Overview Benchmark Email Customer Service
For many a day in 2004, three people sat Around a single desk in a tiny medical office — an office that served as the team’s conference room, lunch room, and idea heart. Backed by a little programming team in India, the trio (comprising Benchmark Internet Group founder Curt Keller, his wife Denise, along with an SEO expert) discussed ideas on how best to implement a deceptively straightforward concept. Simple email advertising. Many of the thoughts were beyond the means of this fledgling business, but that did not stop Keller from planning ahead.
The first Clients of Benchmark Email were small companies located in near proximity to Benchmark’s one-room HQ in Long Beach, CA. Keller and his team personally sold them on the usage of email marketing, while working hard to create a simple user interface that would be simple to operate. All the time, the company championed such novel ideas as customizable templates and software which adapted to consumer needs. They also made certain from the beginning that anyone who needed help would have quick access to excellent customer care.
Benchmark Has continued to rise and advantagesper. Its current focus. Providing worldwide email advertising services to small and midsize businesses while continuing to honor a commitment to help children in need. This doesn’t indicate that Benchmark is a little-guys-only company, however; it’s stuck to its core principle of adaptability and serves large organizations such as UNICEF and Kaiser-Permanente via its High Volume Business plans.
Today, Benchmark serves upwards of 73,000 users from throughout the globe, however, the company has not forgotten its origins. Benchmark still maintains good relationships with little, locally-based businesses. In fact, the company offers a complete page of testimonials from users of this program. You can read more about Benchmark’s background and development here.
While the Majority of the attributes Benchmark supplies Are on par with the rest of the business, one of the standout characteristics of the ESP is the simple fact that nearly all its features come standard with every single accounts — including the free ones. Below are a few of Benchmark’s most noteworthy offerings.
· Hundreds of Industry-Specific, Themed Templates. Benchmark provides all customers access to its library of over 400 templates. These are organized into 19 classes, some of which are tailored to specific industries like education, entertainment, and retailstores. There’s also a class for societal media-specific templates.
· Video Emails. Perhaps the best-known advantage of Benchmark is its support for video mails. The business describes the advantages of this attribute here.
· Online Surveys. You can create professional-looking online polls using one of Benchmark’s 6 templates. Post your poll on your site or construct it into an email.
· Dedicated Email Server. All Benchmark’s High Volume plans have a dedicated IP address to help increase deliverability prices. Users on other programs have the option of paying for this service ($30/month) to increase their own delivery stats. Read more about the advantages of dedicated servers .
· Email Delivery Direction . Benchmark’s email delivery management program is about getting clients’ emails into inboxes. The company is a part of the Email Sender and Provider Coalition and works with ReturnPath, a leading email delivery and consulting support. The company also communicates with ISPs on its customers’ behalf. Benchmark Email Customer Service
· Mobile App. Benchmark’s mobile apps make it possible for customers with an Apple device to access several functions on the road. They can get and add contacts, read reports, send videos through integration using a YouTube accounts, and even design and send fast email blasts with one of 10 templates that are available. This is quite a bit more than a number of other businesses offer on their mobile programs, making them considerably more operational.
· Photo Editing. If the pictures you plan to use in your email campaign are not perfectly sized or need some color adjustment, you can use Benchmark’s integrated picture editor. This is a pretty handy feature if you do not have photoshop available.
· Code Editor. In case you’ve got the know-how to work magic with HTML, Benchmark provides this ultra-customization option with which you can construct your mails from scratch.
· Autoresponder. Each Benchmark client has the ability to design around eight custom autoresponder messages. These could be scheduled as a series or event lead-up, or designed as yearly messages like birthday or anniversary emails.
· Sign-Up Types . The only way to become prosperous in email marketing is through growing your own list, and Benchmark actually promotes doing this through sign-up forms. The company bases its Free For Life account entirely around website and Facebook sign-ups and supplies an easy-to-use tool to create custom templates for every medium.
