Summary Email Marketing Script
For many a day in 2004, three people sat Around a single desk in a small medical office — an office which functioned as the team’s conference room, breakfast area, and thought heart. Backed by a little programming group in India, the trio (comprising Benchmark Internet Group founder Curt Keller, his wife Denise, along with an search engine optimization pro ) discussed ideas on how best to implement a deceptively simple idea. Simple email advertising. Many of the thoughts were beyond the resources of the fledgling business, but that didn’t stop Keller from planning ahead.
The first Customers of Benchmark Mail were small businesses located in near proximity to Benchmark’s one-room HQ in Long Beach, CA. Keller and his staff personally sold them on the use of email advertising, while working hard to create a very simple user interface which would be easy to operate. All the while, the business uses such innovative ideas as customizable templates and software which adapted to consumer requirements. They also made certain from the beginning 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 services to small and midsize businesses while continuing to honor a commitment to assist kids in need. This doesn’t indicate that Benchmark is a little-guys-only service, however; it has adhered to its core principle of adaptability and serves big organizations such as UNICEF and Kaiser-Permanente via its High Volume Business plans.
Today, Benchmark serves up of 73,000 users from across the planet, but the company has not forgotten its origins. Benchmark still maintains good relationships with small, locally-based businesses. In reality, the organization supplies a full page of testimonials from users of the app. You may read more about Benchmark’s history and development here.
While most of the features Benchmark provides Are on par with the rest of the industry, one of the standout features of this ESP is the simple fact that most of its features 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 classes, some of which are tailored to specific industries such as education, entertainment, and retail. There’s also a class for societal media-specific templates.
· Video Emails. Possibly the best-known benefit of Benchmark is its support for video mails. The company explains the benefits of this attribute here.
· Online Surveys. You can create professional-looking online polls using among Benchmark’s 6 templates. Post your poll on your website or build it into an email.
· Dedicated Email Server. All of Benchmark’s High Volume plans have a dedicated IP address to help increase deliverability prices. Users on other plans have the option of paying for this service ($30/month) to boost their particular delivery stats. Read more about the advantages of dedicated servers here.
· Email Delivery Management. Benchmark’s email delivery management program is about getting clients’ mails into inboxes. The business 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. Email Marketing Script
· Mobile App. Benchmark’s mobile programs allow customers having an Apple device to access several functions on the road. They can get and include contacts, read reportsand send videos through integration with a YouTube accounts, 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 functional.
· Photo Editing. If the pictures you intend to utilize on your email campaign are not perfectly sized or need some colour adjustment, you can use Benchmark’s integrated photo 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 may construct your mails from scratch.
· Autoresponder. Each Benchmark client has the ability to style up to eight custom autoresponder messages. These could be scheduled as a series or occasion lead-up, or designed as annual messages such as birthday or anniversary mails.
· Sign-Up Forms. The only way to become prosperous in email marketing is through growing your own list, and Benchmark really promotes doing so through 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. Because every email program differs and each internet browser has a signature style, making certain your emails look great across the board is crucial. You can use Inbox Checker to look at the way that your email displays in Gmail using Explorer and Outlook 3. Employing the entire program (which checks everything out of AOL to Yahoo, Explorer to Safari, mobile to PC) is a paid add-on provider, available for $14 each 100 checks.
· RSS-to-Email. Regular bloggers can create newsletters from their blogs automatically through the RSS-to-Email feature, which works with any blog which handles an RSS-feed. Users simply need 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 connection. Benchmark’s API Integration feature permits users with XML-RPC, HTTP POST, or HTTP GET abilities to retrieve data from other programs that use JSON, XML, XML-RPC, or PHP serialization strings. In a nutshell, this permits them to play three purposes. Manage contact lists, manage campaigns and effort sending, and assess 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.
Ease Of Use
Signing up for a Benchmark accounts is fairly straightforward. After entering your name, email, phone number, and business name, you have to confirm your email address. This is a five-minute procedure for me. Upon logging into my account (with the free program ) I was greeted by an attractive UI that gave me a clear direction about the best way best to create my very first email campaign. Good start!
Email Campaign Creation
On its own dashboard, Benchmark offers users five chief options. Emails, Automations, Contacts, Surveys, and Reports. To create a new campaign, go into the Emails section, then hit on the big blue”Create New Mail” button in the upper right-hand corner. Email Marketing Script
From there, you have to decide if you want an RSS Or classic email message. You can use Benchmark’s drag-and-drop editor, or move for more customization using 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 gifted that way, so I moved with the drag-and-drop alternative.
I had been prompted to enter a subject line for my Email and setup how much observation I desired on the message, in addition to if I wanted an automatic tweet when the campaign went out. The next task was to choose which contacts I wanted to get the campaign. With that, I was finally able to start constructing the email . If you want to, you can assemble your own email designs employing a very intuitive editor. On the flip side, you can modify one of Benchmark’s templates, that are great, and much better than I managed to do on my own.
