There are many email marketing services out there, so how does your agency choose the right one? Whether you are picking an email service provider for your own agency's client acquisition and retention programs or recommending one to a client, It can be difficult to settle on an option.
But there’s no question that the right email marketing software is essential to simplifying your agency’s operations. From client relationship management to marketing automation, you’ll save valuable time, streamline processes, and increase the chances of client retention.
Regardless of your decision, evaluating your agency’s current standpoint, how many customers you’re managing, your agency’s estimated growth, client needs, and what you expect from email marketing software is essential. After all, there’s no one-size-fits-all solution.
Not sure where to begin? We’ve got you covered! In this article, we’ll explore:
Why an Email Marketing Software Is Important for Your Agency
You may be wondering–should my agency even invest in email marketing software? It may seem like an extra platform to learn the reigns of, but it’s absolutely vital for long-term success and meeting client needs. With over 4.2 billion email users worldwide, the customer outreach possibilities are endless, and you wouldn’t want to waste it because of a lack in process.
And with consumers spending an average of just 10 seconds reading branded emails, it’s especially important to send visually aesthetic and well-timed email campaigns.
Here’s a detailed breakdown of why an email marketing service will benefit your agency and keep clients happy.
1. Efficient Management of Customer Databases
After you’ve put in the work to capture client lead data, what will you do with it? It makes no sense to store that golden information in something as non-scalable as a manual spreadsheet.
Not only does this open your agency up to human error (on top of additional, painstaking hours to copy and paste that information), it isn’t a viable solution if you're looking to grow–unless you’re a fan of spreadsheets with a million tabs.
Besides, it doesn't make sense for all that valuable data just to sit there without offering real insight that helps you to understand what’s happening, performance-wise.
A robust email marketing platform gives you access to audience demographics, data visualization, and other valuable capabilities. That way, you’ll be better positioned to make future recommendations to your client and report on data-informed insights.
Use our email marketing report template to showcase metrics like list growth instantly. Try it out for yourself or your clients during your free 14-day trial!
2. Cost-Effective and Results in High ROI
In fact, a recent study found that for every $1 that’s spent on email marketing, marketers see an average of $36 ROI.
That means that your agency should view an email marketing tool as a win-win, strategic investment that not only meets client needs but also drives revenue.
3. Customizable Templates and Visually Appealing Designs
What catches your attention more–a heap of text in an e-mail or a well-designed template with stunning visuals and media?
Having a proper solution in place means you’ll be able to create and customize email newsletters in a palatable, visually appealing way. After all, that’s what this type of software was made for.
Solidifying your client’s marketing collateral and brand aesthetic will also go a long way in establishing loyalty and building recognition.
4. Audience Segmentation and Personalization
As subscriber lists grow, so do their data subsets and audience segments. You don’t want to overgeneralize newsletters when there are opportunities to speak specifically to different types of subscribers.
Segmentation is a powerful tool at your disposal because you can target specific subsets within your client’s audience or even trigger emails based on specific behaviors or actions.
That way, you customize correspondence based on the email marketing customer’s journey and increase the likelihood of favorable actions (such as opens, clicks, downloads, or online transactions, for example). With a segmented audience, you’ll be able to tailor-make offers, exclusive deals, incentives, and discounts.
5. Granular, Data-Driven Level Understanding Your Audience
Successful marketing campaigns are data-driven, and email marketing is no different. When your agency invests in the right software, you’ll see exactly who opens your client’s emails, what actions they take, which links are most clicked, and even the most engaged followers according to geographic region.
Armed with these insights, you paint a picture of what’s happening and even uncover previously unchartered audiences or new email marketing opportunities. Conversely, monitoring email analytics informs your agency if anything goes haywire or needs improvement (such as a high unsubscribe rate, spam reports, or high bounce rates).
Having data is a superpower–be sure to equip your agency with it by using email marketing software that provides it.
Create a custom marketing dashboard to keep track of your client’s email marketing efforts in one place. Try it on AgencyAnalytics, free for 14 days.
