Email marketing is still extremely lucrative in 2022. And if you do it the right way, you can convert readers into customers on autopilot. This right here is MailerCloud, an email marketing platform with a lot of integrations. Let’s check it out.
So this is the MailerCloud platform. We are here on the dashboard. The first time you go through MailerCloud, you need to go through a setup process where you need to add your domain. You need to set up a sender ID, and then you can shoot out your first campaign. That I’ve been through, and I’ve sent out my first campaign. So you can see here that we have some statistics and this is based on one campaign.
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- Features of MailerCloud
- MailerCloud Pricing
- Alternatives to MailerCloud
- Future of MailerCloud
- Pros & Cons using MailerCloud
- Last thoughts on MailerCloud
Features of MailerCloud
So it sent out one email, and it opened one time. There’s been zero clicks in it and zero has unsubscribed. And then here we can see it a bit more statistically, where we can see whether it has bounced, unknown if it has been spam, and so much more. So the dashboard is just a quick overview of all of your campaigns. We do also have a reporting module which I will show you a bit later.
But now let’s jump into the campaigns. You can set up three types of campaigns, but all the campaigns are based on regular campaigns. So the first step here is to set up a regular campaign. Let’s call this one YouTube video. We’ll give it a subject line as well.
And then here we have to choose our sender name. In this case, I’ve already done it on my sender ID, so you can see it fills it out automatically. We can also add tags for this campaign where we can easily add a new tag. Let’s call this YouTube in this case and then add the tag. So this is now part of this campaign.
We can also change the pre-header. This is what is shown in the inbox overview where we can see all of our emails. So we can just write this is a YouTube video email, just as an example. Then we can also add the permission reminder where it shows why the reader is getting this specific email. It’s often because they have subscribed to a newsletter.
And then, last but not least, we can set up conversion tracking. Conversion tracking is to track all of your visitors and this can later on be used on the landing pages or on your own website when we, hopefully, at some point, get website tracking. But in this case it’s just to track your own readers. Then we can, of course, continue. But before we do so, we need to build our email and in this case we can choose between more than 100 templates in here, and it’s everything from a wedding letter to a women’s day to when we go further airline tour.
And this is, of course, just templates. So you just need to go with the template you like, and then you can change it into your own style. So let’s go with the membership mail here. I will then continue, and then we have the basic template. In order to make this template our own, we need to edit it over here, and we are now in the editor of the email templates and here we can change everything.
We can change the text, we can add more blocks over here, we can change the structure if we want to. We can even add templates and these are template modules. It is not an entire template. So if I like this banner, I can then pull it in, and it will then be shown down here. I can also use this text if I want to change it to be something else, but I can also change the font. Up here where it says Anton right now, I can change that to be something else.
And this is mainly just Google fonts. However, if your email is sent to an email client that doesn’t support this font, it will just redirect to the default. So don’t worry, it will still look good. But you can, of course, also change the email, and you can do so much more with the different blocks, the different buttons. You can also track the buttons which will be done automatically by clicks.
And then, as you just saw, we can add more blocks. But let’s just keep this email as it is. You can see it has now changed what we just changed together, and now I can continue. And here we need to choose our default list because that’s the only list I have right now. Of course, you choose the list you want to send this campaign to.
What we can also do here is that we get a template review. Here it shows us if we are linking to any broken links, this means a website or URL that doesn’t exist, or we are linking to a blacklisted domain. And this is important because if you link to a blacklisted domain in an email, your email will most likely end up as spam for so many of your readers. So it’s so significant that both of these numbers are always zero. Now another very interesting thing you can do is that you can set up these rules and this is not like A/B testing, it is special rules.
So, for instance, we can say send emails to the first or the last 100 contacts and then send the emails to 20% of the subscribers, and then you can pause the campaign if the open rate is greater or lower than a specific percentage. Or you can just send it after a specific number of minutes. So these are the different rules that you can play around with to really try and make your email perform and achieve the best. For now, I’ll just keep it as this. I will email the first 100 contacts, and now we can go to the last step where we then get the overview.
We can see the email here with the content and the button we have made, and then we can both schedule it and when we schedule it, there is a standard way of scheduling it with your own time zone and time to send it out. And then there’s the advanced way. In the advanced way, you can choose to shoot this campaign out on specific days and a certain number of emails every day. And this is, in order to, of course, not spam. So here we can say that I want to send this email out on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday between nine and five in this case.
Again, we can set the time zone, and then we can also send out how fast we want to shoot out these emails. I would just say I want to send 240 emails per hour, and then we can basically just schedule it. So now our email campaign is ready. We can visit it here, or we can just close the cross here. So now you can see we have it up here.
Right now it has been scheduled, and it’s a time based campaign. This is a regular campaign. You do also have automation and right now the automation is very simplified. We give it a name. Let’s call this one YouTube Automation.
