Overview Best Email Marketing Software For Real Estate
For many an evening in 2004, three people sat Around one desk in a small medical office — an office that served as the group’s conference room, breakfast area, and thought hub. Backed by a little programming team in India, the trio (consisting of Benchmark Internet Group founder Curt Keller, his wife Denise, and an search engine optimization expert) discussed ideas for how to execute a deceptively straightforward idea. Simple email marketing. Many of the ideas were beyond the resources of the fledgling business, but that didn’t 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 advertising, while working hard to create a very simple user interface that would be easy to operate. All the time, the company championed such innovative ideas as customizable templates and software which adapted to consumer requirements. They also made sure from the beginning that anyone who needed help would have rapid access to outstanding customer support.
Benchmark Has continued to grow and advantagesper. Its present focus. Providing worldwide email marketing services to small and medium-sized businesses while continuing to honor a commitment to help children in need. This does not mean that Benchmark is a little-guys-only service, however; it has adhered to its core principle of adaptability and serves large organizations such as UNICEF and Kaiser-Permanente through its High Volume Business plans.
Today, Benchmark serves upwards of 73,000 users from across the planet, but the company hasn’t forgotten its roots. Benchmark still keeps good relationships with little, locally-based companies. In fact, the company supplies a full page of testimonials from users of the app. You can read more about Benchmark’s history and development here.
While most of the attributes Benchmark supplies Are on par with the rest of the industry, among the standout features of this ESP is the fact that most of its features come standard with each account — including the free ones. Below are a few of Benchmark’s most noteworthy offerings.
· Countless Industry-Specific, Themed Templates. Benchmark offers all users access to the library of over 400 templates. These are organized into 19 categories, some of which are tailored to specific industries such as education, entertainment, and retail. There is also a class for societal media-specific templates.
· Video Emails. Perhaps the best-known advantage of Benchmark is its support for video emails. The business explains the advantages of this feature here.
· Online Surveys. You’ll be able to create professional-looking online surveys using among Benchmark’s 6 templates. Post your poll on your website or construct it into an email.
· Dedicated Email Server. All Benchmark’s High Volume programs have a dedicated IP address to help increase deliverability rates. Users on other programs have the choice of paying for this service ($30/month) to boost their own delivery stats. Read more about the benefits of dedicated servers .
· Email Delivery Direction . Benchmark’s email shipping management program is all about getting clients’ emails into inboxes. The company is a member of the Email Sender and Provider Coalition and works with ReturnPath, a leading email delivery and consulting service. The company also communicates with ISPs on its clients’ behalf. Best Email Marketing Software For Real Estate
· Mobile App. Benchmark’s mobile programs allow customers having an Apple device to access several functions on the street. They can access and include contacts, browse reports, send videos through integration using a YouTube account, and even design and send fast email blasts with one of 10 available templates. That is quite a bit more than many other companies offer in their mobile apps, which makes them much more operational.
· Photo Editing. If the pictures you plan to utilize on 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 accessible.
· Code Editor. In case you have the know-how to work magic with HTML, Benchmark provides this ultra-customization choice with which you can build your emails from scratch.
· Autoresponder. Every Benchmark client has the ability to design around eight custom autoresponder messages. These could be scheduled as a series or occasion lead-up, or designed as yearly messages such as birthday or anniversary emails.
· Sign-Up Types . The only way to be prosperous in email advertising is by way of growing your own list, and Benchmark really promotes doing this through sign-up forms. The company bases its Free For Life account completely around website and Facebook sign-ups and provides an easy-to-use instrument to create customized templates for every medium.
· Inbox Checker. Because every email program differs and each web browser has a signature style, making certain your emails look great across the board is important. You can use Inbox Checker to look at the way your email screens in Gmail using Explorer and Outlook 3. Using the full app (which assesses everything out of AOL to Yahoo, Explorer to Safari, mobile to PC) is a paid add-on service, available for $14 each 100 checks.
· RSS-to-Email. Regular bloggers may create newsletters out of their sites automatically through the RSS-to-Email attribute, which works with any blog which handles an RSS-feed. Users simply have to set up a campaign and template within Benchmark once.
· API Integration. An API (Application Program Interface) allows different software programs to communicate with one another with no formal plug-in connection. Benchmark’s API Integration feature permits users with XML-RPC, HTTP POST, or HTTP GET abilities to retrieve data from other apps which 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 assess statistics. The business describes this role in more detail .
· Advanced Metrics. Benchmark offers both Listing Segmentation and AB Split Testing.
· Multiple-Language Interface. Benchmark is offered in seven languages. Chinese, English, German, Japanese, Italian, Portuguese, and Spanish.
