Newsletters are a great way to inform your clients and potential customers of your products and services and to show them you are on the front foot by offering good industry-specific advice – Mailchimp allows you to do just that.

Just a few years ago, newsletters were quite bland affairs that usually involved a few snippets of information on a plain email template. Things have certainly moved forward in that regard and one of the most popular mailshot programmes on the market is Mailchimp.

Mailchimp is a cloud-based app which allows you to send out mailshots, special offers, newsletters, interactive forms and much more. Mailchimp’s marketing team reckon that their platform sends out over 600 million emails per day!

One of the best qualities of Mailchimp is that the free plan they offer is rich and also allows for integration with a tonne of third-party apps.

The free plan allows you to send up to 12,000 emails per month to a total of 2,000 subscribers. This means that Mailchimp – immediately identifiable with its cheeky monkey logo – is a go-to for small to medium-sized businesses.

Under its free plan, Mailchimp offers most of its tools and templates which can be used to create image and HTML rich campaigns.

The interface is very easy to use and works with a drag and drop system where you can create headers, footers, image boxes, collages, clickable images and much more.

In short, you can use the free version of this package to create everything you need if you don’t want to break the bank. Of course, Mailchimp enriches its paid package through additional tools, templates, and designs as well as detailed reporting.

In the free version of the package, users can track how many emails have been opened and clicked through, which is often enough to get a basic idea of how well your campaign has performed.

But with the paid version, you get much more detailed results, including demographics, location and other important pieces of information that can help you target your market.

sletOther attractive aspects of the Mailchimp platform include the fact that you can scale back when you need to. To give a practical example of this, you could use the free version of MailChimp through the bulk of the year and then scale it up to the paid version if you have a big sales drive coming up, or are catering to specific events such as Mother or Father’s Day, or Christmas, for example.

They also have pay-as-you-go options, which work out to be cheaper for low-volume clients, whilst also giving you some included extras such as automation and integration options.

This is a good option if you are just going to sit down and hammer out your own newsletter or campaign and hit send and it is very cost effective.

However, if you want features such as email previews, snippet previews, spellcheck, reporting, timed delivery, pre-scheduling and more, you will need to shift over to a paid plan.

Mailchimp has many options on the table ranging from $10 per month for a growing business to $240 per month for a business with 50,000 subscribers. Mailchimp also offers a $450 per month with pro-marketer tools for marketing and content agencies.

 

Mailchimp pros

Integration

Mailchimp’s newsletter platform integrates well with other essential tools such as Zapier, WordPress and Shopify and hundreds of others. You can also incorporate third-party order forms, links to landing pages and drip campaigns.

 

Reporting

Mailchimp gives you all the information that you need to know about clients including geo-tracking, social media and Google Analytics integration.

 

Generous Free Plan

12,000 emails to 2,000 subscribers with a drag and drop interface that anyone who has basic knowledge of desktop publishing can master. This is a great deal.

Great templates

Mailchimp’s interface is intuitive and surprisingly rich. You can create some truly professional campaigns and newsletters with little effort.

 

Mailchimp cons

Premium price plans

While Mailchimp’s free version is an excellent deal all round, things can get pricey quickly if you decide to scale your package up or purchase extras. The plans are competitive, but it can get expensive.

 

Limited email automation

Mailchimp incorporates auto responding functions, but if you want more advanced features, such as targeted responses, filtering and classification, you need to get involved at a hands-on level.

 

Delivery

According to various websites that tested Mailchimp, under 15 percent of emails end up in people’s spam folders, which is a good result. However, you should be aware that all emails sent from the platform go into the ‘Promotions’ folder, which is not always checked. Mailchimp, like many other platforms, also struggles to get into Outlook’s inbox.

 

Support

The resource centre on Mailchimp is extensive and there are plenty of third-party tutorials to help you if you get stuck. However, live chat and other support is only available with paid plans.

 

Conclusion

Mailchimp is a very easy to use tool and it delivers professional looking results with tools that you can use to analyse your market response. The free version is brimming over with features and really does not penalise you for not going premium. All in all, Mailchimp is great for reaching out to your clients and for sending newsletters and campaigns. However, if you are looking for that extra push or have a larger contact list, you will have to pay for a premium package.

 

Alternatives

If Mailchimp doesn’t quite do it for you, there are other options available including ActiveCampaign, MailerLite or GetResponse.

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