Overview Email Marketing Sender Software
For many an evening in 2004, three people sat Around one desk in a small medical office — an office which served as the group’s conference room, breakfast area, and thought heart. Backed by a little programming group in India, the trio (consisting of Benchmark Internet Group founder Curt Keller, his wife Denise, and an search engine optimization pro ) discussed ideas for how to implement a deceptively straightforward idea. Simple email advertising. Many of their ideas were beyond the resources of the fledgling business, but that did not stop Keller from planning ahead.
The first Customers of Benchmark Email were small companies located in close proximity to Benchmark’s one-room HQ in Long Beach, CA. Keller and his staff sold them on the usage of email advertising, while working hard to make a simple user interface which would be simple to operate. All the while, the business championed such novel ideas as customizable templates and software which adapted to consumer needs. They also made sure from the beginning that anybody who needed help would have rapid access to excellent customer support.
Benchmark Has continued to rise and advantagesper. Its present focus. Providing global email advertising solutions to small and medium-sized companies while continuing to honor a commitment to assist children in need. This doesn’t mean that Benchmark is a little-guys-only company, however; it has adhered to its core principle of adaptability and serves large organizations like UNICEF and Kaiser-Permanente through its High Volume Enterprise plans.
Today, Benchmark serves upwards of 73,000 users from across the planet, however, the company has not forgotten its origins. Benchmark still keeps good relationships with little, locally-based companies. In fact, the organization supplies a full page of testimonials from users of this app. You can read more about Benchmark’s background and development here.
While most of the features Benchmark supplies Are on par with the rest of the industry, one of the standout features of this ESP is the fact that nearly all its features come standard with every single account — including the free ones. Below are some of Benchmark’s most notable offerings.
· Hundreds of Industry-Specific, Themed Templates. Benchmark offers all customers access to the library of over 400 templates. These are organized into 19 classes, some of which are tailored to particular industries like education, entertainment, and retailstores. There’s also a category for social media-specific templates.
· Video Emails. Perhaps the best-known advantage of Benchmark is its support for video mails. The business explains the benefits of this feature here.
· Online Surveys. You can create professional-looking online surveys using among Benchmark’s 6 templates. Post your poll on your site or construct it into an email.
· Dedicated Email Server. All Benchmark’s High Volume plans have a dedicated IP address to help increase deliverability prices. Users on other plans have the option of paying for this service ($30/month) to increase their own delivery stats. Read more about the benefits of dedicated servers .
· Email Delivery Management. Benchmark’s email shipping management program is about getting clients’ mails into inboxes. The business is a part of the Email Sender and Provider Coalition and works with ReturnPath, a top email delivery and delivery support. The company also communicates with ISPs on its clients’ behalf. Email Marketing Sender Software
· Mobile App. Benchmark’s mobile apps make it possible for customers having an Apple device to access several purposes on the street. They can get and add contacts, read reports, send videos via integration using a YouTube accounts, and even layout and send fast email blasts with one of 10 templates that are available. That is quite a bit more than a number of other businesses offer on their mobile programs, making them considerably more operational.
· Photo Editing. If the photos you intend to utilize on your email campaign are not perfectly sized or want some color adjustment, you can use Benchmark’s integrated photo 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 may construct your mails from scratch.
· Autoresponder. Each Benchmark client has the power to style around eight custom autoresponder messages. These can be scheduled as a series or event lead-up, or designed as yearly messages like anniversary or birthday mails.
· Sign-Up Forms. The only way to be prosperous in email advertising is through growing your list, and Benchmark really promotes doing this through sign-up forms. The business bases its Free For Life account completely around site and Facebook sign-ups and provides an easy-to-use instrument to create customized templates for every medium.
· Inbox Checker. Since every email program is different and each internet browser includes a signature style, making sure your emails look good across the board is important. 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 assesses everything from 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 may create newsletters from their sites mechanically 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 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 using XML-RPC, HTTP POST, or HTTP GET skills to retrieve data from other programs that use JSON, XML, XML-RPC, or PHP serialization strings. In a nutshell, this allows them to play three functions. Manage contact lists, manage campaigns and effort sending, and check data. The company describes this role in more detail here.
· 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.
Ease Of Use
Signing up for a Benchmark account is pretty straightforward. After entering your name, email, phone number, and business name, you have to confirm your email address. This was a five-minute process for me. Upon logging in to my account (with the free program ) I was greeted by an attractive UI that gave me a very clear direction on the best way to create my very first email campaign. Great start!
Email Campaign Creation
On its 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 large blue”Create New Mail” button at the top right-hand corner. Email Marketing Sender Software
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 went with the drag-and-drop alternative.
I was prompted to enter a subject line for my Email and setup how much observation I wanted on the message, as well as if I wanted an automated tweet once the effort went out. The next task was to choose which contacts I wished to get the campaign. With that, I was eventually able to begin constructing the email itself. If you want to, you are able to construct your personal email designs using a very intuitive editor. On the other hand, you can alter one of Benchmark’s templates, that can be great, and much better than I was able to do on my own.