Benefits Of Use
Enrolling in a Benchmark accounts is fairly straightforward. After entering your name, email, phone number, and company name, you need to validate your email address. This is a five-minute process for me. Upon logging into my account (using the free plan) I was greeted by an attractive UI that gave me a very clear direction about the best way best to create my first email campaign. Good start!
Email Campaign Creation
On its dashboard, Benchmark provides users five main choices. Emails, Automations, Contacts, Surveys, and Reports. To make a new campaign, go to the Emails segment, then hit on the large blue”Create New Email” button at the top right-hand corner. Best Email Marketing Software For Real Estate
From there, you have to 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 with the built-in code editor. If you are 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 alternative.
I had been prompted to enter a subject line for my Email and set up how much tracking I wanted on the message, in addition to if I wanted an automatic tweet when the effort went out. The following task was to choose which contacts I wanted to receive the campaign. With that, I was finally able to start building the email itself. If you want to, you can construct your own email designs using an extremely intuitive editor. On the other hand, you can alter one of Benchmark’s templates, that are great, and much better than I managed to do in my.
Preventing the Email Campaign
If you are just Starting out, you can do as I did and manually enter contacts at a time. However, for people who already have a listing, there are several ways to import it. You can upload a CSV, xls, or txt file directly from the computer; import contacts directly from Salesforce.com, Hotmail, or Gmail accounts; or copy and paste huge lists of contacts into a text type. Once you create your Benchmark lists, then they’ll appear on your dash, along with a Master Unsubscribe List.
The actual sending of this email is quite easy. Once you have completed all your tweaks, you can save the email as a draft, send it instantly, or schedule a date and time for delivery. If you would like to verify everything is well before unleashing your email on the world, it is possible to send it to your self to preview it as many as 10 times/day. I opted to program my email for shipping to view how timely the automatic system would really be. I scheduled my email for 2.45 and obtained it in 2.50, therefore while the timing was not exactly perfect, it was likely present in tolerance levels for most users. If you are one of the more rare users who need on-the-minute email sending, you may have to appear elsewhere. More worryingly, my email didn’t go to my main inbox but was mechanically sorted into my”promotions” folder. Definitely not ideal.
Mail Campaign Reporting
The first thing I Noticed about Benchmark email reports was something I would read about in a couple of reviews. They’re really, really quickly. I mean lightning fast. Opens enroll from the Benchmark system almost instantaneously. I’ve worked with several other programs where these reports take hours or even days to look.
Benchmark provides users with several key Bits of information about each campaign. The possibly most important statistic, the available rate, seems in both pie graph and numerical form. Additionally, Benchmark supplies users with stats for clicks, forward, bounces, unsubscribes, and abuse. Each stat further breaks down to the exact email addresses associated with a given activity. Users may export this information for additional analysis via 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 that breaks down, by country, that opens your emails. Best Email Marketing Software For Real Estate
Though all of the information Is Excellent and Necessary, it isn’t sufficient to sustain increased level marketers that need more information such as conversions, which links were clicked, and earnings analysis. Though Google Analytics provides a lot of this information with appropriate integration, there might come a time when serious entrepreneurs need more info than Benchmark provides. Whether or not a small company will reach that point varies, of course, dependent on the business.
Specific Size Of Business
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 businesses, especially those just starting out in email marketing. This is especially reflected in the reality that clients subscribing to the medium plans get unlimited mails, while larger plans have limitations.
Integrations and Add-Ons
Benchmark Offers approximately 20 plug-ins and integrations. If you do not observe the integration you need, there’s still hope. You can use the API or request a integration by sending an email to [email protected]
· Benchmark Events — Benchmark Events is event marketing software designed to integrate fully with Benchmark Email. Launched in 2012, this program permits users to create and customize events, promote and market tickets, and monitor the success of their events via their Benchmark Email account. A variety of subscriptions are available, including a free alternative.
· Salesforce.com — This integration allows users to import contacts into Benchmark and utilize Benchmark’s email system to keep Salesforce customers participated. Read our review of Salesforce here.
· Twitter — Benchmark Mail Lite is a WordPress plug-in which permits users to quickly build an email viewer through their subscribers. The plug-in can automatically create email variations of blog articles and permits users to connect up to five Benchmark accounts.
· Highrise — Merges Highrise contacts using a Benchmark listing. Read our overview of Highrisehere.
· Benchmark Power — This free plug-in lets you source images for your Benchmark mails from places across the net. Benchmark Power captures images you locate and immediately uploads them to your Benchmark account for future usage.
