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What is a Mailchimp Campaign, And How to Track its Effectiveness?

When you think of a Mailchimp campaign, the first thing that comes to mind is a bunch of emails sent to hundreds of customers at once. However, there’s much more to it. In fact, Mailchimp is not just a mailing service but rather a marketing automation platform. So Mailchimp campaigns can take many forms, from landing pages to printed postcards.
Let’s take a look at the most widely used Mailchimp campaign types. In addition, you’ll also find some useful tips on monitoring the campaign effectiveness at the end of the article.

Mailchimp campaign. General meaning

Strictly speaking, a Mailchimp campaign means the process of distributing any type of content by the means provided by Mailchimp. So, whatever it is, if you use Mailchimp to create this content, deliver it to your audience, or track your results – that’s a Mailchimp campaign.

This may be an email campaign – for example, if you own an online shop and send monthly newsletters to your customers. Or this can be a landing page that you create using Mailchimp and then promote on social media and other channels. Or it can be a Mailchimp SMS campaign with its stunning open rate.

If we look at parameters other than content type, we will see other campaign examples. For instance, an ongoing campaign, which is any campaign that is currently running. Or re-engagement campaign, which is targeted at dormant subscribers or customers and can take different forms.

Now we’ll zoom in and explore these options in more detail.

Mailchimp email campaigns and their main types

Since Mailchimp provides great functionality for email marketing, it’s no surprise that email campaigns are arguably the most widespread format. Many marketers use them as a basis that can be enhanced with additional options. Depending on your goals, strategy, and available resources, you may decide to use one or another type of email campaign.

What is a regular Mailchimp campaign?

A regular email campaign is when you send a bunch of marketing emails with visually rich content to your contact list. You can create such content using the Mailchimp email builder. It offers many ready-to-use templates and layouts to choose from. You can pick a template by searching in relevant categories (like Holidays or Newsletters) and then customize it for your topic and preferences. Or you can make your own template from scratch. Thanks to the provided assets, you can create a visually compelling email even if you are not a designer.

Typically, regular emails include images, various fonts, action buttons, and sometimes GIFs or other media.

What is a plain-text Mailchimp campaign?

As the name suggests, a plain-text email consists of nothing more than just text. For these emails, you cannot use any images, stylized fonts, advanced formatting, or embedded links. And of course, the usage of templates is not available as well. It may seem that emails with no visuals must be boring and ineffective. But, in fact, they have certain advantages. Most people often write and receive plain-text emails while communicating with colleagues or relatives. For this reason, such emails feel personal and sound more natural. 

Another advantage is good compatibility with wearables. If your target audience actively uses smart watches and fitness trackers, they won’t be able to preview your email in HTML format on these devices. However, you can grasp their attention with a powerful down-to-the-point plain-text message. In addition, such emails are easy to create, so you can launch a plain-text Mailchimp campaign virtually in no time.

What is an automated Mailchimp campaign?

An automated campaign is when your messages are sent automatically, based on a specific trigger. For example, a shop can send date-based emails, like birthday cards or holiday greetings. There’s no need to monitor when each of your customers has a birthday. The system will contact them automatically based on the information they provided. 

Another example is transactional emails. When a customer places an order, they receive an automatic confirmation by email. When they change their password or when someone tries to access their account, they also get automated emails with notifications or instructions. In general, such automations allow businesses to support and guide their customers along the way without any manual effort.

For a Mailchimp email campaign, you can set automation with just one email or a sequence of emails for different triggers. Mailchimp offers a bunch of pre-built automations, but if necessary, you can always create a custom solution.

What is a Mailchimp drip campaign?

This campaign type overlaps with automated campaigns, and the difference is sometimes blurry. In general, a Mailchimp drip campaign is an automated email campaign that typically contains a sequence of pre-written emails. Usually, after the first introductory email, a user receives several follow-ups on the same topic (although a drip campaign can consist of one email as well). All emails are sent automatically, according to a predefined schedule or as a response to a specific user action. These campaigns are called “drip” because the messages are sent in a steady and slow flow.

