The search for finding the best email marketing software for YOU is definitely not easy as there are a multitude of options for every budget and every feature set. Here’s a quick round up of e-mail marketing software in the market, after having gone through the process myself.
A broad look at the kind of people who can benefit from the cloud based email marketing software:
- Savvy Entrepreneurs who would like to build a profitable relationship with the existing base of customers, looking at leaving no opportunity to delight the consumers.
- Marketers at medium and large companies trying to do the same, exploring more efficient options than hiring an agency and paying 5-15 times lesser. More savings is equal to more earnings.
- Digital marketers and agencies looking at acquiring new leads/customers for themselves and their clients.
I’ll be comparing Aweber, Constant Contact, iContact, Madmimi, ActiveCampaign, Infusionsoft, MailChimp and Vertical Response with a summary here. These are the most actively used and successful players while there are a dozen more smaller players not worth mentioning here.
AWeber has more than 150 email marketing templates to choose from along with a drag and drop editor. It integrates with WordPress, PayPal, Eventbrite and a few others. AWeber also allows you to quickly segment your lists by subscriber opens or clicks, location, and even what pages subscribers visited on your website.
Known to handle big volumes easily, good for professional digital marketers who would be able to create great email marketing solutions out of this . This provider has an option for custom HTML and also allows you to add attachments to your email. Ideal for bulk email marketing campaigns and giving a fantastic deliverability rate being 15 years in the business.
No free trial (although $1 won’t hurt). No image hosting (Edit: now free unlimited hosting). No ability to forward a message to a friend. Not integrated with Google Analytics. (Edit: Since this posts, almost all the negatives are converted to positive or neutral)
AWeber offers a variety of pricing options, but their monthly plans range from $19/month for up to 500 subscribers to $149/month for up to 25,000 subscribers. If you want to send an email blast to more users than that, just ask for a custom quote. NGO’s with a registered 501 certificate get a free 3 month trial.
One Line Verdict
Best solution for individual digital marketers into as well email marketing agencies handling multiple accounts and mass email marketing. Try here for $1
You may also read this Aweber vs Mailchimp
Constant Contact being one of the older players in the market is perfect for beginners. They have a marketing coach assigned to you in the ultimate, along with having a free marketplace access to meet fellow marketers and adding some useful services from the market. They have a very good integration with Social and best part is that surveys are integrated into their system, so need for buying additional survey monkey packages.
The easy possibility of changing the ‘From’ line is another important benefit. This is important if you want your emails to come from multiple people within your organization., especially useful with the new Gmail tabs.
KPI’s and reporting data is very thorough, you can view bounces, complaints, opt-outs, CTA’s, forwards and social shares.
In built survey and social tools, a marketplace, feels like a virtual assistant, great tracking and a free trial.
Constant Contact pricing is monthly and is based on your number of email addresses ranging from $15/month for up to 500 addresses to $75/month for up to 10k. They also offer discounts for non-profits.
One line verdict
They’ve been in the business for so long because of a reason. The ever evolving features and a very good integration offered in the system itself, making it a breeze to use, along with trusted mechanics delivering good delivery rates. Very good for small businesses. Try here for free (60 days and no CC required). Highly Recommended.
Also read, Constant Contact vs Mailchimp
iContact is one of the most popular email marketing tools and has been around for quite some time. While all the standard of features of an email marketing service like having free templates (around 250), image hosting, list segmentation and management, what stands out for iContact is their Message builder (TM) which allows a drag and drop functionality. Also, the social media integration, with Vocus marketing’s social product makes it a very interesting product for an email cum social experience, due to their smooth integration. Lastly, there is an ‘agency solution’ which offers whitelabel model giving clients access to their reports with your agency logo.
High deliverability with their team of specialists and years of experience, and SpamCheck (TM) feature. Good Social Media integration. Whitelabel solution for agencies. Strong infrastructure and whitelabel makes using this for agencies with multiple clients a breeze. Award winning customer service, available on phone too.
The interface can enthuse more energy than the current state.
iContact has an interesting tiered structure of pricing beginning with a free trial for 30 days, followed by a $14 plan with 500 contacts and upto 15k subscribers for $109. Not for Profit organizations get a 20% off and a 15% discount is offered to all on annual services. For more than 5k subs, the company needs to be contacted for a customized quote.
