Summary Email Marketing Email List
For many a day in 2004, three people sat Around one desk in a tiny medical office — an office which served as the team’s conference room, breakfast area, and idea hub. Backed by a small programming team in India, the trio (comprising Benchmark Internet Group founder Curt Keller, his wife Denise, along with an search engine optimization expert) discussed ideas on how best to implement a deceptively simple idea. Simple email marketing. Many of the ideas were beyond the resources of the fledgling business, but that did not stop Keller from moving 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 sold them on the use of email advertising, while working hard to make a simple user interface that would be simple to operate. All the while, the company championed such novel ideas as customizable templates and software which adapted to user requirements. They also made certain from the outset that anybody who needed help would have quick access to excellent customer support.
Benchmark Has continued to grow and advantagesper. Its current focus. Providing global email advertising services to small and medium-sized businesses while continuing to honor a commitment to help kids in need. This does not indicate that Benchmark is a little-guys-only service, however; it’s adhered to its core principle of adaptability and serves large organizations such as UNICEF and Kaiser-Permanente via its High Volume Enterprise plans.
Today, Benchmark serves upwards of 73,000 users from across the planet, however, the company hasn’t forgotten its roots. Benchmark still maintains good relationships with small, locally-based companies. In reality, the company offers a full page of testimonials from local users of this app. You can read about Benchmark’s history and development here.
While the Majority of the attributes Benchmark supplies Are on par with the rest of the industry, one of the standout characteristics of the ESP is the fact that nearly all its attributes come standard with each account — including the free ones. Below are a few of Benchmark’s most notable offerings.
· Countless Industry-Specific, Themed Templates. Benchmark provides all customers access to the library of over 400 templates. These are organized into 19 categories, some of which are tailored to particular 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 mails. The company describes the advantages of this feature here.
· Online Surveys. You’ll be able to create professional-looking online polls using one of Benchmark’s 6 templates. Post your survey on your website or build it into an email.
· Dedicated Email Server. All Benchmark’s High Volume programs come with a dedicated IP address to help increase deliverability rates. Users on other plans have the option of paying for this service ($30/month) to boost their own delivery stats. Read more about the advantages of dedicated servers .
· Email Delivery Management. Benchmark’s email delivery management program is all about getting clients’ mails into inboxes. The company is a part of the Email Sender and Provider Coalition and works with ReturnPath, a top email delivery and consulting support. The business also communicates with ISPs on its clients’ behalf. Email Marketing Email List
· Mobile App. Benchmark’s mobile programs make it possible for customers with an Apple device to get several purposes on the road. They can get and add contacts, read reportsand send videos through integration with a YouTube account, and even layout and send quick email blasts with one of 10 templates that are available. This is quite a little more than a number of other businesses offer in their mobile apps, which makes them much more operational.
· Photo Editing. If the photos you plan to utilize on your email campaign aren’t perfectly sized or need some color adjustment, you may use Benchmark’s integrated picture editor. This is a pretty handy feature if you do not have photoshop accessible.
· Code Editor. In case you’ve got the know-how to work magic with HTML, Benchmark provides this ultra-customization choice with which you may construct your mails from scratch.
· Autoresponder. Every Benchmark customer has the ability to style up to eight custom autoresponder messages. These could be scheduled as a series or event lead-up, or made as yearly messages like birthday or anniversary emails.
· Sign-Up Forms. The only way to become successful in email marketing is through growing your own list, and Benchmark really promotes doing this via sign-up forms. The business bases its Free For Life account entirely around site and Facebook sign-ups and supplies an easy-to-use instrument to create custom templates for each medium.
· Inbox Checker. Since every email program is different and every web browser has a signature fashion, making certain your emails look good across the board is important. It is possible to use Inbox Checker to have a look at the way that your email screens in Gmail using Explorer and Outlook 3. Employing the entire app (which assesses everything out of AOL to Yahoo, Explorer into Safari, mobile to PC) is a paid add-on service, available for $14 per 100 checks.
· RSS-to-Email. Regular bloggers may create newsletters from their blogs automatically through the RSS-to-Email attribute, which works with any blog which handles an RSS-feed. Users only have to establish a template and campaign inside Benchmark once.
