Overview Email Marketing Services Company
For many an evening in 2004, three people sat Around one desk in a small medical office — an office that functioned 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, along with an search engine optimization expert) discussed ideas on how best to implement a deceptively straightforward idea. Simple email marketing. Many of their ideas were beyond the resources of this fledgling company, but that did not stop Keller from moving ahead.
The first Clients of Benchmark Mail were small companies located in near proximity to Benchmark’s one-room HQ in Long Beach, CA. Keller and his team personally sold them on the use of email advertising, while working hard to create a simple user interface which would be easy to operate. All the while, the company championed such innovative ideas as customizable templates and software which adapted to consumer needs. They also made certain from the outset that anybody who needed help would have quick access to outstanding customer support.
Benchmark Has continued to grow and advantagesper. Its current focus. Providing global email advertising solutions to small and midsize businesses while continuing to honor a commitment to assist children in need. This doesn’t indicate that Benchmark is a little-guys-only company, however; it’s 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 upwards of 73,000 users from throughout the planet, however, the company has not forgotten its roots. Benchmark still maintains good relationships with small, locally-based businesses. In reality, the organization supplies a complete page of testimonials from local users of the program. You may read more about Benchmark’s history and development here.
While the Majority of the attributes Benchmark supplies Are on par with the rest of the industry, among the standout characteristics of the ESP is the fact that most of its attributes come standard with each account — including the free ones. Here are some 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 specific industries such as education, entertainment, and retail. There is also a class for societal media-specific templates.
· Video Emails. Perhaps the best-known benefit of Benchmark is its support for video mails. The business explains the benefits of this feature here.
· Online Surveys. You’ll be able to create professional-looking online polls using among Benchmark’s 6 templates. Post your survey on your website or construct it 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 own delivery stats. Read more about the benefits of dedicated servers here.
· Email Delivery Management. Benchmark’s email delivery management program is all about getting customers’ emails into inboxes. The company is a part 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 customers’ behalf. Email Marketing Services Company
· Mobile App. Benchmark’s mobile apps make it possible for customers with an Apple device to get several purposes on the street. They can access and include contacts, browse reportsand send videos through integration with a YouTube accounts, and even layout and send quick email blasts with one of 10 available templates. This is quite a bit more than many other businesses offer in their mobile apps, which makes them considerably more functional.
· Photo Editing. If the photos you intend to utilize in your email campaign aren’t perfectly sized or want some colour adjustment, you may use Benchmark’s integrated photo editor. This is a pretty handy feature if you don’t have photoshop accessible.
· Code Editor. In case you have the know-how to work magic with HTML, Benchmark offers this ultra-customization option with which you can construct your emails from scratch.
· Autoresponder. Every Benchmark customer has the power to style around eight custom autoresponder messages. These could be scheduled as a string or occasion lead-up, or designed as yearly messages like anniversary or birthday emails.
· Sign-Up Forms. The only way to be successful in email marketing is by way of growing your list, and Benchmark really promotes doing this via sign-up forms. The company bases its Free For Life account entirely around website and Facebook sign-ups and provides an easy-to-use tool to create custom templates for each medium.
· Inbox Checker. Since every email program differs and every internet browser has a signature style, making certain your emails look good across the board is crucial. You can use Inbox Checker to look at the way your email screens in Gmail using Explorer and Outlook 3. Using the full app (which assesses everything from AOL to Yahoo, Explorer to Safari, mobile to PC) is a paid add-on provider, available for $14 per 100 checks.
· RSS-to-Email. Regular bloggers can create newsletters from their blogs mechanically through the RSS-to-Email feature, which works with any site which handles an RSS-feed. Users only have to establish a template and campaign inside 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 some other apps which use JSON, XML, XML-RPC, or PHP serialization strings. In brief, this allows them to perform three purposes. Manage contact lists, handle campaigns and effort sending, and check statistics. The business explains this function in more detail here.
