Email Newsletters – Part 2

I finally completed transfer of my newsletters to a new provider, got a design made up for 2 of the newsletters, began rebuilding my mailing list, and sent out 2 campaigns (one for each completed newsletter). The provider I selected to go with is MailChimp. I almost went with Vertical Response, but they didn’t have the one feature I wanted (discriminating unsubscribe). I have 4 newsletters I send out; a monthly newsletter (Blue Planet Photography Newsletter), a bi-monthly (PhotoCrawl), a quarterly (Workshops), and an occasional (Gallery shows). With Vertical Response, if a subscriber unsubscribes from one list they are deleted from everything and to be re-subscribed they (not me) have to contact customer service to be reinstated. I was told they are working on correcting that, but not within the time frame I needed.

MailChimp allows subscribers to select the interest groups they want to subscribe to or unsubscribe from, update their email address and other fields (If I have them available). I can also integrate Google Analytics (just getting that started also). I can use MailChimp’s templates as is or modify the layout with their simple and easy to use editor. Photos and graphics can be edited online using Picnik, resized in place, or uploaded from my computer ready to go (or combination).

Pricing is good, too. If you have less than 100 addresses, you can send emails free (up to 6X/month). Other options are pay-as-you-go and bulk ($10/month for 0-500 addresses and unlimited sends/month up to $240/month for 25,001 – 50,000 addresses). Pay-as-you-go starts at $9 for 300 credits (1 credit = 1 mailing to 1 email address).

I find the integration of the sign-up form, unsubscribe, forward-to-a friend, archives and other notifications very easy to accomplish. Automated reply emails and pages hosted by MailChimp can be customized to match the colors and appearance (mostly) of your website to minimize the feeling you’re yanking your visitors all over the web (swinging from tree to tree as MC might put it).

It took a day or so to get used to the new interface at MailChimp, understand how to make changes to templates, import graphics and HTML, but once I got the hang of it things went smoothly. I had to contact customer service three times and each time they were prompt, patient, and friendly. The tutorial videos are well-done and treat what could be a dry subject with humor.

Overall, I’m pleased with the performance and ease of use so far. The one thing that is lacking that Emailbrain allowed me to do, is drill down on individuals who opened and clicked. I would like the ability to know exactly who opened, unopened, clicked (and on what link) so I can direct other contact information to those individuals if needed. I’ll be requesting that, as if they probably haven’t heard that request before.

For small businesses (and larger ones), non-profits, and individuals, MailChimp has the features and convenience to make the newsletter/email campaign process enjoyable.

You can view my archived newsletters (just the 2 I’ve sent so far) Here. If you have comments about the newsletters or MailChimp, I would appreciate them.

One Reply to “Email Newsletters – Part 2”

  1. I was searching for a blog post on emailbrain when I come across yours.fabulous. Wow this was exactly what I was looking for.Thanks for sharing this.

Leave a Reply to Emailbrain Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.