E-mail campaign services can save costs

Make up the difference in your labour costs and valuable tracking results that can hone your next mailing

You could spend a lot of time creating e-mail newsletters and promotions, only to take even longer trying to manage lists and send everything out. Forget trying to send to Outlook groups; spend a little extra, and go with an e-mail campaign service. You'll make up the difference in your labor costs and valuable tracking results that can hone your next mailing.

Emma e-mail marketing service handles almost everything except your specific message content. The company designs an e-mail template based on your preferences, website, and logo. So for future mailings, you can just change the text for a new message.

Emma imports your contact list as an Excel spreadsheet file. Even better, the service cleans up bounced addresses and duplicates automatically, saving you time from culling the database. Additional features can target recipients based on their geographical location or alert you if your message seems likely to trigger spam filters.

And after you send messages, tracking tools can return helpful information. How many people opened your e-mail? Which links--and placement--were the most clicked? How many people forwarded the note to a friend? In all of these cases except the final one, you can see the specific people who responded. Plus, Emma stores these details so that you can compare results from different campaigns.

All of that automated tracking magic comes with a few caveats, however. Like other services that return similar information, Emma relies on HTML messages to report reader feedback. If recipients have turned off automatic HTML image downloading--something I recommend for simplicity and security--Emma doesn't know if they opened the e-mail to read the plain-text instead. Plus, the forward-tracking feature relies on an internal link; Emma doesn't know if someone manually clicked Forward in Outlook.

A 2007 MarketingSherpa study said that people block HTML images in e-mail 59% of the time. So you'll miss actual data from the majority of results, but you could still roughly extrapolate from that 41%.

Those issues aside, Emma's per-campaign pricing could save in overall labor costs versus trying to run your own mailings. An initial fee of $99 to $399 includes your customized template design. (This price varies with your business size and needs.) Plus Emma charges for each mail, starting at $30 for 1,000 messages a month. Costs go down in bulk, such as $70 for 5,000 message or $210 for 25,000.

By paying for services that are outside of your expertise, your businesses could end up saving money in labor and hassle. Do you have a team of designers and marketers in-house? If not, an e-mail campaign service could help your smaller business compete on a bigger level.

Zack Stern is building a new business from San Francisco, where he frequently contributes to PC World.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags costsemail marketingEmma Email Marketing

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Zack Stern

PC World (US online)
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?