The first in a series of shows that focuses on Email marketing tools.
Constant Contact has been around for a long time and many people know or have heard of them. Recently they have seriously upped their game with the addition of several features and add ons.
I take a look at Constant Contact and how the are implementing these features and where the fit in the sector of email marketing today.
Visit them here - Constant Contact
Constant Contact was also discussed in this recent article - 3 Best Email Services For Podcasters.
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Speaker 1: (00:02)
This is digital marketing tool talk, never miss out or fall behind on the latest digital tools for social media, SEO content reviews, and the entire digital marketing space. I'm your host, Brandon Hughes. Hello everyone. Welcome to another episode. I hope you really enjoyed the last one where I talked about accessibility, which can really help you make your website a lot more accessible to those with disabilities. Now if you didn't hear the last episode I talked about how going forward I'm going to now group my podcast, um, uh, sections into groupings of certain tools. And I'm going to start off with email marketing. I know it's something that we all do. You probably have all heard about MailChimp and constant contact and all the other various email marketing platforms out there. So what I'm going to do is I'm, I'm not going to talk about the obvious stuff.
Speaker 1: (01:03)
I'm just going to share with you each email marketing platform as a tool and what some of the unique things there are about each one and what makes it stand out. So today I'm going to go ahead and start with that. So the first email marketing platform that I want to talk to you about is one that's been around for a very long time and you probably have all heard, um, or know of it recently though within the past year or so, they have been really aggressive in doing all kinds of new and unique things with their platform. Let's take a look at the email provider I'm talking about is constant contact. Yes, we have all heard of them. We all know of them. They've been around. They're probably one of the oldest email marketing platforms out there and if they're not, if there's someone older than I just don't know about them.
Speaker 1: (02:03)
Um, so let's get into it. Let's just talk a little bit about constant contact. I'm going to go over some of the basics with you just real quick and then I want to kind of share with you a lot of unique things that they've been doing lately. Constant contact is a almost by definition I, once you hear about all the features that they have, you're really not going to look at them as just an email marketing platform. They are into all kinds of other things now. So let's, let's take a look. So let's just talk about pricing. Um, yeah, they have a free trial. Everyone has a free trial. The basic setup is a $20 a month. And if you go with their email plus, which gives you a bunch of more features, that's $45 a month. And obviously just like most, it's based on the number of emails that you have in your contact list.
Speaker 1: (02:55)
And let me just talk a little bit about, uh, the cost right now. If you're entry level, if you're, you know, under 5,000 emails, you can obviously look at the price if you absolutely have to. But make that secondary, you really should look at the features instead of just the pricing when picking an email marketing platform. Because there were some unique feature differences. And if you listen to this show to completion on the other ones that I'm going to do, you're going to see that there are some platforms that are better for certain cases than others. So really look at the features, the pricing, it's competitive, they're all closer. A couple of dollars off here, a couple of dollars off there. And even when you get your list and it's really big and maybe the price difference is bigger at that point. I mean if you're dealing with a list of 10, 20, 50,000 emails, you're rocking and rolling and you, those features may be more and more valuable to you.
Speaker 1: (03:56)
So let's talk about constant contact. So yeah, unlimited emails that you can send. Um, of course they have all kinds of templates, um, that you can use. They do have, um, e-commerce, uh, integration for those of you out there with a woo commerce or Shopify, the you can integrate on the back of your website, um, with them, which is nice cause you can grab emails on directly from there. You can also integrate, uh, through the, um, the actions that they're taking. You know, have they visited your product page, abandoned cart, et cetera, et cetera. So they have some integration on there. When you're developing your emails in constant contact, you can drop product block product blocks right into your email and it'll pull it right from Shopify or will commerce. So that's really nice. So that may be one thing you want to think about when picking a platform.
Speaker 1: (04:50)
Obviously all types of list building tools, pop up forms, the popup form for constant contact is basic and it's functional. I really wish there was a lot more customization even with the email plus their next one up that it is customizable, but I wish it was more a, I'm on a Shopify out of the sandbox theme so my pop up is customized through the theme and then integrated to my email platform. So you know, you may want to think about that. If you just want something really basic and simple, it'll definitely work. Work for you, a list segmentation. Yup. It's there. This is where you all need to head. If you're just starting out, you may not get into this segmentation, but for those of us who are using it on a day to day basis, definitely something that you need to get familiar with because it really will help your open and conversion rates.
