ActiveCampaign vs Mailchimp: Why I Made The Switch

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ActiveCampaign vs Mailchimp Why I Made The Switch | Banner image showing ActiveCampaign and Mailchimp logos - Juan Rojo Design Toronto

Full Marketing Automation vs Email Marketing

ActiveCampaign vs Mailchimp is a comparison often searched for in Google (try it right now and see how many results come up). However, rather than a straight apples to apples, it’s more like comparing a plate full of fruit to just one apple.

ActiveCampaign vs Mailchimp

If you are a business owner, like myself, you probably do some type of email marketing to promote new services or products to your existing customer base. For instance, you might have a small distribution list comprised of past clients, as well as people who have signed up for your newsletter. As your business grows, you want to have a platform that will scale up with you.

Mailchimp is a nice email marketing platform with mass audience appeal and a free plan, which is great for small businesses starting out. Unfortunately, email marketing is pretty much all you can do with Mailchimp. Their marketing automation is rather limited to email sequences, rather than customer journeys.

Automation Options in Mailchimp

ActiveCampaign vs Mailchimp: Why I Made The Switch

As you can see in the screenshot above, Mailchimp offers ready-made automation sequences based exclusively on triggers generated by the subscribers or yourself. For instance, while the ‘happy birthday’ email is technically an automated email, is not an actual automation based on customer behavior.

ActiveCampaign vs Mailchimp: Why I Made The Switch

Once again, in the example above, you can see that the sequences are only generated once the subscriber takes a specific action in relation to your distribution list. Therefore, if you want to take action based on a page or product visited, there’s not much you can do because:

  1. Mailchimp can’t track subscribers browsing activity on your website, unless you get an e-commerce integration, where it can track cart abandonment
  2. Mailchimp doesn’t do true marketing automation, which allows you to create a proper customer journey that ultimately leads to selling your product or service.

Automation Options In ActiveCampaign

ActiveCampaign vs Mailchimp: Why I Made The Switch

In ActiveCampaign, automation is at the core of the platform. As you can see in the image above, you can select one of the multiple ‘recipes’ already available, or you can start from scratch.

In this particular example, you can select the recipe called ‘Add Points for Page Views’ to increase the score for a particular lead in your CRM. Did I mention that ActiveCampaign also offers a CRM, starting with their Plus plan? They do! So in this instance, you could use the automation to increase the score of your lead and even trigger an action that notifies one of your salespeople/account managers to take a specific action.

ActiveCampaign vs Mailchimp: Why I Made The Switch

In the image above, you can see an automation I created from scratch for my list. For instance, there are true ‘YES’ or ‘NO’ conditions, and actions taken depending on which condition is triggered.

For my particular case scenario, I want tags added to new subscribers depending on which page they used to sign up. For instance, if you sign up to my list from this article, a tag called Marketing Automation will be added to your contact information. After that, I’ll be able to tailor the content of my campaigns based on that information, so you don’t end up getting an email about non-related topics.

List Management

The ActiveCampaign vs Mailchimp debate doesn’t end with automation though. Unlike ActiveCampaign, MailChimp’s lists are mutually exclusive. That means that you can’t include contacts on different lists in the same campaigns. And as MailChimp charge per subscriber, it also means that if you have the same contact on different lists, you’re paying for them twice.

Mailchimp’s list management is unnecessarily complicated, with groups, tags and segments. Similarly, the process of launching a campaign has been made a bit more complicated, with the renaming of lists to audiences. Now if you want to view your campaigns, you need to select the appropriate audience, otherwise you’ll be staring at a blank page.

Need More Reasons?

If you need more reasons to make the switch or just start with the proper tool for marketing automation, then I urge you to go visit G2’s comparison page, which is very detailed.

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