Don't panic. Mailchimp is changing!!
What’s going on with our favourite email marketing software?
Last month, Mailchimp sent out an email:
“As of today, Mailchimp is moving to a new pricing model for new paid users as well as current paid users who choose to switch to one of our new paid plan offerings.”
“…our new method of defining an audience of contacts based on a user’s ability to market to or interact with those contacts, as well as a new archiving feature that allows users to move contacts out of their audience.”
In a nutshell - Mailchimp now considers ALL contacts, subscribed and unsubscribed, as part of your ‘audience’, and they’re going to charge you accordingly.
Mailchimp has realised the potential to market to your contacts extends beyond those who are actively subscribed to your list, to those who have also unsubscribed, via Facebook and Google Ads.
Does this affect you?
If you have a fairly large list (over 2000 people) including those ‘unsubscribed’, yes! You will now have to pay for Mailchimp. Annoying yes, but really how long is anything good free these days?
Can you just delete those who have unsubscribed?
You can, but this comes with a big CAUTION. When you delete your unsubscribers, there is no marker left to tell you they have unsubscribed, so if you re-sync with your ecommerce website, or upload an old database, Mailchimp won’t know who NOT to send to and you could cop some spam complaints.
Should you change email marketing software?
You could change. Other common email marketing software I see people using are ActiveCampaign, GoEmail and Vision6. But none of these are free, and each has its own benefits and limitations.
Mailchimp has always been the best and most cost effective solution. It also has the market covered in terms of integration with the other systems you use, eg. Squarespace, Shopify, Eventbrite, Stickytickets, Jotform, CRM systems etc. The risk in moving to another software is that you may lose the flexibility of integration with your existing systems.
If you want to see what else is out there, here is a great website that lets you compare all known software: https://www.getapp.com/marketing-software/email-marketing/
Here is the link to the software which claims to have a free plan: https://www.getapp.com/marketing-software/email-marketing/p/free/
What if you want to stay with Mailchimp? How to make it more cost effective!
If you want to stay with Mailchimp, there are some things you can do to bring the cost down, but more importantly, ensure you are getting the BEST VALUE out of the software if you are paying for it.
Consistency in use. Email marketing is BY FAR the best bang for your buck in terms of marketing in 2019. Not only does it enable you to provide intangible value to your existing customers via information and tips, cross promote products and services, and drive offers, but it is a way to keep in touch and top of mind when used regularly. My recommendation here would be to set a date for an email to be sent each month, create a simple template with regular articles, eg. 1 blog post, 1 relevant service profile, 1 product review, new staff announcements, events and community.
Make sure your list is made up of only people who are relevant and engaged. Of the total amount of people on your list, how many have moved away or disengaged with your brand/business? Create a new segment from your main list and add to it all of the people who have “not opened any one of your last 10 emails”. And delete them. Rather than delete your unsubscribers, delete the people who either are not receiving your emails or who are not opening them. It’s not about who has the most people on their list, but who has the healthiest and most engaged audience. This could be enough to take you from a paid plan back to a free plan.
Embrace the changes Mailchimp has made and use the new functionality to re-engage with an old audience. Mailchimp has realised that it’s not only the people ‘subscribed’ to your list that are important. You can retarget people who have unsubscribed to your list via Facebook and Google Ads, to re-engage with them. Everyone knows that it’s more cost effective to get an existing customer to return than it is to find a new one. Data is driving marketing today, and here is the perfect example, and a simple tool to help you achieve more with your marketing dollar.
Hope this helps you out! Make sure you get in touch to chat more about how we can get Mailchimp working better for you!