I discovered ConvertKit by accident through Melyssa Griffin's blog. I was on the hunt for information on listbuilding. I do the same thing everyone else does when they are looking for that specific purchase.
This is how it normally goes when you want to make a purchase;
You go online, browse the internet until you have a headache and make a choice on what seems to be the public’s favourite.
Okay, maybe that’s just me.
I searched for ages for an email service provider that could offer me an answer to all my problems. All I wanted was something that was not over complicated and not outside my budget. ConvertKit was the solution I needed.
I have always known what email lists are, but I have never bothered about them in any of my former business'. I never even took the time to figure them out. I used to collect emails and then ignore them. I always saw email lists as a way of making a hard sale, and I am not that person. Selling always made me feel uncomfortable. It’s only recently, I realised I was uncomfortable with selling. I later realised that this was because I didn’t believe in the product I was promoting. Now I am doing something for myself that I believe in, I have to say, that discomfort has gone.
When I think of email service providers, I tend to think of Mailchimp. They are who everyone mentions when asked ‘Who should I use to manage my emails?’. Besides, it’s free and who doesn’t like free?
I am in no way bashing MailChimp here. I would use them whenever I needed a simple email service provider. Mailchimp were great in the beginning, but as my needs grew, ConvertKit was much better for my needs. In fact, I am utterly and profoundly in love with them. I waited three months to get used to the application to write my review. I wanted to use it over time before giving my honest feedback and ensuring my feelings didn’t change.
MORE ABOUT CONVERKIT
ConvertKit is an email service provider designed for bloggers. The application is created by Nathan Barry, an established author. ConvertKit is a well thought out application which has only been around since 2014 but already making huge waves. I can only begin to imagine how powerful their service will be as time goes on. They are continuously listening to feedback and adding more features often.
The great thing about the app is that it makes it easy to see the information that’s important. This will be stats such as how many people have signed up for a day, what forms they signed up to etc. The dashboard has a simple, clean design that allows you to focus on the data. Functionality is more important than a cute layout. The design is clean and allows you to focus on what’s important; managing your emails.
The great thing I love about ConvertKit is its ability to not only collect emails but the capacity to understand my audience and provide them with exactly what they need. I was not able to do that with other email applications. The application is intuitive and brilliant for beginners and advanced users.
When looking for a solution for your emails. I recommend thinking about what you need before you start thinking about how much the service costs, or which service to choose. When you have established exactly what your needs are, you can then start comparing services. If you think about price, you make a price based judgement which can often be the wrong choice. This was certainly true for me when choosing Mailchimp. If you think about features first, you make a decision based on the best fit.
When deciding to switch over from Mailchimp, I made a list of what I needed. Here’s my list and an explanation on how ConvertKit met those requirements;
I WANTED THE SIGN UP PROCESS TO BE EASY
When a reader decides that they enjoy your content so much that they are going to sign up to read more, they have to enter their email address in a form, right? In ConvertKit, I have a separate form for each freebie. This means that if you have loads of forms, you can easily keep track of how many people sign up to each form. It makes it so easy to see which freebie is more popular amongst your audience.
ConvertKit gives my audience the option to sign up to many lists without being added to my mailing list multiple times. What this mean is that when a reader signs up for a list, they count as a subscriber. ConvertKit is subscriber based rather than list based. When they subscribe to another list, the new form they signed up to, will be added to their subscriber profile.
If I had used Mailchimp, if the subscriber signed up to two forms, they would join two lists. Not only this but the same subscriber would have been seen as two subscribers. This means, if you pay for Mailchimp, you would be paying for two subscribers. This means, if I sent out a broadcast to both lists, the subscriber would get the email twice.
I have heard stories of people deleting subscribers from their list, just to make sure they stay under the 2000 mark so the service remains free. Should you have to do this each time? This is where ConvertKit won my heart over MailChimp.
I blog about three different topics on my blog. Someone may be interested in one thing, but not the others. Separating each subscriber into forms, allows me to have easier control over who likes what rather than guessing.
Being able to create several forms makes it so much easier see which list building strategies work best for my website.
I WANTED TO BE ABLE TO SEE WHAT INTERESTED MY AUDIENCE THE MOST
This is made easy with Segments, Tags and Automation.
If you manage your email list, you will note that most ESP's (email service providers) have a method for segmenting your audience. I have many forms. Putting each form into a segment makes it easy to communicate with the right people when sending out broadcasts. This can become pretty time-consuming when you have many forms. To make it easier, what you can do is place each form into a segment. This segment will house all the forms related to that topic. You would do this by adding an automation rule.This makes it easier to send out relevant emails to interested subscribers.
For example, we all know that I talk about three things;
- Self Development
- Systems to help you run your business
- Creating and developing your online presence.
I created three segments and ensured that if a person signs up to a specific list, they are also included in the relevant segment. What I had to do was create an automation rule which states that once a person signs up to a form, they are automatically added to a particular segment. I only have to set up this rule once, and it’s done for me automatically every time. This is a HUGE timesaver.