We choose our audience again, I only have the default list, so I will go with that. Then we choose a start and an end date. So let’s go with this and then continue. This is where the automation starts. You can see it starts on the 3rd of March and I can then add the campaign YouTube video.
The YouTube video will then be sent out on 3 of March, and then we can set up an automation rule that the next campaign needs to be sent out immediately only to the open subscribers. And this will then be the first campaign I’ve previously made here. And then again, it moves on, and it goes on and on where you can set up these automation rules. So, again, this is very simplified. We cannot work with integrations within the automation and that is something they definitely need to work on.
But for now, this is how we set up automation. I can then continue, and then I can publish this automation. So this can start to run and, with this automation, you can, of course, use it to set up email series. So let’s say that you want to sell a specific service from your company, or you want to sell a product. Then you can set up an email service of ten different types of emails where you really showcase your product in different types of emails to really encourage the reader to buy your product or service.
That is what automation is perfect for. Now, the last thing within campaigns I want to show you is autoresponders. So an autoresponder can be used for many things. But let’s start by setting it up here with again the same thing you saw before. We need to give an autoresponder’s name, a subject line here.
We need to set the sender, and then we need to choose an email template. I will go with the health tips right here. We will just keep it as it is. Again. I will add the conversion tracking, and then we will have it ready.
I will then continue. And this is where it’s important because this autoresponder has rules. So this autoresponder will be attached to a specific campaign. In this case I will choose the YouTube video, you can attach it to multiple, and then I’ll press continue. Then we set up the rules.
And right now the rule is that when a subscriber opened this campaign, we will then trigger this autoresponder immediately, and we will maximum do it with, let’s say ten subscribers for instance. And this will only run until 31 March. We can also set a wait for ten minutes if you just want to create some space between when it’s opened and when they receive the next email. But now it’s ready. So let’s publish this autoresponder and then this is running completely automatic again.
And that is what’s so important about these email marketing platforms. They need to be able to run automatically, so we don’t have to spend time on this. Now the next module is audience. It is very simple. We have our default list with my email on here. We can see a summary and a list of performance.
We can see the domains and then, of course, our contacts. And for each contact there is a rating which is based on how much they open, how much they click and if they put it in spam and so much more. We can then view this one. But what we cannot do at the moment is that we cannot add tags. This means that we cannot say that this one comes from this specific form because it has this tag.
Definitely something that’s very important to have in email marketing campaign platforms. So let’s just close down this list again and then let’s move on to the segments because you can also build segments and this is another way of using tags. So a segment is based on some criteria that you set. So let’s call this one again YouTube segment. Then I will choose the default list and then continue.
So now you have to say that the subscriber status should be active. We can also say that the email needs to be verified and that the country should be Denmark, just as an example. So now we have this segment. We can then call it YouTube segment Denmark up here and then save it. So now all the subscribers who are from Denmark will be saved in this specific segment.
So, if I want to send out campaigns to a specific segment which is only for Denmark, then I can use this segment and that is another way of using the tags. Now one more exciting thing is web forms, because all of this is a platform to send out emails to your subscribers. But how do you get subscribers? Of course, you can have forms on your website where you can do an integration with Zapier, which will then send this subscriber into MailerCloud. But you can also build the form within MailerCloud.
So here we have a form. Let’s call it YouTube. Then you choose what type this form should be, whether it should be embedded on your website, if it should be a drop-down banner, slide in or slide in on the right side, let’s just go with the drop-down and then let’s go to the next page. So here you can see it’s very simple. We have our slide down, we can change the text, we can change the style a bit of how this should look.
You can see that when I click here it is updated automatically. We can change the modal style to be maybe only 50% of the width. That doesn’t look so good. So let’s go back to the 100. We can change again the font here, let’s go with Poppins.
We can change the button, and then we can go to options because the options then contain a redirect to another page or display, thank you. What I would really like to be able to do is to send an email out to these because let’s say that they can sign up for my newsletter and in exchange I will give them an e-book or an e-paper. Right now, this is only possible if I redirect them to a specific page where they can download it. The problem with that is that often people will just write a nonsense email to get the e-book.
That is why if I can send one per email it is so much better. But now we have the form ready. You can see it’s very limited how much we can change. I can then preview the form and, of course, see here how it is. But then I will update it and now the form is ready.
So I can embed it on my website, or I can just share the link to the form. And that is how you build forms in order to gather all of these subscribers that you can shoot out emails to. The last module within the audience is just a contact summary where we can see how many are valid, how many are opening, the click rate and so on. This is very simplified. So let’s move on to the reports and here we have reports for regular campaigns, automations, autoresponders and the forms.
