Getting More Value Out Of Your Gmail Contacts (or, How To Mess Up A Gmail Import)

About a year ago we introduced the import your Gmail contacts feature.  It was buggy, and Gmail seemed to change their API (the protocol that allows a third party (like us) to tap into their system).  We just sat and waited, and moved on to other things.  It’s hard chasing around moving APIs and keeping up to date.

One of my developers told me they had really updated their API, it was more stable, and ready to look at again.  So we fixed the import on our end, and it seems to work!  However, I did an import and saw stuff that I didn’t want in my database, and a user did an import and had some other issues.  The import works, but you may get a bunch of garbage in your JibberJobber database… so a few thoughts:

This is a premium feature (only $9.95/month) Mouse over Network or Tools, and then click on Import/Export.  You’ll see the Gmail tab in there.

The import pulls all of your Gmail contacts in.  If they don’t have names (first name, last name), they that will be BLANK… but it will pull that e-mail address in.  Kind of useful, but it means you have to go and clean it up 🙁

On our lastest implementation, there were some duplicates created, and tags and categories got duplicated.  This should be fixed now, but if it’s not, let us know!

If there are fields in your Gmail contacts that are not coming over, please let us know… we’ll see if we can grab those also.

If you do an import and you get a bunch of junk, you can delete in bulk (I’ve done this a number of times).  Here’s how:

  1. Go to the Network List Panel,
  2. Click on Manage Columns (next to the search box above your contacts)
  3. In the middle column, show up to 255 contacts (right now we are capping it at 255)
  4. Click save, which takes you back to the list panel
  5. Click on the checkbox on the top right, which selects ALL of the 255 contacts on the page,
  6. Scroll to the bottom, and click the delete, which will delete those 255.

This would be repeated for all of the contacts you want to delete (in batches of 255).  You can order by Date Created, so you don’t mix in other contacts with the contacts from that import.  WHen I did an import, it pulled in about 2k or 3k new contacts…

One other option to consider, just export from Gmail into a csv file, clean up the csv file, then import that…!

Very cool to take those relationships to the next level, but yes, I am overwhelmed at the number of people I’ve communicated with over the last two years in Gmail!

4 thoughts on “Getting More Value Out Of Your Gmail Contacts (or, How To Mess Up A Gmail Import)”

  1. If you use gmail often, it is probably better to go to a csv file from the beginning. There are so many irrelevant things that you pick up – especially if that is your primary email – that it just causes more work later.

  2. Paul – I looked for that function when we put that feature on … but didn’t find it – but I found it now! Thanks for the suggestion, and I TOTALLY AGREE! I’ll blog about how to do this on another post.

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