Episode – 010- 3 Reasons Why It's Time to Ditch Mailchimp
AH Mailchimp. When you are starting out, everyone tells you to use Mailchimp. It's free. It's easy.
EASY? Really??? Well, no. In my experience, Mailchimp is clunky. Ineffective. Hard to use. Confusing. Boring.
So in this episode, I'm going to share the good, the bad, and the ugly (mostly the bad and ugly) of Mailchimp. I'm going to tell you precisely why I don't recommend using it, and I'm going to be brutally honest about it.
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Hello and welcome to Episode 10 of the Online Business Tech Hub, this is Alessia, your host tech expert for online coaches and consultants on a mission to rescue my clients from tech disasters. And today we are talking about why it is time for you to finally ditch MailChimp.
Now, MailChimp is my worst enemy, OK? So I really don't like it as a platform, especially since they did the latest update, what, a couple of years ago. And it's curious that MailChimp is actually among the most recommended software to use for newsletters, especially when you're starting out. But I've always wondered why, because it's actually rather complex and clunky compared to others.
So in this episode, I want to share with you the bad and the ugly of this platform and my reasons why I don't actually recommend it.
One. Now, let's start with this.
In the past, before the latest major update, they did in 2019. Yes, it could have been among the easiest platform to use, quite basic. So the reason why it was decently simple, was that MailChimp has always been a rather basic platform. OK, it has never been, and not even now after the update. It hasn't become an advanced platform.
I mean, if you have a lot of different online courses and funnels and maybe you, I don't know, you have a membership, I think using MailChimp is not really a good idea because it's one for one thing, it's so complex and clunky and there are a lot of middle steps. But on the other side, the thing is that MailChimp gets quite expensive. If you start to need the more advanced features like the customer journey, for example.
So basically the e-mail automation and I am shocked by how much it costs compared to other platforms like MailerLite that start from free. You can have an unlimited list, unlimited automation. It's free for 1000 subscribers and keep in mind, 1000 unique subscribers. Now, soon, you will understand why I'm telling that unique subscriber.
OK, so I'm really the worst enemy of MailChimp. So let's start with this. OK, but the problem is that I've seen a lot of people really getting stuck because of the complexity of MailChimp. Because there were a lot of middle steps and it was so limiting when you want to target specific subscribers.
Now since the latest update, yes, if you did sign up before 2019, now you can have two lists, but the rest of the people you have to manage with tags. If you sign up after the major update in 2019, you can only have one list to manage with tags. So if you have listened to the previous episode, Episode 9, where I tell you all about newsletter jargon, you know what a tag means.
And because I know what a tag is and I know that when my clients or generally speaking when you are tech challenged, tags and segmentation isn't really the most intuitive thing. It can get quite complex. You may lose so much time trying to understand how it works. And it's really not intuitive, not flexible, and it doesn't actually help you. So if you think about it, any system you use should be there to support your business growth and expansion, and development. The way MailChimp is structured now, it is not. Especially if you are tech challenged.
Now let's dive in and you will see the three juiciest things that I really, really dislike about, MailChimp. The reasons that made me tell you that it's time to ditch MailChimp. Reason #1, you can only create one single welcome email for a person that joins your list. So let's say that you have a free resource and you obviously need to deliver this free resource.
You have used your welcome series. You can only have one email where you welcome your new subscribers. You share with them the freebie and that's it. You are not able to send a series of emails. For example, I don't know, in the first email you would deliver the freebie. And then after three days, you send another newsletter where you can share how you help your clients. And then after a week, you can send another email where you share another useful resource and so on.
So welcome series can be anything really, but it's a way to create a relationship with your new subscribers that may not know you at all. OK, and we maintain this is an extra feature. You have to pay for it. It's a customer journey and you have to pay for it, which is ridiculous. It's such a basic feature nowadays that it's ridiculous that MailChimp asks you to pay for that.
I think a welcome, series, a welcome sequence shouldn't belong. Don't think of a series of 7, 10 emails, but at least two or three emails to deliver your free resource. Tell a bit about you, who you help, and offer an extra resource, invite them to join your group or anything else. So even a series of two or three emails is a welcome series. It's a way to nurture the relationship with your subscribers. And you can't do that with MailChimp unless you upgrade to the customer journey feature.
