Email marketing is an essential part of marketing, and one of the best ways to build and maintain relationships with clients and customers. Of course, you can design and send out all the emails yourself, but there are a lot of free tools and resources that can help you with your email marketing efforts. Yes, you’re probably familiar with MailChimp and AWeber, but they’re not the only email marketing tools available on the Internet.
There are plenty of free and freemium tools out there that can help you with every step of creating and maintaining an email marketing campaign. From designing your emails, to managing your inbox, to handling the actual email campaign itself, here’s a list of 20 tools and resources that you can try out.
Recommended Reading: Should Your Email Marketing Campaign Be More Interactive?
Email Marketing Platforms
Email marketing platforms are all-in-one solutions that help you run email marketing campaigns, design your emails and manage your contact lists, amongst other features. Some also include autoresponders and social media integration.
A free Reachmail account lets you have 5,000 contacts and send 15,000 emails a month. In addition to the impressive free plan, Reachmail supports social media sharing, custom email templates and list segmentation, amongst others.
TargetHero’s free account trumps even that of ReachMail, supporting up to 5,000 contacts and unlimited sending. TargetHero has features such as an email design wizard, contact list management, campaign management and automation as well as real time analytics.
CakeMail aims to skip the learning curve normally associated with email marketing. CakeMail has list management and analytics features, and comes with a number of beautiful and customizable email design templates. Free accounts are limited to 2,000 contacts and 12,000 emails a month.
Mailjet is easy to use, with great flexibility and easy integration via SMTP or API. Mailjet offers in-depth statistics and analytics, in addition to monitoring your campaigns and IP address to ensure deliverability. Free accounts are limited to 6,000 emails a month.
Mad Mimi’s email design features and templates focus on minimalism and beauty. Other features include comprehensive list management features, delivery reports and tracking as well as add-on support. Free accounts are limited to 2,500 contacts and 12,500 emails a month, and also receive no support.
Mailigen’s free account, limited to 5,000 subscribers, has the same features as paid accounts. These include web signup forms, drag and drop email design, surveys, social media integration and autoresponders. However, the free account doesn’t allow the bulk import of contacts.
Flashissue is an extension for Google Chrome that integrates with your Gmail account. You can use Flashissue to create mailing lists and track your emails using analytics tools. Flashissue also has a drag and drop email design feature. The free account limits you to 25 contacts, with no limit to emails.
Email Scheduling And Productivity
These extensions and web services help you manage your email inbox and increase productivity. Scheduling emails, sending automatic follow-up emails and creating email reminders will all help you get on top of your inbox and help secure potential customers.
Rebump is a free extension for both Chrome and Firefox that integrates with your Gmail. It automatically sends follow-up emails to clients and customers quickly and easily. Rebump also customizes the messages, so that it’ll look like you sent the email yourself.
FollowUp is a web service and Chrome extension that lets you schedule email reminders directly from your inbox. Emails will disappear from your inbox and reappear when you need them. The free account is limited to 20 reminders a month.
Boomerang is an extension for Gmail, available for Chrome, Firefox and Safari. It not only lets you create email reminders, but also lets you schedule emails to be sent at a later date. Boomerang also has response tracking and read receipt features. The free account is limited to 10 message credits a month.
FollowUpThen is another tool that helps you achieve "inbox zero" by hiding emails and only reminding you of them at a time of your choosing. It’s completely email based and works anywhere. You get unlimited reminders, even with a free account.
Design And Branding
One of the most important parts to marketing via email is, of course, making sure that your emails look good and are branded in a manner that will potentially increase engagement via social media or similar channels. Here are some tools to help with this.
BrandMyMail is an extension for Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox. BrandMyMail integrates social media content such as Facebook posts and your Twitter feed into your email using custom email templates. BrandMyMail can also create HTML signatures that highlight your social media links. The free account limits you to 100 branded emails a month.
WiseStamp is a web service and plugin (for Firefox, Chrome, RockMelt and Thunderbird) that creates social media-centric HTML signatures for your emails, a great way to integrate social media with email communication. WiseStamp works with Gmail, Yahoo! Mail, Hotmail and AOL Mail.
This is an essential tool if you code your own HTML emails. This Premailer cleans up and improves your HTML code. It makes sure all your CSS is inline, turns relative URLs into absolute URLs, removes unwanted HTML elements and even makes a text version for non-HTML viewing.
This free standalone tool does one job, and one job only: convert HTML to plaintext. This will definitely come in handy if you ever want to send a text version of your email alongside, or even in place of, your HTML email.
This Email Reader Simulation Tool will help you check how your email displays across different email accounts. Just input your HTML and select the viewing mode to see how your email will look like. Viewing modes include Apple Mail, Hotmail, Outlook and Gmail.
Spam Checking And Deliverability
There’s nothing worse for an email marketing effort than having your emails end up in a recipient’s junk folder. Here are some tools that will help you make sure your emails reach your recipients’ inboxes.
Lyris’ ContentChecker is a no-frills and incredibly simple-to-use tool that tests your email content using commonly-adopted spam filter rules to determine whether your email will end up in a recipient’s spam folder.
SendForensics tests your emails for deliverability, providing comprehensive content and infrastructure breakdowns. The service can also compare the deliverability of your emails to industry and regional benchmarks, as well as set deliverability alerts.
Return Path’s Sender Score algorithm judges the trustworthiness of outgoing mail sender IPs and domains based on data from more than 60 million mailboxes. Mail servers often check this Sender Score to determine whether an email might be spam, so maintaining a high Sender Score is crucial.
It’s important for your subject line to display properly across different email clients, to make sure recipients click on your email. This tool helps you test your subject line to make sure that it displays correctly in most clients. You can also check the excerpt text that each client will show.