Intro Cake Mail
If I asked you to name an email Marketing tool, what would you say? Cake Mail
MailChimp? Aweber? ActiveCampaign?
Like most online industries now, email advertising has been Dominated by the identical large players for the previous ten years. Which means that they get promoted very heavily and accomplish a lot of mindshare.
Now and then, however, an Underdog disrupts the market, causing long-time customers to question their loyalties.
MailerLite has done precisely that.
So today, in this review, I will be tearing MailerLite from limb To limb to find out whether it really stands its ground against the big boys…
…and, what’s more, whether youshould consider making the change.
– Uses tag-based system (called Groups)
– Powerful Segmentation using principles
– Custom Fields for innovative email personalization
– Advanced Campaign types (auto-resend, A/B, etc.)
– Easy to Use email builder/template editor
– Practical Email elements for example countdowns and merchandise boxes
– Intuitive Type, popup and landing page builder
– Supports Automations using visual workflows
– Offers Both readable and comprehensive reporting
– A Fraction of the cost compared to most other solutions
– Strict Approval process
– Few email Templates accessible
– Very few Form templates available
– Can’t Create emails without leaving the visual workflow builder
– No Support for website tracking Cake Mail
Like most email advertising providers these days, you will need to Go through a review process before being able to correctly use the software.
When you first sign up, you’ll be asked to complete your profile.
This includes information like your company name, website, Industry, address, business size, list size and also the kind of material you intend to send.
Then, you need to confirm your Site (or domain ).
This remains part of this approval process, and MailerLite will Simply inquire which email is associated to that domain so they can email you a confirmation link.
Once you’ve completed these Measures, you ought to wait it out.
The MailerLite team will review your application, assess your Site, and ascertain whether you are a good match for their service.
(In other words, they’re making sure you are not a spammer/scammer)
As shown above, you’ll still be Able to use the software to make campaigns and perform with the attributes, but you won’t be able to send anything before accepted.
I was”partially” approved within a few hours, which gave me a Temporary limit of 500 subscribers.
Here’s what the email said:
But while these steps aren’t perfect for getting started, it Does help stop unscrupulous users from hurting everyone else’s deliverability.
If you’re anything like me, you’ll rely upon automations to handle Nearly all your email marketing.
(We will get to automations soon, do not worry.)
But whether it is a new blog post, podcast, or timely Announcement, there is always some excuse to send a more instant email.
That is where’Campaigns’ come in.
Clicking the brand new’Produce Campaign’ will provide you several choices.
– Regular effort: A Conventional broadcast email.
– A/B split effort: Multiple email Variations, including subject line, from title and, yes, even email content. (Woop!)
– Auto resend: Resend to subscribers who Don’t open your broadcast email, together with the option of altering the subject line and email content.
– RSS effort: Produce a recurring campaign That sends new content to subscribers using your site’s RSS feed.
Aside from a few additional options, most of these will follow The same step-by-step process of a standard campaign.
So let us walk you through it.
Once you click on to create your campaign, you’ll be asked to Pick a favorite editor, whether that’s the dragn’ drop, rich text or HTML.
Otherwise, you can change to the Templates tab and select from among the pre-designed email templates — that will move you into the dragn’ drop editor by default.
In the time of writing, you’ll find 21 email templates to select From which is a little on the low side, but the designs are super modern.
And, of course, if you’d just Prefer to reuse a previous email, you can click the’Recent Emails’ tab.
For this instance, I’ll choose the first template in the library.
The editor is easy to use, Making viewing these templates a 5-minute job.
You can also use the cubes in the sidebar to add different Types of content to your email, including videos, product columns, and societal connections.
After making your adjustments, simply click’Done Editing’ and you’ll Be carried to the recipients’ choices where you are able to choose your classes or segments.
The tab also allows you To build segment-like rules , in case your targeting isn’t quite perfect.
Finally, right before sending, you’ll get to the’Program’ screen.
This is where you control if your broadcast email should go Out, if that’s instantly, at a set time/date, or according to your subscribers time zones.
Impressive, right? Cake Mail
Handling Your Subscribers
Having granular control over your readers is arguably one of The most important facets of any email marketing program today.
Because highly personalized efforts are necessary if You are looking to increase opens, clicks, and, above all, your own conversions.
And while most providers allow you to”tag” subscribers in order To target them effectively, MailerLite uses a slightly different strategy.
When you start up your subscriber dash, you’ll notice two Choices; Segments and Groups.
Segments are essentially principles.
Your readers belong to a section only when they meet the Specified rules, and are automatically inserted or eliminated accordingly.