· Inbox Checker. Since every email program is different and every web browser has a signature fashion, making certain that your emails look great across the board is important. It is possible to use Inbox Checker to have a look at the way your email displays in Gmail using Explorer and Outlook 3. Employing the full app (which assesses everything out of AOL to Yahoo, Explorer to Safari, mobile to PC) is a paid add-on provider, available for $14 per 100 checks.
· RSS-to-Email. Regular bloggers may create newsletters out of their sites mechanically through the RSS-to-Email feature, which works with any blog which manages an RSS-feed. Users simply have to establish a template and campaign inside Benchmark once.
· API Integration. An API (Application Program Interface) allows different software programs to communicate with one another without a formal plug-in connection. Benchmark’s API Integration feature allows users using XML-RPC, HTTP POST, or HTTP GET skills to recover data from some other apps that use JSON, XML, XML-RPC, or PHP serialization strings. In brief, this allows them to play three purposes. Manage contact lists, manage campaigns and campaign sending, and check data. The business explains this function in more detail here.
· Advanced Metrics. Benchmark provides both List Segmentation and AB Split Testing.
· Multiple-Language Interface. Benchmark is available in seven languages. Chinese, English, German, Japanese, Italian, Portuguese, and Spanish.
Benefits Of Use
Enrolling in a Benchmark accounts is pretty straightforward. After entering your name, email, phone number, and business name, you have to confirm your email address. This was a five-minute procedure for me. Upon logging in to my account (with the free plan) I was greeted by an appealing UI that gave me a very clear direction about how best to create my very first email campaign. Great beginning!
Email Campaign Creation
On its own dashboard, Benchmark provides users five chief choices. Emails, Automations, Contacts, Surveys, and Reports. To create a new effort, go into the Emails segment, then hit the big blue”Create New Mail” button at the top right-hand corner. Benchmark Email Customer Service
From there, you must decide If You Would like an RSS Or classic email message. You can use Benchmark’s drag-and-drop editor, or go for more customization using the built-in code editor. If you’re someone who codes their own email, then my hat is off to you, but I am not gifted that way, so I went with the drag-and-drop option.
I was motivated to enter a subject line for my Email and setup how much tracking I wanted on the message, as well as when I wanted an automated tweet when the campaign went out. The next task was to select which contacts I wished to receive the campaign. With that, I was eventually able to begin constructing the email . If you want to, you can assemble your personal email layouts employing an extremely intuitive editor. On the other hand, you can modify one of Benchmark’s templates, that are great, and much better than I was able to do in my.
Preventing the Email Campaign
If You’re just Starting out, you can do as I did and manually enter contacts at a time. However, for those who already have a list, there are numerous ways to import it. You can upload a CSV, xls, or txt file directly from your computer; import contacts directly from Salesforce.com, Hotmail, or Gmail accounts; or copy and paste huge lists of contacts to a text form. When you create your Benchmark lists, they will appear on your dash, along with a Master Unsubscribe List.
The sending of the email is rather simple. Once you’ve finished all your tweaks, you may save the email as a draft, send it immediately, or schedule a date and time for delivery. If you want to check everything is well before unleashing your email about the world, it is possible to send it to yourself to preview it as many as 10 times/day. I chose to program my email for shipping to view how timely the automatic system would actually be. I scheduled my email for 2.45 and obtained it at 2.50, so while the timing was not exactly perfect, it was likely within tolerance levels for many users. If you are among the more rare users who demand on-the-minute email sending, then you may need to appear elsewhere. More worryingly, my email did not go to my main inbox but was automatically sorted into my”promotions” folder. Definitely not ideal.
Mail Campaign Reporting
First thing I Discovered about Benchmark email reports was something I’d read about in a couple of reviews. They are really, really quickly. I mean lightning fast. Opens enroll from the Benchmark system almost instantaneously. I’ve worked with a lot of different apps where these reports require hours or even days to appear.
