MailChimp versus CampaignMonitor Landing Page
Email marketing software is an essential tool for digital marketers. Two software companies that are often top of mind for email marketing are CampaignMonitor and Mailchimp.
These companies are almost twins…
CampaignMonitor is an Australian based company that grew organically from a web design business. Mailchimp is a US based company that grew organically from a web development business. Both platforms offer their customers a simple user interface with great analytics, free email templates and online email editors, lots of community support through their blog, newsletter and support section and a strong api with plenty of integrations.
…and yet their landing pages communicate completely different messages. Let’s take a look:
1. Value Propositions
Mailchimp’s value proposition is “Easy Email Newsletters”: The clever bit here is the word “Newsletters”. This attracts customers who carry out the continuous, predictable activity of sending newsletters to a defined list of recipients. It also communicates that more general ’email marketing’ which can involve more sales focused/once-off campaigns to lots of different lists of recipients, may not be welcome. I think this is a clever way to verbally repel once-off sales-focused emailers who want to take advantage of Mailchimp’s free version to spam people.
CampaignMonitor offers “email marketing software for designers and their clients”. As well as addressing designers directly as their product’s target market, they make designers a business proposition: designers can white-label their email marketing platform and resell the service at a profit to their clients. While this sounds a bit complex, somehow CampaignMonitor have compellingly presented the business case to designers, right there on the homepage. CampaignMonitor uses the more general term “email marketing” rather than “email newsletters”, perhaps because they may not encounter the same issues with spammers as Mailchimp. CampaignMonitor customers must spend a minimum of per campaign charged to their credit cards to send out an email to more than 5 recipients.
2. Top Navigation
What strikes me straight away is the similarity between the top navigation of both MailChimp and CampaignMonitor. Both companies have tabs for Pricing, Features, Resources, Support and a Blog.
Campaign Monitor also add two additional tabs: Customers and Our Story. The ‘Our Story’ tab is interesting. When you click on it you learn that CampaignMonitor evolved from a web design company run by two college buddies. Since the CampaignMonitor target market is ‘designers and their clients’, I think this company background does work to create empathy with designers who often operate in similar situations as freelancers or small design agencies.
An interesting point here is that Mailchimp’s background is similar but they have avoided promoting their company background in the top navigation. One way of looking at this might be that since CampaignMonitor is trying to create a partnership with designers, displaying the company background and evoking empathy with designers becomes more important.
Meanwhile Mailchimp’s focus is on the simplicity of its product…so maybe adding a the company background in a prominent place would confuse that message.
3. Look and Feel
Interestingly both Mailchimp and CampaignMonitor show images of mobile interfaces on their homepages. Alongside the top navigation, that’s where the similarities end.
MailChimp’s look and feel has a definite focus on simplicity. Alongside the big smiling purposeful Monkey with his mail delivery bag, a three word message “Easy Email Newsletters” take up the bulk of the page. The lanaguage used is simple and focused on functionality: “design email newsletters, share them on social networks, intergrate with the services you already use, and track your results”. There’s no mention of customers, there’s no pricing, just the simple ‘Sign up free’ call to action. I don’t fully get the last part ‘It’s like your own personal publishing platform”- isn’t my blog/website my “personal publishing platform”?
CampaignMonitor puts together a more more complex message on their landing page. Designers can not only send and track emails, they can also resell the solution to their clients. Understandably the focus is on the deal between CampaignMonitor and Designers. “100% rebrandable”, “Mark-up, resell and profit” and ” Set your own prices and automatically earn a profit” feature in prominent location on the homepage. The language used is also interesting. Emails are “beautiful”, analytics is “powerful”, it’s used by “leading” designers. The focus is on design aspirations and the ability to make more money.
For two products that are extremely comparable in functionality, support and resources, its amazing to see how different the landing pages are in many aspects.
CampaignMonitor persuasiveness: 8/10 As a web designer, CampaignMonitor addresses me and I can appreciate this. I haven’t yet been persuaded by the profit-sharing approach because I find it easier to give our clients transparent pricing, but I can see how it could be compelling, especially to companies who only focus on email marketing.
MailChimp persuasiveness: 7/10 I like the simplicity and starkness of mailchimp’s homepage. That said, I feel a bit uneasy by a marketing tool that calls itself “easy” and has a massive picture of a monkey… it just feels like it might over-compromise on features for the sake of simplicity. However that is just my personal taste.