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Help to create an easier Zap that will add attendees to a google calendar event from a Google form response


I am new to Zapier, and will appreciate any help on this topic.

I am looking for help to simplify my Zap, so that my Executive Admin team can set up and utilize without to much technical work.  And can be easily changed for different events. 

I have currently created a Zap that is connected to a Google form and based on the response it will add the user to 1 of 3 Calendar Events.  I am use paths to read to a certain column and based on that connect to the right calendar event and add the user.  Right now this multiple touch points for our Admins to change and connect to make the Zap work.  

Is there a better approach to limit how our Admins can update the Zap or maybe use a Google Sheet to enter in the Form and Calendar Event details?

Thank you for any help or guidance.

Tony

 

 

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Best answer by Danvers 16 June 2022, 16:06

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Userlevel 7
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Hey @Tony Landowski, thanks for taking the time to break down your workflow for us! Would you mind expanding a bit on what this looks like?:

Right now this multiple touch points for our Admins to change and connect to make the Zap work.

What are those touch points? What are they changing and connecting? The more specifics you can provide, the better we’ll be able to assist. 🙂

Jesse, thank you very much and I will be glad to add more details.

Their process would be:

 - they will need to set up the Google Form

 - they will need to create the 3 different Google Calendar events

 - Now they will need to connect the Zap to the Google form

 - they would need to change the path time to reflect the correct calendar times

 - Finally, they will need to connect each of the 3 Calendar events.

 

As you can see the total process has 11 steps, to follow each time they need to set up an event.  I know the first 4 steps cannot be avoided, but trying to limit the additional touches into Zapier.  Each time they have a new event they would have to go in and change the connection to the form, the path timings and connect to the calendar events.  

Hope this helps.

 

Also here is a Screen Shot of my Zap.

 

Userlevel 7
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@Tony Landowski your explanation is SUPER helpful and I really appreciate you taking the time to outline it for me! 

It sounds like a lot of this process is dependent on that initial Google Form and that you have 1 form per event. Every time someone fills out the form for that event, the Zap will run its course and add them to the correct calendar event based on the time they selected. But in order for all of this to happen, someone needs to go in and set up the Zap each time there is a new event. Am I understanding that right?

I am wondering if it would be possible to change the approach to this workflow, starting with the trigger. For example, if there was a way to use the same form for all events, would that eliminate the need to update the Zap at all?

Some other things to consider when answering that question:

  • How is this form being surfaced to potential attendees? Through a website? Email? Etc.?
  • Is there a list of current/upcoming events somewhere that your team references to create a form for?
  • Are the times of the events always the same? Or do they differ? It sounds like they will be different each time but I wanted to double-check!
  • Are the calendars the events are added to always the same, or do they differ? 
  • Can you tell me more about why you are utilizing different calendars for different event times?

Looking forward to continue working with you on this, Tony!

Jesse,

thank you for the potential solution.  Please find below my answers in red.  Let me know what additional you might need to help.

 

someone needs to go in and set up the Zap each time there is a new event. Am I understanding that right?

 - this is correct.  Someone will need to go in and set up the Zap each time there is a new event.

 

How is this form being surfaced to potential attendees? Through a website? Email? Etc.?

 - the form is being sent to the attendees as a link on an email.

 

Is there a list of current/upcoming events somewhere that your team references to create a form for?

 

 - No.  They only reference the current upcoming event.

 

Are the times of the events always the same? Or do they differ? It sounds like they will be different each time but I wanted to double-check!

 - Event times might be the same, but most of the time different.

 

Are the calendars the events are added to always the same, or do they differ? 

 - For each over all event, the calendar events setup is the same with the exception of date and time.

 

Can you tell me more about why you are utilizing different calendars for different event times?

 - Based on the event and who the event is for, we utilize different calendars to the administrator of the event can manage.  We have about 4 different administrators with multiple different events they manage over a year.

