Is your free Email Service Provider really free?
Choosing the right Email Service Provider (ESP) for your business can seem like an arduous task. With a world full of fantastic ESPs out there to choose from, all of which have a wide range of services and numerous pricing options, deciding on who to use is a big decision.
Everyone wants different goals with their email marketing and it’s not just about comparing the right features and tools – pricing will always be a major factor in your choice. The offer of a ‘free service’ from a blue-chip firm, which seems to have everything you need in one place, would be the ideal solution, or so you’d think.
If I told you that when you look at the bigger picture and did a little digging, Mailchimp or other large ESPs offering a “free” service maybe isn’t the cheapest option and probably isn’t the most beneficial when it comes to connecting with your customers, prospects, members & stakeholders.
The “free” Mailchimp account isn’t always the most cost-effective solution.
If Mailchimp or other “free” ESPs are indeed free, then how is a premium ESP such as mmunicMail cheaper?
I’m going to tell you a story.
Back in 2000 and something, when I was a bright eyed and bushy tailed graphic designer, I landed a new role as a digital designer for an ESP called mmunic (the middle bit of the word communication, get it?).
It had beautiful offices on the Chester Business Park and its own state of the art email marketing platform, complete with lots of lovely clients from all over the world. My job was to design, build and schedule HTML emails. Once an email had been approved by the client, I would then schedule the email for delivery at a designated time. Three to four days later we would provide a list of opens, clicks and unsubscribes for the client then do it all over again the next week.
As the years moved on, so did technology and email marketing features, complexity, and strategy.
It felt that another new email marketing firm was popping up every week with brilliant new tools, features and cheaper packages. The days of sending out an email to your entire list regardless of whether they had given permission or not, was over.
Marketing gurus were developing complex strategies using split testing, dynamic content, and intelligent, automated sending. Automation became an integral part of the marketing process and segmentation became essential.
You could now read emails on new devices of all shapes and sizes demanding emails to be fully responsive. New complex, dynamic templates were introduced and were expected to be a part of the “free” package.
New email clients were multiplying rapidly; Gmail, Thunderbird, Yahoo, Pixel, Dynamics etc. and your email campaigns were expected to render dependent on where it was being read, what it was being read on (your desktop, tablet, or phone) and on what email client you were opening the email. The world of emails and ESPs were becoming a minefield.
Fast forward a few years, where I’m now a mmunicMail veteran, our game has had to be dramatically stepped up. We developed a brand-new platform that rivalled all other platform features and made them user friendly complete with its own tailored automations suite. We also introduced face to face support, delivered by established email marketers and engineers.
So why mmunicMail?
The main point I’m trying to portray here is that email marketing is constantly evolving. It’s come on leaps and bounds over the last ten years and is now a very powerful marketing tool that when used correctly can deliver a 44% ROI. That’s a higher return than any other form of marketing, digital or otherwise.
Using a free email marketing service which offers a quick and easy service to ‘just get email out’ and has their branding on the bottom of your company’s email doesn’t scream professional, does it?
If you’re a restaurant and have an audience of 5,000 recipients and want to email that audience about a new vegan menu, would you send it to your whole database, or would you want to use segmentation to ensure you’re sending the email to the right people, knowing that vegan content is what they’ve requested to receive? You need to be sending the right email, to the right people at the right time.
A so-called free service doesn’t allow you access the tools to do this – you must pay to utilise these tools.
Let’s have a look at what you’re missing out on with your ‘free’ service!
Below is a comparison table detailing just five of what is available in your free Mailchimp account compared to what you would receive from a mmunicMail account. Our accounts are bespoke, start at £60 per month depending on your monthly sending amounts, and we don’t hide any basic features. We don’t restrict your sending and there are no limits to the email addresses you can upload.
Using a ‘free’ email marketing service without any training or support from a friendly face may actually cost your business a lot of money indirectly through things such as wasted time trying to work out how to use the platform correctly and understanding what those complex tools really can do for you.
You can also unknowingly cause real damage to your businesses online reputation by not having a dedicated sending domain set up so that when your emails reach the inbox they will appear to come from you, rather than another domain altogether.
Finally, but by no means least you can really be missing out on some new revenue opportunities that your campaign data/reports reveal to you through proper analysis and strategy with an email marketing expert.
At mmunic our onboarding process starts with understanding you, your business and your goals. We appoint you with a friendly UK based account manager who will remotely train you and your employees and are available by phone, email or video chat to help you get the very best out of your email marketing. If you’d like a friendly service that never makes you use another company’s branding on our emails and a platform where no features are hidden or locked until you pay us more money then get in touch, we’d love to help.