Dynamic Content

Kyle Tarbuck
Kyle Tarbuck
  • Updated

Have you ever wanted to be able to create a single email campaign that automatically includes different bits of information depending on who you’re sending it to? With Spektrix and our integration with dotdigital you can do just that, using Spektrix’s powerful segmentation tools to determine which information goes to which customers.

Here are a few examples of email campaigns that might benefit from using dynamic content:

  • Pre- and Post-show Emails: include specific content for access bookers and/or first-time bookers
  • Standard marketing emails: provide different content depending on various customer-related factors
    • Events booked: customers who have booked mostly music events will receive information about upcoming concerts, while customers who book mostly for theatre will receive information about new plays
    • Frequency of booking: include an offer for customers who haven’t booked recently, but not for regular bookers
    • Days booked in advance: provide an early bird offer to people who normally book last minute, to encourage them to book in advance
    • Age group: use different language designed to appeal more to each age group

WARNING: You won't be able to use any of the Event Data fields for dynamic content.


How does Spektrix facilitate using dynamic content?

As long as you’re using our integration with dotdigital, you can set things up to use dynamic content. This feature builds on the basic elements of personalisation in dotdigital, in which you sync basic information (name, title etc.) from Spektrix to dotdigital and set up custom Contact Data Fields in dotdigital so that you can include this information in campaigns.

If you haven’t already, we would recommend you read through our article on personalisation in dotdigital before carrying on with this article.

Once you have passed this information to dotdigital you can use it to determine which customers should receive which pieces of content in your emails.

Default fields

As well as Tags, there are a number of other default fields which are automatically synced from Spektrix to dotdigital. 

These do not need to start with TAG_ but should be written exactly as below: 

    Type: Date
    Customer's Date of Birth field.

    Type: Yes/No
    If the customer has only ever purchased tickets for one Event.

    Type: Yes/No
    If the customer has never purchased tickets.

    Type: Number
    The total unexpired account credit balance on a customer's account.

    Type: Number
    The average number of days before Instance Date the customer purchased tickets. This metric is calculated overnight. Does not include instances not in metrics.

    Type: Number
    The mean average Ticket spend per Order for the customer. Does not include instances not in metrics.
    Type: Number
    The mean average Ticket spend for the customer. Does not include instances not in metrics.

    Type: Number
    The number of weeks since a customer's last purchase of unreturned Tickets. Does not include instances not in metrics.

    Type: Number
    The number of weeks until the date of the next future Instance. Does not include instances not in metrics.

    Type: Number.
    The number of weeks since the date of the most recent Instance. Does not include instances not in metrics.

What can be synced from Spektrix to dotdigital?

As well as the basic Firstname, Lastname and Title fields, you can also sync the following pieces of information to dotdigital:

  • Customer Attributes: these provide general information about customers, having been input either by the customers themselves or by venue staff
  • Tags: these provide information on customer behaviour such as their booking history, or how they have interacted with mailings that you’ve previously sent them


What do I need to set up in Spektrix?

For both Attributes and Tags you need to set things up in a specific manner in Spektrix:


When you’re setting your Attributes up (see this article for more information on how to do that) you just need to make sure that you create Customer Attributes and that you tick the option for Send this Attribute Definition to Dotdigital.

Send this attribute definition to dotdigital.png


When creating Tags for use in powering dynamic content you need to set them up slightly differently than the rest of your Tags, as you can only sync one Tag Group with dotdigital.

NOTE: you will need to speak to the Support team before setting up this Tag group, as the Tag Group needs to be specified behind the scenes in Spektrix as well, which only the Support team can do.

Once your Tag Group is set up, you can create the Tags in that group in the way you would normally, whether normal Tags or Auto Tags. There are, however, a couple of points you need to bear in mind:

  • There is a character limit on custom Contact Data Fields in dotdigital, which means you need to make sure the Tag names in Spektrix are no longer than sixteen characters
  • You can sync up to 100 Tags with dotdigital, so it’s worth planning in advance which Tags you’re going to need
NOTE: all Tags in this Tag Group will sync with dotdigital, and if any Tag (regardless of whether it's in use in dotdigital) contains more than 16 characters, the entire group will not sync. Likewise, if the group contains more than 100 Tags, it won't sync.

As you can only sync one Tag Group with dotdigital, the Tags in this group are the only ones which you can use to power dynamic content – you can’t use Tags from any other groups.

What do I need to set up in dotdigital?

Before you can start adding dynamic content into your dotdigital campaigns you need to set up a custom Contact Data Field for each Tag or customer attribute in Spektrix. If you’re not sure how to do that, you should read this article first.


When you’re naming each Data Field, the name needs to match the Attribute or Tag in Spektrix, but with a specific prefix:

  • Attributes must start ATT_ followed by the exact Attribute name
    • For example ATT_JOB_TITLE
  • Tags must start TAG_ followed by the exact Tag name
    • For example TAG_LAPSED_BOOKER.
  • Spaces in Attribute/Tag names must be represented by underscores (_)

Data type
You’ll need to choose this depending on what you’re syncing from Spektrix:

  • Tags should be created with Yes/No as the Data type
  • Attributes should use the Data type relevant to the Attribute Type in Spektrix. For example:
    • Text field and Dropdown list attributes should be set up with Text as the Data type in dotdigital
    • Check box attributes should be set up with Yes/No as the Data type in dotdigital

Default value
This field determines what will be shown if you display the Contact Data Field in an email – if you’re sure that you’re only going to use a Data Field for determining dynamic content then you can leave this blank, but otherwise we would recommend you do fill this in. Once again, what you enter here will depend on what you’re syncing from Spektrix.

For example if you’re syncing an attribute called PRIMARY_INTEREST (i.e. what the customer is most interested in) then you might enter something like “specially selected” so that the text would read “... but we think you’ll particularly love these [specially selected] shows …”

You can choose whichever one of these options you like, as they don’t have any impact on how you’re going to use the Custom Data Field.

How do I add dynamic content into dotdigital campaigns?

Adding dynamic content in dotdigital is as easy as adding any other type of content – once you’ve done all of the setup work in Spektrix and dotdigital,  it’s just another tool in the dotdigital Easy Editor.

REMINDER: Dynamic Content only works in HTML versions of your email campaign. Plain text versions of an email will only display the default content, not any dynamic variations.

First, build your campaign as normal, including all of the elements that you want to keep consistent for every email. Next, you just need to add in each of your dynamic content sections just like you would add any other building block.

This dotdigital support article explains the specifics of how to insert those building blocks and then how to set up the dynamic content within each one. Here’s a simple overview of the next steps, however:

  • Within each dynamic content section, first create your default content - this is what’s going to display to any customers who don’t have the Attribute(s) or Tag(s) you’re using to power the variations
  • Next, create one or more variations that you want to display based on the Data Fields that you’ve synced with dotdigital
  • For each variation you set up a rule which determines which Contact Data Field(s) to use when determining which customers see the content
  • You can add in as many variations as you want

You should now have all of the information you need to be able to set up and use dynamic content in Spektrix and dotdigital.

If you have any questions, or would like to discuss any parts of this process in particular, please get in touch with the Spektrix Support team.