A funny name but a serious e-marketing solution!
Updated January 11, 2020
A funny name but a serious e-marketing solution!
Score 8 out of 10
Overall Satisfaction with Mailchimp
MailChimp is used by our marketing department in support of our curriculum team to send newsletters and follow-up emails to students. We are able to use MailChimp to communicate directly with those students who have asked us to contact them regarding new programs or programs they had requested. We also use MailChimp to follow up with students to ask them to complete feedback surveys regarding programs they have completed.
- Easy to Import Contacts: MailChimp accepts a number of files and formats, so no matter where your contacts are currently, you'll likely be able to import them fairly quickly without much issue.
- Customization options: There are templates to choose that can allow you to fairly easily make your design look like it's yours. If you happen to also have access to a graphic designer, then you can really take advantage of the customization options to make the design match your brand.
- Analytics: Being able to review data points like open rates and click-thru has allowed us to improve our communications and reach more people.
- Backend organization: I'm used to it now but initially it was very difficult to navigate the dashboard. I still get confused from time to time and have difficulty finding what I'm looking for. The organization just isn't very intuitive.
- The payment structure and credit system are incredibly confusing. We use the free version but had at one point considered paying for the full version. We had difficulty understanding how many credits we needed and abandoned the idea.
- We are able to directly communicate with our learners about their needs and improve their experience with our organization.
- We have been able to follow-up with learners and get feedback regarding our programs.
- We are able to accomplish our communication goals without it impacting our financial bottom-line.
I think some things, like creating the actual content of your campaign, are very user-friendly. With their available templates you can craft a message that looks attractive and professional designed without having a background or knowledge of design. However, importing your mail lists, managing your lists, and some of the other backend tools for generally managing your campaign aren't terribly intuitive and can be frustrating in the beginning. Mostly in just finding where different settings are located and discoverability of tools.
I'm aware of these functions and I've tried to use some of the tools in the past to cross post on our Facebook page and things like that. However, I didn't really like how the tool worked/it didn't work as I expected, and you were limited in the way that you could post to Facebook. I didn't feel like it was a good experience and I never used the function again, preferring to post directly at Facebook so that my post would appear as I preferred it to appear.
It's been a great way to be able to continue to communicate with our "customers" and keep them engaged and informed. I feel like enewsletters are the best way to reach people you already have a relationship with and you can more actively reach them by putting something in their mailbox (rather than posting to your social media and hoping they see it). So I feel that Mailchimp has helped us develop better relationships with our core audience who are deeply engaged.
We use the free option of MailChimp, which means some features aren't available to us. However, as a nonprofit organization, the ability to communicate with our learners directly for free means we are able to focus on our mission and not worry about the bottom line. I feel that the free version is incredibly robust and has almost all that we need. The only issue is that we are limited to sending 1,000 emails a day. This fits our needs and we've been able to work around this limitation; however, if you have a much larger contact list and are sending daily emails, then the free version wouldn't be for you.
Mailchimp Feature Ratings
Evaluating Mailchimp and Competitors
- Product Features
- Product Reputation
- Prior Experience with the Product
I had used Mailchimp at a previous position and felt that for what it offered at the price (free for us), it really did offer the best value. I haven't looked closely at a lot of other products but I do know that most of them charge for even the most basic features so knowing that Mailchimp provided a service that allowed me and my organization to accomplish its goals, free of charge, was clearly the deciding factor. For larger organizations with large mailing lists or if you want more robust analytics, there are fees involved. But it definitely meets our needs.
If our needs changed and we had a larger mailing list that meant we'd have to start paying fees at Mailchimp, I'd likely then look at the competitors to make sure we were getting the best price for our needs. But given that our needs haven't changed, I wouldn't do anything differently and am pleased with what we are able to accomplish with Mailchimp.