Benchmark provides users with several key Bits of data about every effort. The arguably most important statistic, the open speed, appears in both pie chart and numerical form. In addition, Benchmark supplies users with stats such as clicks, forwards, bounces, unsubscribes, and misuse. Each stat further breaks down to the exact email addresses related to a given action. Users can export this information for additional analysis by means of a csv or xls file. There’s also a social media place which reports shares via Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn, as well as a map which breaks down, by country, that opens your emails. Benchmark Email Customer Service
Though all of the information Is Excellent and Necessary, it isn’t enough to sustain increased level marketers who need more info such as conversions, which hyperlinks were clicked, and revenue analysis. Although Google Analytics provides a lot of that info with appropriate integration, there may come a time when serious entrepreneurs need more information than Benchmark provides. Whether or not a small business will reach that point changes, of course, based on the business.
Specific Size Of Company
Benchmark made its 3-tiered pricing Structure with the goal of serving everyone from the smallest kitchen-table startup to big email marketers. However, the organization’s main focus is on small to medium companies, especially those just starting out in email advertising. This is especially reflected in the reality that customers subscribing to the moderate plans get unlimited emails, while larger plans have limitations.
Integrations and Add-Ons
Benchmark Offers roughly 20 plug-ins and integrations. If you don’t see the integration you want, there is still hope. You’re able to use the API or ask an integration by sending an email to [email protected]
· Benchmark Events — Benchmark Occasions is event marketing applications designed to integrate fully with Benchmark Email. Launched in 2012, this program permits users to create and customize occasions, promote and sell tickets, and monitor the success of their events through their Benchmark Email accounts. A variety of programs are available, such as a free option.
· Salesforce.com — This integration allows users to import contacts directly into Benchmark and utilize Benchmark’s email system to maintain Salesforce customers engaged. Read our overview of Salesforce here.
· Twitter — Benchmark Email Lite is a WordPress plug-in which permits users to easily build an email viewer via their readers. The plugin can automatically produce email versions of blog articles and allows users to connect up to five Benchmark accounts.
· Highrise — Merges Highrise contacts with a Benchmark list. Read our review of Highrisehere.
· Benchmark Power — This free plug-in lets you supply images for your Benchmark mails from places throughout the web. Benchmark Power captures pictures you locate and immediately uploads them to a Benchmark accounts for future use.
· Flickr — Users with Flickr accounts can link Flickr for their Benchmark image galleries.
· Shopify — You can link a Shopify accounts to Benchmark and automatically add Shopify clients to Benchmark lists. You can even add contributors to various lists based on what they purchased. Read our review of Shopify here.
· PayPal — Users may add some of the PayPal customers for their Benchmark email lists bylinking the account. Read our review of Paypal here.
· Easy List — Learn more about this very simple list-making app and download it here.
· WordPress — The ever-present site and site builder offers an integration using Benchmark. Use it to send mails of your blog posts and also use the analytics to observe how your readers respond to them. Learn more here.
· Zapier — Gain access to Zapier’s enormous integration library . Benchmark Email Customer Service
Social Media Integrations
Since Of the integral connection between social media and email marketing, it’s very important to check out the social networking features contained in Benchmark.
· Social Media Templates — One segment of Benchmark’s enormous email template listing is made of societal media-specific templates which directly promote your company’s participation in social media forums such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
· Facebook”Like” Button — Benchmark offers a simple function which allows you to add a Facebook”Just Like” button into your emails.
· Facebook Sign-Up Form — Benchmark provides easy-to-create sign-up forms (see”Characteristics” above) for both sites and Facebook fan pages, to help you convert followers into subscribers.
· Social Links within Mail — Once you connect your Benchmark account together with your Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn account, you can add buttons to every email that will direct your readers to each of your social media pages.
The Business also fully Complies with the U.S.-E.U. and U.S.-Swiss Safe Harbor Frameworks regarding the collection of personal data from citizens of these countries. When customers provide credit card numbers to Benchmark, the business uses secure socket layer (SSL) protection to encrypt the info. The whole system is encrypted to ensure the security of all customers’ personal details.