Preventing the Email Campaign
If You’re just Starting out, you can certainly 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 right from the personal computer; import contacts directly from Salesforce.com, Hotmail, or Gmail accounts; or copy and paste large lists of contacts into a text type. Once you create your Benchmark lists, they’ll appear on your dashboard, together with a Master Unsubscribe List.
The sending of the email is quite simple. When you’ve finished all your tweaks, you may either save the email as a draft, send it immediately, or schedule a time and date for delivery. If you would like to verify everything is well before distributing your email about the planet, you can send it to your self to preview it as many as 10 times/day. I opted to program my email for delivery to see how timely the automated system would actually be. I advised my email for 2.45 and received it at 2.50, so while the timing wasn’t exactly ideal, it was likely within tolerance levels for most users. If you are among the more infrequent users who need on-the-minute email sending, you might have to appear elsewhere. More worryingly, my email didn’t go to my main inbox but was mechanically sorted in my”promotions” folder. Definitely not ideal.
Mail Campaign Reporting
First thing I Discovered about Benchmark email reports was something I’d read in a few reviews. They’re really, really fast. I mean lightning fast. Opens enroll from the Benchmark system virtually immediately. I have worked with a lot of different apps where these reports take hours or even days to appear.
Benchmark provides users with several key Bits of data about each effort. The possibly most important statistic, the open rate, appears in both pie chart and numerical form. Additionally, Benchmark provides users with stats such as clicks, forwards, bounces, unsubscribes, and misuse. Every stat further breaks down to the specific email addresses associated with a given activity. Users may export this information for additional analysis by means of a csv or xls file. There is also a social networking place which reports shares through Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn, as well as a map that breaks down, by country, that opens your mails. Email Marketing Script
Though all of the information Is Excellent and Necessary, it is not sufficient to sustain increased level marketers that want more info such as conversions, which hyperlinks were clicked, and revenue analysis. Though Google Analytics provides a lot of that info with proper integration, there might come a time when serious entrepreneurs need more information than Benchmark provides. Whether a small company will get to that point varies, naturally, based on the company.
Specific Size Of Company
Benchmark designed its 3-tiered pricing Structure with the goal of serving everyone from the tiniest kitchen-table startup to large email marketers. On the other hand, the company’s key focus is on small to medium companies, particularly those just starting out in email marketing. This is particularly reflected in the fact that customers subscribing to the moderate plans get unlimited emails, 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 allows users to create and customize occasions, promote and sell tickets, and track the success of the events via their Benchmark Email account. A number of subscriptions are available, including a free alternative.
· Salesforce.com — This integration enables users to import contacts into Benchmark and use Benchmark’s email system to maintain Salesforce customers engaged. Read our review of Salesforce here.
· Twitter — Benchmark Email Lite is a WordPress plugin which allows users to quickly build an email viewer via their subscribers. The plug-in 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 listing. Read our review of Highrisehere.
· Benchmark Power — This free plugin allows you to source images for your Benchmark mails from locations throughout the net. Benchmark Power captures images you find and instantly uploads them to your Benchmark accounts for future usage.
· Flickr — Users with Flickr accounts may link Flickr to 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 contributors to various lists based on which products they bought. Read our review of Shopify here.
· PayPal — Users may add any of the PayPal customers for their own Benchmark email lists bylinking the account. Read our overview of Paypal here.
· Easy List — Know more about this very simple list-making app and download it here.
· WordPress — The ever-present blog and site builder offers an integration with Benchmark. Use it to send mails of your blog posts and also use the analytics to see how your readers respond to them. Learn more here.
· Zapier — Gain entry to Zapier’s enormous integration library here. Email Marketing Script
Social Media Integrations
Since Of the integral connection between social networking and email advertising, it’s important to look at the social networking features included in Benchmark.
· Social Media Templates — One section of Benchmark’s enormous email template listing consists of social media-specific templates that directly promote your institution’s involvement in social networking forums like facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
· Facebook”Like” Button — Benchmark provides a simple function which permits you to bring a Facebook”Just Like” button into your emails.
· Facebook Sign-Up Form — Benchmark supplies easy-to-create sign-up forms (see”Features” above) for both websites and Facebook fan pages, to help you convert followers into subscribers.
· 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 which will direct your readers to each of your social media pages.
The company also fully Complies with all 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 business uses secure socket layer (SSL) protection to encrypt the info. The whole system is encrypted to ensure the safety of customers’ personal details.
Anti-Spam Policy and Protection
Like All valid ESPs, Benchmark takes spam seriously and summarizes a clear zero-tolerance coverage for any of the users hoping to take part in spam activities. The business is entirely in compliance with all the U.S. CAN-SPAM Act of 2003. Benchmark additionally takes several steps to maintain its standing as a spam-free supplier, among them membership in the Email Sender and Provider Coalition. The company employs the app SpamAssassin to filter messages sent through its server.
To stop users from Unknowingly sending spam-like substances, Benchmark provides a spam test feature that looks for words commonly 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” choices. Individualized IP addresses also help large-volume senders reduce their spam numbers.
