According to Statista¹, the number of active email accounts is expected to increase to almost 5.6 billion towards the end of the decade. A study by McKinsey & Co.² revealed that email marketing is a significantly more effective way to acquire customers than social media. With increased smartphone users, nearly three out of four people will check their inbox many times within the day. Companies still prefer using email, relative to many other marketing channels as it is cost effective and it works practically at every stage of the customers’ journey. Having said that, companies need to review their email marketing strategies consistently – to ensure that they are attracting the right target audience and converting email opens to sales.
While statistics are great indicators to predict, scale and launch marketing efforts, the success of email marketing lies in getting to know your audience and giving them what they want. Tedious? Absolutely. The great news is that you don’t have to go at it ALONE. There are companies which provide one-stop solutions to meet with your email marketing needs and you can leverage on their expertise.
Quirky and they pride themselves in rooting for the ‘underdogs’ (in this case, small businesses), Mailchimp started as a side project in 2001, straight outta’ Atlanta. Founders – Ben Chestnut and Dan Kurzius designed MailChimp to provide affordable email software solutions and gave smaller businesses access to high-end marketing tools, that are usually only attainable by their competitors with deep pockets. In 2017, Mailchimp evolved into a full-fledged marketing platform with the integration of Facebook, Instagram, Google ads, landing pages and more. Its modus operandi remains focused on helping small business owners to grow, despite its commercial success and investment interests from venture capitalists.
This German-based company, with 17-plus years email marketing experience under its belt, plays an integral pioneering role in the industry. It has over 2000 customers (which included some high-profile corporations from various sectors), 200 international partners worldwide and touted as the top 25 most customer-service oriented providers in Germany. Founded by two IT specialists – Peter Ziras and Martin Bucher, it was their passion for service and providing solutions that attributed to the company’s success.
Now, let’s look at the solutions that both service providers offer:
Personalisation includes segmenting your target audience based on their geographical locations, age group or interests, sending marketing emails when your audience is most receptive and recommending products based on abandoned carts or buying preferences of customers. Segmented email (targeted emails) have a 14.32% higher open rate and also account for 50% of all revenue. MailChimp has incorporated easy-to-use templates for first-time users with 2000 or fewer subscribers at no fee at all. As your business grows, you can opt for better plans (with advanced segmentation, email and chat support) starting from USD10 per month to suit your increasing marketing needs. Inxmail provides companies with a more complex email marketing appetite and those seeking to optimize their existing CRM (Customer Relationship Management) system. Some of the add-on benefits that Inxmail provide are extensive personalization options, professional bounce management, maximum deliverability and newsletter templates in line with your corporate design specifications.
We personally love the automation options that are provided by both service providers. Automated emails can be left running in the background and relieve you from engaging in repetitive marketing efforts. MailChimp provides automated triggers – be it a welcome subscriber email, product recommendation or order notification. Transactional emails like order confirmations or shipping notices receive 8 times more open than regular marketing emails. Companies can capitalize on this to create product awareness or incorporate surveys that customers would typically ignore. Inxmail combines eCommerce and email marketing to create newsletter content based on reactions from the previous campaign and also event-based transactional emails by leveraging on interfaces that allow you to obtain customer preferences. Their intelligent campaign management and multichannel strategy offer automated and cross-channel customer communication to increase conversion rates. Automation helps to increase audience engagement and ensure that no one falls through the cracks.
Linking your email marketing with other social media will widen audience reach, open doors to a new niche market and move prospects through the conversion funnel. MailChimp allows you to create emails and ad campaigns with Facebook, Instagram and Google ads without having to leave its site. Their in-built templates come with descriptive instructions – not rocket science material, which is suitable for users of all proficiency levels. Inxmail also offers an easy-to-use ‘share with social media’ function that allows sharing of newsletters (into viral messages on other social media platforms) and the integration of Facebook lead ads aids in converting current Facebook followers into new Newsletter subscribers.
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The beauty of digital marketing is that it allows you to measure the ROI of your marketing efforts with the availability of data analytics. You can now track performance, monitor trends, understand customers preferences to better personalize upcoming marketing campaigns. Both MailChimp and Inxmail offer detailed reporting where you can measure the efficacy of your marketing launches.
Conclusion: Does digital email marketing work for all businesses? It can work for any business in any industry. However, that’s not to say that all businesses should adopt a universal, one-size-fits-all strategy. Although Mailchimp fronts itself as a small business connoisseur, bigger corporate set ups can still leverage on the creative solutions that it offers – in terms of ease of use and the quick implementations. Similarly, Inxmail’s superior, a systemic approach may work for smaller businesses with bigger budgets.
We hope that the blow-by-blow comparisons have helped you gain a better understanding of the services rendered by both companies. We can’t stress enough the importance of partnering with service providers who are able to meet with your marketing appetite, target audience needs and of course, the proverbial budget.
Freelance writer who (tries to) dabble with digital marketing and practises yoga in her free time.