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Pros & Cons of Email Marketing Platforms

Back in 1999, email was fun. You sent dancing Irish leprechauns to your niece on Saint Patrick’s Day and forwarded Y2K emails to the other members of your grunge band. But since I became a professional millennial marketer—Mom, it’s a real job—I’m finding that there’s more to email than chain letters and e-vites.

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Now, email is an amazing—if time-consuming—tool for anyone looking to build (and hold) an audience. According to a 2012 McKinsey study, the American workforce spends 28 percent of work hours on email. Last summer, late New York Times writer David Carr even declared an email renaissance: “Email newsletters, an old-school artifact of the web that was supposed to die along with dial-up connections, are not only still around, but very much on the march.”

Luckily, there are tools for almost every type of email marketer. Mostly called email service providers (ESPs), many marketing automation tools double as email software that allows senders to build, test, optimize, send, and track newsletters.

There are hundreds of ESPs out there and not all are created equal; in addition, costs varies dramatically based on what you’ll need an ESP for. You’ll want to do a ton of research and demo a product before making a decision. But to get you started, here’s our breakdown of the top five tools on the market:

Here Some Email Marketing Platforms:

Mailchimp

Very easy to use and incredibly accessible! Let’s see Pros and Cons.

Pros

As I said before, one of its greatest features is that it is very easy to use. Importing and exporting your list has never been easier.

Second, it’s 100% free. Third, Mailchimp’s integrations are extremely powerful: WordPress, Google Analytics, Facebook, Unbounce, Instapage, and the list continues.

Cons

Although it is free, you still have to pay to upgrade for better features. Because so many people use Mailchimp, your template might look very similar to another user’s template.

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ConvertKit

One of the most popular tool among bloggers, ConvertKit makes your life so much easier. It is designed to help bloggers put up their list of clients and advertise their content. Here you can find some pros and cons of using ConvertKit.

Pros

ConvertKit has a very simple structure that anyone can follow. Its clear features and design makes you master something new every day. You don’t have to worry about spending too much time learning new technical words. It also has multiple inspiring characteristics.

For example, ConvertKit helps bloggers and authors keep track of their subscribers by providing a subscribe bar chart. It is simple to use and intelligible for everybody.

Cons

What could possibly go wrong with ConvertKit? The answer is: price. ConvertKit starts at $29/month and it does not provide a free trial opportunity. Besides this, it is the best platform any author could use.

Aweber

Pros

Although Aweber might seem a little bit outdated, it works incredibly well. Beginners are the ones that take the most out of Aweber. If you are new, it will teach you the basics and point you in the right direction.

Aweber will be beneficial to you even if you are an advanced user. It provides split testing, which is comparing multiple websites and figuring out which one draws most attention to the public. This increases your ratings and improves your expending approach.

Provides 30 days of free trial!

Cons

Aweber might run at a slower pace than the other platforms. Also, it might be a little too expensive for the services it offers. Check their website to find this out.

In case you want to unsubscribe, it will also charge you. Finally, Aweber will ask payment for a whole package of features, even though some of them you will never use. Choose wisely!

ActiveCampaign

One of the best priced tools, ActiveCampaign has its own CRM system for making your way into your customer’s pockets. It starts at only $9/month and it is very easy to access.

Pros

ActiveCampaign makes pre-built sequences of e-mails such an easy activity! This platform shows you how fast your customers replied, when they replied and if they have just opened the e-mail.

You can also personalize your e-mails with the information you get from your subscribers.

Cons

Their reporting could be improved. Allowing you to test different automatic sequences of e-mails would not be a bad idea also.

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GetResponse

GetResponse is another easy tool to use. Not much to say about its general features, as they are similar to ConvertKit, so check out the pros and cons.

Pros

Very affordable price, starting at $15/month. Great new designs, amazing opportunities for you to create proficient autoresponders or interesting newsletters. GetResponse is also connected to Shopify, WordPress or PayPal.

Also, you get 30 days of free trial!

Cons

GetResponse is a little bit difficult to use. Its structure and design are not that clear. Sometimes, it is hard for users to understand what applications are available.

It does have a well-designed e-mail automatic system. This can set you back, as you have to appeal to other platforms to get the job done for you.

Sailthru

Sailthru is a customer retention software which helps retail and media companies, as well as marketers, build and nourish stronger relationships with their clients and customers. With this cloud-based solution, you can personalize the experience of each customer across several different online communication channels such as your business website, email, and mobile app. This platform will also help you become more reliable and an expert in your niche in the eyes of your target market. Because the more your customers can depend on you, the higher the possibility of keeping their loyalty to your brand. Moreover, the capability to offer incredible customer experience also has a positive impact on your business revenue.

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Pros: Sailthru’s specialty is personalization. Whenever a user engages with your content, that person is cookie’d, which lets Sailthru create a personal email for each individual reader. Let’s say I only read narwhal-related content. Sailthru will learn that behavior and populate an email with content related to my narwhal interest. It’s made huge strides since joining the ESP scene in 2008, especially in the publisher space, gaining clients like Adweek, Refinery29, and Business Insider. The software is also great for programmatic email sending.

Cons: It’s pricey and was built as an engagement tool, not an acquisition tool. In other words, Sailthru is good for keeping friends but wasn’t made for making new ones. If lead gen is your game, you may want to look elsewhere.

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