First of all, BuzzFeed has awesome subject lines and preview text. They are always short and punchy -- which fits in perfectly with the rest of BuzzFeed's content. I especially love how the preview text will accompany the subject line. For example, if the subject line is a question, the preview text is the answer. Or if the subject line is a command (like the one below), the preview text seems like the next logical thought right after it:
This article is informative, but it does not offer distinguishing features between the services covered (other than mailchimp is free). You seemed to go to great lengths to say good things about each – although I’m sure each services has positive aspects. I would have benefited much more from a rating of some sort of the various features of each service, or at least the pros & cons of each.
Now, while there’s no doubt that email marketing can be a great tool for small business owners, it’s also true that this type of promotion is usually only one item on a lengthy “to do” list.  So while the strategy may sound good in theory, it often falls to the wayside for business owners who are too swamped with other priorities to send out messages regularly.
The Law of Scale is what all good marketers recognize, intuitively or explicitly. It states that in order to get to scale, you must leverage that which has scale. In other words, if your business’s email list is on level 1 (small), and you want to get up to level 2 (medium), use the tactic that will get you (or that have already gotten others) up there: the elevator, the stairs, a ladder, etc. Except in this case the stairs and the ladder are other websites. One of the most effective ways to do this is with guest blog posts. Brian Harris (VideoFruit.com) and others have used this technique to attract hundreds of new email subscribers to their lists. The basic formula works like this:

But since you can’t just judge a message’s quality by your own perceptions (as the members of your list will have diverse interests and viewpoints), you can also take a look at the analytics information provided by your email marketing account provider to see which messages have been opened and which emails have been accessed most frequently.  This should give you some insight into the message topics your audience finds most compelling.
Be sure to look at the tech support offered by each of these companies, as we felt many weren't as available as we would have liked. You'll find that some offer 24/7 phone support, live chat, and email help, while others leave you to rely on online documentation and limited live support hours. The best services offer a combination of self-serve help resources—where you can search FAQs and articles to find your own answers—as well as live support via chat or phone when you can't solve an issue yourself. We cover all of these concerns in our reviews, plus you can get an overview in the feature chart above.
Use it as a lead magnet/free mini-course. You can also use an autoresponder as a lead magnet to attract new subscribers to your email list. This is commonly done in the form of a free “mini-course”, or a free “challenge”, which promises to deliver a series of emails containing lessons (or other valuable information) over the course of several days or weeks. There is a high perceived value with a mini-course or a challenge like this, which makes it a very effective lead magnet.
Integration – Companies can not just rely on one method of marketing, nor can they rely on several methods of differentiated marketing. Instead, best marketing practices utilise integrated marketing communication (IMC) where all aspects of their promotion work together to create a whole. Email marketing must be including here, therefore your emails must carry the same image and message as your entire operations. Even the timing of the campaign must work in with other aspects of your marketing mix.
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FreshMail – FreshMail offers email marketing software with a variety of features, including an intuitive template editor, mobile-optimized templates, social sharing tools, automation, contact management tools, an inbox inspector, a spam checker, A/B testing, Google Analytics, and integrations with CRM systems, e-commerce platforms and a variety of other programs. freshmail.com
In my premium flagship program, Virtual Summit Mastery, we make it as easy as possible for you for you to implement everything for your summit. You will get done-for-you email automation templates that you can use for the pre-summit promotion, during summit email and post-summit phase to communicate with your audience. They work seamlessly with ActiveCampaign so that you can import them with a few clicks, tweak the copy get them working for you. This is a game-changer for email marketing - you get the copy and tech automations all-in-one.
Andrew Warner experimented with this strategy on Mixergy.com a while ago. It was quite successful at growing his list. In a more prominent case with a full write-up on Tim Ferris’s website, Harry’s, a company that makes high-end shaving kits for men, ran a similar contest-like promotion before formally launching and managed to gather over 100,000 email addresses. Finally here are my recommendations for giveaway / raffle tools:
As opposed to static messaging, chat advertising refers to real time messages dropped to users on certain sites. This is done by the usage of live chat software or tracking applications installed within certain websites with the operating personnel behind the site often dropping adverts on the traffic surfing around the sites. In reality this is a subset of the email advertising but different because of its time window.
Double opt-in is generally believed to cut spam complaint rates, though you may see a slight decrease in your opt-in rates compared to a single opt-in set-up.  Both arrangements have their place in the email marketing world – the important thing is that you’re requesting future recipients’ permission to receive messages from your business.  Sending messages without securing this permission is a quick way to get your account banned due to CAN-SPAM complaints.

