Businesses need to use a custom domain name for a number of reasons. These reasons include everything from creating a professional and trustworthy appearance to maintaining continuity across an organization by having a standard email address format for your staff. Email addresses that use a custom domain are also more memorable while providing additional administrative control.
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Your email campaign is created. Your newsletter is designed and ready. You have even sent it to your list of subscribers. Now what? This is the moment when you are dying to know what your recipients think about it. Did they open it? How many read it through? Do they click on the links and visit your website? Have they watched the video you thoughtfully inserted? Finding the right tool for you means more than finding the best bulk email software. Pinpointe is one such email service that offers great insight and analytics, so you can track your email campaigns and see how they are performing.
Mailchimp offers a forever free plan which allows you to send 12,000 emails for up to 2,000 subscribers. This plan is fairly limited because you don’t get features like send-time optimization, advanced segmentation, multi-variate testing, etc. You are also required to display their branding in your email. Last but not least, support is restricted to email only which is fine if you’re a hobbyist but as a serious business, you need reliable support that you can count on.
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Choosing the right email marketing service that fits your needs is important for your business. Just because an email marketing company is popular doesn’t always mean that it’s the best solution for your needs. It’s easy to get overwhelmed with different choices since there are dozens of email marketing solutions on the market. That’s why we’re going to break it all down for you!
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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.
How do I create an email marketing list?
I send out monthly email newsletters for my Realtor clients and have used iContact (years ago), MailChimp and ConstantContact. I find the CC product to be the best though it’s clearly not the cheapest. They do have live support though which I like and the emails always look professional. I had problems with MailChimp’s support – not responsive enough and too time consuming trying to describe some issues by Chat or even Email – and I also discovered that if you have email addresses in one particular group and you want to add them into another group, that was considered yet another contact! So I stopped using MailChimp.
If you pay on a yearly basis you’ll receive wide discounts across the board. There’s also a 14-day free trial that allows you to test the service for up to 100 contacts and 100 emails sent. However, they are lenient with the timeframe and you might be able to get an extension. Since there are no refunds you’ll definitely want to try the software before you buy.
Your email marketing cost will entirely depend on the number of subscribers you have, the number of total emails you send per month, and the email platform you use. On average, a small business email marketing costs is around $20 – $300 per month on email marketing given that they manage their own campaign. If you use an email marketing agency, then your cost might be closer to $500 per month or higher.
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Segmentation tools: The most successful and professional email marketing campaigns make your customers feel important. To do this, you need to send only applicable content to each subscriber. With segmentation tools, you can separate your contacts into specific groups to ensure they only receive content that's relevant to them. Creating smaller email lists within your one large email list helps you target groups more effectively. Segmentation is an important email marketing tool.
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While pricing varies by provider, the cost structure is usually the same. Most email marketing providers charge a monthly fee based on contact list size, with a range of packages and plans. With this structure, most providers allow you to send out an unlimited number of emails each month and have enough different plans to fit into the budget of any business.
Econsultancy Research Manager Aliya Zaidi says email is no longer just on a computer—it's also mobile content on smartphones and iPads. As a result, Zaidi's email marketing tips include being aware of how your message is delivered and displayed on different mobile devices. "Think about touchscreens and how you can optimize an email to improve this part of the customer experience," Zaidi says. For some, mobile is read offline, which limits real-time offers in the content, she says. On the other hand, mobile does let you do some things better, such as target by location.
Molly K. McLaughlin is a New York-based writer and editor with more than a decade of experience covering technology. She has tested and reviewed all sorts of software, mobile apps, and gadgets. Before launching her freelance business, she was an editor at PC Magazine, covering consumer electronics, followed by a stint at ConsumerSearch.com, a review website. Molly also runs About.com's Android site and contributes to DealNews and other online publications. Follow her on Twitter @bloggingmolly.
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Most email marketing services offer a free version of their software or at least a 14-day free trial. The trial allows your team of marketers to practice using the services to see if they like it. We'd recommend trying out a few different free trials if offered. This lets you check out multiple companies and pick an option that's truly tailored to your needs before spending money on the email marketing service.
If you’re a small business owner who’re just getting started with email marketing, then Constant Contact is the best email marketing service for you. It comes packaged with all the features that you’ll need to grow your email list. Plus, you can make use of their 60-day free trial without any contract or commitment. That way, you can experiment and get to know their tools before you actually have to start paying.