· Flickr — Users with Flickr accounts may link Flickr to their own Benchmark image galleries.
· Shopify — You can link a Shopify account to Benchmark and mechanically add Shopify clients to Benchmark lists. You can even add contributors to different lists based on what they bought. Read our overview of Shopify here.
· PayPal — Users may add any of the PayPal customers for their Benchmark email lists bylinking the accounts. Read our review of Paypal here.
· Easy List — Know more about this simple list-making program and download it .
· WordPress — The ever-present blog and website builder provides an integration using Benchmark. Use it to send emails of your blog articles and use the analytics to observe how your subscribers react to them. Learn more here.
· Zapier — Gain entry to Zapier’s enormous integration library . Best Email Marketing Software For Real Estate
Social Media Integrations
Because Of the integral connection between social networking and email marketing, it’s very important to look at the social networking features contained in Benchmark.
· Social Media Templates — One segment of Benchmark’s massive email template list consists of social media-specific templates which directly promote your institution’s involvement in social networking forums such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
· Facebook”Like” Button — Benchmark provides a very simple function which permits you to add a Facebook”Like” button to your own emails.
· Facebook Sign-Up Form — Benchmark supplies easy-to-create sign-up forms (see”Characteristics” above) for both sites and Facebook enthusiast pages, so you can convert followers to readers.
· Social Links within Mail — After you connect your Benchmark account together with your Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn accounts, you can add buttons to each email which will direct your readers to each of your social networking pages.
The Business also fully Complies with all the U.S.-E.U. and U.S.-Swiss Safe Harbor Frameworks regarding the collection of personal data from citizens of these countries. When clients provide credit card numbers to Benchmark, the business utilizes secure socket layer (SSL) protection to encrypt the info. The whole platform is encrypted to ensure the safety of customers’ personal details.
Anti-Spam Policy and Protection
Like All legitimate ESPs, Benchmark takes junk seriously and outlines a clear zero-tolerance coverage for any of the users trying to engage in spam actions. The business is entirely in compliance with the U.S. CAN-SPAM Act of 2003. Benchmark additionally takes several measures to maintain its reputation as a spam-free supplier, among them membership in the Email Sender and Provider Coalition. The company uses the app SpamAssassin to filter messages sent through its host.
To prevent users from Unknowingly sending spam-like materials, Benchmark supplies a spam test feature which looks for words commonly used in spam messages. It scores each email on a scale from 1 to 5; 5s are delegated to content that is likely to be blocked. In the event of a top score, the program suggests”less spammy” alternatives. Individualized IP addresses also assist large-volume senders reduce their spam amounts.
Client Support and Service
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 is often buried and hard to locate, especially in the event that you don’t know precisely what you’re searching for, particularly in regards to minute particulars about strategies. As an example. The Free For Life plan comprises Benchmark branding on each email, however you won’t see that mentioned on the Free For Life webpage, not even in the fine print. Nor are you going to see it mentioned when you sign up. The only place it is mentioned is at the FAQ, here.
Here are some of the resources Benchmark offers. Best Email Marketing Software For Real Estate
· Live Support and Email — Benchmark provides live one-on-one support through these means.
· Email Support. Contact Benchmark at [email protected] or through the organization’s contact form here. Accessible 24 hours Monday — Friday and limited hours on Saturday.
· Phone Support. You can reach Benchmark at 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 almost 24 hours per day Monday — Friday and limited hours on Saturday. Offered in English, Spanish, Portuguese, and Italian.
· FAQ — Benchmark’s FAQ section is somewhat mislabeled because it’s closer to some QandA-format knowledge base than a normal FAQ. There are more than 900 entries, sorted into 18 topics 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’s pretty much inevitable that some entries are going to be out of date. A few of the QandAs offer advice that’s wholly incorrect, so in some cases, you may need to contact support to hash things out.
· Video Tutorials and Webinars — Benchmark supplies about two dozen video tutorials which take users step by step through the features of this program. The company also offers a webinar known as”Benchmark Email Crash Course.” You can view it live each Friday at 10.00 a.m. PST or see the recorded version at any moment. You might even ask for a special webinar on quite a few other subjects. Live webinars include the opportunity to ask questions throughout the presentation.
· Email Marketing Manuals and Articles — You can find more in-depth information on email marketing in general, in addition to the Benchmark program especially, in the Manuals Section. These downloadable documents also cover industry-specific issues. Articles, similar to blogs, offer users guidance beyond that found in the FAQ section, but in shorter, more readable chunks than the guides provide.
