Which Email Marketing Platform is Best for Your Business?
July 14, 2019
Don't miss the last two words to the title of this blog. We're not going to bash one email marketing service and praise the other right now. The truth is, both Constant Contact and MailChimp offer so many great features. However, when considering the unique needs of your business, one service could be a better choice over the other.
While it is true that the employees here at Hyperchat Social can tell you which email marketing service they undoubtedly prefer to use over the other, that's just our personal preference. When it comes to recommending these services to our clients, we put our opinions to the side and think about what's best for the client.
We pointed out in our previous blog on email marketing that we love making email marketing strategies and newsletters for our clients. Here's a brief rundown of all the things we love about the two email marketing services we provide for our clients.
So let's dive in: MailChimp vs. Constant Contact, here we go!
MailChimp Email Marketing: What We Love
Ever since it was founded in 2001, MailChimp has made a huge name for itself. This platform is much more well-known among the marketing world and it is the biggest. That means instant credibility backing up its services. Think about word-of-mouth marketing: you're much more likely to dine at a restaurant that your friend praises and recommends to you, right? Of course! The more credibility a marketing service has, the more likely a client is to trust the quality of the service. Our clients trust MailChimp because they've heard their peers talk about the platform. So, of course, this is a big reason why we love using MailChimp in the marketing plans for our clients.
Side note: MailChimp is also an Atlanta-based email marketing platform, making the platform even more well-known in our area specifically.
MailChimp's services are completely free for users whose contact list is less than 2,000 emails. That's a lot of free contacts! Most of the clients we work with have less than 2,000 emails (at least in the beginning) so we love telling our clients that this email marketing service is totally free for them. If you have a low marketing budget, then the cost-effectiveness of MailChimp is a great reason to choose it for launching your email marketing strategy.
Integration with Zapier
Zapier is a service designed to help marketers connect apps they use every day. Zapier has a list of over 1,500 integrated apps - and MailChimp is one of them! With the help of Zapier, MailChimp can acquire the data that businesses pull in from their other apps, such as social media pages. We love using Zapier to connect clients' Facebook Ad data to their MailChimp accounts. Because of this integration, a client can automatically start sending emails to their Facebook leads.
If you're not sure about which option is best for the layout of your email, MailChimp offers the solution! You don't have to choose with MailChimp! MailChimp allows users to test multiple versions of an email to determine which one performs best. This increases the performance of a client's email marketing and really maximizes the effort put into each email.
How to do it: There are a lot of steps involved with creating an A/B test, so we've provided a link to a tutorial for your convenience. Click here and scroll down to the Experiment with A/B Testing section.
MailChimp's automation features are great for nurturing clients. Email marketing is effective for a business' marketing plan only when it is consistent. MailChimp makes it easy to keep that consistency with clients. With MailChimp, a user has many automation options, including sending an automated email to every new subscriber as they come in. With features like this, a business will never miss the opportunity at a new lead.
How to do it:
1. Go to Campaigns > create a new campaign > click email
2. Create a new campaign and select Automated
3. From there, you'll see that there are a ton of automated workflows available; for now, select Welcome new subscribers
4. Give the campaign a name and select the list you want to use for the automation
5. From here, you can design your email and edit all of the settings to fit your preference; you can also add other emails to a workflow if you'd like to send onboarding emails as well, for example
6. Once everything is set up, click Next and double check all of the settings before clicking Publish
Constant Contact: What We Love
Since we are a social media marketing agency first and foremost, we absolutely love that Constant Contact has a feature that allows users to share their emails to their social media pages. This is great for newsletters and event emails. Being able to post emails to social media right from the CC dashboard expands an email's reach, allowing clients to reach more people. The Social Share feature provides suggestions to optimize each post, such as what time to post.
How to do it:
- From the sent email or live event, click Schedule Posts.
- Connect your social media channels. To sync with Facebook, you need to have a Facebook Business Page.
- Use the Channel drop-down menu to decide which social media profiles you want to share your post on. Using the same post on all three social media networks saves time, but crafting custom posts for each network is more effective.
- Edit your post content. Use the subject line of your email as your post, click the "New Suggestion" link to generate more examples, or come up with something different. Just be careful not to delete the link to your email!
- Select an image for your post. You can use the arrows to scroll through a mix of stock images and images from your Library or click the picture icon to use one of your own images from your Library or to upload a new image. You can even use the editing tools in the Library to customize or resize the image.
- Select a time for the post. Use the drop-down menu to select what time of day you want your post to appear.
- Schedule additional posts for future dates by clicking Options > Calendar.
- Click the plus sign on the date you want to post on. Posts are available for six months after the date you originally sent or scheduled your email.
- Click the pencil icon to choose your social media channels and edit the post content.
Uploading contact lists and organizing them into certain groups is a breeze in Constant Contact. From there, the platform allows its users to send emails to each list separately so that each contact list can receive emails tailored specifically for them. When uploading contacts, choosing which list you want to add contacts to is very straightforward as well.
Sending Test Emails
The ability to send test emails to multiple recipients is a great feature that Constant Contact offers. Users can easily receive feedback from their entire team with just a few clicks! Once an email design is finished, the designer can send out the draft directly to each team members' email inbox, including a personalized message requesting feedback from the team.
Constant contact was designed with simplicity in mind. With its drag and drop design feature, it makes designing emails easy and efficient. Their design interface lays out design and integration options clearly, eliminating much of the learning curve for users creating their very first email. CC also offers a convenient stock image gallery for quick access to beautiful pictures. The fact that CC is so user-friendly makes it a great option for clients who want to design their own emails.
As we've discussed, email marketing is the ultimate tool for creating and maintaining relationships with clients. A great way to keep clients involved in your company is by inviting them to events. Constant Contact's event management feature is totally unique to its competitors. This feature makes it easy for businesses to accept payments online and track registrations. This feature even offers a special landing page for the event, allowing businesses to collect registrants with ease.
The bottom line:
Again, we are not going to tell you which platform is "better." While MailChimp is used by more people, that doesn't mean it's always the best choice. If you're on a tight budget, then MailChimp is the superior choice for you. If you're looking for a user-friendly experience and host a lot of events, then Constant Contact is your go- to!
We understand that was a lot of information to take in. If you're still not sure which platform is best for you, or you need help launching your email marketing campaign, then reach out to us!
Schedule a demo with us here!
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