Here is what setting up a rule looks like:
Notice how you can even blend Principles, as well as another rule when the first doesn’t exist.
Pretty smart, eh?
The next tab is for groups, and also the difference in name, These act much like your usual”tagging” system.
(MailerLite even debated Changing the name to’Tags’, but finally decided against it.)
Contrary to Segments, Groups are updated manually or through an Automation rule — that we will get to in a minute — and they don’t have any value aside from what you call them.
As you start to use this platform, you’ll Start to understand At which Segments and Groups are generally used, but MailerLite offers a hand in the event you’re unsure:
Fundamentally, groups are more of a Deliberate action on a per-subscriber foundation, whereas Segments allow you to lump multiple contributors collectively according to a frequent denominator.
Somewhat confusing, I will admit… but I feel it’s a fair trade-off For the added flexibility. In any case, they are discretionary.
Finally, the’Fields’ tab is used to personalize your email copy.
You will notice that MailerLite has Already populated this area with their own areas, such as title, business, and nation.
If you want to create your own custom fields, you can do this by Clicking the’Add new field’ button.
So how do they really work?
You can either upload a CSV record of your subscribers along with Your custom field information in separate columns… or can easily add these fields to your types which will only apply to future subscribers.
Here’s a screenshot of a test area I created and added to a form:
I won’t go too much to the form Things here since I have an entire section on this below, but this is the strategy I’d recommend if you wished to use this attribute.
Again, once you’ve collected your custom field data from fresh Subscribers, you can pull them in to your email content and subject line.
Just click the’Personalization’ drop down and select your Customized field.
I’m barely scratching the surface Of what is possible with custom fields, but it’s important that you understand that this is a feature you can use.
Overall, it is fair to state MailerLite has their contributor Direction and personalization features on stage. Cake Mail
If you are not impressed with what you have seen so far, then perhaps The webpage builder will tickle your fancy.
After choosing’Landing Pages’ from the forms page, then you will be Able to select from 8 pre-designed templates.
Again, while the template selection Isn’t winning any awards, but it will offer a great base to work from if, for example most of us, you do not have that pure eye for layout.
I went ahead and chosen the’Lead Generation’ template, however They all finally do the identical job; collect an email address.
This time, the editor will give you 17 building blocks to Further build or change your landing page.
Now, I have used my fair share of Visual page builders, and this is better than some dedicated solutions *cough* WPBakery.
Along with the fundamental building blocks, you can use elements like Hero sections, popup buttons, reviews and countdown timers.
No, it won’t be replacing landing Page builders like Thrive Architect or even LeadPagesanytime shortly, but credit where credit due, this item over-delivers on all 3 kind types.
Form Builder Tool
Unlike some email advertising tools, MailerLite actually Provides a Decent pair of type building tools.
Also, but you can also create popups and landing pages Through this same interface, so there’s a whole lot to cover here.
Let’s begin with your Bog-standard embedded type.
These forms are first created inside MailerLite so as to get An embed code, which you can then put on your website to display it on specific pages.
Despite starting off super basic, the form designer allows you To personalize everything from the kind style, fields, background, title, input fields and, clearly, the button.
Form text may also be edited directly, which Provides you a chance To envision your own backup in real-time.
It would’ve been nice to have Some templates here, but as you know, there’s more to some form than just its appearance.
Clicking the’Settings’ tab will allow you to configure how the Form functions, including adding additional fields and setting a custom success page.
(There’s even a GDPR compliance option. Sweet.)
And speaking of the success webpage…
…MailerLite also lets you customize the default message, That can replace the embedded form and prevents users from redirecting.
Last but surely not least, you Can check the way your form displays on mobile by shifting the toggle to responsive mode.
You won’t be able to make any layout changes here, but it makes Sense to test, nevertheless.
So that’s an overview of this Embedded form but like I said before, you can also create popup forms in MailerLite.
While the Vast Majority of this setup process is identical, you will find A few differences I’d like to point out.
Unlike embedded kinds, you can choose between a set of Templates:
While this isn’t the most Comprehensive selection, they do offer a good foundation to work from and the editor is at least as easy to use with this form kind.
Clicking the’E-commerce’ template requires me to a preview Before moving into the editor.
Here, you’ll notice there are some new options under form types This time around:
Contemplating paid programs like Thrive Leads exist for both ribbons and slide-in forms, it is pretty impressive to observe this amount of control over popup types.
And, like before, you can play the styling options to get it Matched up with your branding.
Finally, you can choose the near Behavior of your form under the’Settings’ tab.