Client Support and Service
Benchmark Offers its customers a lot of support resources. Customer support is usually responsive, with minimal waiting times. The website provides good learning tools, but can be needlessly opaque occasionally. Crucial information is often buried and difficult to locate, 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 every email, but you won’t find that mentioned on the Free For Life webpage, not even at the fine print. Nor are you going to 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. Email Marketing Script
· Live Support and Email — Benchmark supplies live one-on-one support through the following means.
· Email Service. Contact Benchmark at [email protected] or through the organization’s contact form . Accessible 24 hours Monday — Friday and restricted hours on Saturday.
· Telephone Support. You are able to reach Benchmark at 800-430-4095 (U.S.) or 001-562-252-3789 (all states ). Available weekdays from 6 am to 5 pm PT.
· Chat Support. Accessible 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 as it is closer to a QandA-format knowledge base than a typical FAQ. There are more than 900 entries, sorted into 18 subjects ranging from”Getting Started” to”API.” Users may perform a key word search of any topic (or sub-topic) or of their FAQ as a whole. 1 caveat. With such a comprehensive knowledge base, it’s pretty much inevitable that some entries will be out of date. A few of the QandAs provide information which is wholly inaccurate, so in some cases, you may need to contact support to hash things out.
· Video Tutorials and Webinars — Benchmark provides about two dozen video tutorials that take users step by step through the features of this program. The business also offers a webinar called”Benchmark Mail Crash Course.” You can 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 particular webinar on a number of different subjects. Live webinars include the opportunity to ask questions during the presentation.
· Email Marketing Manuals and Articles — You can find more in-depth information on email marketing generally, as well as the Benchmark program especially, in the Manuals Section. These downloadable documents also cover industry-specific issues. Articles, very similar to sites, offer users guidance beyond that found in the FAQ section, but in shorter, more readable chunks than the guides provide.
· Glossary of Email Marketing Terms — This can be a particularly helpful tool for those new to email marketing who believe absorbed by all the jargon. Benchmark provides a glossarywith 50 of the very popular email advertising terms from”above-the-fold” into”whitelists.”
· Website and Newsletter — For current info about email advertising trends, check out Benchmark’s monthly newsletter, in addition to its exceptionally 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 may post their latest newsletters on message boards at 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 setup on your computer.
Favorable Reviews and Reviews
Benchmark Includes a four-out-of-five star rating on G2 Crowd, with a slightly better showing on GetApp and Capterra. 4.5 stars each. Email Marketing Script
Some common points of compliments.
· Top Notch Support. This is perhaps the most typical monitoring regarding Benchmark, and something I discovered for myself too. People today tend to find support prompt and helpful, and a few say it is 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 most plans; many companies charge extra for these attributes or only include them in their pricier plans.
· 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 consumers to people who have attempted a variety of programs before settling Benchmark.
· Mobile Friendly Emails. Users 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 consider.
Negative Reviews and Complaints
I was Unable to find many people who disliked Their own Benchmark experience. But, I was able to find 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. One customer theorized that the issue might arise in lengthy lists of recipients. Not all customers of Benchmark will have time-sensitive sending needs, but other people will. If you want your emails to go out precisely when your schedule dictates, you might need to consider this issue.
· Buggy Social Media Integrations. I watched several consumer testimonials that remarked the social media integrations in Benchmark aren’t up to par.
· “Spammy” Templates. Some users have been worried that Benchmark’s templates can feel like spam mail, leading recipients to mark them as junk and not studying the contents. Since the whole purpose of an ESP would be to stop this from happening, this might be a problem. On the other hand, I never felt this way while searching through the template list, so it might not be the most valid of complaints.
Benchmark Offers a enormous variety of pricing plans, including a totally free plan and a massive array of paid programs that can service anywhere between 600 and 7,140,000 subscribers.
Benchmark’s free plans do not require charge Cards, that is always refreshing. The only grab. There will be a little Benchmark emblem at the bottom of each email you send out. Of course, you can always choose to upgrade to a paid plan in case you don’t want the Benchmark branding. The free plan permits you to send up to 14000 emails to up to 2000 subscribers and gives you access to most but not all Benchmark’s features record. Notable absences into the features list for free accounts comprise email automation and sub-accounts (enabling many users to get one Benchmark account).
Paid Strategies. Email Marketing Script
Users with small contacts lists and restricted Monthly messages have the option of paying to get their email advertising depending on the number of mails they send each 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 per 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 you a 25% reduction for nonprofits and teachers.
Benchmark is a good program. It is Simple to Use, Open to invention, and competitively priced. Its free options may very well be the best in the company for anybody who only wants to dive into email advertising (especially small, local businesses). For that matter, any Benchmark plan can work nicely for a little business which perspectives email as a minor element of its marketing and does not have any desire to operate beyond the basics just yet.
If you are a little or maybe medium-sized Company trying to find a easy email marketing program using a host of great features, Benchmark is an excellent choice. Even though there may come a time when you launch the program, it provides a lot for the money, offers excellent service, and the business seems to be sensitive to the needs of its customers. You can not ask for more.