Comparing B2B Marketing Management Systems (1 of 3) - Email
To get the most out of your digital marketing, you should be utilizing the resources available to you via marketing management systems. The problem is, there are so many different options available to choose from. To help, we’ve provided a breakdown of our top two choices for providers that MSPs should consider when looking to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of their digital marketing. The first part of our three-part series looks into our two favorite email marketing providers.
Email Marketing Service Providers
Having a quality email service provider (ESP) is essential for B2B marketers, especially when that business is small or medium-sized. Two of the best options available are MailChimp and Constant Contact.
Constant Contact was founded under the name Roving Software in 1995 in Brookline, Massachusetts, not changing its name to Constant Contact until the year 2006. Constant Contact used to be the go-to ESP, but have since lost customers to other emerging ESPs. As of February 2016, Constant Contact operates under Endurance International Group Holdings.
One of Constant Contact’s closest competitors is MailChimp. MailChimp was founded in 2001 in Atlanta, Georgia by Dan Kurzius and Ben Chestnut and is operated by parent company Rocket Science Group. As of January 2017, over 14 million customers utilize MailChimp, and approximately 1 billion emails are sent daily. Their ingenuity has been recognized by many, leading the child company to be ranked #7 on the 2016 Forbes Cloud 100 list and named one of Fast Company's Most Innovative Companies in the year 2017.
Here are some similarities and differences between these EPSs:
Cost: MailChimp is the more cost-effective option across the board, offering a free plan for up to 2,000 subscribers/12,000 emails, and is cheaper overall as you reach different subscriber tiers. They also allow for a pay-as-you-go option, which Constant Contact does not have.
Features: Both MailChimp and Constant Contact allow for multiple ways to import contacts, and allow you to integrate with your ConnectWise PSA to sync marketing groups and track campaign metrics. They both come with a wide variety of templates that you can change using HTML, but MailChimp tends to provide the user with greater flexibility in terms of layout options. You have unlimited storage space with MailChimp and not Constant Contact, but Constant Contact allows you to utilize stock images from their Stock Image Gallery.
Analytics: Both platforms track open and click rates, allow you to compare campaigns, view interactive graphs, and allow for Google Analytics integration. MailChimp has additional options that include geo-tracking, click maps, social media reports, success per email provider, and comparisons to industry averages.
Integration and Automation Abilities: MailChimp offers much more integration options compared to Constant Contact. In terms of automation, MailChimp is far superior to Constant Contact: both platforms have autoresponder options, but MailChimp allows you to run campaigns that are triggered by segment and email sequences. This can allow for better movement through the sales funnel.
Performance Testing: Utilizing A/B testing is a bit more difficult in Constant Contact: you’ll have to create two new contact lists from your original list, then send one of your versions to your first list and the other version to your second list. This can become time-consuming when you have a lot of contacts on your list. On the contrary, MailChimp makes it easier to split-test things like subject lines, names, content, and send time so that you can easily compare open and click rates.
Deliverability: The deliverability rates are more or less the same between MailChimp (96-99%) and Constant Contact (97%). Both service providers have spam check tools in place to ensure that your emails comply with email regulations.
Support: Both MailChimp and Constant Contact have various online resources such as online tutorials and answers to frequently asked questions, as well as chat and email support. Note that if you are using the free plan for MailChimp, you lose access to many of their support options after 1 month of use. Additionally, Constant Contact offers phone support during weekday business hours, giving them a leg up on MailChimp.
Our Choice: MailChimp
MailChimp allows for a much better experience for B2B marketers through its flexible design options, analytics, A/B testing capabilities, and advanced analytic tracking - all at a better cost.
Get The Most Out Of Your Digital Marketing
Stay tuned for the next part of this series discussing the best social media management systems for MSPs just like you. Contact us if you need help taking your email marketing to the next level.