Overall Satisfaction with Mailchimp
We use MailChimp to distribute newsletters to subscribers to our online community. Also use for event marketing and notifications (e.g. webinars). Implemented several years ago and have been very happy with the cost, usability and function. Mailchimp provides good tracking and statistics on emails, and like most everything about the solution, it's easy to use.
- Very affordable. Especially considering the functionality, a great deal.
- Easy to use. The basics are handled without difficulty.
- Good function. Not the most sophisticated email system we've ever used, but missing functions are rare and we've implemented workarounds.
- Segmentation is one area where MailChimp has room for improvement. Basic segmentation is done well, but complex segments (combination of ands and ors) have be created manually and then uploaded as a static segment.
- MailChimp takes a very hard line on spam complaints. This is generally good because it ensures a 'clean' signup process. But opt-in subscribers sometimes forget they signed up and complain anyway. If this surpasses a threshold (fairly low, in my opinion) you could end up with your account suspended until you explain what happened. While I understand the need to enforce quality, this is a draconian approach that puts my business at risk.
- The main impact has been lowering costs. We have to run a hyper efficient operation, and MailChimp cuts our annual email delivery costs by 75% over a previous enterprise class product.
- Ease of use has also been helpful. People of my staff can use MailChimp with very little training. Our previous product was much too technical.
We looked a number of different products designed for email distribution. MailChimp had the best over all combination of cost/function/usability. Our second choice was Infusionsoft, but it was a bit more costly and had functions we didn't need. In general, I wish more software products worked like Mailchimp -- easy and affordable.
We were able to use if from "day one" without any training. I think enterprise software vendors could learn a thing or two about design by studying MailChimp. A number of templates are provided to help get started, but we didn't use because we have extensive html experience. Reporting is intuitive.
As an online publisher, it's key to keep costs low and Mailchimp helps us do that. We publish a lot of content and send two or three emails each week to our subscribers, so it's crucial to have a simple, repeatable process that requires little training. After using for several years, I can't imagine doing business without Mailchimp.
MailChimp is clearly geared towards small businesses and email newsletter publishers. With a little creativity it can be used in a lead generation process (we do so in combination with a Wordpress forms plugin. They recently announced a more full featured marketing automation product, but I have not reviewed or attempted to use.
Mailchimp Feature Ratings
Editor (sends email newsletters)
Operations Director (schedules promotional emails)
1 - Editor provides what support is needed (minimal). Some thought needs to be given to database setup and integrations (with Wordpress, in our case). On a day-to-day basis, however, support is rarely needed. Mailchimp "just works" and that's why we like it so much. The main skill you need is html design.
- Editorial newsletters featuring top content published in past week
- Promotional newsletters to feature sponsored resources and webinars
- RSS to email. We can feature a post on our site to add to RSS feed, and send an email the next day. Nice!
- Mailchimp became our de facto subscriber data base because it's so easy to work with
Evaluating Mailchimp and Competitors
Yes - We were using an email solution from RightNow (since acquired by Oracle). The product had a lot of great function, but was designed for large enterprises and required too much IT skill for our small business. Also wanted to get our cost down.
- Product Features
- Product Usability
Ease of use at an affordable price. We wanted to cut our costs, but needed basic functionality, which Mailchimp delivered and more. Ease of use is the gift that keeps on giving.
Yes - We phased MailChimp in pretty rapidly. Imported subscribers (after exporting from previous system), then set up some test campaigns. All went well, so we implemented fully and never looked back.
Change management was minimal - If you have existing templates, the change process should be easy. If you're creating emails from scratch then allow plenty of time to learn how to use the designer.
Like to use
Easy to use
Technical support not required
Quick to learn
Feel confident using
- Setting up 'campaigns' is easy if you're using a template (we do). Copy a previous campaign, edit, and send.
- Simple segmentation is very easy and intuitive.
- Reporting is easy and provide what we need to understand how different emails are performing.
- Complex combinations of AND and OR conditions may require manual (offline) work to set up a static segment.
- Send an auto-notification when a user clicks on a link is too complex.