Looking for a new email service provider, or trying to get more out of the one you have?
You have to ask some tough questions, writes Carolyn Nye, director, Digital Interactive Group for Acxiom, in an article in Practical Ecommerce. As part of your due diligence, ask if your ESP provides these capabilities:
First, an ESP must be easy to use — many marketers lack the technical background to cope with a complicated solution. Second, the ESP must be able to import data on new subscribers or a segment of existing ones in batches. And it must offer segmentation tools and automatic A/B testing, Nye says.
That’s the basic marketing stuff. Now let’s move on the creative features you need:
Next, does your ESP fulfill these systems functions?
Now we come to the most sensitive question: the economics.
“Some ESPs have a fixed monthly fee for set features and email volume,” Nye writes. “Others have a combination of fixed and volume prices based on the number of deployments. Focus on what you need. Don’t pay for unnecessary features.”
You can have it all. Nye observes that “mail service providers are responding with new features and capabilities at, frequently, a lower monthly cost.”