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Q: How can I add LISTSERV Maestro's subscriber warehouse features to a LISTSERV email list?

LISTSERV list owners often want to use additional mail-merge fields beyond EMAIL and NAME for targeting messages to a segment of their subscribers. This can be accomplished by setting up the email list as a DBMS list, maintaining a custom database and web signup form. This tip describes how to make the work much easier with LISTSERV Maestro's built-in subscriber warehouse.

The following screenshots show the sample LISTSERV list that we'll be working with in this tip.

Converting the LISTSERV List to Use the Subscriber Warehouse

To prepare for the conversion, you have to log in to LISTSERV Maestro with an account that is configured to access LISTSERV with an email address listed under the "Owner=" keyword in the list's header. Additionally, the account must have been granted the "Administer Subscriber Datasets, Subscriber Lists and Lookup Tables" user right in LISTSERV Maestro.

Being logged in with such an account, the LISTSERV Maestro Explorer section "Subscriber Warehouse" allows you to create a new subscriber dataset.

For the purpose of this tip, we'll name the dataset "Aeronautics Department". After finishing the dataset wizard, you once again see the LISTSERV Maestro Explorer with the dataset node selected. You now click the right mouse button to reveal the context menu.

Picking the "Convert Or Clone Classic LISTSERV List..." option opens the following screen:

This is the main LISTSERV list conversion screen. You will return to this screen again during the remainder of this tip. Start by selecting the desired list for conversion, then click the "Read List" button. This creates a temporary copy of the list's settings and subscribers, allowing you to further refine the list's settings before finally approving the conversion.

As you see in the screenshot above, the subscriber names are yet to be imported. Since we plan to add additional fields to the list, click the "Refine Settings" link to open the list's definition wizard.

The above screenshot shows the list wizard with some additional fields added. On the profile field details screen, you now choose to import the subscribers' full names into the "NAME" field.

After finishing the wizard, the conversion screen now looks like this:

Clicking the "OK" button starts the actual list conversion with the steps described on-screen under "Summary".

The above screenshot shows the result of the conversion in LISTSERV Maestro. You now have a subscriber dataset with an advanced subscriber list containing all your list's subscribers in the LISTSERV Maestro system database. Note that the LISTSERV list's configuration has been modified automatically.

While retaining the existing LISTSERV functionality to allow your subscribers to use the list's posting address exactly as before, LISTSERV Maestro automatically provides a ready-made signup page (and additional pages associated with subscriber activity, such as logging in, subscribing, unsubscribing and editing the additional list profile fields such as City and Zip Code in our sample list.

Another major benefit of having a subscriber list in LISTSERV Maestro is that, assuming your subscribers have provided the correct values for the CITY and ZIP fields, you now can send targeted messages to subscriber subsets through LISTSERV Maestro. The screenshot below shows the LISTSERV Maestro recipient wizard with a subset definition picking two of the three subscribers of the sample list.

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