· Advanced Metrics. Benchmark offers both List 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 accounts is pretty straightforward. After entering your name, email, contact number, and business name, you need to confirm your email address. This was a five-minute process for me. Upon logging into my new account (with the free program ) I was greeted by an appealing UI that gave me a clear direction on the best way best to create my very first email campaign. Good start!
Email Campaign Creation
On its own dashboard, Benchmark provides users five main options. Emails, Automations, Contacts, Surveys, and Reports. To create a new campaign, proceed to the Emails section, then hit the large blue”Create New Mail” button at the top right-hand corner. Email Marketing Services Company
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 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 personally gifted that way, so I went with the drag-and-drop option.
I had been prompted to enter a subject line for my Email and set up how much tracking I desired on the message, in addition to if I wanted an automated tweet once the campaign went out. The next task was to choose which contacts I wished to receive the campaign. With that, I was eventually able to begin building the email . If you would like to, you are able to 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 better than I was able to do on my own.
Sending the Email Campaign
If You’re just Starting out, you can do as I did and manually enter 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 right from the computer; import contacts directly from Salesforce.com, Hotmail, or Gmail accounts; or copy and paste huge lists of contacts to a text type. Once you make your Benchmark lists, then they’ll show up on your dashboard, together with a Master Unsubscribe List.
The actual sending of this email is rather easy. When you have completed all your tweaks, you may either save email as a draft, send it instantly, or schedule a time and date for delivery. If you would like to verify all is well before distributing your email about the planet, you can send it to yourself 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 scheduled my email for 2.45 and received it in 2.50, so while the timing was not exactly perfect, it was probably present in tolerance levels for most users. If you are among the more infrequent users who demand on-the-minute email sending, you might have to appear 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
The first thing I Noticed about Benchmark email reports was something I would read in a couple of reviews. They’re really, really fast. I mean lightning fast. Opens register in the Benchmark system virtually immediately. I’ve worked with several different apps where these reports require hours or even days to appear.
Benchmark provides users with several key Bits of information about each effort. The possibly most important statistic, the available speed, seems in both pie graph and numerical form. In addition, Benchmark supplies users with stats such as clicks, forward, bounces, unsubscribes, and misuse. Every stat further breaks down to the exact email addresses related to a given action. Users may export this information for further analysis by means of a csv or xls file. There is also a social media area which reports shares through Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn, in addition to a map that breaks down, by country, that opens your emails. Email Marketing Services Company
Though all of this information is great and Necessary, it is not enough to sustain higher level marketers who need more info such as conversions, which hyperlinks were clicked, and revenue analysis. Though Google Analytics provides a lot of this information with appropriate integration, there might come a time when serious entrepreneurs need more information than Benchmark provides. Whether a small company will reach that point changes, of course, dependent on the business.
Particular Size Of Business
Benchmark made its 3-tiered pricing Structure with the goal of serving everybody from the tiniest kitchen-table startup to large email marketers. However, the company’s main focus is on small to medium companies, especially those just starting out in email marketing. This is especially reflected in the fact that clients subscribing to the medium plans get unlimited mails, while bigger plans have constraints.
Integrations and Add-Ons
Benchmark Offers roughly 20 plug-ins and integrations. If you do not see the integration you want, there is still hope. You’re able to use the API or request an integration by sending an email to [email protected]
· Benchmark Occasions — Benchmark Events is event marketing software 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 variety of subscriptions are available, such as a free alternative.
· Salesforce.com — This integration enables users to import contacts directly into Benchmark and utilize Benchmark’s email system to maintain Salesforce customers participated. Read our review of Salesforce here.
· Twitter — Benchmark Mail Lite is a WordPress plugin which allows users to quickly build an email audience via their readers. The plugin can automatically create email variations of blog posts and permits 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 emails from locations across the web. Benchmark Power captures pictures you find and immediately uploads them to a Benchmark accounts for future use.
· Flickr — Users with Flickr accounts can link Flickr for their own Benchmark image galleries.
· Shopify — You are able to link a Shopify accounts to Benchmark and automatically add Shopify clients to Benchmark lists. You may even add contributors to various lists based on what they bought. Read our review of Shopify here.
