One of the most famous misconceptions about email marketing is that it is old-fashioned.
It might seem like social media took all the glory. In fact, some believe that people don’t even open promotional emails anymore.
However, that is far from the real state of affairs.
Email marketing remains one of the most effective marketing strategies. But, in order for it to work out, you need to know the tricks. You need to know how to tailor the strategy and to employ the latest tools to execute it efficiently.
What Is Email Marketing?
According to some email marketing guides, around 20% of all transactions are made thanks to promotional emails.
Email marketing is a form of digital marketing that uses emails as the primary communication channel with prospects and customers.
In other words, it is one of the most effective mechanisms to push prospects through the marketing funnel. So, the main goal is to turn prospects into loyal customers.
Furthermore, an email address is considered to be sensitive data. When a person entrusts a brand with their email address, it means that they trust it and are willing to communicate with the brand directly.
Additionally, email marketing is highly compatible with other advertising methods, such as social media marketing. What makes email marketing special is that it is one of the most personalized ways of communication with customers. Messages on social media are sent to everyone following a page, while email is delivered to individuals.
Email marketing is also an effective way to promote your website content, blog, video, podcast, ebooks, or other digital assets. If you’ve invested your time or hired others to help you with copywriting and content strategy, then you’ll want to increase the value of those assets by using email marketing to promote your efforts.
Perhaps the greatest challenge of email marketing is knowing your limits. Ending up in a spam folder is one of the worst results of any email marketing strategy. People are becoming overwhelmed with advertising. Things such as AdBlock software and the latest iOS update are sending a clear message that marketing needs to become more personalized and proficient.
Even with such challenges, email is still one of the most effective promotional assets any business can have; but that doesn’t mean you don’t have to watch your email marketing costs. Fortunately, there are many tools available to help you get your money’s worth while gaining all the marketing efficiency that email provides.
Why Should You Automate Your Email Marketing Campaign?
Now, marketing automation is one of the main prerequisites of a successful email marketing campaign.
It is impossible to do everything manually anymore. There are too many prospects, each with their specific needs, aspirations, and values. Also, the fast-paced market and fierce competition wait for no one.
Therefore, there is a variety of software that helps businesses and marketers analyze, outline, and execute their campaigns.
Here are some of the features these email marketing automation tools have:
- customer behavior tracking
- website visitor tracking
- data collection
- personalization of content
- help to create buyer personas
- automate lead assignment
- nurturing leads
- build landing pages and forms
- make dynamic content
- smart list segmentation
In other words, email marketing software is powerful tools that will boost your marketing metrics and, in turn, raise sales.
However, upon a simple Google search on email marketing software, you discover that there are so many tools currently in the market. Besides, a lot of them are quite expensive. How to pick the best, get some benefits, and still not exceed your budget? This is especially a concern for volunteer groups that need to choose a budget-conscious non-profit email marketing platform.
We made a top 10 list of software that has been approved by professionals and are sure to positively contribute to your business at minimum cost.
The free plan with EmailOctopus will allow you to communicate with up to 2,500 subscribers a month. Also, you can send an unlimited number of emails.
Optionally, you can decide on one of the premium plans, starting at $19/month. They offer features such as insight in sending stats, analytics, and newsletter templates you can customize without coding.
With MailChimp free plan, you get to have 2,000 subscribers and send up to 10k emails each month.
Although their free plan is less generous, the premium plan is cheaper. It starts with as little as $9.99 per month.
MailChimp is one of the most popular email marketing tools. It includes services for a variety of channels: emails, social media ads, postcards, pop-ups, and landing pages.
MoonMail has a quite limited free plan, but it is a good short-term solution for startups and small businesses. Without a subscription, it is possible to have up to 2,000 subscribers and send 300 emails monthly.
To get access to other channels and additional features, the user has to pay at least $23.99/month.
Now, Sender is much more generous. Its free plan allows all available features, only limiting the number of subscribers to 2,500 and sending a maximum of 15,000 emails a month.
The features include free newsletter templates to improve your email marketing content, a gallery of editable email templates.
Another piece of good news is that the premium subscription is quite affordable, starting at $10.
Hubspot is a superstar among email marketing automation tools. The free plan limits you to 2,000 emails a month and comes with HubSpot branding in the footer.
The premium plans are a bit pricey: they start with $480 a year (which is $40 a month). However, the quality of Hubspot’s service is impeccable. They are one of the best CRM software, integrating almost any other tool such as Front App, ZenDesk, or LiveChat.
Benchmark Email has a rich gallery of email templates, a CRM, and multiple forms and reports. The free plan limits you to 2,000 subscribers and 14,000 emails per month.
VerticalResponse doesn’t have a free plan, but rather a two months trial period. Besides, the paid plans start at $11 and depend on the number of your subscribers.
Apart from email automation, the app has an HTML editor, a rich mobile template library, a social media posting option, access to stock images, and more.
SendLoop is another great option for startups and small businesses. The free account has 10,000 free email credits, and the premium subscription is as low as $9 per month. The paid plans grant access to easy email builders, email campaigns, many mobile-friendly templates, helpful support service, and more.
MailGenius is an entirely free email marketing tool. It has a series of useful features, such as inspecting the reasons why your emails went to spam, deliverability test, and more.
Sumo is a bundle of tools that comes for free or $468 a year. The free plan is limited to 10,000 emails, while subscribers are unlimited. The features include
- Email opt-in forms
- Fully customizable design
- Social media sharing
- Visitor Targeting
and a series of other options, including analytics and email campaigns.
Marketing is a necessary component of every business activity. At times, it can be costly. Luckily, email marketing is one of the most cost-effective promotional methods available, and there are many free and affordable email service providers that can help you get the most from your email efforts.