[ad#inline]Email Marketing is a great tool for marketing your small business if it is done right. Please read our article on email marketing for small business to find out how you can engage your customers and increase business through email. I have gone out and looked at most of the major players and found one that is great for the price, service, ease of use and great design. This company is known as MadMimi. Do not let the name fool you, this company means serious business. MadMimi offers a very feature rich software at a low cost keeping your email marketing campaign from breaking the bank. I will break down some of the features that please us here at 708 Media and that helped MadMimi earn a place in our Business Spotlight.
Creation, Design and Sending
MadMimi has developed their software to be simple and easy to use for those that are new to the business of email marketing. This allows you, the business owner, to run your own email campaigns. The design of the site is bright and fun. You often forget as you are designing your email that you are actually working. Everything is quick and easy to get to and uses terms that the average Joe will understand.
MadMimi allows you to create your email with their WYSWYG editor which makes designing your email the same as if you were using Microsoft Word. You can easily drag and drop photos, text, titles, headers and other items right into your email. If you can drag, drop and type, you can create a professional looking email. On top of being able to design your own email, you can also use their many templates they have available. These have been designed by the MadMimi staff and are free for you to use. I have often found it is easier to find a theme similar to what I am looking for then customize it to meet my colors and look that I want.
Once you have created your email message, sending it is just as simple as creating it. You follow the easy instructions at the bottom of the page which end up taking you through a small wizard. Through this process, each page will offer you different options with a simple explanation of each. You will then be displayed a page with check boxes allowing you to choose which list you would like to send the email to. After clicking send, you can either exit out of the page or sit and watch as your emails are sent out at a very quick rate. I have noticed that when I send out to around 1,000 addresses, all emails are delivered within 4-5 minutes of clicking send.
Some of the other options that you have when sending your email is the ability to schedule, save your campaign, publish to web and more. Scheduling is a great feature which allows for you to write your campaign today and have it send next week. You can also save your campaign and resend it at a later time if you wish. The publish to web feature is great for those who have email addresses that do not always play nice or for you to post a link on your website to your promotion. This provides a URL that takes you directly to your email promotion in your browser.
Managing Your Lists
MadMimi makes it quick and easy to manage your list of contacts. MadMimi does not limit you to a certain number of lists allowing you to easily organize all your contacts. Adding contacts to these lists is easy. You can manually add them one by one, in bulk from a spreadsheet or you can create a simple web form using their form generator allowing your visitors to easily sign up and pick exactly which lists to be on. When adding contacts by spreadsheet, Madmimi attempt to add these automatically and if they can’t, one of their staff will come in and find a way to make it work. This is a feature that their competitors do not normally offer in their base charges.
Once you have created your lists, management of these are quick, simple and easy. Madmim automatically tracks all unsubscribe notices, multiple bounce backs and old email addresses and then will remove the ones that need to be removed. All these lists can be managed from one page with simple to use instructions on what you need to do.
Reports, Statistics and Tracking
You will learn as you read articles on 708 Media we are big on you tracking your efforts so you know what is being successful and what is not. Madmimi offers a very nice tracking system and is continuing to improve upon it. Currently, at the time of writing this, Madmimi has real time tracking where you can track how many emails have been sent, opened, bounced, and how many times links within these emails have been clicked. This is helps you to realize the best way to build your next promotional email by seeing what promotions in the past had more interest. You also have the ability to integrate your Google Analytics code into your promotions so that you can track how many sales are generated from each promotion.
Bottom Line…The Cost
All of the above may sound great but lets be serious here. The biggest thing to any small business is how much will the ongoing cost be and how much will I have to invest upfront.
This is why I love MadMimi so much. Their price is amazing. For your first 100 contacts, Madmimi allows you to pay nothing. Thats right, its completely free! Unlike other services, Madmimi gives you access to ALL features (except support) and allows you to send out as many emails as you want to those first 100 contacts for free. The cost after your first 100 contacts is very reasonable and you can pay as you grow. Unlike other services, Madmimi charges by total unique contacts in the system. This means if you have 1 person signed up to 10 different lists, Madmimi only counts that person as 1 towards your total contacts rather than as 10 towards your total. You also are not limited on how many promotions you send out each month. You could send one a month or you could send one a day. Its is fully up to you.
Support from Madmimi is top of the line. This company does not have you talking to someone who took a 2 hour training coarse, given a book and told to support their customers. Their support team is the actual developers of the software. When your talking to support, your talking to someone that really knows the way the system works. The owner of the company is also easy to talk to and will sometimes assist with the support team as well.
The only downside to support is that you can currently only contact support via chat or email. There is no phone line currently to call. Their chat support is opened during normal business hours and their email is 24/7 support. For after hours support, my emails have normally been answered in less than an hour. My understanding is that they are working to open a phone line in the near future.