· PayPal — Users may add some of the PayPal customers for their own Benchmark email lists bylinking the accounts. Read our review of Paypal here.
· Easy List — Learn more about this simple list-making program and download it here.
· WordPress — The ever-present blog and website builder provides an integration using Benchmark. Use it to send emails of your blog posts and also use the analytics to observe how your readers respond to them. Learn more here.
· Zapier — Gain access to Zapier’s enormous integration library here. Email Marketing Services Company
Social Media Integrations
Because Of the integral link between social media and email advertising, it is very important to look at the social networking features contained in Benchmark.
· Social Media Templates — One segment of Benchmark’s massive email template list is made of societal media-specific templates that directly promote your company’s participation in social media forums such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
· Facebook”Like” Button — Benchmark provides a very simple function which allows you to bring a Facebook”Just Like” button into your emails.
· Facebook Sign-Up Form — Benchmark provides easy-to-create sign-up forms (see”Characteristics” above) for both sites and Facebook fan pages, to help you convert followers to readers.
· Social Links within Mail — After you link your Benchmark account together with your Facebook, Twitter, and/or LinkedIn accounts, you can add switches to each email which will direct your readers to each of your social media pages.
The company 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 nations. When customers provide credit card numbers to Benchmark, the business uses secure socket layer (SSL) security to encrypt the info. The whole system is encrypted to ensure the security 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 their users trying to engage in spam activities. The business is fully in compliance with the U.S. CAN-SPAM Act of 2003. Benchmark additionally takes several measures to preserve its standing as a spam-free provider, one of them membership in the Email Sender and Provider Coalition. The company employs the program SpamAssassin to filter messages sent through its host.
To prevent users from Unknowingly sending spam-like substances, Benchmark supplies 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 delegated to content that is likely to be blocked. In the event of a high score, the program suggests”less spammy” choices. Individualized IP addresses also help large-volume senders decrease their spam amounts.
Client Support and Service
Benchmark Offers its customers a great deal of support resources. Customer service is usually responsive, with minimal waiting times. The site provides good learning tools, but can be needlessly opaque at times. Key information can be buried and hard to locate, especially in the event that 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 includes Benchmark branding on every email, but you won’t find that mentioned on the Free For Life page, not even in the fine print. Nor will you 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 Services Company
· Live Email and Support — Benchmark provides live one-on-one aid through these means.
· Email Service. Contact Benchmark at [email protected] or via the company’s contact form . Available 24 hours Monday — Friday and limited hours on Saturday.
· Phone Support. You are able to reach Benchmark in 800-430-4095 (U.S.) or 001-562-252-3789 (all countries). Available weekdays from 6 am to 5 pm PT.
· Chat Support. Accessible nearly 24 hours daily Monday — Friday and limited hours on Saturday. Offered in English, Spanish, Portuguese, and Italian.
· FAQ — Benchmark’s FAQ section is somewhat mislabeled because it’s closer to some QandA-format knowledge foundation than a typical FAQ. There are more than 900 entries, sorted into 18 subjects ranging from”Getting Started” to”API.” Users can perform a key word search of any topic (or sub-topic) or from their 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. Some of the QandAs provide advice which is wholly incorrect, so in some cases, you may need to contact support to hash things out.
· Video Tutorials and Webinars — Benchmark provides about two dozen movie tutorials that take users step by step through the features of the app. The business also offers a webinar called”Benchmark Mail Crash Course.” You can see it live each Friday at 10.00 a.m. PST or see the recorded version at any time. You might even ask for a particular webinar on a number of different subjects. Live webinars comprise the chance to ask questions during the presentation.
· Email Marketing Manuals and Articles — You can find more in-depth details on email marketing in general, in addition to the Benchmark program specifically, in the Manuals Section. These downloadable files also cover industry-specific troubles. Articles, very similar to sites, offer users advice beyond that found in the FAQ section, but in shorter, more digestible chunks compared to the manuals provide.
