And that leads us right into understanding service pricing and packaging. The email marketing services we reviewed range from about $3 per month to send out 500 emails per month in Zoho Campaigns to as much as $1,250 per month for up to 10,000 contacts in Pardot. Many email marketing plans include unlimited email sends each month and bill you based on the number of subscribers. If you have a small list, then look for a company that offers a free plan, a low-cost plan for several hundred subscribers, or even a pay-as-you-go plan. On the flip side, many of these services also offer high-volume plans with up to 100,000 or more contacts. Sometimes this requires a custom plan that has to be arranged directly with a sales rep. If you're willing to commit, then look for the companies that offer discounts if you pay yearly rather than monthly. A few also offer money-back guarantees.
Found your article very informative especially as I am a novice in all this. We are about to launch a research centre in the UK and wondered which email marketing tool you would recommend. Having read quite a bit now online, I see a lot of the literature seems to concentrate on business users rather than non-profits. Any suggestions would be most welcome.
Mailchimp delivers email pretty darn fast, but there are a number of factors that can impact how much time it takes for your campaign to be delivered to your list, like the reputation of the sending server, the campaign’s content, and the receiving servers. As an email service provider, Mailchimp follows best practices and helps users stay compliant with anti-spam laws so that we maintain a great sending reputation. But good list management and the content you send also impact how fast your campaigns get delivered, so it’s important to make sure your content is compliant with our Terms of Use and consistent with your brand, and that you maintain a healthy list. These practices can also help keep your campaigns from triggering spam filters and firewalls when they reach receiving servers, which transfer your campaigns from Mailchimp to your recipients’ inboxes.
Looking to have more control over your email design? You have the option to code your own HTML template and import it to Mailchimp. We even have our own template language so you can create templates that are editable in the template editor or campaign builder, and we recommend making your layouts 600 pixels or 640 pixels wide to ensure they’re displayed properly across email clients.
As a growing business, you may also be looking for a CRM solution, and you'll find that the more advanced email marketing services have begun to crossover into CRM. It makes sense: Both types of software deal with managing and communicating with customers. A handful of these services are one-stop shops, either offering both email marketing and CRM out of the box or as add-on services.
Mailchimp makes it easy to design beautiful, personalized email campaigns and automations so you can build and strengthen your relationships with potential and existing customers. And with your online store connected, you’ll collect helpful e-commerce data for your customers—like order history, how much they spent, and whether they’re first-time or repeating customers—so you can send targeted campaigns that direct traffic back to your store and generate more sales.

But while automations are designed to take some of the work and effort out of engaging with your customers, your emails should show that you care. You should take time to research what your customers like to help make your emails sound human and personal. Above all, marketing automation is an opportunity to deepen your relationship with your customers.
Honestly, there are a ton of great email blast examples and email blast templates out there. And you’ll see that an email blast can cater to a variety of uses and information. Whether it be a referral program invite with an amazing referral email design, a product update, or a simple sales flyer. Email blasts are quick ways to send out valuable information to all their email list subscribers, simple as that.
Send the email. Once you've uploaded the contacts that you want to send the email to, it's time to send the email to the list. Go over the recipients one more time before sending the email and then send it out. Another option that you have is to schedule the blast to go out at a later date and time. This is a great idea if you may have to make last-minute revisions or want to choose a specific time to send it out.

