How MailChimp and Google Analytics work together to achieve inbound marketing success.
In our time as an Ann Arbor digital marketing agency, we’ve gotten to know a range of tools for sending marketing emails, tracking audience behavior, and generating inbound marketing leads. From our experience, we’ve worked with some tools that were too lightweight for our purposes, others which were usability nightmares, and others that lost our faith through poor business practices.
But we’ve also settled on some favorites—tried and true platforms that get 90% of our customers 90% of the way toward their goals. They’re now what we use with any client who doesn’t have an established platform, and although they’re familiar names in the realm of online marketing, we think that’s as good a reason as any to look at why they’ve become marketing staples.
Ready to learn how MailChimp and Google Analytics can help you achieve your marketing goals? Let’s take a deeper dive.
MailChimp: email marketing automation.
MailChimp is one of the most recognized names in online marketing—probably because of timely ad campaign on the podcast Serial a few years ago that turned it into a cult meme. People not only know MailChimp, they have a fondness for it that few express for its email marketing equivalents.
Most people who move off do so because they feel they’ve outgrown it, and in some cases they have—it’s biggest weakness is that it’s more a marketing tool than a CRM. But as a marketing tool, it’s very effective. Here are some of the features.
1. Clean lists
In email marketing, having a clean email list is crucial to keeping your emails out of spam folders and to prevent you from irritating subscribers. While there are tools to help you clean lists by removing old emails, MailChimp helps do this for you by removing any email addresses that result in a hard bounce.
2. Automation and workflows
Email automations are a key part of any good marketing strategy. If you want to set up triggers to send clients an email after a certain action (downloading a PDF, or signing up to a newsletter), then MailChimp makes these steps easy. You can even set up a series of emails that will go out after timed intervals, or when further triggers are activated.
3. Easy eBlast send
MailChimp is most known for their list building tools that make it easy to manage newsletters. These lists can also be used to send out beautifully designed marketing campaign emails. MailChimp has templates that make designing and updating email content quick and easy, and there are other products that make it possible to design more complex emails that work with MailChimp if needed.
4. Clear metrics
Because emails land directly in someone’s inbox, it is more important than almost any other marketing medium to ensure that you’re sending content that your contacts want. MailChimp’s metrics will tell you how who opened your emails, what they clicked on, and how far they read. These numbers will tell you if your message is resonating with your list, and give you clues as to how to improve it if it’s falling flat.
5. A/B testing
If you aren’t doing well with reaching your audience, MailChimp’s A/B testing tools can help you methodically search for improvements. Schedule your emails to go out with subtle changes to the headline, length, or content layout, and see what your audience responds to. You may find that with a few tweaks, your emails reach a more people.
6. Decent support
There are plenty of marketing companies out there that don’t put any effort into their support channels. Not so MailChimp. We’ve had a few times in the past where one of our clients has mistakenly sabotaged their own list, or where we’ve had to transfer account access, and MailChimp support has been truly helpful on this front.
7. Fits any size budget
Finally, while many view MailChimp as only good for small businesses, the reality is that it can scale to serve the needs of large organizations just as well. So whether you’re a startup with a small budget or a large corporation, MailChimp can be a reliable go-to tool.
Google Analytics: tracking visitor behavior.
MailChimp provides metrics on how leads engage with your emails, but nothing matches Google for metrics on how users behave on your website. These are some of the most important numbers you can keep an eye on as you assess your marketing strategy, and they’re the ones we use when we deliver our monthly marketing reports to our clients. Here are some of the main reasons we love Google Analytics.
1. Reliable metrics
Google is the source of many of the most important metrics for your site. It will tell you how many visits you are getting on your site, where those visits are coming from, how long they stayed on your site, and which pages received the most traffic. These are the core numbers you need to understand your site performance.
2. Easy to read and understand
Everyone loves a good visualization, and Google Analytics does an excellent job of presenting your numbers in charts and graphics that help you absorb information quickly. It also makes it easy to compare year-over changes in traffic and visitor behavior.
3. Event tracking
Google Analytics provides tools to help users understand visitor behaviors beyond what they may do on your web page. These analytics can measure actions related to downloads, ad clicks, and video plays. Understanding how users engage with content is an essential part of knowing which parts of your strategy are working in your favor.
4. Goal conversions
You can set up Google Analytics to track how many visitors behaved in a way you had intended. For instance, if you want visitors to navigate from one specific page to another, sign up for a newsletter, add an item to a shopping cart, or complete a purchase, you can configure Google to track that number.
Finally, Google can help you model which aspsects of your sales funnel are the most relevant for converting leads. In a multichannel marketing world, where leads are coming from all sources and often returning over periods of time, knowing which of your marketing strategies was most responsible for landing the sale is key.
It’s rare to find a single service that does everything you need, so find ones that work together.
While there are some things you can’t accomplish with just MailChimp and Google Analytics, we’re also advocates of choosing the best tool for the job. There are many large services that claim to offer everything. But when we’ve looked deeper, it’s only been to discover that these services aren’t as robust as we would like.
Choosing the best tools for the job is more important than finding a service that offers it all. MailChimp and Google Analytics are exceptional at the jobs they perform—reliable, user friendly, and with excellent features for the functions they support. If you want to generate leads through email marketing and track the effectiveness of your campaigns on your site, these tools are a great place to start.