Overview Email Marketing Roi
For many a day in 2004, three people sat Around one desk in a tiny medical office — an office which functioned as the team’s conference room, breakfast area, and thought hub. Backed by a little programming group in India, the trio (comprising Benchmark Internet Group founder Curt Keller, his wife Denise, and an search engine optimization expert) discussed ideas for how to execute a deceptively simple concept. Simple email advertising. Many of the thoughts were beyond the means of the fledgling company, but that did not stop Keller from planning ahead.
The first Customers of Benchmark Email were small companies located in near proximity to Benchmark’s one-room HQ in Long Beach, CA. Keller and his staff personally sold them on the usage of email advertising, while working hard to make a simple user interface which would be easy to operate. All the while, the business championed such novel ideas as customizable templates and applications which adapted to consumer needs. They also made sure from the outset that anybody who needed help would have quick access to excellent customer care.
Benchmark Has continued to rise and advantagesper. Its present focus. Providing global email marketing solutions to small and midsize businesses while continuing to honor a commitment to assist kids in need. This does not indicate that Benchmark is a little-guys-only service, however; it has adhered to its core principle of adaptability and functions big organizations such as UNICEF and Kaiser-Permanente via its High Volume Business plans.
Today, Benchmark serves upwards of 73,000 users from across the globe, however, the company hasn’t forgotten its roots. Benchmark still maintains good relationships with little, locally-based businesses. In reality, the company supplies a complete page of testimonials from local users of this program. You can read more about Benchmark’s history and development here.
While the Majority of the features Benchmark supplies Are on par with the rest of the business, one of the standout features of the ESP is the fact that most of its attributes come standard with every single account — including the free ones. Here are a few of Benchmark’s most notable offerings.
· Hundreds of Industry-Specific, Themed Templates. Benchmark offers all customers access to its 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’s 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 describes the benefits of this feature here.
· Online Surveys. You’ll be able to create professional-looking online surveys using among Benchmark’s 6 templates. Post your survey on your website or construct it directly into an email.
· Dedicated Email Server. All of Benchmark’s High Volume plans come with a dedicated IP address to help increase deliverability rates. Users on other plans have the choice of paying for this service ($30/month) to increase their particular delivery stats. Read more about the benefits 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 operates with ReturnPath, a leading email delivery and delivery service. The business also communicates with ISPs on its customers’ behalf. Email Marketing Roi
· Mobile App. Benchmark’s mobile apps allow customers with an Apple device to access several purposes on the road. They can access and include contacts, browse reportsand send videos via integration with a YouTube account, and even layout and send quick email blasts with one of 10 available templates. This is quite a little more than many other businesses offer on their mobile programs, which makes them considerably more operational.
· Photo Editing. If the pictures you intend to utilize in your email campaign aren’t perfectly sized or want some colour adjustment, you may use Benchmark’s integrated picture editor. This is a fairly handy feature if you don’t have photoshop available.
· Code Editor. In case you have the know-how to work magic with HTML, Benchmark provides this ultra-customization option with which you can build your mails from scratch.
· Autoresponder. Each Benchmark client has the power to design around eight custom autoresponder messages. These could be scheduled as a string or event lead-up, or made as yearly messages like anniversary or birthday emails.
· Sign-Up Forms. The only way to be prosperous in email marketing is through growing your list, and Benchmark actually promotes doing this via sign-up forms. The business bases its Free For Life account entirely around site and Facebook sign-ups and provides an easy-to-use tool to create custom templates for each medium.
· Inbox Checker. Because every email program is different and each web browser has a signature style, making sure that your emails look good across the board is crucial. It is possible to use Inbox Checker to have a look at the way your email displays in Gmail using Explorer and Outlook 3. Using the entire program (which checks everything from AOL to Yahoo, Explorer into 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 automatically through the RSS-to-Email feature, which works with any blog which manages an RSS-feed. Users only have to establish 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 link. Benchmark’s API Integration feature permits users with XML-RPC, HTTP POST, or HTTP GET skills to recover data from other programs 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 effort sending, and check statistics. 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.