Speaker 1: (05:47)
Uh, you can integrate your Facebook and Instagram ads with these guys now, so you can get some data. You can monitor your social posts through the platform of constant contact. So they're adding these new features. So if you're posting, you can monitor it right through constant contact. You don't have to leave and go into Facebook, et cetera. Uh, Google ads. Um, if you want to do targeted search, you can do it through their platform as well, just like you would do directly through a Google landing pages. Like most guys, um, I'll type of calendars, images, all of that stuff's in there. Um, something that is only in the email plus is when you get into the, uh, email welcome series and other automated, uh, series. So if you're into the automation, which I really hope you are because it just makes your life so much easier and consistent, then you got to go to the email.
Speaker 1: (06:46)
Plus there is one thing that I have used with the constant contact platform and that is a reset and two non openers. You can select the number of days that you want to wait before you send it to non openers. And I tell you my experience has been 100% of the time. Additional people open the email, uh, that get it re sent to them. So it has, it has increased. Some of my opens anywhere from two to 3%, which if you have a big list is significant. Okay. Uh, these other features are only for the plus, um, um, plan but they're kind of unique. RSVP you can, you can manage events and do event marketing through the constant contact platform now so you can capture those RSVPs right through the email. It's pretty cool. Um, you want to add dynamic marketing into your, uh, content and into some of the boxes and sections that you have.
Speaker 1: (07:53)
They have that, what is dynamic content that's adding things like their name. If you collected their, their business name or their job title, you can integrate those things throughout the email. So that's, that's always nice. Another thing which I think fits really well with the event marketing section and the RSVP section is surveys and polls that you can do. So if you want to collect information from your readers, the people who are getting your newsletter, you can drop it right into the newsletter and it's part of constant contacts platform so you don't have to go out and use something like survey monkey or something like that. So very cool. Features are very robust. I mean, if you can do a newsletter that's integrated to your eCommerce store and will allow you to do events, RSVP, take surveys and polls, that's quite a few features on the platform.
Speaker 1: (08:50)
In addition, you can also take donations. So they have, it's set up, you can do online donation, so if you're a nonprofit or you're supporting a group, you can do that. Um, there, it's even mobile responsive, uh, on that page. So, so that, that's pretty cool. So a lot of features with constant contact. Now some of the other platforms that you may be aware of like mail Chimp or convert kit or a Webber, um, uh, and some of these other email marketing platforms, they may be nicer than maybe do other things better, but I think constant contact really knocks it out of the park asF as far as providing a suite of services. So if you're getting started and you're like, okay, I want all of these features, I don't need them to be, uh, you know, the most, uh, the best in the industry.
Speaker 1: (09:47)
I just need to have all of them. I want access to all of them, then I would recommend constant contact to you. Um, in addition to a lot of those features that I just mentioned, they also are doing websites now and you can do one for free. I have a all starter plan that's $10 a month, and then they have a business plus, which is $20 a month. So there's a bunch of obviously a feature differences there as far as, um, you know, what's available. They all have unlimited storage to have an SSL certificate. Um, some of them on the free one, obviously they are displaying ads on there and then the others, those go away. Um, analytics changes based on the plan that you get. I'll have a blog and then, um, there are some other, uh, features with each one. It's just interesting that constant contact is now doing this.
Speaker 1: (10:44)
So, you know, you're talking websites, you have the ability to do basic e-commerce type functions, the marketing, the RSVPs, the surveys, the polls all through one platform and, and, and monitoring engaged with Facebook posting and Facebook and Google ads. So really, um, they've made a lot of changes. So if you are aware of constant contact and you've heard of them and maybe dismiss them as being that old platform that nobody uses anymore, I would, uh, take the moment, go back, give them a look, give them a re look. They really have, um, been aggressive in what they're providing and I think they're really trying to, um, turn all the stones over as far as what somebody may need or will want in a full suite of products and services with constant contact. I have personally used them. It's a very easy to use interface. It's very simple.
Speaker 1: (11:48)
Um, if you're going to get heavy into um, automation and, and flows, this is probably not the one for you. However, if you want the full suite of services, maybe it is, if any of you out there are using constant contact, I'd love to hear from you, especially if you're using any of the new services. Y'all have a Shopify website. So I don't use the website, I don't do events, I don't do RSVPs surveys or polls. So, um, let me know. You can email me firstname.lastname@example.org the love to know what your experience has been with constant contact. In the next episode, I am going to take a look at MailChimp and what's going on with them. They've had a lot of changes within the past year, both positive and negative. So stay tuned for that one and we'll take a look at MailChimp next week. Thanks for listening. If you like what you heard today, please rate, review and subscribe to this podcast. If you have a digital marketing tool that you like or you use, or even one that you've created, let me know in the comments or send me an email@example.com I'll see you on the new school. Flip side.
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