Rob, you don’t say who ‘booted’ you from using it. A significant GDPR factor is non-profits having to consent/re-consent those on established email lists and experiencing significant proportions of lists being lost because people miss the notifications or are too busy to fill in yet more forms. However, I have found a few using a ‘one-touch’ re-subscription button that takes immediate effect, without the recipient having to do anything else. It would appear that the re-subscription rate is higher, the easier it is to activate. On enquiry, I was told that they were using mail chimp for this.
Maropost – Maropost is a provider of on-demand digital marketing solutions. Its platform transforms the complex process behind successful email marketing into a manageable task, enabling users to segment and target prospects, craft content, optimize message delivery, track customer behavior, and create collaborations within a single dashboard. maropost.com
Ideally, email marketing should go hand-in-hand with social media. Adding social media "Like" or "Share" buttons to your marketing emails gives an additional way for customers to connect with your brand. Snippets of positive reviews from social media fans can be included in emails, and conversely, social media postings can be used to encourage fans to subscribe to your email newsletters.
Lead magnets are essentially tempting offers that provide consumers something of value in exchange for their contact information. The valuable offer is often targeted content that aims to help individuals better understand and solve their greatest challenges. For instance, this could be a holiday product guide or an e-book on B2B challenges that your business solves.
And finally if you want to build optin forms that you can integrate with your website and which also integrates with GoToWebinar then I use and recommend LeadPages – and as a bonus they have their feature of LeadBoxes which can be used to enable people to opt in for your lead magnet e.g. a special report from within an article or blog post or on the side bar of your site.
Speaking of Neil Patel, Hello Bar is a very simple (free) tool that helps you collect emails by presenting an attention grabbing call-to-action bar at the top of your webpages. When creating your Hello Bar you have the option to set a goal. Your goal will be to either get emails or drive clicks. Since I use a Hello Bar on this site, and because their options are a bit limited as far as downloading emails that are collected, I set my goal to get clicks. The call-to-action button then leads visitors to a landing page with an offer for our free course. Success in using the Hello Bar really depends on your ability to write a compelling 1 sentence line of copy. So test frequently with multiple Hello Bar variations.
Imagine how your audience members’ response might be different if their added to your list but don’t hear from you for several months until your schedule opens up enough to revisit email marketing.  By this point, your readers will have grown cold to your company’s promotions (assuming they remember who you are or that they requested information from you at all in the first place).  As a result, you’ll see a significantly lower success rate from your promotional efforts than if you’d taken the time to build genuine relationships with the members of your email marketing lists.
Then, you can use what you’ve learned to drive even more conversions through your email marketing. For example, let’s say that you’re running a Labor Day sale that features a buy one, get one promotion. You might use social media to educate your audience and let them know about the sale, and then later use email marketing to drive traffic to the product page.
SXSW, Inc. – This lean organization organizes some of the most well-known events in the world, including the SXSW film, music and interactive festivals held every year in Austin, Texas. The goal of their marketing team is to increase ticket sales and attendees at these events, so they use email marketing to keep subscribers up to date as new artists and speakers join the lineup.
How is 7.5 okay? I think that it’s a great score, especially when you take into consideration that it’s an averaged score of several hundred people’s opinion… Shopify and BigCommerce (I don’t agree that they should have the same score) are very good builders. Yes, they are only for stores, and there are different free website creators that might take their place due to them being free, but they do their job very well. It’s better to be a master at a trade, unlike the other builders – jack of all trades, master of none.

Retention Science – Retention Science (ReSci) is a predictive marketing and personalization software that helps brands convert more customers through 1:1 multi-channel communication. Its machine learning platform uses AI to automate and deliver scalable and relevant marketing campaigns to create direct relationships with each individual customer. retentionscience.com
Getting started shouldn't be daunting. Generally, you'll know right away whether you like a user interface (UI) or not, and most of the contenders we reviewed offer free trials so you can poke around before dropping any cash. Luckily, most of these services have modern-looking graphics and uncluttered layouts. These are not the complex business software UIs of yesterday. Be careful, though, as some free trials require a credit card. This means you need to be sure to cancel your trial before you're billed if you're not happy with the service.
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