I use Mailchimp to send out my weekly newsletter and numerous one-off email messages (I can hear you groaning already he’s on the sell again :)) I thought I would write a quick blog post saying why I use this over other systems such as Aweber or Contant Contact,
Free For First 2000 Signups
I bet that caught your attention, yes Mailchimp is completely free for the first 1000 subscribers you have. You can send out 6000 emails per month, with a cap on 1000 emails in any 24 hour period.
This is great if you are just building your list and don’t want to be hit by the fees other email providers impose.
One of the great featured of Mailchimp is the ability to create a recurring campaign based upon the RSS feed of a site. I use this for my weekly newsletter. I publish my content at my blog, then once a week, my RSS feed is automatically packaged up as a newsletter and sent to everyone on my list.
Easy Integration With WordPress
There are an array of plugins out there to integrate WordPress and Mailchimp. I use a combination of Gravity forms and the Mailchimp integration, but I have also used this excellent one from Mailchimp themselves http://www.mailchimp.com/plugins/mailchimp-wordpress-plugin/ which allows you to create an easily customisable widget in your sidebar. There is also a function to call which allows you to place the code anywhere in your theme files.
Integration With Other Systems
Mailchimp and a lot of the other software as a service supplies are working together to make integration very easy, for example I used Freshbooks for my invoicing, this integrates with Mailchimp so I could export data from one system into another
There is a big old list of integration providers, check out this page http://www.mailchimp.com/features/extras/
Ease Of Use
I’ve tried systems like Aweber, Constant contact and found them to be pretty un-intuitive, Mailchimp has none of those problems, I found it very easy to use, and they have some very good online training and documentation.
CAVEAT: I found it pretty difficult to get my head around the concept of groups within a mailing list, watch the videos before segmenting your list with groups.
It Does Everything You Would Expect
It has all the other good things you would expect from an email provider, autoresponders, list segmenting, reporting on your campaigns, import lists etc etc.
Give It A Go
I cannot stress how important my email list is to my business, it is the most important way to contact your clients or followers (if you are a pure blog) in a manner that they will give you their attention. The sooner you start an email list the sooner you will see real growth in your business because of the offers you can make.
If you sign up for Mailchimp I will receive something called monkey rewards, these entitle me to free upgraded on my Mailchimp account. I can exchange monkey rewards for things such as spam checks, and an increased number of daily sends.