Create Templates for email, SMS, and Open Channels

Templates provide a way to personalize messages with information specific to each member of your audience, like first name, flight number, or order status. You can even pass complicated variables to your template.


This feature takes the place of legacy email templates. If you have existing legacy email templates, you can use them as a reference when creating new email templates, but you cannot use legacy email templates to send a message.

When you create a template, you can use Dynamic Content operators to define the variables or merge fields that you want to populate when you send a message using the template. The Airship interface guides you through the process to create or edit your template much like creating a standard message.

When you're done, you can reference your template when you create email, SMS, or open channel messages through the UI using the Upload Users Audience option or when sending a message using the /create-and-send API.


To use email templates for commercial messages, include a ua_unsubscribe link. If you do not include a ua_unsubscribe link in your template, your message must have the Transactional option selected.

After you select a template, you can click and then select Custom HTML to add or remove a ua_unsubscribe link to support your message.

  1. Open your messaging project and go to Messages » Templates.
  2. Click Create Template.
  3. Select the Template Type. This is channel you want to send messages to.
  4. Enter a Name and a brief Description to help you identify the template in lists, and click Save & Continue.
  5. Click Add to populate the different fields in your template.
    1. Enter information for the field, including dynamic content. With dynamic content, you can define message variables and conditions determining the message text that each individual audience member receives. The preview populates as you fill in the fields.

      When using dynamic content and variables, you should define default values for your variables with {{else}}. The preview represents variables without default values as blank spaces; this mimics the behavior your audience will experience if they receive messages with unpopulated variables.

    2. Click Save after you populate each field.
    3. Repeat this step until you have populated all fields in the template.
  6. Click Save Template.

Send a Templated Message

You can use a template in your email, SMS, or Open Channel message when you select the Upload Users option in the Audience step. The Upload Users option lets you upload a CSV containing the merge field values you want to populate for each member of your audience.

When you send a message using the /create-and-send API, you can specify a template_id to base your message on an existing template. Your template_id ID must correspond to the message type you want to send (i.e. you cannot use an SMS template to send an MMS message). You can find the template_id in the ID field in Messages » Templates.

Manage Templates

Messages » Templates lists your templates. Templates marked Empty do not have message content; you cannot use Empty templates in messages until you edit and populate them.

  1. Open your messaging project and go to Messages » Templates.
  2. Find the template you want to manage. You can search by name, type, or ID.
  3. Click an icon to edit, delete, or copy a template.
    • to Delete a template.
    • to Edit a template.
    • to Duplicate a template.