Benefits Of Use
Signing up for a Benchmark accounts is fairly straightforward. After entering your name, email, contact number, and business name, you have to validate 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 make my first email campaign. Great start!
Email Campaign Creation
On its own dashboard, Benchmark offers users five chief options. Emails, Automations, Contacts, Surveys, and Reports. To create a new effort, go to the Emails section, then hit on the big blue”Create New Mail” button in the top right-hand corner. Email Marketing Roi
From there, you must decide if you want an RSS Or classic email message. It is possible to use Benchmark’s drag-and-drop editor, or go for more customization using 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 was motivated to enter a subject line for my Email and setup how much observation I desired on the message, as well as if I wanted an automated tweet once the campaign went out. The next task was to select which contacts I wanted to receive the campaign. With that, I was eventually able to start building the email itself. If you want to, you can assemble your personal email layouts employing an extremely intuitive editor. On the flip side, you can alter one of Benchmark’s templates, that are great, and much better than I managed to do in my.
Sending the Email Campaign
If You’re just Starting out, you can certainly do as I did and manually input contacts at a time. However, for people who already have a list, there are numerous ways to import it. You are able to upload a CSV, xls, or txt file right from the personal 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 show up on your dashboard, together with a Master Unsubscribe List.
The sending of this email is rather easy. Once you’ve finished all your tweaks, you can save email as a draft, send it immediately, or schedule a date and time for delivery. If you would like to check all is well before distributing your email about the world, it is possible to send it to your self 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 advised my email for 2.45 and received it at 2.50, therefore while the timing was not exactly ideal, it was probably within tolerance levels for most users. If you are one of the more infrequent users who demand on-the-minute email sending, then you may need 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.
Mail Campaign Reporting
The first thing I Noticed about Benchmark email reports was something I’d read about in a few reviews. They’re really, really quickly. I mean lightning fast. Opens enroll in the Benchmark system virtually instantaneously. I’ve worked with several different apps where these reports take hours or even days to look.
Benchmark provides users with several key Pieces of data about each campaign. The arguably most important statistic, the open rate, seems in both pie graph and numerical form. Additionally, Benchmark provides users with stats for clicks, forwards, bounces, unsubscribes, and abuse. Each stat further breaks down to the specific email addresses related to a given activity. Users may export this data for further analysis by means of a csv or xls file. There is also a social networking area which reports shares through Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn, in addition to a map that breaks down, by country, who opens your emails. Email Marketing Roi
Though all of the information Is Excellent and Necessary, it isn’t sufficient to sustain higher level marketers who want more info such as conversions, which hyperlinks were clicked, and earnings analysis. Though Google Analytics provides a lot of this information with proper integration, there may come a time when serious marketers need more info than Benchmark provides. Whether a small business will get to that point changes, of course, dependent on the company.
Particular Size Of Company
Benchmark designed its 3-tiered pricing Structure with the goal of serving everybody from the tiniest kitchen-table startup to big email marketers. However, the organization’s key focus is on small to medium companies, especially those just beginning in email marketing. This is particularly reflected in the reality that customers subscribing to the moderate plans get unlimited emails, while larger plans have constraints.
Integrations and Add-Ons
Benchmark Offers approximately 20 plug-ins and integrations. If you don’t see the integration you need, there is still hope. You’re able to use the API or request a integration by sending an email to [email protected]
· Benchmark Occasions — Benchmark Events is event marketing applications designed to integrate fully with Benchmark Email. Launched in 2012, this program allows users to create and customize events, promote and market tickets, and monitor the success of the events via their Benchmark Email account. A number of subscriptions are available, including a free option.
· Salesforce.com — This integration enables users to import contacts into Benchmark and utilize Benchmark’s email system to maintain Salesforce customers participated. Read our overview of Salesforce here.
· Twitter — Benchmark Mail Lite is a WordPress plugin which permits users to quickly build an email audience via their subscribers. The plugin can automatically create email versions of blog articles and permits users to connect up to five Benchmark accounts.
· Highrise — Merges Highrise contacts using a Benchmark list. Read our overview of Highrisehere.
