This ActiveCampaign review assesses its features, pricing and overall functionality that will be fundamentally relevant to your business.
It’s cheap and most importantly, super effective.
Welcome to the world of email marketing!
If you have used this channel for a long time, you probably recognize its sheer power in generating leads. In fact, 80% of retail business owners agree that email marketing is their major customer retention driver.
It probably has something to do with the fact that 77% of consumers prefer to receive promotional materials via email, as opposed to social media, phone calls, texts or direct mail.
You are dying right. Email is still king. You can say that again.
If you are yet to fully take advantage of email marketing, your online store is very much alive to its potential.
No more. I’m not talking about lazy formatting a couple of selected emails. Here’s the thing. There’s nothing like a selected lead when you want to rapidly grow your customer base.
Every prospect is worth an email, because in the end, leads captured via email offers typically cost 138% more than their counterparts who are left out.
So, what does this mean?
Basically, if your business doesn’t implement a comprehensive email marketing strategy, your entire campaign is worth nothing.
But, of course, we know that it is logistically impossible to keep up with all of your prospecting emails. Unless, otherwise, your store is dealing with only five leads — which essentially defeats the whole point of email marketing.
It goes without saying that email marketing is a mass lead generation channel. This is the reason why it is popularly bundled with marketing automation tools.
Now, there’s no mistake. Although automation is all about handing over repetitive functionalities to an AI engine, it is still about the same efficiency as a human controlled system. Of course, even better because of data based decision making.
According to eMarketer reports, businesses that capitalize on automation are recording conversion rates as high as 50%. Come to think of it, it’s understandable why 79% of top-performing businesses have been on the marketing bandwagon for at least 24 months.
where does that leave you?
A perfect place to start would be adopting an email marketing tool.
But, here is the problem. There are over 215 solutions available in the market today. While the resulting competition is primarily beneficial to users, the wide variety complicates the selection process too much.
I’ll tell you what it is. Let’s look at the primary ones in detail. Starting with one of the top dogs, ActiveCampaign.
So, let’s dive in…..
What is ActiveCampaign?
Before we jump into the intricacies, it’s worth noting that ActiveCampaign is not just an email service provider. It attempts to provide a holistic approach to the entire email lead generation process through four basic functions:
- Email marketing
- Marketing automation
- Sales and CRM
Can you think of any other functions that would fit seamlessly into this series?
I do not think so. This is why ActiveCampaign popularly sells itself as an “all-in-one” marketing tool. How it actually stays put is something we’ve been looking into for a bit.
As of now, the solution has been serving businesses since 2003. It is mostly focused on small enterprises that want to drive increased growth through optimized lead generation and customer retention.
As a player in the ecommerce space, therefore, ActiveCampaign is undoubtedly something you should assess in detail.
How does ActiveCampaign fit into your business? Is it worth a test?
And most importantly, what are the key features of ActiveCampaign?
Well, let’s find out….
ActiveCampaign Review: Features
Let’s start with the most important feature is marketing automation.
Because marketing needs variation across businesses, ActiveCampaign recognizes that it is impossible to provide an ideal one-size-fits-all automation approach. Instead, it provides an automation builder to help you customize your automation process to suit your specific goals and objectives.
And guess what? The whole process is really as simple as clicking, dragging and dropping the various automation rules until you have your final workflow.
Speaking of which, you can comfortably create a complex workflow as each automation element is customizable.
For example, you can adjust your system to turn off some pending emails until a specific milestone is reached. Like it eventually converts into customers by proceeding to checkout.
To further define the automated logic, ActiveCampaign allows you to define the entire decision making flow, with if/then rules.
But then again, you probably aren’t cut out for this whole workflow. So you may find the process of creating your own automation protocol a bit confusing and time-consuming.
That’s why ActiveCampaign also offers an automation marketplace.
Instead of scratching your head defining custom rules, you can skip the whole thing altogether and buy a readymade automation workflow. The Automation Marketplace is just the right place to shop for a wide range of automation workflows with different protocols that can be plugged directly into your system.
And you know what? Yes, you can also sell your own unique workflow to other marketers who want a quick solution.
Unfortunately, it’s not all good news. It also has a negative aspect.
Purchasing a workflow does not guarantee seamless compatibility with your system objectives. Ignoring even a simple protocol can lead to buggy automation systems.
As an online based business, I think the targeting market of your site can be very broad with different demographics.
Now, this complicates the entire lead nurturing process. Because it would not be appropriate to send out emails with the same details to all your prospects. You end up taking the risk which is a very important part.
To help with this problem, ActiveCampaign comes with built-in e-mail segmentation. This allows you to break down and segment your entire list according to a wide array of categories such as: page visited, email open, device, country of origin, etc.
And, it just covers the baseline. You can still go ahead and set up a deeply targeted list by stacking multiple categories to filter the entire email list.
Additionally, you can introduce tags dynamically to automatically add certain sections. For example, you can choose to include an automation rule that will send all checkout traffic information to the ‘Customers’ list.