 

Regards,

Tony

 

Userlevel 7
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@Tony Landowski wonderful details - thanks again! 

Are you open to utilizing a different form service/app (thinking of Airtable) and allowing attendees to choose the event they’re registering for, from a drop-down? My thinking (and I can elaborate on this further once I know how open you are to changing form apps) is that:

  • You/your team can store event details in Airtable.
  • These events can be dynamically referenced on the form. I can even share with you how to ensure past events are automatically removed from the drop-down!
  • Your Zap references the details of the event from within Airtable and automatically sends them down the right path.
  • You no longer need 1 Zap per event and instead of your team having to edit Zaps, they are adding event details in what is essentially, a shared spreadsheet.

Let me know if you’re okay with those details and if so, I can write out a more detailed idea. P.S. this is a great time to surface back to me any “what if” or “how would I” questions.

Looking forward to hearing back from you!

@jesse - thank you for all your guidance and help.

Not that I am objecting Airtable.  But, I have never used that system or know anything about it.  How does this differ from using Google Forms?  Can we not achieve the same or is there some additional connections that I am missing? 

Also, based on your proposed solution, do we need to purchase a higher level plan or will the free version work?

 

Userlevel 7
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Hey @Tony Landowski! I made this video for you to explain some of the workflow that I am thinking could help you out. Let me know what you think!

As for pricing, that depends on how many attendees come through each month and how many steps run in your Zap. I would say if you have more than ~30 attendees per month, you will need to upgrade to the next plan up. However, this workflow should save you steps, Tasks, time, and effort overall as opposed to going the route of utilizing Google Forms and many Zap edits to solve this. 🙂

 

 

@jesse,

thank you for taking the time for creating this video.  I shared this with a few people within my company and they are interested.  

I have just signed up with Airtable and currently have a 30day Pro Trial to test out this proposal.  Is there something unique to the setup that I should be aware of or just straight forward?  

Let me know and I will get started.

Regards,

Tony

@jesse,

I was able to create the airtable and the zap.  But I am wondering if I am doing something wrong on the calendar connection.  To make things work, I had to select the Event by name, under the Event section, to add the attendee.  Is there a better way or is this the only way to go?

Regards,

Tony

Userlevel 7
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Hey @Tony Landowski, great! I cannot think of anything unique about the setup that needs to be considered, based on what I know about your workflow. 

For the step you’re getting stuck on, can you send me a screenshot of the template in the step you’re filling out? With a bit more context, I can make some suggestions. 😊

Userlevel 7
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Hey @Tony Landowski just checking in here. Let me know how things are going!

@jesse,

very sorry.  Things got crazy here.  The below is the details and screen shots..  

My issue is that if the future event changes name, I will need to update the Zap.  Is there a way to dynamically look for the Google Calendar event?  Vs needing to select the event in the tool like below.  If not, it is ok.  Just trying to see what my options are.

 

 

Userlevel 7
Badge +11

Hi @Tony Landowski!

You can choose to use a custom value for the event instead of choosing one for the dropdown. 

When you use a custom value for the Event, you need the ID of the event, not the name of it. The ID is a long string of text and numbers, you can see what it looks like if you click on the event drop down:

So, what you need for the Add attendee/s action to work is to have the Event ID of the event you want to add them to. To do this, you’ll need to add a Find Event step to your Zap before the Add Attendees step:

 

 

For the Find Event step, you can use the information from the form to find the relevant event. You can search by things like the event name and the start and end time for the event:

When the Find event step finds an event, it will give you the event ID:

That ID is what you need to put in the Event field in the Add Attendees step. 

I hope that’s clear, let me know if you have any questions about that part of the Zap. 

 

 

Does that get you where you need to be with your Zap? If not could you please summarize where you’re at right now (the steps in you Zap) and let us know which parts you still need help with. Thanks!

Thank you both @Danvers and @jesse 

All of this was a great help.