Campaign Monitor has undergone a lot of growth recently. What does your customer base look like?
We now have more than 1.2 million customers at 120,000 companies globally. Our customers break down into three main categories:
1) We have a great set of SMB customers who are really trying to grow their businesses with Campaign Monitor. We work with businesses like Rip Curl, who uses Campaign Monitor’s email marketing to launch their products, and the San Diego Chargers, who use us to manage ticket sales and promotions.
2) We also have a lot of digital agency customers. Businesses work with agencies to make their email marketing decisions, and those agencies then utilize Campaign Monitor to send emails for their clients, like the Foo Fighters and Disney on Ice for example.
3) Lastly, divisions or departments in big companies use Campaign Monitor to get on-brand email out. These are people who are trying to get something done and can’t afford to wait in the queue of a corporate marketing dept. Coca-Cola and British Airways are two examples; they use Campaign Monitor in a specific division of their larger organization.
Where are your new customers coming from, in terms of their previous solutions?
Our new customers are coming to Campaign Monitor from across the board. There are people who are new to email marketing altogether, and are purchasing a tool for the first time. Then there are customers using lower end email marketing solutions for the masses who want something more flexible and geared towards business. We also see people who are using larger marketing suite systems that are too complex and cumbersome, and they want something easier to use, easier to implement.
How would you describe the Campaign Monitor value proposition?
We look at ourselves as simple, elegant email marketing for business. A lot of tools out there try to be everything to everybody. We’re focused on specific business goals. We target the do-it-yourself marketer who needs to get something out the door that’s on-brand and looks absolutely beautiful.
“Beautiful” isn’t a term we often hear about emails. How do you help users create more beautiful emails and why is this important?
Historically, getting email visuals right has been really hard. With many other solutions, you have to code HTML. This is a pain point, because people that care about email marketing aren’t developers—they are marketers. What’s awesome and different about Campaign Monitor is the elegant drag-and-drop interface. I can easily upload my corporate branding, put in the messaging that I need to communicate to my client, and send it out. It’s automatically mobile-friendly, optimized for a variety of screens and devices. As an end-user I don’t have to worry about the HTML underneath. I know that when I design an email, the way I see it in the builder is the way it will be delivered to clients.
Where does Campaign Monitor fit in the marketing landscape? Do you compete with marketing automation tools, or with email tools like MailChimp and Constant Contact?
We have an interesting position in the space – We don’t get caught up in the complexity of marketing cloud suites or serve the masses with goofy cartoon tools. I think we’re looking at a different market, because we’re not trying to be that high-end all-in-one marketing suite product. We find that marketers want to use a best-of-breed solution, and a key reason why marketers buy those marketing suite products is for email. So our goal is to be the absolute best email marketing solution for business. We provide everything around email, including automation. And, we have great relationships with other marketing solutions that do landing pages or automation for things outside of email.
I see email for the masses at the other end of the spectrum. But in terms of simpler email tools, there aren’t a lot of products in the space targeting the business user. They’re more brick and mortal, aimed at the masses—they provide templates for birthday parties, church newsletters, etc. We’re really focused on the growing business. That’s the difference.
How does the focus on business users manifest in Campaign Monitor’s template structure?
When you log into Campaign Monitor and look at our templates, they’re pre-built for “ecommerce,” “Lead gen,” “Webinars,” etc. Our templates are designed for marketers who are trying to achieve a particular business goal. The templates add a ton of value, because they’re designed to be relevant starting points. They work with the drag-and-drop interface, so you’re not starting with a blank slate and you don’t have to import HTML.
What are some of the other features that cater to business users?
A/B testing is one that I personally use a lot. For any marketer the big question is: “How do I know I have an impact on the business?” A/B testing helps me understand what message is resonating with my audience and driving conversion points. It enables measurement and from there, improvement.
Dynamic content is another one of my favorites. Research shows that personalization increases open rates and engagement. The ability to dynamically serve up content that is relevant to our users increases engagement and builds trust with the brand.
Those are two other features, along with automation, that are great for the marketer.
You mentioned that Campaign Monitor works well as part of a marketing stack—what integrations do you offer?
Integration with Salesforce is a great one; it’s one we use ourselves internally a lot. We have more than 5,000 partnerships with technology companies and digital agencies. There are over 250 systems that we deeply integrate with, ranging from CRM integrations to an integration with Spotify. We also integrate to some CMS products, and to content marketing solutions for scheduling and posting. And, we have an open API so that companies can directly integrate with us as well.
What trends are driving your plans for product development?
From a technology standpoint, I see it coming back to the rise of the do-it-yourself marketer. Marketing was one of the last departments to get technology and become automated. It’s been fun to see all of this technology come on board over the last 10 years, but now we’re almost overwhelmed with technology. Personally, I see a lot of companies trying to be everything to everyone. With that kind of technology, marketing needs IT and developers, and that becomes hard. So now among my peers and colleagues I’m seeing a back-to-basics trend. We want to get our stuff out the door. We want it to be beautiful, on-brand, and we want to be able to do it ourselves. Campaign Monitor is focused on being able to empower marketers to execute.
From an industry standpoint, we’re thinking about personalization and relevancy. We now have all of this data available to us—so how do we use it to be better marketers, to have a greater, broader impact on our business?
To what degree are your customers ready to do personalization, beyond incorporating a contact’s name?
There’s definitely an appetite for it. Rip Curl comes to mind as a great customer example of this. They sell surf gear, and they use personalization to determine whether they should serve up products for females or males. They can also determine where in the world their contact is located, because it’s winter in Australia right now but it’s summer in the U.S., and this affects the type of product they want to include in their emails.
So are your customers doing mostly demographic-based segmentation?
Absolutely. And, in cases where we’re integrated with ecommerce software, we’re also pulling in purchase history and browsing data. For example, if a customer looked at a certain wetsuit, Rip Curl wants to send them emails with types of wetsuits that are very similar.
Can you pull in data from other sources to create segmentation and personalization rules?
Yes. Because of our open API, the sky is the limit. Whatever systems you have available to you, you can easily push that data into Campaign Monitor. Then you can leverage the data for personalization and dynamic content. It’s really exciting; there are a lot of opportunities for marketers to hyper-target their prospects and customers.