· API Integration. An API (Application Program Interface) enables different software programs to communicate with one another with no formal plug connection. Benchmark’s API Integration feature permits users using XML-RPC, HTTP POST, or HTTP GET abilities to retrieve data from some other apps which use JSON, XML, XML-RPC, or PHP serialization strings. In brief, this permits them to play three purposes. Manage contact lists, handle campaigns and effort sending, and check data. The company describes 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.
Ease Of Use
Signing up for a Benchmark account is fairly straightforward. After entering your name, email, phone number, and business name, you need to confirm your email address. This was a five-minute procedure for me. Upon logging into my account (with the free plan) I was greeted by an appealing UI that gave me a very clear path about how best to create my very first email campaign. Good beginning!
Email Campaign Creation
On its dashboard, Benchmark provides users five main options. Emails, Automations, Contacts, Surveys, and Reports. To make a new effort, go to the Emails section, then hit the big blue”Create New Email” button in the upper right-hand corner. Email Marketing Email List
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 move for more customization with the built-in code editor. If you’re somebody who codes their own email, then my hat is off to you, but I am not personally gifted that way, so I went with the drag-and-drop option.
I had been motivated to enter a subject line for my Email and setup how much tracking I wanted on the message, in addition to when I wanted an automated tweet once the campaign went out. The next task was to select which contacts I wished to get the campaign. With that, I was eventually able to begin constructing the email . If you would like to, you are able to assemble your personal email layouts using an extremely intuitive editor. On the other hand, you can modify one of Benchmark’s templates, which are great, and better than I managed to do on my own.
Preventing the Email Campaign
If you are just Starting out, you can do as I did and manually input 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 into a text type. Once you create your Benchmark lists, then they will show up on your dash, together with a Master Unsubscribe List.
The actual sending of the email is rather simple. Once you have completed all of your tweaks, you may either save the email as a draft, send it instantly, or schedule a time and date for delivery. If you would like to verify everything is well before unleashing your email about the planet, you can send it to yourself to preview it as many as 10 times/day. I opted to program my email for delivery to see how timely the automatic system would actually be. I advised my email for 2.45 and received it at 2.50, therefore while the timing wasn’t exactly perfect, it was likely present in tolerance levels for most users. If you’re among the more infrequent users who need on-the-minute email sending, you might have to look elsewhere. More worryingly, my email did not go to my main inbox but was mechanically sorted in my”promotions” folder. Definitely not perfect.
Email Campaign Reporting
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 register from the Benchmark system virtually immediately. I have worked with a lot of other programs where these reports require hours or even days to look.
Benchmark provides users with several key Bits of data about each campaign. The possibly most important statistic, the open speed, appears in both pie chart and numerical form. In addition, Benchmark provides users with stats for clicks, forward, bounces, unsubscribes, and abuse. Every stat further breaks down to the exact email addresses associated with a given action. Users may export this data for further analysis via a csv or xls file. There’s also a social networking area which reports shares via Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn, as well as a map that breaks down, by country, who opens your mails. Email Marketing Email List
Though all of the information Is Excellent and Necessary, it isn’t sufficient to sustain increased level marketers who want more info such as conversions, which links were clicked, and earnings analysis. Although Google Analytics provides a whole lot of that info with appropriate integration, there might come a time when serious marketers need more info than Benchmark provides. Whether a small company will reach that point varies, of course, based on the company.
Specific Size Of Business
Benchmark designed its 3-tiered pricing Structure with the objective of serving everyone from the smallest kitchen-table startup to big email marketers. On the other hand, the organization’s key focus is on small to medium businesses, particularly those just beginning in email advertising. This is especially reflected in the reality that customers subscribing to the moderate plans get unlimited mails, while larger plans have constraints.
Integrations and Add-Ons
Benchmark Offers approximately 20 plug-ins and integrations. If you do not see the integration you want, there’s still hope. You’re able to use the API or ask 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 allows users to create and customize occasions, promote and sell tickets, and monitor the success of their events via their Benchmark Email account. A number of subscriptions are available, such as a free alternative.
· Salesforce.com — This integration enables users to import contacts directly into Benchmark and use Benchmark’s email system to keep Salesforce customers participated. Read our overview of Salesforce here.