For example, businesses can run drip campaigns for customers who have stopped ordering from them for some time. Such users can receive an email reminding them of the offered products or services. If there is still no action, later, they may get a few more emails with special discounts or other messages nudging them to place another order.

What is a multivariate Mailchimp campaign?

When you run a multivariate campaign, you can send different versions of the same email to different sets of addresses. Then, you can compare the results and see which version performs best. It’s possible to experiment with the subject line, send time, and, of course, content. This will help you discover whether your customers prefer long reads or short digests, morning or afternoon newsletters, and so on. 

With Mailchimp’s multivariate campaigns, marketers can test up to 8 combinations of different variables at once. To determine the winning option, you’ll need to set the success criteria first. It can be open rate, click rate, or generated revenue. If none of this fits, the best option can be selected manually. After this, you can use the most promising combination to launch an effective campaign for the rest of your audience.

Mailchimp claims that running a multivariate campaign allows businesses to increase revenue by 20% compared to a regular campaign.

What is an ongoing Mailchimp campaign?

A campaign of any type that is currently running is an ongoing campaign. So, it can be an email campaign, Ad campaign, automation, or any other type. A campaign is not ongoing if it is marked as Completed or Draft. You can check the status of your campaigns in the Mailchimp menu on the left (Campaigns -> All Campaigns -> View by Status).

What is a Mailchimp re-engagement campaign?

This is a campaign targeted at people who had already placed orders in the past but, for some reason, stopped now. The purpose of the campaign is to bring them back and, ideally, turn them into loyal customers. Another goal can be winning back the inactive subscribers of your Mailchimp lists.

Typically, these campaigns take the form of automated emails. You can automatically track how long it has been since a user placed an order or interacted with your email, and trigger a series of re-engagement emails at certain intervals. To enhance the results, businesses can use landing pages, surveys, promo codes, and contests, along with other instruments like A/B testing.

What is a Mailchimp reconfirmation campaign?

This is a special type of campaign designed to confirm that your subscribers still want to receive your messages. There are many reasons to run a reconfirmation campaign in Mailchimp. For example, when your list accumulates a lot of inactive subscribers and you need to clean them out. This means you have to delete or archive them. However, some of the contacts who didn’t open your emails for a while might still be interested in your content. Obviously, you wouldn’t want to lose them. That’s why you will need to launch a Mailchimp reconfirmation campaign and ask your idle customers to reconfirm if they want to remain subscribed.

Another common case is when your company makes a significant pause in communicating with customers. People might simply forget who you are. As a result, they’ll ignore your messages or mark them as spam – even though they gave you the permission to email them. This might negatively affect your open rate and sending reputation. To avoid such disastrous results, you can start a reconfirmation campaign in Mailchimp. This will be a great opportunity to remind your audience about yourself and confirm they don’t want to revoke the permissions given before.

The stages of a Mailchimp reconfirmation campaign: 

  • Filtering out inactive users. These will be the audience for the reconfirmation campaign.
  • Unsubscribing inactive users in bulk.
  • Creating a signup form or a dedicated page.
  • Sending a reconfirmation message.

When the unsubscribed contacts receive an email with a link to the signup form, they can use it to subscribe again. If they don’t confirm their subscription, they remain unsubscribed. In any case, your list health increases as you can focus on the customers for whom your messages are relevant and valuable.

Mailchimp email campaign – examples

Example 1. Regular campaign

Here, you can see the preview of a regular Mailchimp campaign that has already been launched. The email contains visuals (a logo and background), formatted text (bold), and a button with the CTA.

And here’s an example of how a regular campaign looks in Mailchimp when it’s about to hit the inboxes. You can see the main settings and the preview of the email content.

Example 2. Plain-text campaign

This is an example of a plain-text campaign in the making. The email only contains simple copy with no rich-text formatting or visual elements.

Below you can see the preview of this plain-text email on a mobile phone.

Example 3. Automated campaign

Here you can see the preview of an automated Mailchimp campaign. This one is created for sending emails for birthdays. In this case, the campaign consists of just one email, but it’s possible to add more and make it a sequence.

And this is the preview of the email from this campaign in Mailchimp’s design builder.

