Set User Subscriptions

Segment associates a user subscription state with each contact vector in your Engage audiences. Subscription states give you insight into the level of consent a user has given you to receive your Engage campaigns.

You can set a user’s subscription state using a CSV file or, programmatically, using Segment’s APIs. On this page, you’ll learn how and when to use both processes.

Setting user subscriptions with a CSV file upload

Setting user subscriptions by uploading a CSV file proves useful when you’re importing batch contacts to Segment for the first time or when you need to change a specific user’s subscription status.

For example, you may want to add contacts to Segment using an audience list sourced from a third-party tool, or you may have gathered a large number of contacts from an in-person event.

Subscription state CSV fields

To learn how to upload a CSV file to Segment, view the Engage CSV Uploader page.

To change a user’s email or SMS subscription status with a CSV file, include at least one of the following user subscription columns next to the contact column:

  • email_subscription_status
  • sms_subscription_status

These columns take the following values:

  • subscribed; for users who opted in to your marketing campaigns
  • unsubscribed; for users who have unsubscribed from your marketing campaigns
  • did_not_subscribe; for users who have neither subscribed nor unsubscribed from your marketing campaigns
  • Blank; for profiles that have no subscription information

Refer to the User Subscription States documentation for detailed explanations of each subscription state.

Managing user subscriptions with Segment APIs

Use Segment’s APIs to manage user subscriptions programmatically on an ongoing, real-time basis. You can choose between a standard track call, for non-critical subscription updates, or the Public API, for critical updates that require immediate confirmation, like unsubscribes.

Managing subscriptions with Segment’s APIs allows you to handle continuous updates of subscription statuses, like when users subscribe to your marketing campaigns on a website form or modify their subscription from within a notification center.

The track call versus using the Public API

When you use the track call, Segment replies with a standard HTTP 200 OK status response code if it successfully received the request. Because the track call updates user traits asynchronously, though, the 200 OK code indicates that Segment has received, but not yet processed, the request. As a result, use the track call for non-critical subscription updates, like form signups on your website or adding a subscription from within the user’s notification center.

When you make calls to Segment’s Public API, however, you’ll get an immediate response that confirms that Segment both received and processed the request. Use the Public API, then, for user unsubscribes. If a user unsubscribes from your marketing campaigns within their notification center, they’ll know immediately whether or not their request was processed.

This page was last modified: 09 May 2022