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We also love how consistent the design of Uber's emails is with its brand. Like its app, website, social media photos, and other parts of the visual branding, the emails are represented by bright colors and geometric patterns. All of its communications and marketing assets tell the brand's story -- and brand consistency is one tactic Uber's nailed in order to gain brand loyalty.
Understand the statistics. Click-through rate or CTR is how often customers click on links contained in your email. There is also a conversion rate, which tracks how many people took action after clicking your link, as well as a rate for how many people opened and read your email. Many email blast software will have these metrics built in. Do not make things in the email blast confusing or complicated as it can prevent people from taking action or even reading the blast.
This strategy manages to prove itself both effective, but also cringe-worthy at the same time for a few reasons. The term “blast” can imply unexpected aggression and a general lack of tact. And while we’re not advising our senders to stop sending email blasts (we provide software that allows for this exact type of sending), we think it’s time to reframe how we think about an email blast for good.
Write a compelling subject line. The subject of your email will be the first thing that people will see when viewing it. Because of the immense amount of spam that exists, it's important that you draw the recipient in enough so that they open the message. The subject line should invite the reader to some benefit or include a sense of urgency which requires action. Avoid cliche marketing terminology like "act now" or "free limited offer" as these subject lines can make recipients feel suspicious and turned off. Your subject line should be 50 characters or less.[2]
Mailing lists preceded web forums and can provide similar functionalities. When used in that fashion, mailing lists are sometimes known as discussion lists or discussion forums. Discussion lists provide some advantages over typical web forums, so they are still used in various projects, notably Git and Debian. The advantages over web forums include the ability to work offline, the ability to sign/encrypt posts via GPG, and the ability to use an e-mail client's features, such as filters.
Unlike regular campaigns, an automation is a targeted email or series of emails that you can set and forget. From welcoming new subscribers to following up with a customer after a purchase to rewarding your customers with a special incentive, automation helps you streamline your communications with customers so you have more time to focus on creating content and increasing ROI. Plus, you can design, send, and track order notifications to update customers on purchases they made from your store.

Thanks for this article. It is super helpful. I have used quite a few different ESPs (Bronto, MailChimp, Constant Contact, dotmailer, Listrak and now Informz) and have my opinions about all of them. But I have always worked for e-commerce companies. I now work for a non-profit association and we need an ESP that integrates with our database, which is run on Aptify. The only ESP I have found that claims to integrate with Aptify is Informz (Higher Logic) and lets just say, the integration doesn’t actually work and the platform itself leaves a lot to be desired. So I was wondering if you knew of any other platform that might integrate with Aptify or be able to build an integration?


The full-blown version of ActiveCampaign offers an all-in-one solution for a business to house it’s CRM, email marketing, deal flow, sales automation and more. With the offer of one-on-one training and onboarding, without the 4-figure fee that InfusionSoft requires, it’s a great alternative if you want to automate the way you keep in touch with your customers both new and old.


Wow such a detailed review! I have tried MailChimp before and I found it too expensive. After that i’ve signed up to Mailerlite and got hooked. It’s either free or cheapish depending on your subscribers’ lists. With other email software providers, you’d need to make an investment even if you’re running a small shop or a blog. And let’s be honest, not everyone of us can afford it :)

However, as email marketing developed as an effective means of direct communication, in the 1990s, users increasingly began referring to it as "spam", and began blocking out content from emails with filters and blocking programs. In order to effectively communicate a message through email, marketers had to develop a way of pushing content through to the end user, without being cut out by automatic filters and spam removing software.
Double-check your email blast. After you've written your email blast, you should go over it again for grammar and spelling errors. An excellent way to help you edit your email is to send it to colleagues to ensure that there aren't any factual or grammatical mistakes, and to make sure that the messaging stays on brand. Ask people on your team to look over your blast and provide you with feedback.

Write a compelling subject line. The subject of your email will be the first thing that people will see when viewing it. Because of the immense amount of spam that exists, it's important that you draw the recipient in enough so that they open the message. The subject line should invite the reader to some benefit or include a sense of urgency which requires action. Avoid cliche marketing terminology like "act now" or "free limited offer" as these subject lines can make recipients feel suspicious and turned off. Your subject line should be 50 characters or less.[2]
Find things that encourage people to engage. By tracking the statistics on each of your emails, you'll be able to develop concise reports about what works and what doesn't for your target audience. Take note of the specific days and times for your highest open and conversion rates. Test different tones and subject lines and see what causes your audience to read the blast. Stick to the things that your consumer tends to favor or enjoy and avoid repeating aspects of emails that do poorly according to the stats.
Among the obstacles a small business or online seller has to face is finding a cost-efficient way to market their brand to a wider audience. That’s where email marketing comes in. Whether it’s your grand opening or your company is already well-established, an effective email marketing plan is key to promoting and growing your business, increasing revenue, and selling more stuff.
Well, charity: water took an alternate route. Once someone donates to a charity: water project, her money takes a long journey. Most charities don't tell you about that journey at all -- charity: water uses automated emails to show donors how their money is making an impact over time. With the project timeline and accompanying table, you don't even really need to read the email -- you know immediately where you are in the whole process so you can move onto other things in your inbox.
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