One line verdict
Good deliverability and customer support, coupled with a social media integration makes it an important player in your trial as well as final list. The pricing structure suggests that it’s targeted at smaller organizations and particularly agencies. Give this honest email service a shot with a free trial here.
4. Mad Mimi
Mad Mimi is a good piece of service, tastefully developed with a lot of personal effort by a talented silicon valley couple. Useful for creating beautiful email marketing campaigns and creating a pool of loyal customers through being in touch. Must Try the interface
Mad Mimi is integrates with many other applications that will further propel your brand. Surprisingly affordable.
Complete creative control can be daunting and is not for everyone
Starts at$10 a month for up to 500 contacts with an ultimate pack to have 350k clients at just $1049. The best seller is of course the 10k plan for only $42/month. You may learn more or begin a lifetime free trial here.
One line verdict
One of the best players around, slick interface, fantastic customer support, great price. Must try now. Recommended.
Active Campaign is at an ever evolving stage and are aiming to provide best email marketing solutions in the market. Their latest addition is a whole suite of sales automation (CRM) and marketing automation features and auto responders.
They can even custom design templates for your business at a nominal price. Reporting is comprehensive from the open rates, link opens, email client and the best part is geographical reporting of the campaign opens. CRM and auto responder features (although in Beta phase)
They also have a feature Erja at an additional with which the entire database’s social media profiling and segmentation can be done for creating razor sharp targeted campaigns.
Doesn’t offer a direct copying of the campaign from a zip file. But that’s hardly a deterrent.
One Line Verdict
A must try for small business owners as well those looking at doing b2b email marketing, who would want to get into the depth of their customer’s digital behavior and try sharp segmented campaigns! If you know how to manage auto responders for business gain, should give it a shot for free.
InfusionSoft combines CRM, email and social marketing, and e-commerce solutions. It is most known for it’s easy ability to segment subscribers by activity to help you send very targeted emails. They also provide detailed customer records so you can see what emails were sent to who and which actions your subscribers took. I can cover this not just under my email marketing blog but even in later posts under marketing automation.
A total solution, not limited to email marketing only but a good way to automate the sales and marketing departments of SME’s and statups. One can create email marketing best practices by using this service. Must try this before making the final decision.
Not as user-friendly as its competitors, expect a learning curve, but that’s there with everything great (like wordpress). But it will surely grow on you. On the expensive side to begin with.
InfusionSoft has three tiers of pricing starting at $199/month for 5,000 contacts/500,000 emails. Their premier pricing is $499/month for 100,000 contacts/500,000 emails.
One line verdict
If you are an ecoomerce startup, and looking to scale up soon with a scalable marketing automation with full seriousness, this is the tool to go ahead with, at least a must try
Many of their templates are optimized to display on mobile devices. You also have the option of coding your email directly with HTML and inline CSS.
They also lend performance advice by comparing your open rate with your industry average and your lists average, which is a plus. If you are looking for a free email marketing software for simply using it as a email newsletter service, this may fit the bill, but not for advanced stuff and scaling up.
MailChimp does not allow you to send one campaign to multiple subscriber lists. Also, a big drawback is the inability to send auto-responder campaigns which is the present and future of email marketing services.
They score well if you are beginner looking for a free version, which offers up to 2k subscribers and 12 k mails. MailChimp has a number of monthly plans to choose from ranging to $240/month for up to 50,000 subscribers. All paid plans have an unlimited number of sends.
One line verdict
Clean interface, known brand, but may not be the best value for money as it is slightly expensive, the interface can get sucky at times due to forced sense of humour of the developers (it’s pretty good at times, but not always), auto responders missing in the system yet (update: auto responders have been added)
One line verdict
In a Nutshell, to find the best email marketing software for you, I suggest choose 2 or items from the list, register and try for it yourself right away. And then make a decision for yourself within a week.
Happy Decision making , just remember that the faster you start the better, there are people out there waiting to be your customers, and there are your customers out there waiting to be your loyal customers forever.
So which email marketing platform is your favorite? Also see a quicker comparison of the 5 best email marketing service here. Know of another good one that’s not listed here? Give us the details in the comments!
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