Preventing the Email Campaign
If you are just Starting out, you can do as I did and manually enter contacts one 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 your personal computer; import contacts directly from Salesforce.com, Hotmail, or Gmail accounts; or copy and paste large lists of contacts into a text form. When you create your Benchmark lists, they’ll show up on your dashboard, together with a Master Unsubscribe List.
The sending of this email is quite easy. When you have completed all your tweaks, you can either save the email as a draft, send it instantly, or schedule a date and time for delivery. If you would like to verify all is well before distributing your email on the planet, it is possible to send it to yourself to preview it as many as 10 times/day. I opted to schedule my email for shipping to see how timely the automatic system would really be. I scheduled my email for 2.45 and obtained it in 2.50, so while the timing wasn’t exactly perfect, it was likely within tolerance levels for most users. If you’re one of the more infrequent 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 perfect.
Mail Campaign Reporting
First thing I Noticed about Benchmark email reports was something I would read about in a few reviews. They’re really, really quickly. I mean lightning fast. Opens register in the Benchmark system virtually immediately. I’ve worked with a lot of other programs where these reports take hours or even days to appear.
Benchmark provides users with several key Bits of information about each campaign. The arguably most important statistic, the open rate, seems in both pie graph and numerical type. Additionally, Benchmark supplies users with stats for clicks, forward, bounces, unsubscribes, and misuse. 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 is also a social networking place which reports shares via Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn, in addition to a map which breaks down, by country, who opens your emails. Email Marketing Sender Software
Though all of this information is great and Necessary, it is not enough to sustain increased level marketers that need more info such as conversions, which hyperlinks were clicked, and revenue analysis. Though Google Analytics provides a lot of this info with proper integration, there may come a time when serious marketers need more information than Benchmark provides. Whether or not a small company will get to that point changes, of course, dependent on the company.
Specific Size Of Company
Benchmark designed its 3-tiered pricing Structure with the goal of serving everyone from the smallest kitchen-table startup to big email marketers. On the other hand, the company’s key focus is on small to medium businesses, especially those just starting out in email marketing. This is especially reflected in the reality that customers subscribing to the moderate plans get unlimited emails, while bigger plans have limitations.
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 Occasions 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 their events via their Benchmark Email accounts. A number of subscriptions are available, such as a free option.
· Salesforce.com — This integration allows users to import contacts directly into Benchmark and use Benchmark’s email system to keep Salesforce customers engaged. Read our review of Salesforce here.
· Twitter — Benchmark Mail Lite is a WordPress plug-in which permits users to easily build an email audience via their readers. The plugin can automatically produce email variations of blog posts and allows 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 lets you supply images for your Benchmark emails from locations throughout the net. Benchmark Power captures images you find and immediately uploads them to a Benchmark account for future usage.
· Flickr — Users with Flickr accounts may link Flickr for their Benchmark image galleries.
· Shopify — You can link a Shopify account to Benchmark and automatically add Shopify clients to Benchmark lists. You may even add contributors to different lists based on what they purchased. Read our overview of Shopify here.
· PayPal — Users may add some of their PayPal clients to their Benchmark email lists bylinking the account. Read our overview of Paypal here.
· Easy List — Know more about this very simple list-making program and download it .
· WordPress — The ever-present blog and site builder provides an integration with Benchmark. Use it to send emails of your blog articles and use the analytics to see how your readers react to them. Learn more here.
· Zapier — Gain entry to Zapier’s enormous integration library . Email Marketing Sender Software
Social Media Integrations
Since Of the key connection between social media and email marketing, it is important to check out the social networking features included 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 media forums such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
· Facebook”Like” Button — Benchmark offers a very simple function which permits you to bring a Facebook”Like” button into your own emails.
· Facebook Sign-Up Form — Benchmark supplies easy-to-create sign-up forms (see”Features” above) for both websites and Facebook enthusiast pages, to help you convert followers into subscribers.
· Social Links within Email — After you connect your Benchmark account together with your Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn account, you can add switches to every email that will direct your subscribers to each of your social networking pages.
The company also fully Complies with all the U.S.-E.U. and U.S.-Swiss Safe Harbor Frameworks concerning the selection of personal data from citizens of these nations. When clients provide credit card amounts to Benchmark, the business utilizes secure socket layer (SSL) protection to encrypt the info. The entire system is encrypted to ensure the security of all customers’ personal information.
Anti-Spam Policy and Protection
Like All legitimate 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 fully in compliance with the U.S. CAN-SPAM Act of 2003. Benchmark also takes several measures to maintain its standing as a spam-free supplier, one of them membership in the Email Sender and Provider Coalition. The company uses the app SpamAssassin to filter messages sent through its server.
To stop users from Unknowingly sending spam-like materials, Benchmark provides a spam test feature that looks for words commonly used in spam messages. It scores every email on a scale from 1 to 5; 5s are assigned to content that is very likely to be blocked. In case of a high score, the program suggests”less spammy” choices. Individualized IP addresses also help large-volume senders reduce their spam amounts.
