Do you plan on having a simple email newsletter that you send daily, semi-daily or just relatively often? Or, do you plan to in the near future?
Are you using one of the many services like MailChimp, Constant Contact, Active Campaign or many of those similar competitors?
These services are pretty good and full-featured, but they are extremely expensive when you start to scale to any meaningful level.
There's a simple alternative to sending emails that works just as well.
It utilizes the power of Amazon Web Services (AWS) to send emails for a fraction of the cost you're paying (think 1/100th of the cost of MailChimp).
The product is Sendy, and I use it for a separate newsletter I send with about 6,000 daily recipients.
To put the cost savings in perspective, MailChimp used to cost $200 to send emails daily to 10,000 people, at bare minimum. (They recently obfuscated their pricing so you can't even predict it yourself)
How much would it cost to have Sendy send 10,000 emails?
Just $1, paid directly to Amazon. There is a one-time fee of $59 to buy the Sendy software, but that includes regular free updates.
The only catch? You need to have some limited technical knowledge.
You either have to be able to (or have someone else) do the relatively simple procedure of installing a PHP/MySQL program on your server, signing up and configuring Amazon SES (Simple Email Service) to work with your installation, and changing some DNS settings for your sending domain.
The actual process is A LOT simpler than this sounds, and it described well in their tutorial.
But what about deliverability?
People ask this a lot. They think services like MailChimp or similar products have a leg up when it comes to getting delivered into email inboxes.
The secret? They don't.
You have almost complete control over your individual sending reputation, and, in addition, Amazon SES maintains a relatively good one for you to start with.
In fact, services like Gmail have gotten so smart that they already know the demographics of a typical MailChimp client. They know those clients are likely sending marketing newsletters.
So, what do they do? They tend to deliver emails they can tell came from MailChimp to the 'promotions' tabs, since their algorithm thinks that is likely the correct labeling.
With Amazon, you're on a level playing field because so many other big services and brands use it, that you won't be boxed in.
You can establish your own email sending reputation through Amazon, and they'll give you all the statistics you need (such as reputation health), for you to do it on your own.
Plus, Amazon offers you the ability to purchase a dedicated IP address for your sending, which can theoretically help you silo yourself off from everyone else. (This is debated a lot, and is not always the correct option, but its good to know the feature is there.)
Sound complicated? It really isn't.
There's so much more info about sending emails that I can't get to today, but the short gist of it is:
If you're looking to send lots of simple newsletters, and you realize you don't need bells and whistles that these services offer, use Sendy.
Alternatively, there is a cloud based service similar to Sendy that also uses Amazon and that you pay a subscription to called EmailOctopus (The Amazon integrated version is called EmailOctopus Connect, and is a separate service on their site.)
Their 'normal' service is still much cheaper than the alternatives. It also has some added features and you don't have to worry about upgrading, but you will pay a subscription (still much cheaper than those alternatives).
(The Imperfect Marketer's emails you receive are sent through Kajabi, the all-in-one digital product platform that hosts my site. I'll discuss that another day.)
I'll have a more detailed guide on setting up your email newsletter in the future, but for now, take care!
Semi-daily point: There are many alternatives to the flashy services that try to take your money. Be resourceful and don't fall for the hype!
- The Imperfect Marketer
Free marketing tips and ideas to chomp on that will probably save you money & time. You'll also get discounts and special promotions for the tools, ad networks & other businesses I use and think you should be using too.