Automation allows you to set up things such as E-Mail Courses that go out automatically without you having to go in each day and write it before it goes out. You can tell convert kit what you want it to do once a reader has joined your list. For example, when someone joins any list after downloading a freebie, I send them a series of welcome emails so that they can learn more about me. It also allows me to find out more about them and tell them what I do and how I can help them. I set it up so as soon as they sign up, they receive my indoctrination email series. I do not have to go manually into make sure this happens.
If someone joins a list and I want them to be tansferred from one list to another after a particular action, I can set up a rule that does this using automation rules. I do this to prevent people from getting emails on topics they have no interest in and avoids creating an unhappy reader. No one wants to upset their readers.
Let’s not forget about the tag feature
I can also tag my subscribers, and I do love the tagging feature. The tagging feature allows you to add a tag to a subscriber so that you can easily identify them using specific parameters. This is exceptionally useful when importing a list from another subscriber. For instance, maybe I have used an excel spreadsheet or maybe even mail chimp to collect a list of emails at an event. I can then, import all these emails into my convert kit. When I import them, I can add a tag labelling these subscribers as ‘people met at event’ (or something more appropriate). In future, if I only want to target these subscribers, it is easy to identify who is who with tagging.
Let’s look at another example. Say you’re lucky enough to have a list of 100,000 subscribers. Maybe part of this list includes people that signed up for a free seven-day email course. You’d set up your emails to go out to the subscribers of your course. To quickly identify your subscriber from the few hundred thousand you may have, you ‘may' add a tag to the subscriber.
What happens if you want to send them an offer but only after they have completed the free course? This is where tagging comes in. You can use the automation tool to tag a subscriber so that you know they have completed the course. The automation rule would add the tag once they have gone through the course. You can name it something like ‘completed seven-day course’ or anything else you fancy. You’ll then be able to identify who has gone through the course and who is still in it.
It’s helpful if you wanted to offer a paid product but only after they have completed their course. Or maybe you add a tag to someone who has purchased a paid product/service, and you do want to send sales information on the item they have just bought.
I love the automation system. It allows me to do so much with so little time, and there are no extra fees to have it.
Having a natural process makes it easy for you to go in and prepare your emails and it makes the process so much more enjoyable. Most importantly, it frees up time for you to do something else within your business.
I WANTED TO ABILITY TO EASILY INTERGRATE WITH OTHER APPLICATIONS
I use two other plugins to help collect email address. One of those services is Magic Action Box. You may notice on my website that there is sign up box below each post. This is the magic action box in action. I enjoy the freedom it offers me in design and connecting it with ConvertKit was a doddle.
I also used Leadpages. The content upgrades on my site are all done through lead pages. Leadpages then integrates with convert kit to add the new subscriber to the relevant form. You do not have to use a third party to create a landing page. You can create one yourself on your chosen platform or use the pages that also come included in ConvertKit, which is easily customizable.
They have many other integrations you can choose from. Zapier also makes it possible to add more integrations that may not be supported just yet.
I WANTED THE ABILITY TO OFFER MORE THAN ONE CONTENT UPGRADE
Offering valuable and free content is the best way to get readers to sign up to your mailing list. Creating content upgrades with Mailchimp was not easy, and I was limited. Having switched over, now I can offer multiple content upgrades without worrying about limits. You can choose to create a link to the download, or you can upload the opt-in to ConvertKit. With the option of creating your landing page, it makes the process of capturing leads seamless.
ConvertKit ticked all the boxes for me. I was a bit sceptical about purchasing ConvertKit because few people were talking about them, but I was not disappointed. From the few reviews I had read, I was wondering ‘Is it going to be as good as the hype?’. All I can say is that they knew what I needed before I knew I needed it.
OTHER THINGS I LOVE ABOUT CONVERTKIT
Do you find it frustrating when you send an email to subscribers, but not everyone opens it? ConvertKit allows you to resend your email to those that did not open the email. This means fewer people are missing your emails. How cool is that?
You can also include link triggers in emails. This means, if you put a link in an email, this link can trigger one of many things using automation. You may want to add someone who clicks on a link to a particular segment or adds a tag stating that this customer is interested in something specific.
I really enjoy the ability to create sequences. This makes it easy to host things such a free email challenges and paid email courses and automate the process for evergreen content. It makes it easy to create all your content in one go. As the sequence is saved, if you ever need to make changes, it is quite easy to do that without worrying about redoing the whole email again.
Everything is included, and it starts from one simple price. With ConvertKit, I can create landing pages, pop-up boxes, manage my lead magnets, offer email courses on top of collecting leads.
Prices start from $29 for up to 1000 subscribers and then moves up to $49 for 3000 subscribers. They do have higher tier packages. If you are running a content based business, I believe a good email service provider is worth the investment.
If I could turn back time, I would start with ConvertKit from the beginning and I will certainly be using them for any other business I start in the future.
So there’s my roundup on ConvertKit. Have you made the switch or considering making the switch? Let me know in the comments below.