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Creating your first lead form on Gist

By Jitta

Updated 6 days ago

Creating a lead capture campaign using Gist forms, is a very simple and straightforward process. Here is a step by step process to help you get started with your first lead capture form.

Step 1: Click on the 'Forms' button on the left side panel which takes you to the forms section on Gist.

Step 2: Click on 'New Form' and choose one of the six types of forms available. For this example, we'll choose the 'Lightbox' option. Give the form and name, and click 'Next'. You can choose any name for the form - it's for internal purposes only, and your users will not see it.

But it is important that you use a clear and comprehensive naming convention everytime you create a new form, in order to easily spot any form in the future, and avoid confusion. It might seem trivial in the beginning, but when you have dozens of forms on your site, it would be necessary to know what each form is about, without having to open each form every time. It makes sense to start off with a naming standard for your project, for example, like - Pricing Page Hellobar, Homepage Lightbox, Blog Welcome Mat, etc.

Step 3: This is the meat of the form creator. This is where you can customize the form as you like. You're going to see a few customization options here - Form, Fields, Post-Signup, and Confirmation Settings.

3a. Customize the form - This is where you can configure the look and feel of the form. 

You can customize what text goes into the heading and the subheading as you can see in the image above. We've included placeholder texts everywhere to help you get started. You can, of course, modify as required.  

There are plenty of options to stylize the text and the background of the form. You can change the fonts, colors, add tables, bullet points, etc, and customize the call to action button (CTA) as required. 

3b. Customize the fields - Once you configure how the form looks, you then have the option to pick what fields you want to add to your form.

Note that the email field is present by default and cannot be deleted or edited. You can, however, change the positions of these fields as needed.

Even though you can add multiple fields to your form, it is recommended to not go overboard, as it can overwhelm potential leads, who might end up closing the form altogether, hence driving down your conversion rates. 2-3 fields per form are optimal. 

The most commonly added fields are name, email, and phone. If your business needs other details, you can add them too. 

Be sure to attach the right identifier to each field that you're adding to the form.

3c. Customize your thank you message - This is where you can configure what to show someone as soon as they submit the form.

The first option is a custom thank you message that you want to display on the screen as soon as a user submits the form. You can make this sound professional or cheeky, depending on your target audience, and make them feel at home.

Or, if you already have a page on your website with a custom design welcoming your subscribers, you can enter the URL of that page in the 'Redirect URL' box as you can see below.

Note that these two steps are entirely optional.

If you want to pass on user data to Gist, the check the box at the bottom that says 'Send subscriber data to post-submission page'. 

This passes on the details of the subscriber to Gist as URL parameters when someone submits your form. This enables Gist to automatically track those user properties and attach them to the users' profiles. 

3d. Customizing the confirmation settings - This is where you decide when to send a confirmation email to your subscribers, and what exactly to include in it. 

Since forms decide how people are going to end up in your database, and especially what kind of people are added to your database, it is important that you configure how and when to send emails to people asking them to confirm their subscription. This is an important step in your lead gen strategy since unconfirmed subscribers will not be able to receive your email communications. 

In this section, you need to first choose if and when Gist should send the confirmation email. You have three options to choose from:

1. After every submission - This option is commonly known as the double optin. Choosing this option means that Gist will send the confirmation email everytime someone submits a form. This means actions related to the form (such as adding the user to a campaign or sending them a lead magnet) will not be performed unless the subscriber clicks the confirmation link every time they submit the form.

2. Only to new subscribers - This is commonly known as single optin. This is similar to the previous option, with the exception that it only applies to new users. And that means when the form is submitted by a new user, actions related to that form will not be performed unless the user confirms the link in the email sent to them. 

But if someone who is already in your contacts (whose email address is already in your Gist database) submits the form, then they will automatically receive form actions (such as lead magnets), and they will not receive the confirmation email from Gist.

3. Never - This option is commonly known as 'no optin'. When this option is selected, Gist immediately performs the actions related to the form, even if the user does not confirm their email address. This means people will still receive downloadables and lead magnets even if they are new users and they do not confirm their email addresses. 

Note that in this scenario, Gist will not send the confirmation email to anyone who submits that particular, and will automatically add to your user base anyone who submits their email address.

Important: We highly recommend you to not choose this option, since it does not double check the validity of the email addresses you are receiving. People can get access to your site/material by submitting invalid/fake email addresses, which will greatly increase your bounce rate, and eventually lead to your account being suspended.

You can choose one of these three options depending on your use case. 

This section also allows you to choose what kind of confirmation email you want to send, who on your team it should be sent on behalf of, and exactly what content is to be sent. 

Note: Do not remove/modify the {{confirmation_link}} text from the email. Gist automatically replaces this text with a unique confirmation link to your users.

Finally, just like with Gist emails, you can also send yourself a test email, and review how the email looks...before you commit. 

Step 4: After you compose and configure the form and the relevant actions, you need to create the settings and conditions which will decide when, where, and to whom the form should be displayed.

These settings are pretty self-explanatory and very similar to the settings you see for chat prompts.

Once you set these conditions right, you can go ahead and set the form live on your site. If you want to test whether the form is working on your site, you should ideally check in an incognito (private) window.

If you come across any difficulty in setting up any form on Gist, let us know via live chat, and we'll help.

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