As you consider your business online, you’ve probably seen one of these. Those pesky ads that easily follow you around to other sites, try to persuade you to go back to a particular site.
This is what is traditionally known as ad retargeting.
Well, it turns out ActiveCampaign helps you do just that with email. But it uses a rather clever approach.
Let’s assume that one of your leads surfs through your site and reads a blog article on “How to Make Strong Coffee”. The automation system later picks it up and sends them an email outlining the wide range of coffee makers in their online store.
Its as simple as that!
Social and behavioral data in CRM:
Personalization is the foundation of customer relationship management (CRM). This is why 96% of marketers are convinced that it is effective enough in developing relationships with their leadership.
Fair enough. Right?
But personalization and subsequent targeting rely heavily on personal information, which is rarely presented at large by customers.
Thankfully, ActiveCampaign will handle the dirty work for you. Through its CRM, it provides insight into the social and behavioral data of your leads:
- Age and interests
- Past conversations and site activity
- Social feeds
This comes in quite handy when you need to refine your complex automation workflow.
Business experts often advise growing entrepreneurs to treat each lead as important.
But let’s face it. All in all, only a limited number will eventually convert, and subsequently, proceed to be a return customer. And they can be uniquely identified in the conversion funnel if you pay attention to the intricate details.
ActiveCampaign makes this super easy through an automated lead scoring feature. It basically assigns a score to your leads according to your respective conversion probability.
As a result, you will be able to identify specific aspects to which you can direct the bulk of your nutrition resources.
All things considered, this is basically what you’ll get from ActiveCampaign:
- Free one-on-one training
- Custom landing page
- Free email template
- Social media monitoring
- Dynamic email content
- Automatic chain
- Advanced segmentation and targeting
- Contact categories
- CRM and sales automation
- Newsletter management
- Free phone, live chat, and email support
- SMS marketing
- Contact status tracking
- Campaign, contact and list reporting
- Email designer
- Built-in integration
- Marketing automation
ActiveCampaign Review: Dashboard
ActiveCampaign’s cockpit is fresh and simple!
It basically grants you the all-important front seat to your account, while displaying all the important information in the widget. The top ones are neatly arranged to provide the following navigation:
- Create automation
- Create a form
- Make a deal
- View report
- Integrate services
- Make a list
There is also a menu on the right side with the following options:
At the far right is a section that summarizes what your contacts have done recently—including subscriptions, social media activity, emails opened, emails read, and much more.
Next to it is the Campaigns widget, showing your latest marketing campaigns in chronological order.
As you navigate through the dashboard, you also get to see your top contacts and current automation workflows for your respective campaigns.
ActiveCampaign Review: Pricing
ActiveCampaign has a fairly solid list of features.
So, of course, I expected the pricing plans to be a little on the upper side. But, surprisingly, they’ve managed to keep their overall strategy fairly competitive, with pretty decent pricing for all business categories.
ActiveCampaign comes in four primary plans, each of which is priced differently — Lite, Plus, Professional, and Enterprise. Your specific level is dependent on the actual number of leads in your contact database.
That said, it’s worth noting that you can give the service a test run through the XNUMX-day-free trial period. And the best part about it is that you can proceed without presenting credit card information.
OK, sounds good. But, what will you get after 14 days?
Billed annually at $17 per month, comes with the Lite package;
- Supports 3 users
- Chat and email support
- Marketing automation
- Email marketing
- Unlimited sending
On the other hand, the bill per year costs $49 per year. In addition to Lite’s features, it comes with:
- Supports 25 users
- SMS marketing
- One on one training
- Custom branding
- Custom domain
- Custom user permissions
- Deep data integration
- Contact and lead scoring
- CRM with sales automation
The RSI Professional plan costs $129 per month annually. Plus’ features, it provides:
- Supports 50 users
- Site message
The biggest is the Enterprise plan, which has been adapted appropriately for large enterprises with broad email marketing needs. Billed annually at $229 per month, you get the following in addition to the professional features:
- Supports unlimited users
- Uptime SLA
- Phone support
- Free social data
- Free design services
- Deep on the ship
- Dedicated account representative
- Custom mail server domain
Who Should Consider ActiveCampaign?
ActiveCampaign as a beginner, intermediate, and experienced email marketer you will need a lot of functionalities.
Although the free trial period is only two weeks, I think it should be enough for a detailed evaluation. But, if time runs out, the plans are reasonably priced, especially when you consider ActiveCampaign’s comprehensive provisions.
And the best part about it is that it can be integrated seamlessly into any business setup. The secret is simply learning the ropes around the whole process of building automation rules.
Unfortunately, the size of supported businesses is limited. While ActiveCampaign offers an enterprise plan for bulk users, its capabilities will match the broad, ever-changing needs of large enterprises.
But, so far it is good when it comes to small and medium sized businesses. So, yes, it’s worth a try.
Go ahead, and feel free to share your experience and thoughts via the comment section.