Anti-Spam Policy and Protection
Like All valid ESPs, Benchmark takes junk seriously and summarizes a clear zero-tolerance coverage for any of the users hoping to take part in spam actions. The business is entirely in compliance with the U.S. CAN-SPAM Act of 2003. Benchmark also takes several steps to maintain its reputation as a spam-free provider, among them membership from the Email Sender and Provider Coalition. The business employs the app SpamAssassin to filter messages delivered through its server.
To stop users from Unknowingly sending spam-like materials, Benchmark provides a spam check feature that looks for words widely utilized in spam messages. It scores every email on a scale from 1 to 5; 5s are assigned to content that’s very likely to be blocked. In case of a top score, the program suggests”less spammy” alternatives. Individualized IP addresses also help large-volume senders decrease their spam amounts.
Client Service and Support
Benchmark Offers its customers a lot of support resources. Customer support is usually responsive, with minimal waiting times. The website offers good learning tools, but can be needlessly opaque occasionally. Crucial information can be buried and hard to find, particularly if you don’t know exactly what you’re searching for, particularly in regards to minute details about strategies. As an example. The Free For Life plan includes Benchmark branding on each email, but you won’t see that mentioned on the Free For Life page, not even in the fine print. Nor will you see it mentioned when you register. The only place it is mentioned is in the FAQ, here.
Here are some of those resources Benchmark offers. Benchmark Email Customer Service
· Live Email and Support — Benchmark provides live one-on-one support through the following means.
· Email Support. Contact Benchmark at [email protected] or through the company’s contact form . Available 24 hours Monday — Friday and limited hours on Saturday.
· Phone Support. You can reach Benchmark in 800-430-4095 (U.S.) or even 001-562-252-3789 (all countries). Available weekdays from 6 am to 5 pm PT.
· Chat Support. Available nearly 24 hours per day Monday — Friday and limited hours on Saturday. Founded in English, Spanish, Portuguese, and Italian.
· FAQ — Benchmark’s FAQ section is somewhat mislabeled as it’s closer to a QandA-format knowledge foundation than a normal FAQ. You will find over 900 entries, sorted into 18 subjects ranging from”Getting Started” to”API.” Users can perform a key word search of any subject (or sub-topic) or from the FAQ as a whole. One caveat. With such a comprehensive knowledge base, it is pretty much inevitable that some entries are going to be out of date. Some of the QandAs provide advice that’s wholly inaccurate, so in some cases, you might need to contact assistance to hash things out.
· Video Tutorials and Webinars — Benchmark supplies about two dozen video tutorials that take users step by step through the features of the app. The business also offers a webinar known as”Benchmark Mail Crash Course.” You may view it live each Friday at 10.00 a.m. PST or watch the recorded version at any time. You might also ask for a special webinar on a number of different subjects. Live webinars include the chance to ask questions during the demonstration.
· Email Marketing Manuals and Articles — There are more in-depth information on email marketing in general, in addition to the Benchmark program especially, at the Manuals Section. These downloadable documents also cover industry-specific issues. Articles, similar to sites, offer users advice beyond that found in the FAQ section, but in shorter, more digestible chunks than the guides provide.
· Glossary of Email Marketing Terms — This can be a particularly valuable tool for all those brand new to email marketing who feel absorbed by all the jargon. Benchmark provides a glossarywith 50 of the most popular email advertising conditions from”above-the-fold” to”whitelists.”
· Blog and Newsletter — For current information regarding email marketing trends, check out Benchmark’s monthly newsletter, as well as its extremely active blog. All subscribers automatically obtain access to current newsletters, and Benchmark also offers an archive of newsletter articles from November 2007-October 2012.
· Benchmark Community — Benchmark users can post their newest newsletters on message boards in the Benchmark Community. This forum allows users to talk about newsletter production approaches, vote for their favourite newsletters, and gain inspiration from other Benchmark users.