The default option is the X icon, but you can swap this out for A”No thanks” text choice, or have .
This is where most email Marketing platforms will leave you, but MailerLite has one more trick up its sleeve.
Reporting & Analytics
Like many tools, you’ll find a summary of your campaign Statistics in the main dashboard.
Here you’ll see everything from effort open and click data, Subscriber growth, automation analytics, and kind signups.
Clicking into any effort will Give you specific reporting for that campaign.
This is where you’ll find a few more advanced statistics such as Unsubscribes, spam complaints, bounces, reading surroundings, email client and more.
This should be plenty of Information for the ordinary user…
…but in Case You really want To dig into the numbers, you can click into different areas of this report for a more detailed breakdown.
You can find some real gems under These reports.
For example, the’View Email’ tab also shows a click map, so You can see your readers interacted to one another.
Reports for automations are also Accessible under the’Automations’ tab, although I found to be less enlightening than effort reports.
Here’s a quick example:
Overall, MailerLite does a Stellar job with their reporting port, and most will get the available statistics more than sufficient to fulfill their needs.
What is email marketing with no dashboard of automation?
For many reading this, MailerLite’s automation capabilities Could easily make or break this review.
The great news? If you’ve ever used a visual workflow builder, You’ll immediately feel at home here…
Much like the rest of MailerLite, The automations interface is easy, clean and simple to navigate — something which certainly can’t be said for each and every email advertising software.
After establishing your trigger, you can Start adding measures to your workflow.
These steps could be anything from sending an email, including a Delay, a conditional split, or an act, like transferring a contributor or upgrading their records.
Here’s a straightforward workflow I set together, where readers Are unsubscribed if they don’t open my email within 7 days.
There are countless Possibilities when it comes to workflow automations like this, and MailerLite should not have any trouble with the huge majority of use cases.
Granted, it is not quite as Feature-rich as something like ActiveCampaign because it lacks a number of the conditional components. (Split, Go To, Goal, etc.. )
For example, there’s currently no automation for transferring Readers directly into another automation.
That being said, most of these actions can Nevertheless Be achieved by moving Subscribers into different groups that activate new automation workflows. It is simply not as effective…. yet.
Another matter of efficiency here is when creating new emails From the automation workflow builder.
After adding an email cube to The workflow, you will be asked to add your subject line which appears on the block itself.
From there, clicking on the’Design email’ button will fire up the Editor:
Now, you’ll be briefly Redirected to the typical campaign creation wizard, which I covered earlier in the review.
This time, but as Soon as You’ve established your email, clicking on the ‘Done editing’ button will guide you straight back into the automations workflow rather than the usual sending options.
Ultimately, your email address will be Loaded into your automation.
A Wonderful touch here is using a thumbnail preview of your Email within your automation block, so you can get an idea about what it contains at a glimpse.
While this process may seem like A grind on paper, it’s really much quicker than what I am utilized to with other email marketing tools — ActiveCampaign being a fantastic example.
On the other hand, if you have come over from something like ConvertKit where The editor is loaded inside the automations builder, so you’ll likely find this a downgrade in performance.
It’s quick enough for me, Personally, but I guess it’s all relative.
Before I wrap up this segment, there’s one type of automation You won’t find in MailerLite, and I think it’s very important to highlight.
The ability to trigger an automation (or step) based on how Readers interact with all the pages on your site.
This Sort of behavioral targeting only is not accessible MailerLite right now, so if it’s something you use or intend to utilize, you may want to skip this one. Cake Mail
The Price of MailerLite is one of those tools biggest Selling things, and let us face it, we all love a fantastic deal.
For starters, they offer an unlimited free plan that includes All attributes (including premium) for up to 1,000 subscribers.
While There’s some subtle Branding in your mails using this plan, it’s still an amazing alternative for those starting out.
And what about the top programs?
It turns out, at around half of the Cost of this rivalry on average, MailerLite is undoubtedly one of the least expensive options on the market. Plus, if you are willing to pay yearly, you are also able to get a much greater discount.
In Reality, I have not been able to locate anything that does exactly the Exact Same job, cheaper.
MailerLite is one of those very few email advertising tools to interrupt The (very crowded) industry in the last couple of years, which is no easy feat.
While it is not as quickly as ConvertKit, or as feature-rich As ActiveCampaign, or as template-heavy as MailChimp, it performs exceptionally well at virtually anything you can throw at it.
I find MailerLite strikes the perfect balance Between flexibility, speed and simplicity, and at a price point you’ll seriously struggle to conquer.
Thinking about giving it a spin? Let us know how it works for you In the remarks. Cake Mail