by Tor Flatebo, Product Manager at GovDelivery
If you need to use GovDelivery to send an email alert or wireless message, most of you will hop on your computer and go to admin.govdelivery.com, log in, and draft a new bulletin to your subscribers. Or, maybe you need to add three new employees to an internal newsletter subscription list. Again, you log in, find your list, and add your new subscribers. But what if there were an easier way?
GovDelivery provides easier, and more automated, ways to interact with our services. One of these ways is to use the GovDelivery API set. APIs (which stands for Application Programming Interfaces) are a widely used method to facilitate the digital exchange and integration of data between two different software platforms or systems. The best APIs extend the features and functionality of the tools you are already using by connecting systems and enhancing their power. For more on APIs, click here and log in.
GovDelivery APIs provide an additional “window” for taking advantage of GovDelivery Digital Communication Management functionalities. With APIs, you can easily connect your current databases and applications with GovDelivery DCM to automate email sending, add subscribers, create topics, and more. In order to improve your efficiency, below are the three most common ways to use the GovDelivery API set:
1. Send Bulletins from Your Website
GovDelivery’s Page Watch and Scheduled Auto Send features are a great way to automate sending bulletins to your subscribers, but do you need additional flexibility of formatting the content of your bulletins? Or do you need the ability to send bulletins in real-time when content is posted to your website?
By using the Send Bulletin API, you can integrate your current content management system with GovDelivery to send bulletins as soon as content is posted to your website. Instead of waiting for Page Watch to pick up new content on your website, your content management system can make a call to GovDelivery to send a message immediately. Leveraging this API allows you to tie your email sending more closely to your publishing workflow.
Rather than using the Page Watch content templates, the Send Bulletin API also gives you more control over the HTML content and text formatting of the bulletin. For example, one GovDelivery client, Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART), uses the Send Bulletin API to communicate all of their transit information directly into their email and wireless messages.
2. Customize Your Sign Up Flow
There are many reasons to use GovDelivery’s Subscriber API, but one of the most common is to capture subscribers as part of a sign up flow that already exists on your website. Many organizations want to keep their subscriber experience as minimal as possible. It’s also beneficial to capture subscribers within an existing user experience. Using the Subscriber API, you can add a subscriber using a new custom form, or any existing ways you’ve already been capturing email addresses. Many organizations are taking advantage of the Subscriber API and it gives them additional flexibility to provide subscription options across more areas of their website. Another GovDelivery client, the U.S. Small Business Administration, uses a Subscriber API to capture email addresses and demographic information in one area of their website, without directing subscribers outside of it.
3. Get More from Your Mobile App
Don’t miss out on a huge opportunity to drive collaboration between mobile app development and your digital communication strategy. A government organization’s mobile app is only successful if citizens and stakeholders both adopt and use the app. Promoting your mobile apps within bulletins sent through the GovDelivery API has proven to be an exceptional way to promote and drive more usage of the tools you offer.
In the same manner, promoting your email/SMS subscription options through your app is an effective way of growing your audience. A third GovDelivery client, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), created a mobile app that provided users with tax tips and allowed them to sign up to be emailed with future information. By using the Subscriber API to send mobile app subscriptions to their GovDelivery topics, they received 14,000 additional citizen subscribers in just a 3-month period.
And this isn’t the end of the things you can accomplish with the GovDelivery DCM API set! Most of the actions you can perform related to bulletins, topics, categories and subscribers are available via our APIs. Many government organizations are already taking advantage of GovDelivery API integrations, including sending SMS alerts for traffic incidents, creating new topics based on legislative activity, and adding digital subscription capabilities to already existing portal applications.
Learn more about our APIs by checking out our recent webinar, reading our Customer Support article, or contact your Client Success Consultant today