Despite cries that email is dead, a 2015 survey by Salesforce.com shows that 73 percent of marketers consider email marketing a core tactic.
But, with so many businesses sending out emails, getting prospects to pay attention can be tough.
Email marketing takes a lot of work. You need to make sure your content and message is clear, your list is constantly updated, and your emails actually make their way to the right people every time.
These 5 tools will help you successfully use email marketing for your small business.
This is the tool that we use to manage all of the email marketing at Main Street ROI.
Infusionsoft is a great option because it eliminates the need to use separate email and CRM programs by combining email marketing, customer relationship management (CRM), e-commerce capabilities, and even referral partner tracking.
Infusionsoft does not skimp on email functionality. Some of the highlights include:
- Scheduling and sending mass emails, such as a weekly email newsletters
- Scheduling and sending autoresponders, such as a targeted sequence of individual follow-up emails
- Using tags to create very specific email list segments from your overall database
One downside to Infusionsoft is the price. Packages start at $199, which can be expensive for small businesses. However, the cost can easily be offset by the increase in sales from your email campaigns and the time saved using the automation features.
Try out Infusionsoft for yourself with this free demo.
MailChimp is an excellent choice for small businesses with a limited budget, because the company offers useful features with a free account.
Free accounts are available for businesses with email lists up to 2,000 subscribers and allow for the sending of 12,000 emails per month. Though some functionality is limited, email design, scheduling, and basic autoresponders are included with free accounts.
MailChimp email creation is quick and easy due to the “drag and drop” nature of the platform. Emails can be created using predesigned templates or custom templates and images can be resized and edited directly in the platform.
The biggest drawback to MailChimp is that they require double opt-in. This means that MailChimp sends a verification email that requires those who have opted in to click a validation link. If they forget to do so, you cannot send them additional emails. This improves email deliverability, but can dramatically cut the size of your list due to real subscribers simply forgetting to click on the validation link.
Note that it is possible to get around this double opt-in using a third party tool like Leadpages.
If you are willing to deal with the double opt-in limitation, or use a third party to change it, MailChimp offers great value for the price. You can get started with a “Forever Free” MailChimp account here.
Constant Contact offers numerous features, including robust autoresponders and customizable email templates.
Unlike MailChimp, the default setting is single opt-in, which means people are automatically added to your list as soon as the sign up.
The biggest drawback is that system is a bit clunky and not as easy to use as the other tools.
Constant Contact is also a great choice for businesses on a budget. They offer a free 60-day trial, and pricing after that is highly competitive. You can start your 60-day free trial here.
AWeber is a complete and competitive solution. Its biggest strength is the autoresponder system, which allows you to quickly and easily set up a series of emails to automatically go out to new subscribers and other targeted groups.
AWeber offers an extensive lineup of templates and is easy to integrate with your website, blog, and existing CRM system.
The platform also provides detailed customer tracking through an intuitive dashboard. Not only can you track subscriptions, but you can also download charts that show how many clicks each individual link within an email received. This data helps quickly identify problem areas so that you can improve on future campaigns. It is also easy to split-test subject lines to find what is most effective for your list.
AWeber defaults to double opt-in, but you can disable this and switch to single opt-in within the program itself.
AWeber offers a free 30-day trial and competitive pricing, and is a very good choice for beginning email marketers.
You can get started with your 30-day free trial here.
iContact offers clean, straightforward navigation, a plethora of features, and more than 670 email templates.
It is particularly suited for first-time email marketers interested in building professional campaigns.
Where it really stands out is in the area of social media integration, with tools that allow easy linking to Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and LinkedIn profiles. The platform also has capabilities for scheduling social media posts eliminating the need to use another tool like Hootsuite or Buffer to schedule the same content.
iContact offers a 30-day free trial, followed by highly competitive pricing. If you are ready to try out iContact, you can start your free trial here.
Want More Email Marketing Tips?
On Thursday, June 2, 2016, we’re hosting a free email marketing webinar called:
Email Marketing 101: How to Grow Your List,
Keep Your List Engaged & Actually Generate Sales!
Main Street ROI is a digital marketing agency based in New York City.
Our mission is to help small businesses thrive. With our services and training, we help small businesses succeed with marketing regardless of their budgets.
Since 2010, we’ve helped thousands of small businesses create profitable digital marketing campaigns.
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