What is a CRM platform?
A CRM platform is used for collecting, storing and using data about interactions between a company and its customers. The company analyzes data and uses it to improve the product or service through various channels, and email marketing is one of them.
What are the Requirements for an Email Marketing CRM?
When looking for a CRM that supports email marketing, you’ll need to look at some criteria to help you execute your strategy, such as price, ease of use and more. Depending on your needs there are quite a few CRM systems you can choose from, but let’s look at the criteria first.
You know the drill, it boils down to sending mass emails to a selected segment of people at one time. This is a great solution when you want to send out a newsletter about a sale or a product update to all your customers at once.
In order to be effective, you need to track the metrics and KPIs of your campaigns, such as email open rates or CTA button clicks. Thanks to this, you will know if your campaigns are successful. To keep track of these stats, you’ll need a CRM that comes with email marketing reports. Luckily, many platforms provide email marketing performance reporting tools that give you the sense of your campaign based on click-through rates, conversion rates, or bounce rates over time.
Triggered emails also known as transactional emails are event-driven notifications sent based on users’ activity. For example, if a customer doesn’t finish an online payment, visits your website a certain number of times, or has left a shopping cart with items in it. Apart from driving sales, these emails are meant to improve the user experience. How? You can customize your automatic responses based on the best practices for transactional emails so that you send a message that sounds relevant to the right group of customers exactly when it matters. Once you hit all three goals, you have a great chance to re-engage your customer and sell your product.
Custom Email Templates
Many CRMs have ready-to-use email templates, but it’s just as important to personalize them, as mentioned in the paragraph above. Why? Because the times of generalized, identical emails sent to an entire list are simply over. Along with other email marketing trends, email personalization is going much deeper. Make sure to double-check if the tool allows you to type in the recipient’s name or other details. This way, the overall message will have a better feel once. You can also run A/B tests to see what type of copy works best for your email open-rate or click-through rate on your CTA button
Integrating one tool with another tool refers to seamless collaboration between them. It’s just as if two tools were “talking to each other” and exchanging information. For example, let’s say someone opens your email. If your CRM is integrated with your email marketing tool, you’ll be notified about it and be able to act upon it.
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Real-time notifications are messages that are sent straight to you to let you know that a customer has completed a specific action, such as opened an email or watched a video. That allows you to send them a personalized follow-up.
Additional criteria to consider in a CRM for Email Marketing
In addition to the must-have requirements, you should also consider the below criteria when evaluating a CRM for email marketing:
- Price – Doing email marketing from a CRM saves you money – you don’t need multiple other tools for that.
- Ease of use – Find out how user-friendly and intuitive the tool is. Consider how fast you and your team will be able to create a campaign or import your existing data.
- Segmentation – Segmentation is used as a personalization tactic to deliver more relevant email marketing to subscribers based on their interests, purchase history, and more.
- Contact Management – Contacts allow you to store and quickly retrieve any important information you’d like about a lead or customer. Each contact has its own page with all their information.
What are the Major CRMs for Email Marketing to Consider?
Based on the factors above, let’s take a look at which CRMs are the best for small businesses.
Best if you want to scale: Hubspot
If you’re starting small with a great plan to quickly grow big, go with Hubspot. It has a great ability to scale and handle growth. In their own words, “HubSpot is an inbound marketing software platform that helps companies attract visitors, convert leads, and close customers.”
The great news is – HubSpot’s CRM is free. It includes lead nurturing, contact management, and deal pipelines as well as integrations through Zapier. The Marketing Hub (Hubspot’s marketing automation tool) starts at only $50 per month and gives you access to landing page creation, email templates and mass email sending as well as in-depth analytics.
HubSpot is very easy to start working with and it has the most intuitive UI. You can quickly create email marketing campaigns built into the CRM – this makes it one of the best CRMs with email marketing for small businesses.
Best if you’re not on a budget: Salesforce Essentials
If you want the best CRM for your small business and you are not on a tight budget, look no further than SalesForce. It costs $25/user per month, but it offers advanced tools like sales and contact management, reporting tools, mass emails, and the mobile app that lets you track user interactions on the go. Third-party integrations are included with both Google Apps and Lightning Sync.
Best value & ease of use: Freshsales
If you’re looking for a good, reliable and affordable tool for a larger team, Freshsales is the answer. It has a free-forever plan and its paid plans start at $12/user per month.
Freshsales is a CRM that offers contacts, deal management, advanced reporting tools, visual sales pipelines, and sending mass emails. When it comes to contacts, other tools can look up to Freshsales. It makes contact management a breeze with the 360° contact view where leads are prioritized with AI-based lead scoring and auto-profile enrichment that says farewell to manual data entry. Last but not least, Freshsales has a very simple UI which positions it as one of the easiest CRMs to learn UI.
Best for sales: PipeDrive
If you need a sales-oriented CRM system, PipeDrive will most likely meet your needs. It is a CRM with a pipeline as its primary interface and has been built for minimum input and maximum output.
The visual sales pipeline encourages you to take action, remain organized and stay in control of the complex sales process, and handle deals collected through web forms around the clock by sending them straight to the pipeline.
You can easily follow up on every deal with the visual activity list. Whenever you complete an activity, Pipedrive reminds you to schedule your next one. You will also get reminders for overdue activities, as well as notifications for new tasks. Its powerful API allows you to sync your activities with Google Calendar.
With PipeDrive’s visual reports you can deep dive into metrics customized for your business and measure company performance against your goals – all that on customizable dashboards. Last but not least, PipeDrive has a mobile app you can access it all on the go.
As you can see, there are lots of things to consider and quite a few great tools on the market to choose from. Each CRM has its pros and cons depending on what you need. We hope that this short comparison will help you make the right choice.