The most valuable features for us, include being able to group our contacts on our email lists into multiple segments, and the vast array of mobile-ready templates we can use for our emails. Also, the ability to gain analytical data is valuable including information on our email open rates, click rates and what our subscribers found most interesting. It's also great to be able to link MailChimp subscriber forms with your social media, so for example we have our subscriber form as a tab on our Facebook page, and it links straight through to our chosen email list.
Improvements to My Organization:
This has given DigiEnable the ability to send out engaging, interactive and great looking emails, with ease and relative speed, to keep in touch with our clients and subscribers. It's much better to use a client like Mailchimp to avoid getting our domain blocked by SPAMNet!
Room for Improvement:
Some competitors also provide further details of the open rates and enable a more specific way of tracking users processes through to the end call-to-action or purchase.
Sadly now Mailchimp has started charging for the use of the auto-responder (automation) emails, so it's lost it's edge for the free services. There are cheaper platforms elsewhere that will be auto-responders if that's important to you and your business.
UPDATE: As of May 2017, Automation is now free for everyone!! This platform is now almost perfect!!
Use of Solution:
We've been using Mailchimp for a range of email lists and newsletters since we started our training company, back in 2012.
Sometimes the site will be down,and if it's for planned maintenance you normally get an email a few days before telling you of the downtime.
Once your email list starts to grow and you send more emails each month, you'll have to move up to the paid-for tariffs. In scalability terms, there are cheaper products out there, so I'd recommend this for smaller businesses and projects to keep to the free account. When you're ready, shop around to make sure the paid-for tariffs work for you.
The customer service that I've interacted with has been clear and quick to respond. There are also good resources on their site including a good how-to guide, FAQs, and help pages.
I've never had the need to seek technical support so I could not rate this part of the service.
We had an email client which had an email list that we used to send out our emails. However, there was new legislation on data retention of clients results which has resulted in us needing to improve our email security. This is because we are now holding sensitive data on our clients, and email systems increasing the rules on spam filters. This resulted in the emails we sent out to willing subscribers, were getting met by bounce backs and blacklisting of our email addresses. Mailchimp is great as most email clients see this as a reputable provider and don't normally block the emails.
The initial sign-up online for a free Mailchimp account is quick and simple. You provide a few details, including your location (for legal reasons), an email address that wish to send from, and a username and password and you're good to go. It takes a while to familiarize yourself with the layout of the dashboard once you log in, but the main sections are Campaigns (the emails you send out) and Lists (your email databases).
This is an online product that has free direct access.
This is a great way for DigiEnable to keep in touch with it's clients, users, subscribers, and charities and groups it supports. It's a vital tool in the online communications strategy for any business, meaning you can build better relationships with your clients, keep in touch more, and you'll build better projects for years to come.
Cost and Licensing Advice:
If you're a small business or organisation, we'd suggest just starting out with the free version and if/when your lists grow, think about further packages then. You can also buy one-off blocks of extra emails should you be working on a specific larger campaign over a short period.
Other Solutions Considered:
Before choosing Mailchimp, we looked at a few other options, including
- Constant Contact which in 2012 only did a free account up to 100 fans
- Campaign Monitor which only had a free demo; and
- Aweber which was paid-for from the start.
We chose Mailchimp not only on features, but the capacity to have up to 12000 email per month to 2000 subscribers on the free account too. It's great for a business starting out.
The most important thing with Mailchimp, or any other email service provider, is to spend time checking out the templates and picking and editing one that suits your needs. Make sure your shiny new email newsletter portrays your brand, ethics and style guidelines. When someone opens your email they should immediately know it's from you.
We run digital training and SEO for a variety of organisations and businesses, and our Mailchimp and Email Marketing workshops prove very popular, because these participants realise the importance of connecting with their consumers and potential customers, in a clear but engaging and interesting way. Email is the first line of communication, make sure it looks good!
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.