· Glossary of Email Marketing Requirements — This is a particularly valuable tool for all those brand new to email marketing who believe consumed by all the jargon. Benchmark gives a glossarywith 50 of the most popular email advertising conditions from”above-the-fold” into”whitelists.”
· Website and Newsletter — For current info regarding email advertising trends, check out Benchmark’s monthly newsletter, as well as its exceptionally active blog. All readers automatically obtain access to present newsletters, and Benchmark also provides an archive of newsletter articles from November 2007-October 2012.
· Benchmark Community — Benchmark users can post their latest newsletters on message boards in the Benchmark Community. This forum allows users to discuss newsletter creation approaches, 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 Has 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 Services Company
Some common points of praise.
· Top Notch Support. This is maybe the most common observation regarding Benchmark, and some thing I discovered for myself too. People today tend to find support prompt and helpful, and some say it’s really the element that distinguishes Benchmark from its rivals. The business also receives praise for its website articles and videos.
· Characteristic Selection Across All Aims . Some customers praise the inclusion of attributes like AB testing and surveys from most programs; many companies charge extra for such features or only include them in their pricier plans.
· Benefits of Use. Users tend to find Benchmark’s interface extremely intuitive and user-friendly. The program gathers praise from a broad assortment of demographics, from first-time ESP consumers 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 an increasing number of people access their email from mobile devices, this is an increasingly significant aspect to take into account.
Negative Reviews and Complaints
I was not able to find many people who disliked Their own Benchmark experience. However, I managed to find a couple of complaints.
· Inconsistent Send-Times. Apparently a few users experienced an issue with Benchmark where their emails were sent hours after they were first scheduled. One customer theorized the issue might arise in lengthy lists of recipients. Not all clients of Benchmark will have time-sensitive shipping demands, but others will. If you want your mails to go out exactly when your schedule dictates, you might need to take into account this issue.
· Buggy Social Media Integrations. I saw several user testimonials that remarked the social media integrations in Benchmark are not up to par.
· “Spammy” Templates. Some users were concerned that Benchmark’s templates can feel like spam mail, leading receivers to mark them as junk and not studying the contents. Since the entire purpose of an ESP is to prevent this from occurring, this may be an issue. On the flip side, I never felt this way whilst searching through the template list, therefore it might not be the most legitimate of complaints.
Benchmark Provides a huge variety of pricing strategies, such as a free plan and a huge array of paid programs that may service anywhere between 600 and 7,140,000 subscribers.
Benchmark’s free programs do not require charge Cards, that is always refreshing. The only grab. There will be a small 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 allows you to send up to 14000 mails to up to 2000 subscribers and gives you access to all but not all of Benchmark’s features list. Notable absences to the features list for free account include email automation and sub-accounts (allowing multiple users to get one Benchmark accounts ).
Paid Plans. Email Marketing Services Company
Users with small contacts lists and restricted Monthly messages have the option of paying for their email advertising depending on the amount of emails that they send each month.
o Medium Plans. 600-50,000 subscribers, $13.99-$254.99 per month
o Large Plans. 55,000-100,000 subscribers, $285.99-$494.99 a month
o Extra Large Strategies. 125,000-1,000,000 subscribers, $659.99-$4,273.99 per month
o Massive Plans. 1,070,000-7,140,000 subscribers, $4,500-$29,200 a month
Benchmark accepts all Major credit cards and also allows you to pay through PayPal. They also offer a 25% reduction for nonprofits and teachers.
Benchmark is a good program. It is Simple to Use, Open to innovation, and competitively priced. Its free alternatives may very well be the best in the company for anybody who only wants to dive into email marketing (especially small, neighborhood companies ). For that matter, any Benchmark plan can work well for a little business which views email as a little element of its marketing and does not have any desire to work beyond the basics just yet.
If you are a little or maybe medium-sized Business looking for a simple email advertising program using a host of amazing features, Benchmark is an excellent choice. Though there may come a time when you launch the app, it provides a lot 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.