Besides sending birthday cards, automated campaigns can be used for many other goals. Below you can see the Mailchimp menu with other examples of the most popular automation email types.

So, we’ve already explored the main types of Mailchimp email campaigns. Now it’s time to learn about other campaigns you can run on Mailchimp.

Example 4. Mailchimp reconfirmation campaign

In the example below, you can see how a message for a reconfirmation campaign can look. This is a preview from the Mailchimp design builder. The email reminds an inactive user about the value of the content delivered by the company’s newsletter. It also asks this customer to reconfirm that they are still interested in receiving these emails. If the customer clicks Unsubscribe, does nothing, or doesn’t open the email at all, they will stay unsubscribed. If they click Keep me on the list, the button will take them to a signup form or a page with a thank you message.

Users who reconfirm their subscription often tend to read the subsequent emails more often.

What is a Mailchimp Ad campaign?

Mailchimp allows you to create ads and automatically place them on Facebook, Instagram, and over 2 mln websites in the Google Display Network. Once the campaign is launched, you can monitor the results directly in Mailchimp reports. Such campaigns can be targeted at your Mailchimp lists, other people with similar interests, or totally new audiences. With Mailchimp Ad campaigns, you can attract new customers or bring back people who already visited your website but left. This can be achieved with Facebook and Instagram retargeting ads, as well as Google remarketing ads. These messages will remind people about your product while they browse elsewhere. 

Also, Mailchimp simplifies content creation. The platform provides an Ad Builder that helps marketers create ad designs. It automatically adjusts the sizes of ad visuals to multiple websites where the ads will be displayed. You just need to add messages, visuals, or GIFs to the builder. Mailchimp doesn’t charge you for placing the ads on social media. You’ll only be charged by the platforms themselves.

Below you can see the menu for setting the basic parameters of a Mailchimp Ad campaign. 

What is a Mailchimp social post and social media campaign?

Apart from the ads, you can use Mailchimp for creating and publishing posts on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. This activity is called a Mailchimp social media campaign, and it can be a very effective addition to your other campaigns. 

Mailchimp social posts are a great option for managing your brand’s presence on social media. The reason is simple – you can keep everything in one place and avoid switching between different apps. Other advantages are easy scheduling, auto-posting, and tracking performance in the native Mailchimp reports. 

The tools for content creation are also worth mentioning. Mailchimp has an in-built Creative Assistant, which you can use for designing social media posts. This is an AI-based tool that can analyze your website and generate designs based on your brand style. Creative Assistant identifies your logo, fonts, and palette, and then incorporates them into the new creative assets. 

Here is an example of the visuals for Facebook posts automatically generated by Mailchimp’s Creative Assistant.

What is a postcard campaign on Mailchimp?

This type of Mailchimp campaign may seem a bit unexpected, as it involves printed postcards, i.e., actual physical objects. You can use Mailchimp’s tools to design your postcard, select the audience, and send them your message. This can be useful when you want to invite people to an event, announce a sale, or share promo codes. But keep in mind that printed postcards can only be sent to people who consented to receiving direct mail (for GDPR compliance).

There are three types of Mailchimp postcard campaigns:

  • One-time campaign. This is when you send a single postcard to each of the customers within the selected audience segment.
  • Automated recurring campaign. This is when your audience receives postcards regularly according to your schedule.
  • Abandoned cart campaign. This one is for sending postcards to the customers who left their shopping carts halfway through.

To conclude, launching a postcard campaign on Mailchimp is a valuable opportunity to stand out and better connect with your customers.

What is a Mailchimp landing page?

Mailchimp offers marketers some handy tools for creating landing pages. The platform has a native landing page builder with lots of useful features. Their pre-designed templates, paired with drag-and-drop functionality, allow people to create decent designs even without much skill. If you connect your Mailchimp account to your ecommerce store, the landing page builder will automatically pull the images of your products. So, they will be readily available for your webpage if you need them.
A Mailchimp landing page can be used for many purposes. This can be collecting new contacts for your lists, announcing limited-time offers, holding contests, etc. Once your landing page is ready, you can use it as a part of other Mailchimp campaigns. For example, promoting it on social media, running ads on the Google Display Network websites, and so on.

