Use the Toastmost Find a Club Email Bot with GMail

Toastmasters International sends a variety of different notifications, including “Contact Club” emails from the “Find a Club” page, all to the same email address that you’ve registered in Club Central.

Sending an automated response is one way of responding faster and more consistently — which is not to say you shouldn’t also follow up personally. Currently, this feature is only available to clubs that host their websites on toastmost.org.

To use the autoresponder, you need to have contact email messages from clubleads@toastmasters.org forwarded to findaclub@toastmost.org.

One relatively easy way is to create a GMail account specifically for purposes of club correspondence and have it forward selected emails to findaclub@toastmost.org. While you’re at it, you might want to set up forwarding of various other standard messages to the appropriate officers. See the illustrated tutorial below.

The process is:

  1. Record your club’s main email address here.
  2. Edit the message that will be sent in response to prospective member inquiries. For example, if you answer most of the questions people typically have on your website, you can send them a link to your website, along with contact information for your officers. The title of the document you create in WordPress will become the subject line of the automated emails, and the body of the document will become the body of the autoreply messages.
  3. Set up forwarding from your club’s email account to findaclub@toastmost.org
  4. Before establishing a forwarding address, GMail sends a nofification to the target address asking for confirmation. Our findaclub email bot sends you a copy, allowing you to approve the forwarding yourself by clicking a link in the notification.
  5. Create a forwarding rule in GMail to forward any message from clubleads@toastmasters.org to findaclub@toastmost.org
  6. Verify that it’s working by sending your own Contact Club inquiry from your club’s Find a Club page.

When findaclub@toastmost.org receives a notification from clubleads@toastmasters.org, it parses that message, finds the address of the person requesting information, and sends them the autoresponder message you have defined.

Step-by-Step Illustrations

Autoresponder / Notifications Forwarding Setup
GMail Settings
Show All Settings
Add a forwarding address
Toastmost’s Find-a-Club bot sends you Gmail’s verification message to approve yourself
Search on clubleads@toastmasters.org. Click on Show search options
Create filter button on search options screen
Define filter to forward messages that match your criteria

While you’re at it, you might want to set rules to forward other boilerplate messages from Toastmasters HQ to the appropriate officers.

Author: David F. Carr

Contact me at 954-757-5827 or david@wp4toastmasters.com