6. An Engaged and Brand Aware Subscriber List
When subscribers opt-in to receive your client’s emails, they’re already engaged (to varying degrees), aware of your client’s brand, and interested in further correspondence. With that current level of brand awareness, the possibilities are endless when it comes to marketing as it’s already covered some of the groundwork.
Because you have these subscribers’ attention, you need a way to keep the interest going and build it further over time. By mapping the customer journey and creating effective tactics (such as drip campaigns), email marketing will keep your client’s brand top-of-mind.
And let’s be real–the competition is fierce when it comes to driving brand engagement and fostering loyalty. To increase the chances of email marketing success, keep content relevant and understand who you’re marketing to. That way, you’ll increase the impact of your client’s email marketing and get the most from their campaigns.
What To Consider When Choosing Email Marketing Software
It goes without saying–marketing automation is one of the keys to agency (and client) success. Not only does it save you time in the long run, but it also increases efficiency and results in one less thing on your marketing plate.
But before delving into a decision, here are a few questions to consider:
1. What Are the Overall Expectations When It Comes to Email Marketing?
Do your clients have a vision or expectation for email marketing campaigns? Maybe it’s a beautifully designed template that share’s the latest updates from their business, or maybe they’d value designs that facilitate eCommerce email marketing.
Or does your agency have a specific use case that needs to be executed, such as a email nurture stream to turn a cold lead into a hot sales prospect.
Whatever the case, choose an email marketing service that best fits most (if not all) of your client’s needs. That way, you’ll set a standard and meet expectations from the get-go.
Agency Tip: Before onboarding a new client or offering email marketing services to an existing one, have a 1:1 chat to understand what they’re looking for. In addition, evaluate any existing brand collateral to get a feel of their aesthetic and who they’re marketing to. That way, you’ll be in a more favorable position to create email newsletter designs that resonate with your client (and their audience).
2. How Many Subscribers Does My Agency Need to Manage?
This is an important consideration, as it’ll help you to decide which email marketing tool fits your current situation best.
Evaluate how many email subscribers each of your clients has to get an idea of what contact capacity works best. Based on this, explore options and also consider the financial implications (i.e., how much an email marketing service increases as new subscribers are added).
By mapping this information out, you’ll be able to narrow your options and choose the most efficient, cost-effective choice.
Agency Tip: Work with your client to estimate their average subscriber growth per month so you’ll have a better understanding of their future needs. This will help you to plan ahead and decide on the most appropriate option.
3. Does Your Agency Need an Email Marketing Service With App Integrations?
Email marketing is dynamic and often depends on other integrations for maximum impact (e.g., targeting email subscriber lists through Facebook Ads or Google Ads). Use this insight to narrow down email marketing software and choose the option that most aligns with client needs.
That way, you won’t be stuck in an unfavorable situation later down the road (such as migrating to another email marketing service or realizing that you don’t have the capabilities that a prospective client is looking for).
4. What Type of Data Does Your Agency and Clients Value Most?
When the end of the month rolls around, what types of results do clients typically ask for? Perhaps it’s an understanding of email marketing engagement metrics, or maybe they are most interested in tracking revenue. Whatever the case, use this information to evaluate what type of reporting information you’ll need from email marketing software.
Agency Tip: Use email benchmarks to measure your client’s performance compared to others in their industry. That way, you’ll have a better gauge of how their average performance compares to their peers and whether they’ve hit the mark or not. It also sets a realistic goal to aspire towards (or even surpass).
5. Does the Email Marketing Software Integrate With Your Agency’s Reporting Processes?
Consider your current reporting process and how well email marketing software for agencies will tie into it. For example, you wouldn’t want to decide on a service only to realize it hampers your entire reporting process because of a lack of automation or integration capabilities.
With a reporting tool like AgencyAnalytics, integrating email marketing data is simple, time-saving, and easy to set up. That way, you won’t have to worry about manually sourcing analytics.