· Glossary of Email Marketing Requirements — This is a particularly helpful tool for those brand new to email marketing who believe absorbed by all of the jargon. Benchmark provides a glossarywith 50 of the very popular email advertising conditions from”above-the-fold” into”whitelists.”
· Website and Newsletter — For current information about email marketing trends, check out Benchmark’s monthly newsletter, as well as its exceptionally active site. All subscribers automatically gain access to current newsletters, and Benchmark also provides an archive of newsletter posts from November 2007-October 2012.
· Benchmark Community — Benchmark users may post their newest newsletters on message boards at the Benchmark Community. This forum allows users to discuss newsletter production strategies, vote for their favorite newsletters, and gain inspiration from additional Benchmark users.
Web-Based Or Locally-Installed
Benchmark is entirely web-based and does not Require any installation on your computer.
Favorable Reviews and Reviews
Benchmark Has a four-out-of-five star rating on G2 Crowd, using a slightly better showing on GetApp and Capterra. 4.5 stars each. Best Email Marketing Software For Real Estate
Some common points of compliments.
· Top Notch Support. This is maybe the most common monitoring regarding Benchmark, and some thing I noticed for myself as well. People are inclined to find support prompt and helpful, and some say it is actually the element that distinguishes Benchmark from its rivals. The business also receives praise for its website articles and videos.
· Characteristic Selection Across All Plans. Some users praise the addition of features like AB testing and surveys from all programs; many companies charge extra for these attributes or just include them into their pricier programs.
· Benefits of Use. Users tend to find Benchmark’s interface incredibly user-friendly and intuitive. The program gathers compliments from a broad range of demographics, from first-time ESP users to those who have tried a variety of programs before settling on Benchmark.
· Mobile Friendly Emails. Consumers were impressed with all the mobile-friendly email design of Benchmark’s templates. Since an increasing number of people access their email from mobile devices, this can be an increasingly important factor to take into account.
Negative Reviews and Complaints
I was Unable to find many Men and Women who disliked Their Benchmark experience. But, I managed to discover a few complaints.
· Inconsistent Send-Times. Apparently some users experienced an issue with Benchmark where their mails were sent hours after they were scheduled. 1 customer theorized the issue might arise in long lists of recipients. Not all clients of all Benchmark will have time-sensitive shipping demands, but others will. If you want your emails to go out precisely whenever your schedule dictates, you might need to take into account this issue.
· Buggy Social Media Integrations. I watched several consumer testimonials that remarked the social networking integrations in Benchmark aren’t up to par.
· “Spammy” Templates. Some users have been worried that Benchmark’s templates may feel like spam mail, causing recipients to mark them as spam rather than studying the contents. Since the whole point of an ESP is to stop this from occurring, this may be a problem. On the flip side, I never felt this way whilst searching through the template list, so it might not be the most legitimate of complaints.
Benchmark Provides a enormous number of pricing strategies, including a free plan and a huge array of paid plans which may service anywhere between 600 and 7,140,000 subscribers.
Benchmark’s free plans do not require charge Cards, which is always refreshing. The only grab. There will be a little Benchmark logo in the bottom of every email you send out. Of course, you can always choose to upgrade to a paid program if you don’t want the Benchmark branding. The free plan permits you to send up to 14000 mails to around 2000 subscribers and provides you access to all but not all Benchmark’s features list. Notable absences into the features list for free account include email automation and sub-accounts (allowing multiple users to access one Benchmark account).
Paid Strategies. Best Email Marketing Software For Real Estate
Users with little contacts lists and limited Monthly messages have the option of paying for their email marketing based on the number of emails that they send every month.
o Moderate Plans. 600-50,000 subscribers, $13.99-$254.99 a month
o Large Strategies. 55,000-100,000 subscribers, $285.99-$494.99 per month
o Extra Large Plans. 125,000-1,000,000 subscribers, $659.99-$4,273.99 a month
o Massive Plans. 1,070,000-7,140,000 subscribers, $4,500-$29,200 per month
Benchmark accepts all Major charge cards and also lets you pay through PayPal. They also offer a 25% discount for nonprofits and educators.
Benchmark is a solid program. It’s easy to use, Open to invention, and competitively priced. Its free options may very well be the very best in the company for anyone who just wants to dive into email marketing (especially small, neighborhood companies ). For that matter, any Benchmark plan can work well for a small business which perspectives email as a little element of its advertising and does not have any desire to operate beyond the principles just yet.
If you are a small or maybe medium-sized Company looking for a easy email marketing program with a multitude of great features, Benchmark is an exceptional option. Though there may come a time when you outgrow the program, it supplies a great deal for the price, offers excellent support, and the company seems to be sensitive to the requirements of its users. You can not ask for much more.