· Benchmark Power — This free plug-in allows you to source images for your Benchmark emails from places across the web. Benchmark Power captures pictures you find and immediately uploads them to your Benchmark accounts for future use.
· Flickr — Users with Flickr accounts can link Flickr for their Benchmark image galleries.
· Shopify — You are able to link a Shopify accounts to Benchmark and mechanically add Shopify clients to Benchmark lists. You can even add subscribers to various lists based on what they purchased. Read our review of Shopify here.
· PayPal — Users may add some of their PayPal clients to their own Benchmark email lists bylinking the account. Read our overview of Paypal here.
· Easy List — Learn more about this very simple list-making app and download it .
· WordPress — The ever-present site and site builder provides an integration using Benchmark. Use it to send emails of your blog posts and also use the analytics to observe how your subscribers react to them. Learn more here.
· Zapier — Gain entry to Zapier’s huge integration library . Email Marketing Roi
Social Media Integrations
Since Of the integral link between social media and email advertising, it is very important to check out the social media features included in Benchmark.
· Social Media Templates — One section of Benchmark’s massive email template listing is made of societal media-specific templates which directly promote your company’s participation in social networking forums such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
· Facebook”Like” Button — Benchmark provides 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”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, and/or LinkedIn accounts, you can add buttons to every email which will direct your subscribers to each of your social networking pages.
The Business also fully Complies with the U.S.-E.U. and U.S.-Swiss Safe Harbor Frameworks concerning the selection of personal data from citizens of these countries. When customers provide credit card amounts to Benchmark, the company utilizes secure socket layer (SSL) protection to encrypt the info. The entire system is encrypted to ensure the safety of customers’ personal information.
Anti-Spam Policy and Protection
Like All legitimate ESPs, Benchmark takes junk seriously and summarizes a clear zero-tolerance coverage for any of their users hoping to take part in spam activities. The company is entirely in compliance with all the U.S. CAN-SPAM Act of 2003. Benchmark also takes several steps to preserve its reputation as a spam-free supplier, one of them membership from the Email Sender and Provider Coalition. The business uses the app SpamAssassin to filter messages sent through its host.
To prevent users from Unknowingly sending spam-like substances, Benchmark supplies a spam test feature which looks for words widely used in spam messages. It scores each 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 assist large-volume senders decrease their spam numbers.
Client Service and Support
Benchmark Offers its users a lot of support tools. Customer service is generally responsive, with minimal waiting times. The site provides good learning tools, but can be needlessly opaque occasionally. Crucial information can be buried and hard to find, especially in the event that you don’t know exactly what you’re searching for, especially when it comes to minute details about plans. As an example. The Free For Life plan comprises Benchmark branding on each email, but you won’t find that mentioned on the Free For Life page, not even at the fine print. Nor are you going to see it said when you register. The only place it’s mentioned is at the FAQ, here.
Here are some of the resources Benchmark offers. Email Marketing Roi
· Live Support and Email — Benchmark supplies live one-on-one support through the following means.
· Email Service. Contact Benchmark at [email protected] or via the organization’s contact form . Accessible 24 hours Monday — Friday and restricted hours on Saturday.
· Telephone Support. You are able to reach Benchmark in 800-430-4095 (U.S.) or even 001-562-252-3789 (all states ). Available weekdays from 6 am to 5 pm PT.
· Chat Support. Available almost 24 hours daily Monday — Friday and restricted 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 base than a normal FAQ. There are over 900 entries, sorted into 18 subjects ranging from”Getting Started” to”API.” Users may perform a keyword search of any topic (or sub-topic) or of 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. A few of the QandAs offer advice which is wholly inaccurate, so in some cases, you might want to contact assistance to hash things out.
· Video Tutorials and Webinars — Benchmark supplies about two dozen movie tutorials which take users step by step through the features of the program. The business also offers a webinar called”Benchmark Email Crash Course.” You can see it live each Friday at 10.00 a.m. PST or watch the recorded version at any time. You can also ask for a particular webinar on a number of different subjects. Live webinars comprise the opportunity to ask questions throughout the demonstration.
