3 Email Marketing Tools that Drive Promotion and Customer Engagement

There are many good reasons for you to use email in your marketing efforts, but here's the most important one of all: It works. Email marketing drives sales, bringing in approximately $40 for every $1 spent, according to a study by the Direct Marketing Association.

When you decide to start using email marketing to communicate with customers, one of the first things you need to do is collect and organize your customers' contact information. You can do this by yourself, or you can hire a marketing specialist to help. You also need to know certain laws — specifically, the CAN-SPAM Act of 2003 — so you can avoid fines and being blocked by Internet service providers (i.e, companies like Comcast, Yahoo, and Google that provide email addresses and inboxes).

That’s just the beginning, though. Since email marketing has so many facets, it’s important to find the right tools to help your business market itself effectively. Here are three of the leading ones. Each will allow you to do even more with your marketing program than send out email messages.

iContact — A Great All-in-One Tool

Not only does iContact offer an email marketing tool, it also offers social networking integration to help you gain more exposure for your business. With this Web-based tool, you can create newsletters and other interactive communications, and you can send a survey to gauge your customers' needs and wants. You can also add images to create more eye-catching email messages. iContact offers other services too, including email tracking, which you can use to assess your online promotions.

Constant Contact — For Handling the Marketing in House

If you’re looking for an email marketing tool that allows you to manage your marketing campaign yourself, consider Constant Contact. It offers hundreds of templates to inspire your email communications, plus survey, event marketing and social media tools. Constant Contact is great for marketing newbies: There are extensive coaching resources if you want some help, and a host of helpful metrics so you can see how successful your efforts are.

Benchmark Email — Works Seamlessly with Google

Although Benchmark Email doesn’t offer the conversation-tracking marketing services that other services do, it integrates with Google Analytics to show which marketing campaigns are performing the best. It also allows you to upload photos, other graphics and videos to help your business stand out from the competition. If you do a lot of advertising and marketing through Google, this software may give you the best bang for your buck.

Choose for Yourself

Each of these email marketing tools has its own pros and cons. It's up to you to decide which tool will best meet your business's needs to help you drive more successful marketing campaigns.

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