Example Usage of

Sync a contact.

Description: Add or edit a contact based on their email address. Instead of calling contact_view to check if the contact exists, and then calling contact_add or contact_edit, you can make just one call and include only the information you want added or updated.
Endpoint: /admin/api.php?api_action=contact_sync
HTTP method: POST
Supported output formats: xml, json, serialize
Requires authentication: true
* indicates requirement. Underlined params include in URL, otherwise as part of the post body. POST data must be formatted as
Content-Type: application/x-www-form-urlencoded
. We don't accept any other input formats like JSON.
Variable Description
api_outputxml, json, or serialize (default is XML)
email*Email of the new contact. Example: '[email protected]'
first_nameFirst name of the contact. Example: 'FirstName'
last_nameLast name of the contact. Example: 'LastName'
phonePhone number of the contact. Example: '+1 312 201 0300'
customer_acct_nameOrganization name (if doesn't exist, this will create a new organization) - MUST HAVE CRM FEATURE FOR THIS.
tagsTags for this contact (comma-separated). Example: "tag1, tag2, etc"
ip4IP address of the contact. Example: '' If not supplied, it will default to ''
field[345,0]Custom field values. Example: field[345,0] = 'value'. In this example, "345" is the field ID. Leave 0 as is.
field[%PERS_1%,0]'value' (You can also use the personalization tag to specify which field you want updated)
p[123]Assign to lists. List ID goes in brackets, as well as the value.
status[123]The status for each list the contact is added to. If left blank, the status will default to 1 (active). WARNING: If you change a status from unsubscribed to active, you can re-subscribe a contact to a list from which they had manually unsubscribed. Examples: 1 = active, 2 = unsubscribed
formOptional subscription Form ID, to inherit those redirection settings. Example: 1001. This will allow you to mimic adding the contact through a subscription form, where you can take advantage of the redirection settings.
noresponders[123]Whether or not to set "do not send any future responders." Examples: 1 = yes, 0 = no.
sdate[123]Subscribe date for particular list - leave out to use current date/time. Example: '2009-12-07 06:00:00' Be sure to pass the date/time as CST (Central Standard Time).
instantresponders[123]Use only if status = 1. Whether or not to set "send instant responders." Examples: 1 = yes, 0 = no.
lastmessage[123]Whether or not to set "send the last broadcast campaign." Examples: 1 = yes, 0 = no.
Example response:
Variable Description
subscriber_idThe contact ID that was added or updated.
result_codeWhether or not the response was successful. Examples: 1 = yes, 0 = no
result_messageA custom message that appears explaining what happened. Example: Contact added
result_outputThe result output used. Example: serialize

PHP Example

This is an example of using the contact_sync call with PHP. You can replicate the same idea in virtually any other programming language. The example shown is using serialize as the output format. You can change that to XML or JSON if you would like.


// By default, this sample code is designed to get the result from your ActiveCampaign installation and print out the result
$url = '';

// the API Key can be found on the "Your Settings" page under the "API" tab.
// replace this with your API Key
$api_key = 'YOUR_API_KEY';

$params = array(

	// this is the action that adds a contact
	'api_action'   => 'contact_sync',

	// define the type of output you wish to get back
	// possible values:
	// - 'xml'  :      you have to write your own XML parser
	// - 'json' :      data is returned in JSON format and can be decoded with
	//                 json_decode() function (included in PHP since 5.2.0)
	// - 'serialize' : data is returned in a serialized format and can be decoded with
	//                 a native unserialize() function
	'api_output'   => 'serialize',

// here we define the data we are posting in order to perform an update
$post = array(
	'email'                    => '[email protected]',
	'first_name'               => 'FirstName',
	'last_name'                => 'LastName',
	//'ip4'                    => '',
	'phone'                    => '+1 312 201 0300',
	'customer_acct_name'       => 'Acme, Inc.',
	'tags'                     => 'api',