6. Do You Need More Than One Email Marketing Platform?
A top marketing agency needs more than one email platform to serve its diverse client base. One may be designed to cater to the needs of large companies and high spenders. Another email platform may cater to small businesses with a smaller marketing budget.
Some platforms, such as HubSpot, are better suited for an integrated email, CRM, and sales management process, whereas others, like Drip or Klaviyo, would be better suited to creating visually appealing nurture streams for eCommerce clients.
Most agencies will find themselves working across multiple email platforms based on their internal needs and expertise as well as their clients' requirements.
Even if your team is dealing with multiple platforms, it's important to understand how they work together and with your reporting processes.
Top 12 Email Marketing Software Your Agency Should Know
No matter what your needs are, email marketing software for agencies saves you time and energy–here are the top ones to consider.
Mailchimp continues to be a top choice for marketing agencies and other businesses alike–and for a good reason. This all-in-one platform has many useful features, such as pre-built templates, easy audience segmentation, and over 250 integrations.
With a wide range of email marketing metrics and insights at your fingertips (such as top geographical locations, clickthrough rates, and open rates), it’s easy to analyze performance and make informed decisions.
Best for: Agencies that require extensive integration capabilities (e.g., linking email campaigns seamlessly to social media or running ads). This powerful and versatile email marketing software for agencies also doubles as a CRM solution, which is useful for managing large customer volumes. It’s also user-friendly and intuitive if you don’t have a ton of design experience.
Features to note: Built-in CRM, pre-made email templates, 250+ integrations, A/B testing, facilitates landing page creation, customer journey mapping, facilitates eCommerce transactions, 24/7 customer support, and an extensive suite of analytics.
Pricing: Mailchimp is free for up to 500 contacts and 2500 email sends (which is a plus if you manage a smaller customer base). Their premium package includes an unlimited number of contacts, advanced segmentation, and priority customer support starting from $299/month.
Use the MailChimp integration in AgencyAnalytics and get all your clients’ email metrics under one roof!
Another great email marketing software for agencies is Brevno (formerly known as Sendinblue), which was made specifically for small and medium-sized businesses. This platform works well for trigger-based emails if you’ve got clients with extensive sales funnels.
Best for: Agencies that would benefit from streamlining automated, behavior-based emails and multilingual customer support. With Brevo, you also get the benefit of pre-made templates, CRM capabilities, and automation workflows at a lower cost (than, say, Mailchimp).
Features to note: Workflow automation, creation of email and SMS campaigns, built-in CRM, multilingual customer support, pre-made email templates, landing page creation, and A/B testing.
Pricing: Brevo’s free plan allows an unlimited number of contacts (a huge plus), but with a catch–you’re only allowed to send 300 emails daily. Their premium plan begins at $69 US/month with the option to upgrade to a customizable enterprise plan (a quote is sent upon request).
Use the AgencyAnalytics Brevo integration to consolidate your metrics in an automated, visually appealing way.
Also created for small and medium-sized businesses, ActiveCampaign offers a full suite of features, including email marketing, a built-in CRM, and a whopping 870+ integrations.
Best for: Agencies that want to create intricate, fully customizable automations (e.g., for clients with elaborate sales funnels and email triggers). ActiveCampaign’s powerful CRM feature also makes it easy to track how leads move through the customer journey.
Features to note: Built-in CRM with the ability to create a sales pipeline and deals, 870+ integrations, customizable email automation, pre-made templates, SMS messaging, multi-user access and editing, list segmentation, and A/B testing.
Pricing: ActiveCampaign’sLite feature starts from $15/month for 500 contacts and goes up to $159/month for 500 contacts, with the option to take an Enterprise plan (customizable and available upon request). If you’re not quite ready to subscribe, there’s a free a trial for 14 days.
The AgencyAnalytics ActiveCampaign dashboard comes in handy to understand email marketing performance quickly and easily.
This email marketing tool is also a popular option for creating well-designed newsletters and driving engagement through surveys and polls. Constant Contact’s easy-to-use interface is also a key benefit, in addition to their highly-aesthetic templates.