· Twitter — Benchmark Email Lite is a WordPress plugin which allows users to easily build an email viewer via their subscribers. The plug-in can automatically produce email versions of blog posts 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 plugin lets you source images for your Benchmark mails from locations across the net. Benchmark Power captures pictures you locate and immediately uploads them to your Benchmark accounts for future usage.
· Flickr — Users with Flickr accounts can link Flickr for their own Benchmark image galleries.
· Shopify — You can link a Shopify accounts to Benchmark and mechanically add Shopify customers to Benchmark lists. You may even add contributors to various lists based on what they purchased. Read our review of Shopify here.
· PayPal — Users can add some of the PayPal clients for their own Benchmark email lists bylinking the account. Read our review of Paypal here.
· Easy List — Learn more about this simple list-making program and download it .
· WordPress — The ever-present blog and website builder provides an integration with Benchmark. Use it to send emails of your blog articles and also use the analytics to observe how your readers respond to them. Learn more here.
· Zapier — Gain entry to Zapier’s enormous integration library here. Email Marketing Email List
Social Media Integrations
Since Of the key link between social networking and email marketing, it is very important to look at the social networking features contained in Benchmark.
· Social Media Templates — One section of Benchmark’s massive email template listing is made of social media-specific templates which directly promote your institution’s participation in social media forums such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
· Facebook”Like” Button — Benchmark provides a very simple function which permits you to add a Facebook”Just Like” button into your own emails.
· Facebook Sign-Up Form — Benchmark supplies easy-to-create sign-up forms (see”Features” above) for both sites and Facebook fan pages, so you can convert followers into readers.
· Social Links within Mail — After you link your Benchmark account together with your Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn accounts, you can add buttons to every email that will direct your readers to each of your social networking pages.
The company also fully Complies with the U.S.-E.U. and U.S.-Swiss Safe Harbor Frameworks concerning the collection of personal data from citizens of these nations. When clients provide credit card numbers to Benchmark, the company uses secure socket layer (SSL) protection to encrypt the info. The entire system is encrypted to ensure the security of customers’ personal information.
Anti-Spam Policy and Protection
Like All valid ESPs, Benchmark takes junk seriously and summarizes a clear zero-tolerance policy for any of the users trying to engage in spam activities. The company is fully in compliance with all the U.S. CAN-SPAM Act of 2003. Benchmark additionally takes several steps to preserve its standing as a spam-free supplier, among them membership from the Email Sender and Provider Coalition. The company uses the program SpamAssassin to filter messages sent through its server.
To prevent 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 is likely to be blocked. In case of a high score, the program suggests”less spammy” choices. Individualized IP addresses also assist large-volume senders decrease their spam amounts.
Customer Service and Support
Benchmark Offers its users a great deal of support resources. Customer service is generally responsive, with minimal waiting times. The site offers good learning tools, but can be needlessly opaque at times. Crucial information can be buried and difficult to find, especially if you don’t know exactly what you’re searching for, especially in regards to minute details about plans. As an example. The Free For Life plan comprises Benchmark branding on every email, but you won’t find that mentioned on the Free For Life webpage, not even in the fine print. Nor will you see it mentioned when you register. The only place it’s mentioned is at the FAQ, here.
Here are some of those resources Benchmark offers. Email Marketing Email List
· Live Support and Email — Benchmark supplies live one-on-one aid through these means.
· Email Service. Contact Benchmark at [email protected] or via the company’s contact form here. Accessible 24 hours Monday — Friday and restricted hours on Saturday.
· Telephone 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. Accessible almost 24 hours daily Monday — Friday and limited hours on Saturday. Founded in English, Spanish, Portuguese, and Italian.
· FAQ — Benchmark’s FAQ section is somewhat mislabeled because it is closer to a QandA-format knowledge base than a normal FAQ. There are more than 900 entries, sorted into 18 subjects ranging from”Getting Started” to”API.” Users may perform a keyword search of any subject (or sub-topic) or from the FAQ as a whole. 1 caveat. With such an extensive knowledge base, it’s pretty much inevitable that some entries will be out of date. Some of the QandAs offer advice that’s wholly incorrect, so in some cases, you might need to contact support to hash things out.