· Email Marketing Manuals and Articles — You can find more in-depth information on email marketing in general, as well as the Benchmark program specifically, at the Manuals Section. These downloadable documents also cover industry-specific troubles. Articles, similar to sites, offer users advice beyond that found in the FAQ section, but in shorter, more readable chunks compared to the guides provide.
· Glossary of Email Marketing Requirements — This can be a particularly helpful tool for all those brand new to email marketing who believe consumed by all the jargon. Benchmark provides a glossarywith 50 of the very popular email marketing terms from”above-the-fold” into”whitelists.”
· Website and Newsletter — For current info about email advertising trends, check out Benchmark’s monthly newsletter, as well as its extremely active blog. All subscribers automatically obtain access to present 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 at the Benchmark Community. This forum allows users to discuss newsletter production approaches, vote for their favorite 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 rating on G2 Crowd, using a slightly better showing on GetApp and Capterra. 4.5 stars each. Email Marketing Roi
Some common points of compliments.
· Top Notch Support. This is perhaps the most typical observation regarding Benchmark, and some thing I noticed for myself as well. People tend to find support prompt and beneficial, and some say it is actually the element that distinguishes Benchmark from its rivals. The business also receives praise for its blog posts and videos.
· Characteristic Selection Across All Plans. Some users praise the addition of features like AB testing and surveys in all programs; many companies charge extra for these attributes or only include them in their pricier programs.
· Ease of Use. Users have a tendency to locate Benchmark’s interface incredibly intuitive and user-friendly. The program gathers praise from a broad assortment of demographics, from first time ESP users to people who have tried a variety of programs before settling 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 significant factor to consider.
Negative Reviews and Complaints
I was not able to find many people who loathed Their own Benchmark experience. But, I was able to find a few complaints.
· Inconsistent Send-Times. Apparently a few users experienced a problem with Benchmark in which their emails were sent hours when they were scheduled. One customer theorized the issue might arise from lengthy lists of recipients. Not all customers of all Benchmark will have time-sensitive shipping demands, but others will. If you need your mails to go out exactly when your program dictates, you may need to consider this issue.
· Buggy Social Media Integrations. I watched several consumer reviews that commented the social media integrations in Benchmark aren’t up to par.
· “Spammy” Templates. Some users were concerned that Benchmark’s templates may feel like spam mail, leading recipients to mark them as junk and not studying the contents. Since the whole point of an ESP would be to stop this from happening, this might be an issue. On the flip side, I never felt this way whilst searching through the template list, so it may not be the most valid of complaints.
Benchmark Provides a huge number of pricing strategies, including a totally free plan and a huge array of paid plans that can 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’ll be a little Benchmark emblem in the bottom of each email you send out. Obviously, you can always opt to upgrade to a paid program if you don’t need the Benchmark branding. The free program allows you to send up to 14000 emails to around 2000 subscribers and provides you access to most but not all of Benchmark’s features list. Notable absences into the attributes list for free accounts include email automation and sub-accounts (allowing multiple users to access one Benchmark account).
Paid Strategies. Email Marketing Roi
Users with little contacts lists and restricted Monthly messages have the choice of paying for their email advertising depending on the number of emails that they send every month.
o Medium Plans. 600-50,000 subscribers, $13.99-$254.99 a month
o Large Plans. 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 Enormous Plans. 1,070,000-7,140,000 subscribers, $4,500-$29,200 per month
Benchmark accepts all Major credit cards and also lets you pay through PayPal. They also offer a 25% reduction for nonprofits and educators.
Benchmark is a solid program. It’s Simple to Use, Open to invention, and competitively priced. Its free options may very well be the very best in the business for anyone who only wants to dip into email marketing (particularly small, neighborhood companies ). For that matter, any Benchmark plan can work well for a small company which perspectives email as a little aspect of its marketing and has no desire to operate past the principles just yet.
If you are a little or even medium-sized Business trying to find a simple email marketing program using a multitude of great features, Benchmark is an exceptional choice. Though there may come a time when you launch the program, it provides a lot for the price, offers exceptional support, and the business seems to be sensitive to the needs of its users. You can’t ask for more.