Web-Based Or Locally-Installed
Benchmark is entirely web-based and doesn’t Require any setup on your computer.
Positive Reviews and Reviews
Benchmark Includes a four-out-of-five star score on G2 Crowd, using a slightly better showing on GetApp and Capterra. 4.5 stars each. Benchmark Email Customer Service
Some common points of compliments.
· Top Notch Support. This is maybe the most typical observation concerning Benchmark, and something I discovered for myself too. People today are inclined to find support prompt and beneficial, and some say it’s actually the element that distinguishes Benchmark from its rivals. The business also receives praise for its blog posts and videos.
· Characteristic Selection Across All Aims . Some customers praise the inclusion of features including AB analyzing and surveys in most programs; many firms charge extra for these features or only include them into their pricier programs.
· Ease of Use. Users tend to locate Benchmark’s interface incredibly user-friendly and intuitive. The program gathers compliments from a wide assortment of demographics, from first time ESP users to people who have attempted many different programs before settling on Benchmark.
· Mobile Friendly Emails. Users were impressed with all the mobile-friendly email layout of Benchmark’s templates. Since more and more people access their email from mobile devices, this is an increasingly important factor to consider.
Negative Reviews and Complaints
I was Unable to find many people who loathed Their Benchmark experience. However, I was able to discover a couple of complaints.
· Inconsistent Send-Times. Apparently some users experienced an issue with Benchmark where their mails were sent hours after they were first scheduled. 1 customer theorized the issue might arise from lengthy lists of recipients. Not all customers of Benchmark will possess time-sensitive shipping needs, but others will. Should you need your emails to go out exactly when your program dictates, you may need to consider this issue.
· Buggy Social Media Integrations. I saw several user reviews that commented the social networking integrations in Benchmark aren’t up to par.
· “Spammy” Templates. Some users were concerned that Benchmark’s templates can feel like spam mail, causing receivers to mark them as junk rather than reading the contents. Since the entire point of an ESP is to prevent this from occurring, this may be an issue. On the flip side, I never felt this way while searching through the template list, therefore it may not be the most legitimate of complaints.
Benchmark Provides a enormous number of pricing strategies, such as a free plan and a huge array of paid programs which can service anywhere between 600 and 7,140,000 subscribers.
Benchmark’s free programs do not require charge Cards, which is always refreshing. The only grab. There will be a little Benchmark logo at the bottom of each email you send out. Of course, you may always choose to upgrade to a paid plan if you don’t want the Benchmark branding. The free plan permits you to send up to 14000 mails to up to 2000 subscribers and provides you access to most but not all of Benchmark’s features record. Notable absences to the attributes list for free accounts comprise email automation and sub-accounts (enabling many users to get one Benchmark accounts ).
Paid Plans. Benchmark Email Customer Service
Users with little contacts lists and restricted Monthly messages have the option of paying for their email advertising depending on the number of mails they send each month.
o Medium Plans. 600-50,000 subscribers, $13.99-$254.99 a month
o Large Strategies. 55,000-100,000 subscribers, $285.99-$494.99 a month
o Extra Large Strategies. 125,000-1,000,000 subscribers, $659.99-$4,273.99 per month
o Enormous Plans. 1,070,000-7,140,000 subscribers, $4,500-$29,200 a month
Benchmark accepts all Major charge cards and also allows you to pay through PayPal. They also offer a 25% discount for nonprofits and teachers.
Benchmark is a solid program. It is easy to use, Open to invention, and competitively priced. Its free options might very well be the very best in the company for anybody who just wants to dip into email marketing (especially small, neighborhood businesses). For that matter, any Benchmark plan can work nicely for a little company which views email as a minor aspect of its advertising and does not have any desire to work past the basics just yet.
If you are a little or even medium-sized Company looking for a simple email marketing program with a host of great features, Benchmark is an excellent choice. Though there might come a time when you outgrow the program, it provides a lot for the money, offers exceptional support, and the company appears to be sensitive to the requirements of its users. You can not ask for more.