Honestly, you can really hear it probably from my voice. It's just B.S. because there are other platforms out there that offer you the same. This feature, the email automation for free. You don't have to pay any extra for that. And nowadays it's such a basic feature that it's just unbelievable that MailChimp doesn't let you do that.
The other reason and again, for me this is unbelievable, is that with MailChimp. Let's say that you go above the 2000 contact threshold.
So how does MailChimp calculate the number of subscribers you have? So the total audience, basically the audience for mainstream includes subscribers and unsubscribers. So the contact that decided to opt-out from your email list and is not getting your newsletters. OK, but if you think about it, MailChimp charges you or counts the number of contacts you have, including the unsubscribers. So the people that regardless, they are not going to get your newsletter, they are not going to get anything from you.
And yet MailChimp keeps into account those people. It's a lot faster to hit the 2000 contacts like this, no, what do you think about it? So my personal opinion is that this is a sneaky way to have their clients or the MailChimp users hit the 2K threshold. And so then you have to pay to use MailChimp or then you have to pay a lot more if you are already a paid user.
So for me, this is another thing that is honestly unbelievable. And if you are, with MailChimp and you are getting to the 2000 threshold or you are even above and you're paying for it, you can reduce the number of subscribers by actually deleting or archiving the unsubscribed contacts.
In that way, MailChimp will only keep into account the active users, the subscribers. OK, now the last reason is MailChimp's free plan, as we said earlier, doesn't allow you to have more than one list since the major change in 2019.
This means that you've got to manage your contacts with tags and as I said tagging is not really tagging and segmentation. It's not really the most intuitive thing if you have just started out or you have just signed up for a newsletter platform. Go back to the previous episode to Episode 9, so you can actually understand what a segmentation is if you don't know yet. But in a nutshell, a tag is a label that helps you identify a subscriber according to a piece of information you set.
And segmentation is the process that lets you target specific subscribers that match a certain condition you set. For example, you want to target all the subscribers that have a specific tag because they all downloaded your free resource. Now, to be honest, it's nothing complicated. But the thing is that that if technology isn't really your thing, MailChimp isn't really making it easy for you to manage and target these subscribers. And honestly, this upsets me quite a bit because they're making things complicated for no reason at all.
At least this is my opinion.
To sum up, in this episode, I wanted to explain to you why MailChimp, in my opinion, is really not among the best platforms you can use if you are tech challenged. If you are starting out with newsletters and generally speaking if you don't want to waste time because it does take a bit of a learning curve to figure out how it works. And since they made this major update in 2019, it has become actually among the most complex platforms and expensive for what they offer.
But MailChimp is a rather basic platform, and it doesn't make any sense that it's so complex and so expensive compared to other platforms out there.
Before closing this episode, I want to invite you to E-mail Marketing 101, which is a 3-day workshop to go from confusion to clarity and finally start getting consistent leads.
As you can understand from the name, we are going to focus on email marketing for 3 whole days. So this workshop is perfect for you if you want to pick the right email marketing provider for you, for your business, for your goals, according to your skills, without wasting time and money.
It's also the perfect workshop for you if you want to understand how to actually make the best out of all the features, the automation features without watching outdated and endless YouTube video tutorials. It's also perfect for you if you are fed up, that your newsletters end up in the spam folder. These are the topics we are going to cover in the 3 days of E-mail Marketing 101. It's a free event. It's absolutely free, guys.
So if you've been having a bit of hard times with email marketing, make sure you are registered. Now, the event will be held from the 30th until the 15th of April. It will be around 45 minutes each day. So it's not really long. There is a lot of space for Q&A at the end, so you can ask me all the burning questions have. During the time I will explain and actually show you because this is a really concrete workshop, there's going to be no theory.
I want to show you all the bits of the different email marketing platforms and how you can use them to make the best out of these providers without going mad. You'll find the link to register here, and I'm looking forward to seeing you there on the 13th, 14th, and 15th of April.