Best for: Agencies that want to run engaging email marketing campaigns that also integrate with social media.
Features to note: Offers an event marketing tool (including event promotion and reporting), SMS marketing, 300+ integrations, landing page creation, survey/poll creation, sign-up forms, social media scheduling and advertising, and A/B testing.
Pricing: Constant Contact offers an introductory Core Plan starting from $9.99/month for up to 500 contacts. Their Plus Plan starts from $45/month, which increases with the number of contacts. Constant Contact also offers a free 60-day trial (which is significantly longer than other email marketing services).
Track email marketing performance on a customizable AgencyAnalytics Constant Contact dashboard.
Campaign Monitor is a straightforward email marketing software for agencies that allows customized e-mail template creation and easy list segmentation.
Best for: Agencies that want an easy-to-use email marketing service that doesn’t require heavy design experience.
Features to note: E-mail template builder, Link Review (which automatically searches your client’s newsletter for broken links), signup forms, SMS messaging, list segmentation, ability to send transactional emails (e.g., a confirmation when a customer places an order), and personalized customer journey mapping.
Pricing: Campaign Monitor’s basic package starts from $9/month and allows up to 2500 email sends, email customer support, and a free image gallery. Their highest tier is a Premier package which starts from $149/month and includes additional features (such as time zone sending and spam testing).
The AgencyAnalytics Campaign Monitor dashboard keeps your clients’ email marketing goals on track!
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Built specifically for eCommerce, Drip is a powerful email marketing software for agencies that helps small businesses to scale through email marketing and drive revenue.
Branded as ‘The eCommerce Revenue Engine’, Drip works seamlessly with eCommerce integrations (such as Shopify and WooCommerce) to build high-converting email marketing campaigns.
Best for: Agencies that manage eCommerce clients with a large volume of customers. With its well-built automation and report-tracking features, Drip makes it easy to email campaigns at every step of the buying journey.
Features to note: Email and SMS workflow templates (including e-engagement, shopping cart abandonment, and post-first purchase), 100+ integrations, A/B testing, pop-up forms, and advanced reporting (including revenue and conversion metrics)
Pricing: Drip offers customized pricing, which starts from $39/month for up to 2500 contacts. At the $1,899/month mark, you’ll have up to 170,000 contacts and even a dedicated Customer Success Manager. Pricing is available upon request for a higher number of contacts.
Streamline email marketing metrics with the click of a button! Try the easy-to-use AgencyAnalytics Drip dashboard.
Keap is another all-in-one platform that offers email marketing automation and a built-in CRM (with invoicing). Geared specifically for entrepreneurs and small businesses, Keap’s range of capabilities helps to streamline operations while offering efficient email marketing automation.
Best for: Agencies that specifically manage small businesses that require eCommerce capabilities within email marketing automation.
Features to note: Sales pipeline management, facilitates eCommerce payments, invoicing system, easy list segmentation, pre-made templates, appointment creation, and lead scoring.
Pricing: Get started with a Pro Plan from $169/month (or pay an annual fee of $1548/year), which includes 1500 contacts and 2 users. Upgrade to a Max package starting from $249/month (or an annual payment of $2388), which includes promo code and marketing analytic features. A Max Classic plan is also available upon request.
It’s easy to keep on top of your client’s eCommerce progress and growth with the AgencyAnalytics Keap reporting integration!
This email marketing software was developed specifically for creators, which is great for agencies that service this niche. ConvertKit offers all the benefits of email automation and allows clients to monetize their offerings directly through the platform.
Best for: Agencies that manage a large volume of creative clients, especially those that are looking to monetize their work online. With a built-in sales dashboard and eCommerce integrations (including Shopify), ConvertKit aligns email marketing efforts with sales goals seamlessly.
Features to note: Landing page builder, email designer, Visual Automations builder, paid newsletter option, sales dashboard, transaction integration with Stripe to ensure secure payments.
