Why it’s worthwhile to use an ESP

If some of you are still wondering why you should use a professional email marketing service for your newsletters and campaigns, we have some great reasons for you!

We know there are many SMB marketers out there with smaller subscriber lists – let’s say 500 – who think they don’t need an ESP (Email Service Provider) to send out a plain text newsletter every two months, or a product promotion once a month. Perhaps not, but maybe that’s why they’re still only sending one promo a month to such a small list?! In other words, they’re not doing enough to GROW their business. It’s not their fault…they just don’t know what a great ESP service can do!

We know that most professional ESPs provide features like list management, split testing, surveys, autoresponders, tracking and analytics, (Open rate and CTR) – even Social Media integration. And most leading ESPs compete to ensure the highest possible deliverability ratios. All these services and features should improve the effectiveness of your email marketing, right? But what if they’re not easy to learn and use? Or what if they don’t work well together? Or…what if you just need help figuring it all out?

So you see, features aren’t the whole story – and here’s a great example. We have some real stats for you from a real company that started using GetResponse just two months ago. We think you’ll find the results very interesting.

Nozbe Service

Nozbe Service is one of the most popular web-based productivity software suites on the market. It helps users manage projects and tasks based on David Allan’s world-famous method, known as GTD – “Getting Things Done”.

The CEO and owner, Michael Sliwinski, used emails to drive his marketing activities from the beginning. He knew it was the fastest and easiest way to communicate with Nozbe users and to reach prospects. But initially he used a simple in-house solution based on the PHPmailer sender mechanism.

Michael’s team created an email marketing plan that included all the basics, from easy account registration to newsletter sign-up forms, to periodic follow-up messages to new customers with important information like “how to get started”, etc.

The newsletter went out once every 2-3 months with the latest tips about the Nozbe productivity tools and services. Once every 6 months, users received a promotional email with a bonus or discount offer. Nothing too ambitious, but a solid program.

“Email Marketing was extremely important in my early communications with users, especially during beta testing, then getting really critical with the official launch of the Nozbe service”, explained Sliwinski.

Email marketing results before using GetResponse

In the beginning, the email marketing program results were quite good. The team was able to target lists ranging from 1,000 to 5,000 contacts, with 30% open rates and 10% CTR. However, Michael Slwiniski soon realized that the main reason for the good results was probably because users were already engaged because most of them were Nozbe beta testers! How did he find out for sure?

After launching the official version, things started to go downhill. With every newsletter sent, the results got worse. While the contact list was getting bigger, the campaign results were getting smaller! Open rates slid to less than 10% and the lowest CTR was a dismal 1%. And, after 3 long years, the contact list they had worked so hard to build turned out to be useless.

“We thought we were using quite an advanced system, but after looking at the results, we realized that effective email marketing requires more server infrastructure, deliverability experience, and a lot of other elements. Even the best email message can’t compensate for those missing elements”, Michael Sliwinski explained.

Email marketing results using GetResponse

Michael began networking for advice and soon hit pay dirt: “I opened a GetResponse email marketing account based on the recommendation of several colleagues who said they were very satisfied with the results they achieved.”

Starting with the first GetResponse newsletter, open rates increased to 50%+ (sometimes 60%), and CTRs increased to over 10%! Sliwinski noted that he is constantly working on improving the message content and design, and, now that he has the tools and support of GetResponse, he is sure that CTRs will go even higher.

Michael’s team also started sending newsletters to ProductiveMagazine.com subscribers (over 10 000 contacts) of his new online publication. In fact, the announcement of the Productive Magazine launch returned an open rate of 70%+!!

Next in the queue, the team is going to modify their 10-step video “Getting Things Done” strategy by employing different autoresponders for paid and free users.

All this success and Michael Sliwinski has only been using GetResponse for two months! Now he is exploring power features like Social Media integration and Split Tests to maximize his email messages and his online audience.

He also added that he’s decided to change the frequency of his messages. Now that response rates are so much better, he intends to send Nozbe users emails once or twice each month. What’s more, he’s going to introduce special productivity e-courses sent to users via email − of course! Check out Video Emails for that Michael!

“I’m totally convinced that email marketing is the best solution for the money, not just for communicating with people, but for marketing to and attracting new customers – it does it all!” concluded CEO Sliwinski.