Client Service and Support
Benchmark Offers its customers a great deal of support tools. Customer service is generally responsive, with minimal waiting times. The site offers good learning tools, but may be needlessly opaque occasionally. Crucial information can be buried and difficult to find, especially if you don’t know precisely what you’re searching for, particularly in regards to minute particulars about strategies. For instance. The Free For Life plan comprises Benchmark branding on each email, but you won’t find that mentioned on the Free For Life webpage, not even in the fine print. Nor are you going to see it mentioned when you register. The only place it is mentioned is at the FAQ, here.
Here are some of the resources Benchmark offers. Email Marketing Sender Software
· 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 . 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 even 001-562-252-3789 (all countries). Available weekdays from 6 am to 5 pm PT.
· Chat Support. Accessible nearly 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 a QandA-format knowledge base than a normal FAQ. You will find more than 900 entries, sorted into 18 topics ranging from”Getting Started” to”API.” Users can execute a keyword search of any topic (or sub-topic) or of their 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. Some of the QandAs provide information that’s wholly incorrect, so in some cases, you might want to contact assistance 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 app. The business also supplies a webinar known as”Benchmark Mail Crash Course.” You may see it live each Friday at 10.00 a.m. PST or see the recorded version at any time. You can even request a particular webinar on a number of different topics. Live webinars comprise the opportunity to ask questions throughout the presentation.
· Email Marketing Manuals and Articles — You can find more in-depth information on email marketing generally, in addition to the Benchmark program specifically, in the Manuals Section. These downloadable files also cover industry-specific issues. Articles, similar to blogs, 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 Terms — This can be a particularly valuable tool for all those new to email marketing who feel consumed by all the jargon. Benchmark gives a glossarywith 50 of the most popular email marketing conditions from”above-the-fold” into”whitelists.”
· Blog and Newsletter — For current information regarding email advertising trends, check out Benchmark’s monthly newsletter, in addition to its extremely active site. All readers 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 in the Benchmark Community. This forum allows users to discuss newsletter production approaches, 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 setup on your PC.
Positive 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 Sender Software
Some common points of praise.
· Top Notch Service . This is perhaps the most common monitoring regarding Benchmark, and something I noticed for myself too. People today are inclined to find support prompt and helpful, and some say it is actually the component that distinguishes Benchmark from its competitors. The company also receives praise for its blog articles and videos.
· Characteristic Selection Across All Aims . Some users praise the addition of features including AB analyzing and surveys from all plans; many companies charge extra for such features or only include them into their pricier plans.
· Benefits of Use. Users have a tendency to locate Benchmark’s interface extremely intuitive and user-friendly. The program gathers compliments from a wide range of demographics, from first-time ESP consumers to those who have tried many different programs before settling on Benchmark.
· Mobile Friendly Emails. Users were impressed with 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 Unable to find many Men and Women who disliked Their Benchmark experience. But, I managed to discover a few complaints.
· Inconsistent Send-Times. Apparently a few users experienced a problem with Benchmark where their mails were sent hours when they were first scheduled. 1 customer theorized that the issue might arise in lengthy lists of recipients. Not all customers of Benchmark will possess time-sensitive sending demands, but others will. If you need your emails to go out exactly when your program dictates, you may need to consider this situation.
· Buggy Social Media Integrations. I saw several user testimonials that remarked the social media integrations in Benchmark aren’t up to par.
· “Spammy” Templates. Some users were concerned that Benchmark’s templates can feel like spam mail, leading recipients to mark them as spam rather than studying the contents. Since the entire point of an ESP would be to stop this from occurring, this might be a problem. On the other hand, I never felt this way while looking through the template list, therefore it may not be the most legitimate of complaints.
Benchmark Offers a huge variety of pricing plans, including a totally free plan and a huge scale 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’ll be a little Benchmark emblem at the bottom of every email you send out. Of course, you can always choose to upgrade to a paid plan if you don’t need the Benchmark branding. The free plan allows you to send up to 14000 emails to around 2000 subscribers and gives you access to most but not all of Benchmark’s features record. Notable absences to the attributes list for free accounts comprise email automation and sub-accounts (allowing multiple users to get one Benchmark account).
Paid Plans. Email Marketing Sender Software
Users with small contacts lists and limited Monthly messages have the option of paying for their email advertising depending 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 Plans. 55,000-100,000 subscribers, $285.99-$494.99 per month
o Extra Large Strategies. 125,000-1,000,000 subscribers, $659.99-$4,273.99 per month
o Enormous Plans. 1,070,000-7,140,000 subscribers, $4,500-$29,200 per month
Benchmark accepts all Major charge cards and also allows you to pay through PayPal. They also offer a 25% discount for nonprofits and educators.
Benchmark is a solid program. It is Simple to Use, Open to invention, and competitively priced. Its free options might very well be the best in the company for anyone who only wants to dive into email advertising (especially small, neighborhood companies ). For that matter, any Benchmark plan can work nicely for a little business which perspectives email as a minor aspect of its marketing and has no desire to operate beyond the principles just yet.
If you are a small or maybe medium-sized Business trying to find a easy email advertising program with a multitude of amazing features, Benchmark is an exceptional choice. Even though there might come a time when you outgrow the program, it provides a great deal for the price, provides exceptional service, and the business seems to be sensitive to the needs of its users. You can not ask for much more.