Pricing: ConvertKit has a free option for up to 1000 subscribers that includes unlimited landing page creation, forms, and broadcasts. A Creator plan starts from $9/month or $108/annually, which includes automated email sequences, visual automation builders, and third-party integrations.
ConvertKit’s Creator Pro package starts from $25/month or $290/annually and includes their full suite of features (such as a newsletter referral system, advanced reporting, and subscriber scoring).
Monitor your clients’ email marketing metrics and eCommerce goals with the AgencyAnalytics ConvertKit integration.
This highly-used platform also coins itself as an all-in-one tool for email marketing, sales tracking, and customer management. If you’re looking to unify email marketing and the overall customer experience under one roof, Hubspot is a great option to consider.
Best for: Agencies that need CRM capabilities and multi-user logins (e.g., for agency accounts with more than one liaison or manager). Hubspot also houses all customer information and sales activity in one place, which makes it easier to understand behavior and trends over time.
Features to note: Drag-and-drop editor, pre-made email templates, integration with Hubspot’s CRM and Sales integrations, built-in analytics, an AI-powered email writer, and customer journey mapping.
Pricing: Hubspot’s CRM (which includes their email marketing service) is free for up to 2000 email sends per month. Their starter package is available from $50/month or $540/annually which includes form and email automation.
An enterprise-level plan starts from $3600/month and offers premium features such as advanced reporting, an email frequency cap (to avoid sending correspondence too often), and customizable user permissions.
Use the AgencyAnalytics Hubspot dashboard to monitor and share your CRM, marketing, and Hubspot analytics data alongside all your agency’s other channels.
This eCommerce email marketing service is built for a range of businesses, from entrepreneurs to established brands. Klaviyo allows seamless integration to top eCommerce platforms and also offers advanced customer segmentation based on behavioral actions (such as viewing a specific product or shopping cart abandonment).
Best for: Agencies that manage eCommerce clients with significant inventory and need remarketing campaigns. Because Klaviyo is built specifically for eCommerce, it’s a highly specialized email marketing tool that benefits those who are trying to grow an online store and manage multiple customer transactions.
Features to note: Behavior-based email automation (such as cross-selling relevant products, shipping confirmation and ‘back in stock’ updates), pre-built templates (including discount emails and product recommendations), 220+ integrations, customer profile building, benchmarking data, and eCommerce reporting.
Pricing: Klaviyo offers a free plan that includes up to 250 contacts, 500 email sends, and customer support. Their email and SMS plan starts from $60/month, which includes 1500 contacts and up to 15,000 monthly email sends.
Keep on top of eCommerce email marketing progress. Try the AgencyAnalytics Klaviyo reporting dashboard today!
This is another powerhouse platform that also doubles as an email marketing software for agencies. Salesforce offers a full suite of features (such as a CRM, comprehensive email marketing, and eCommerce management) to house all sales and marketing efforts in one place.
Best for: Agencies that manage large customer bases and need a comprehensive database that consolidates sales and marketing performance seamlessly.
Features to note: Fully integratedCRM platform including contact management and marketing automation, Email Studio, Salesforce Commerce Cloud (with lifecycle management, segment testing, and inventory management), Journey Builder (for customer journey mapping).
Pricing: Salesforce offers an Email, Mobile, and Web Marketing packages starting from $400/month which includes email marketing, personalized content creation, and integration with the Salesforce Sales Cloud.
A corporate package starts from $3,750/month and includes additional features such as customer journey mapping across multiple brands and AI-powered marketing. Enterprise plans are available upon request.
Keep tabs on email marketing performance and all other channels through the AgencyAnalytics Salesforce dashboard!
SharpSpring was created by Constant Contact specifically as a revenue growth marketing platform that helps to streamline and consolidate business operations.
Similar to a few options we’ve mentioned, SharpSpring is a great email marketing software for agencies and includes other impressive features such as a CRM and advertising capabilities.
Best for: Agencies that want a comprehensive range of built-in features and manage small businesses with foreseeable growth.
