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How To Choose An Email Marketing Service

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Many business owners find themselves asking some variation of this question while delving into their email marketing strategy:

“Which email marketing service is best?”

If you’re looking for the best email marketing software, “best” will really depend on what fits for your company. Email marketing software is not a one-size-fits-all deal.

At FireDrum, we understand the individuality of our email clients.
We know that different clients have diverse needs, and that’s the reason we offer the variety of solutions that we’re known for.

I won’t bore you with the details of comparing the individual features of every email service provider out there. Instead, I’ll focus on what you need to assess about your own business before you choose a provider.

 

Here are the things you should consider before choosing an email service provider:

 

Your Audience

The most important thing to assess about your audience is how big it is. How many people will you be sending your emails to? Some email service providers allow you to have a set number of contacts before the price increases.

FireDrum is 1 of 3 email service providers that is free up to 750 contacts.

You should also consider how segmented your list is, or how segmented do you plan for it to be? If you are aiming to use a segmented email marketing strategy, you are going to need tools within your email marketing system to make that happen.

Features

After you asses your audience, you’ll need to figure out what types of email you plan to send them. If you plan to do all of your email marketing yourself, it’s important to look for an email service provider that is easy to use and customize. You’ll want to be able to distinguish the emails for your brand as well as personalize the content for different types of users.

FireDrum offers a DIY Solution that makes it incredibly easy to stay consistent with your branding without any additional help support. You can pick from our massive template library, choose the color scheme and layout, and you’ll be sending high-impact communications in no time.

You should also consider what type of automation features you want your email service to have. Some of the most sought-after features that we offer are:

• Blast emails / eBlasts
• Triggered emails / Drip campaigns
• Automated marketing
• Email list management
• A/B split testing
• Interactive real-time reports
• Social integration
• Template editing
• Managed services
• Custom templates

What will your monthly volume be?

Most email marketing services are priced based on the cost per thousand emails sent (often referred to as CPM, or Cost per Mile.) It’s helpful to know ahead of time what the volume of emails you intend to send will be, to avoid being blindsided by the costs down the road.

Email marketing is known for being reliable, consistent and offering a high ROI. It is also highly scalable, so you will want to consider how fast you expect your email list to grow.

Budget

You saw this one coming. How much of your marketing funds can you allocate to your email service provider?

The good news is that emails can really stretch your marketing dollar. Email consistently has the highest conversion rate of all channels for many businesses, so a little can go a long way. And often times, a little is all you need because it is notoriously inexpensive.

For example, Firedrum allows you to send emails to up to 750 people for free, 2500 people for $20/month, and 5,000 people for $35/month.

How else can you reach so many people for such a small cost?

Don’t fall into mindset that because email marketing is inexpensive, you should pay less attention to it.

Often times, if something has a more significant budget assigned to it, it garners more time and attention. The only reason email gets a small budget is because it doesn’t need a big budget to be effective.

How much support do you need?

A solid support team is a luxury in the world of email marketing.

For some people, that’s okay. There are a lot of DIY-ers out there who prefer who do it all themselves and would never think to utilize member support.

For other email users, service and support can be a lifesaver. Depending on how much time you have or want to put into your emails, how user-friendly your provider’s email tools are, how complex your email campaigns are, and how much customization you are looking for, you may really benefit from a company that offers exceptional support services.

Most providers give you basic tools and the ability to submit support tickets, but others provide additional services, including full-service options.

FireDrum offers extensive support for just about anything you could need. Some of our great support features include:

• Unlimited free phone and email support
• Live chat
• Comprehensive written help guide
• Experienced account management
• Custom template design
• Campaign management
• Creative and technical writing

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Jackie Broussard

Online Marketing Project Manager at FireDrum Marketing