· Video Tutorials and Webinars — Benchmark provides about two dozen movie tutorials which take users step by step through the features of the program. 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 see the recorded version at any moment. You can even request a special webinar on a number of different subjects. Live webinars comprise the opportunity to ask questions throughout the demonstration.
· Email Marketing Manuals and Articles — There are more in-depth details on email marketing in general, as well as the Benchmark program specifically, at the Manuals Section. These downloadable files also cover industry-specific issues. Articles, very similar to sites, offer users advice 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 new to email marketing who feel absorbed by all of the jargon. Benchmark provides a glossarywith 50 of the most popular email marketing terms from”above-the-fold” into”whitelists.”
· Blog and Newsletter — For current information about email advertising trends, check out Benchmark’s monthly newsletter, as well as its extremely active site. All subscribers automatically obtain 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 latest newsletters on message boards in the Benchmark Community. This forum allows users to talk about newsletter production strategies, vote for their favourite newsletters, and gain inspiration from additional Benchmark users.
Web-Based Or Locally-Installed
Benchmark is completely web-based and does not Require any installation on your computer.
Favorable Reviews and Testimonials
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. Email Marketing Email List
Some common points of compliments.
· Top Notch Service . This is perhaps the most common observation regarding Benchmark, and some thing I noticed for myself too. People tend to find support prompt and beneficial, and a few say it’s actually the element that distinguishes Benchmark from its competitors. The company also receives praise for its blog articles and videos.
· Characteristic Selection Across All Aims . Some customers praise the inclusion of attributes like AB testing and surveys from all programs; many companies charge extra for these attributes or just include them into their pricier plans.
· Benefits of Use. Users have a tendency to find Benchmark’s interface incredibly intuitive and user-friendly. The program gathers praise from a broad range of demographics, from first time ESP users to people who have attempted a variety of programs before settling on Benchmark.
· Mobile Friendly Emails. Consumers were impressed with the mobile-friendly email design of Benchmark’s templates. Since more and more people access their email from mobile devices, this can be an increasingly significant aspect to consider.
Negative Reviews and Complaints
I was not able to find many people who disliked Their own Benchmark experience. However, I managed to discover a couple of complaints.
· Inconsistent Send-Times. Apparently a few users experienced a problem with Benchmark where their emails were sent hours when they were scheduled. One customer theorized the issue might arise from long lists of recipients. Not all customers of Benchmark will possess time-sensitive shipping demands, but others will. If you need your mails to go out exactly when your program dictates, you may have to consider this issue.
· Buggy Social Media Integrations. I saw several user testimonials that commented the social networking integrations in Benchmark aren’t up to par.
· “Spammy” Templates. Some users were concerned that Benchmark’s templates may feel like spam mail, causing receivers to mark them as spam rather than reading the contents. Since the entire purpose of an ESP is to stop this from happening, this may be a problem. On the flip side, I never felt this way whilst 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 scale of paid plans that can service anywhere between 600 and 7,140,000 subscribers.
Benchmark’s free programs do not require credit Cards, that is always refreshing. The only grab. There’ll 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 program permits you to send up to 14000 mails to around 2000 subscribers and gives you access to most but not all Benchmark’s features list. Notable absences into the attributes list for free account include email automation and sub-accounts (allowing multiple users to get one Benchmark account).
Paid Strategies. Email Marketing Email List
Users with small contacts lists and restricted Monthly messages have the option of paying to get their email advertising based on the amount of emails 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 per month
o Extra Large Plans. 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 lets you pay through PayPal. They also offer a 25% reduction for nonprofits and teachers.
Benchmark is a solid program. It is Simple to Use, Open to innovation, and competitively priced. Its free alternatives might just be the very best in the business for anyone who only wants to dip into email advertising (especially small, local companies ). For that matter, any Benchmark strategy can work nicely for a little business which views email as a minor aspect of its advertising and does not have any desire to work past the principles just yet.
If you are a little or maybe medium-sized Company trying to find a easy email advertising program with a host of amazing features, Benchmark is an excellent choice. Even though there may come a time when you outgrow the program, it supplies a great deal for the price, provides exceptional support, and the company seems to be sensitive to the needs of its users. You can not ask for much more.