Developing a community and adding value to your audience has always been crucial to marketing. With organic social media reach sharply plummeting across all platforms, companies and brands are now forced to spend more just to maintain their reach and attention.
That must not be yours. Paid advertising can get decent results, but it shouldn't be your only option. You need to have your own asset you can depend on and own fully.
That is your email list.
Your subscribers are much more familiar with your brand since they opted in. They’re not strangers and that massively increases their receptiveness to your new content or any new offers. Traffic from your subscribers to your new content or products is the best quality of traffic you will get.
Advertising is getting more expensive by the month! As social media platforms tighten their belt on organic reach and competition for ad and story placements increase, so does the cost.
Also, it is being speculated that the Facebook newsfeed may be going away soon. That means marketers and brand may have to find a unique to or reach and get customers.
For many businesses this is simply not sustainable. Email marketing allows you reach your subscribers and customers for free!
As previously stated organic reach has been slowly declining on most major platforms for years. In order words despite having fans or followers you’re barely be able reach a fraction of them. Well why would they do that, you may ask. It's easy to get you to pay for advertising.
Your list gives you an opportunity to reach most of them (if you treat them well).
Now you're more familiar with why email marketing is huge and may be your lifeline in the future, your next question may be how do I get started? What factors must I decide on when choosing a solution. Here you go.
Factors to consider when choosing an email Marketing solution
Whether you're new to building an email list or you have some skin in the game, email deliverability (how many of your emails consistently hit the inbox) is a huge deal. Marketers, brands and business owners work hard to get someone to subscribe (and may even spend money with paid advertising as well).
Not being able to reach inbox because of service providers’ bad IP reputation or any miscellaneous reason is financial suicide. it takes multiple touches to nurture a relationship and build trust with a subscriber and get them to do business with you or buy your products.
To be clear, there are other factors affecting email deliverability, many not caused by your provider.
Learning and keeping up with software changes can be a pain. Yes, new features can sometimes help but constant user interface changes along with a navigation that's already cumbersome to use, can be sometimes annoying.
Leave a comment at the bottom of this post if you agree.
Whatever email marketing software that you use must not only have good delivery, but also be easy to use. ConvertKit and Aweber both have decent interfaces and make it easy for beginners grasp quickly.
Especially when you’re brand new and starting out, price matters. Some companies like Aweber, Drip and ConvertKit provide complete access to their functionality at all their plans, most others simply restrict the features, and give them based on list size or the package you opt for. For someone who's bootstrapping, they should consider a cheaper option like GetResponse.
Price doesn't always provide the full picture though. Your email marketing strategy could determine the features, and hence the product that is most relevant to your needs. Depending on how you really want to use it, especially if you experienced and have tried several solutions in the past.
For example some marketers prefer Drip since it allows them to tag subscribers based on website page visits and others may choose ConvertKit or Active Campaign because of its tag segmentation based on clicks and ease of setting up complex automations based on subscriber engagement.
This deserves a little more attention although I briefly touched on it. Beginners fall into the trap and hype of purchasing softwares because of fancy shiny tools and automations.
My personal advice to you is if it's your first time, simpler is better. So a lot of these features may not be applicable to your use case, especially if you have less than 1000 subscribers you won't be able to make the maximum use of them. Focus on getting more subscribers on your list.
For example, some people may only send bi-weekly broadcast emails to subscribers and would not require a solution with fancy automated multi-campaign drip sequences. Others may need to segment the users and use a tag-based approach rather than the traditional broadcast list to send relevant offers to various subscribers.
Last but certainly not least, is customer support. Across the board, support standards of providers have improved drastically and so has customer expectations. The speed, convenience and quality of responses you get when you have an issue is important.
We all love to feel like whomever we partner with and depend on to run our businesses care and has our best interests at heart.
It's really nice to have a good knowledge base to reference, but nothing beats a one-to-one communication. And one thing I'm really insistent on is that companies go the extra mile and offer quality personalised customer support.
With that said, here are the pros and cons of my top 5 recommended email marketing tools
Who is GetResponse best for: professionals who want a stable and all-in-one solution
Who is Aweber best for: new and seasoned marketers who want a reliable solution
Who is ConvertKit best for: new and professional bloggers
Who is Mailerlite best for: Bloggers and professionals new to email marketing
Who is Constant Contact best for: Beginner and experienced bloggers and marketers
These are a breakdown of the main options from my top 5 recommended solutions.
Relationship marketing is the future. Those who can forge and nurture relationships by adding value to subscribers and customers will survive and thrive long-term. It is crucial that you take some control of your future and don't ignore the advice from this post.
We don't know what new platform change is coming or how we may affected. However, our loyal fans who know and trust us is a certainty if you do it properly.
Messenger marketing may seem hopeful but it's still someone else's platform and can be throttled or shut down at anytime. Let's go build your own.
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Craige Hardel is an an email marketing expert, entrepreneur, mindset coach, community advocate & technology enthusiast who is passionate about helping people become their best selves and live lives to their full potential.
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