:

Error: optional Address merge field is incomplete and the subscriber cannot be added

When creating a signup form for your lists, Mailchimp allows you to create a variety of fields, including basic text fields and address blocks. These address blocks include all of the address field parameters (street, city, province/state, postal code/zip, country). If you fill out one of those fields in the address block, the rest of the address fields become required fields. So, if you don't fill out each of these fields in your Zap, you'll see this error.

If you don't want to enter values for all of these fields, you can replace this address block with individual text fields in the signup form in MailChimp. Make one for each field (street, city, etc.). You can set an optional/required status if needed.

NOTE: It's best to keep the address block and add the extra fields instead of replacing them. This ensures that any information added in these fields for existing subscribers is not lost by deleting the address block.

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