So here we have our regular campaign we have sent out, where we can see basically the same we saw on the dashboard. We know how many have been sent, what is the open rate, the click rate and how many have unsubscribed. We can then see a report over this where we see deliverability, the campaign performance, what domains we have sent out to, we can see what browsers and devices have been used, the location we can even see and then the timestamp for when this has been opened. So it is very relevant to see a lot of great data and this you can see for all of your regular campaigns.
Now we can see the same for our automations where we can review the report here and in this case we will see a little different data because now it needs to be shown for all the campaigns first, and then we can dive into the campaign. So here we see how many have been delivered, how many are in the queue, we have, how many have opened and how many have clicked. And then, if we want to see these specific campaigns, we need to click view report, and then we have the same view as you just saw before. So you can really dive into your data to see where you can improve all of your email campaigns. Now we also have for autoresponders, but this is basically the same I’ve already shown you, and then we have for our web forms.
So for our web forms it’s a bit different. We can see how many has viewed and how many have submitted a form and if you take this together then it is basically a conversion rate and that’s about it, we can see. We cannot really dive into this much more. I would like to be able to see where they are from, what countries, what browser they’re using and so on because if they can see it on the campaigns it would be really great to also see on the forms. Now the last module I want to show you in the menu is the template gallery.
This is just very simple if you’ve seen it already. We can also save templates that you like, or you can create your own template to basically just build it from scratch. Now the last thing I just want to show you within MailerCloud is integrations, because within MailerCloud not only do you get an API integration, but you get so many great integrations as you can see here where you can easily work all of your leads and all of your subscribers around from one place to another place. And I know that they’re working on a lot more of these integrations. So, when they start to build the automation to include all of these integrations, we will have a really useful tool.
Now, with these email marketing platforms, the price often depends on either the amount of emails you want to send out or the amount of contacts that you have within the program. And with MailerCloud it is the contact that they are looking at. They do have a free plan where you can send out 12,000 monthly emails and have up to 1000 contacts. When you reach that, you have to upgrade to a paid plan, and they only have one paid plan. But the price varies on this paid plan, and it varies depending on the number of contacts you have.
So it’s really important to clean out your contacts for those that are no longer relevant. And what’s also significant to notice is that the amount of features you get are the exact same as the free plan. So when you start with a free plan you can set up exactly how you want to use MailerCloud because then later on when you upgrade there’s nothing extra to set up. You just continue your set-up, and you just continue to grow your emails.
Alternatives to MailerCloud
Now the alternatives to MailerCloud, as I see it is Encharge. Encharge is very closely to MailerCloud.
Both of them have a very nice design. The UX works well, but Encharge has automation where we can use integrations. This means that we can integrate Stripe with other platforms, pull it into the automation and then do things based on the values from other programs. Right now with MailerCloud they also have automations, but it’s only for campaigns. This means that we can set up an automation which is basically just a series of campaigns which will be sent out to the users who are part of this automation. That is very limited.
Encharge is a more developed email marketing platform compared to MailerCloud.
I do however know that they’re working on elaborating the automation, so we can start to integrate because one thing I really like with MailerCloud is that they have so many integrations, but they’re just not utilised yet because of the automations.
Future of MailerCloud
Even though MailerCloud has a lot of integrations, they are working on adding even more to Integromat, HubSpot, Zero Bounce, and so many more. And this is great, but all of these integrations we need to be able to use and here the automations come in because they are working on adding a more elaborate version of the automations. So we can start to use values from outside programs. Furthermore, then they are working on making the form editor more advanced. This means that right now we can only change the text, we can change the button, we can change the design a little, but that’s it.
We can’t add more fields, we can’t add a process for the entire form, we can’t add so much logic to the form. So, with a more advanced web form, this will be very interesting because they are also working on a landing page builder. So we can build an entire landing page including our form. And this landing page’s purpose is just to collect the email address of whoever is reading. I really hope that these landing pages will be able to showcase some type of e-book or some type of e-paper that we can give the user or the viewer, so they can sign up with their email because it needs to have some type of gift that they can get in order to give their email.
Last but not least, they are also working on RSS campaigns. This means that we again can put our email marketing on autopilot because an RSS feed is built on all your content on your website. So every time you post a new article, make a new page, then automatically, MailerCloud can generate an email for this specific purpose and then send it out completely automatically. So this is again back to saving time and putting your email marketing on autopilot. Definitely some interesting features coming up.
Pros & Cons using MailerCloud
Using MailerCloud I’m a big fan of their UX it’s so easy to navigate around, and they have a lot of great integrations, but their automations could be a lot better if the integrations were part of it and then the form module needs to be elaborated with more options.
Last thoughts on MailerCloud
The design MailerCloud has come up with is one of the best I have seen in a long time between the different email marketing platforms. Now they just need to add some functionality to it. Based on this and all the integrations they already have in place, I want to give MailerCloud three and a half stars. We really need to see automations with integrations being part of it, it’s so essential.