Features to note: CRM and Sales Automation, behavior-based email marketing (with an HTML editor and template library), dynamic landing pages, ad retargeting, reporting and analytics, and chatbots.
Pricing: SharpSpring starts from $449/month for 1,000 contacts, an unlimited number of users, and a full range of features. For 20,000 contacts, expect a $1,449/month fee. Agency and Enterprise rates are available upon request.
Use the AgencyAnalytics SharpSpring integration to understand the big picture and make email marketing recommendations.
Honorable Mentions: Omnisend, MailerLite, and MailJet
As an added bonus, we’ve included three honorable mentions if you’re still not sold on any of the options above. Below are three straight-to-the-point email marketing services that’ll help you get the job done.
Keep in mind that these platforms don’t have seamless integrations with AgencyAnalytics (yet) if that’s on the top of your priority list when choosing the best option.
Omnisend is another email marketing software for agencies that focuses on growing eCommerce-based businesses. Create well-designed templates with Omnisend’s editor feature and segment email lists easily. That way, you’ll get the most from this email marketing platform.
Best for: Agencies that want an intuitive, user-friendly email marketing service built specifically for eCommerce clients.
Features to note: Integrated email and SMS campaigns, customizable and pre-built templates (including product pickers and unique discount codes), a Campaign Booster (which re-sends unopened emails with different subject lines), pop-up forms, and pre-built workflows.
Pricing: With a free plan, 250 contacts are included in addition to 500 emails/month. Omnisend’s Pro package goes up to $59/month with up to 500 contacts a month, unlimited emails, and advanced reporting.
MailerLite is a simple and easy-to-use email marketing service that works well for entrepreneurs and small businesses. Its intuitive interface removes the fluff and makes newsletter creation a breeze (which comes in handy when you’re short on time or not specialized in design).
Best for: Agencies that want a straightforward email automation tool. MailerLite also works well if you manage clients with smaller businesses and don’t necessarily need a full suite of features (such as advanced marketing automation).
Features to note: Automated workflows, free image library, pre-made templates, email delivery by timezone, buildable surveys and quizzes, email verification, and a landing page builder.
Pricing: MailerLite’s free plan includes up to 1000 subscribers, an email automation builder, and 12,000 monthly emails. If your agency opts for an Advanced plan, it starts from $21/month (or $228/year) and includes unlimited monthly emails for up to 1000 subscribers. Enterprise-level, custom pricing is available upon request.
If you’re looking for an email marketing service that involves no coding and collaboration, check out MailJet. Create customizable, highly-aesthetic, and responsive emails with no fuss or prior design experience required.
Best for: Agencies that want an intuitive email marketing service that allows multiple-user collaboration (you also have the ability to leave comments, request changes, and set user permissions).
Features to note: Drag-and-drop email editor, real-time user collaboration, A/B testing, automated workflows for each customer journey phase, 70+ integrations, and real-time data tracking.
Pricing: MailJet’s free plan includes 6000 emails per month and an unlimited number of contacts. If you’re looking to kick it up a notch, their Premium Plan starts from $25/month and includes advanced reporting, priority customer support, and marketing automation. A custom plan is also available above this tier (upon request).
Consolidate Your Client’s Email Marketing Metrics in One Place
And there you have it!
Choose an email marketing service that meets your agency’s demands and client requests. That way, you’ll continue to create top-notch email newsletters and demonstrate your agency’s ROI month after month.
After you’ve worked hard to create beautiful email marketing campaigns for your clients–now what? It’s time to track those email KPIs and give critical insights into what went well or needs improvement.
Don’t waste time pulling all that data manually–invest in a client reporting tool like AgencyAnalytics! Create a fully customizable email marketing template that’s easy to follow, captures all necessary insights, and helps your clients to understand what’s really happening.
Ready to give it a try? Tracking your clients’ email marketing metrics has never been easier. Try AgencyAnalytics risk-free for 14-days–no credit card required.