	// any custom fields
	//'field[345,0]'           => 'field value', // where 345 is the field ID
	//'field[%PERS_1%,0]'      => 'field value', // using the personalization tag instead

	// assign to lists:
	'p[123]'                   => 123, // example list ID (REPLACE '123' WITH ACTUAL LIST ID, IE: p[5] = 5)
	'status[123]'              => 1, // 1: active, 2: unsubscribed (REPLACE '123' WITH ACTUAL LIST ID, IE: status[5] = 1)
	//'form'									 => 1001, // Subscription Form ID, to inherit those redirection settings
	//'noresponders[123]'      => 1, // uncomment to set "do not send any future responders"
	//'sdate[123]'             => '2009-12-07 06:00:00', // Subscribe date for particular list - leave out to use current date/time
	// use the folowing only if status=1
	'instantresponders[123]' => 1, // set to 0 to if you don't want to sent instant autoresponders
	//'lastmessage[123]'       => 1, // uncomment to set "send the last broadcast campaign"

	//'p[]'                    => 345, // some additional lists?
	//'status[345]'            => 1, // some additional lists?

// This section takes the input fields and converts them to the proper format
$query = "";
foreach( $params as $key => $value ) $query .= urlencode($key) . '=' . urlencode($value) . '&';
$query = rtrim($query, '& ');

// This section takes the input data and converts it to the proper format
$data = "";
foreach( $post as $key => $value ) $data .= urlencode($key) . '=' . urlencode($value) . '&';
$data = rtrim($data, '& ');

// clean up the url
$url = rtrim($url, '/ ');

// This sample code uses the CURL library for php to establish a connection,
// submit your request, and show (print out) the response.
if ( !function_exists('curl_init') ) die('CURL not supported. (introduced in PHP 4.0.2)');

// If JSON is used, check if json_decode is present (PHP 5.2.0+)
if ( $params['api_output'] == 'json' && !function_exists('json_decode') ) {
	die('JSON not supported. (introduced in PHP 5.2.0)');

// define a final API request - GET
$api = $url . '/admin/api.php?' . $query;

$request = curl_init($api); // initiate curl object
curl_setopt($request, CURLOPT_HTTPHEADER, array('API-TOKEN: ' . $api_key));  //  Provide the API Token via the API-TOKEN header
curl_setopt($request, CURLOPT_HEADER, 0); // set to 0 to eliminate header info from response
curl_setopt($request, CURLOPT_RETURNTRANSFER, 1); // Returns response data instead of TRUE(1)
curl_setopt($request, CURLOPT_POSTFIELDS, $data); // use HTTP POST to send form data
//curl_setopt($request, CURLOPT_SSL_VERIFYPEER, FALSE); // uncomment if you get no gateway response and are using HTTPS
curl_setopt($request, CURLOPT_FOLLOWLOCATION, true);

$response = (string)curl_exec($request); // execute curl post and store results in $response

// additional options may be required depending upon your server configuration
// you can find documentation on curl options at
curl_close($request); // close curl object

if ( !$response ) {
	die('Nothing was returned. Do you have a connection to Email Marketing server?');

// This line takes the response and breaks it into an array using:
// JSON decoder
//$result = json_decode($response);
// unserializer
$result = unserialize($response);
// XML parser...
// ...

// Result info that is always returned
echo 'Result: ' . ( $result['result_code'] ? 'SUCCESS' : 'FAILED' ) . '<br />';
echo 'Message: ' . $result['result_message'] . '<br />';

// The entire result printed out
echo 'The entire result printed out:<br />';
echo '<pre>';
echo '</pre>';

// Raw response printed out
echo 'Raw response printed out:<br />';
echo '<pre>';
echo '</pre>';

// API URL that returned the result
echo 'API URL that returned the result:<br />';
echo $api;

echo '<br /><br />POST params:<br />';
echo '<pre>';
echo '</pre>';?>

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