Mailchimp landing page – examples

Example 1. A landing page in the making

This is an example of a work in progress. Here, we’ve started creating a new landing page using one of Mailchimp’s templates. This is a drag and drop tool, so you can add, delete, or move around new blocks. It allows you to insert videos, connect your social media pages, and customize your webpage in many other ways.

Example 2. A completed landing page

And here’s an example of a Mailchimp landing page for a gardening shop. The main goal of this page is to drive subscriptions. So, the page structure and messages on the first pane are designed to persuade the users to provide their email addresses. Other panes contain some additional information about the store and highlight the value of the newsletter.

As you can see, the landing page is rather simple and focuses on just one topic. And this is exactly what allows it to get the point across and be effective.

How to monitor the effectiveness of your Mailchimp campaign

To see how your campaigns are doing, you’ll need to take a look at your Mailchimp dashboard and examine your Mailchimp campaign reports. There, you’ll find the most important metrics like open rate and click rate, unsubscribe rate, and soft/hard bounces. These numbers will tell you if your content resonates with your lists and whether your strategy needs changes.

Native Mailchimp reports and dashboard

To view your campaign reports, find the corresponding section in the Campaigns menu on the left. On the Reports page, you’ll see the list of your campaigns, their status, and some basic metrics.

Here’s an example of a Mailchimp report for a test campaign.

Besides the most essential metrics, Mailchimp reports contain recommendations on content improvement and information on social performance and clicks performance (which links in your content get the most clicks). They also provide a map showing top locations by opens. In addition, the reports contain the comparison of your campaign performance with the results of similar campaigns run by other businesses in your domain. This gives you an opportunity to evaluate your results in context.

Mailchimp dashboard provides a more high-level view, focusing on the latest changes. It features the metrics for the latest launched campaign and an overview of the most recent activity and changes.

Here is an example of a Mailchimp dashboard.

Custom Mailchimp reports and dashboard 

Although native Mailchimp reports and dashboard are useful, they have considerable limitations. The reports only feature a fixed set of metrics given in a pre-defined order. If you don’t need some of them or want to calculate some custom metrics, you cannot do this from your Mailchimp account.

The native dashboard is rather inflexible as well. For example, by default, it shows you the results of the latest campaign at the top. If you want to see there a summary for several campaigns or add/delete certain metrics, this won’t be possible as well. In other words, if you need to customize anything at all, most likely, you won’t be able to.

This might seem like not a big deal while you only have several campaigns. But when you run dozens of them, you will have a huge amount of data accumulated. And you will need adequate tools to manipulate this data with flexibility – combine results of several similar campaigns, analyze them across different channels, and so on.

The simplest way to address this issue is to extract your Mailchimp data and create a custom report and comprehensive dashboard elsewhere. For instance, you can easily do this in Excel or Google Sheets. This way, you’ll be able to sort and filter your exported data, apply complex formulas, calculate custom metrics, and perform in-depth analysis. You can also export your marketing data from Hubspot, Pipedrive, and other systems you use, and combine it all in one place for exhaustive analysis. You’ll then be able to get a full view of your marketing efforts.

When it comes to building a custom dashboard, there’s a variety of tools to choose from. You can visualize your data using Excel’s native functionality, or you can create an informative dashboard in Google Sheets, like this one:

Another option is to use advanced visualization tools like Google Data Studio, Tableau, or Power BI. You’ll just need to connect the selected tool to Excel or Google Sheets to transfer your data for the dashboard.

One more advantage is that you can easily share your custom reports and dashboards created outside of Mailchimp. It simplifies collaboration with colleagues and communication with stakeholders.

There are third-party tools that can transfer your Mailchimp data to other apps automatically. This means you will need to connect your Mailchimp account to Excel or Google Sheets – and once this is done, your Mailchimp data in the selected workbook will be regularly updated without manual effort. For example, you can do this with a user-friendly importer Coupler.io.

We’ve already blogged about Mailchimp export contacts.

As data in the destination app will be refreshed on your schedule, the metrics in your custom reports and dashboard will stay up to date. In addition to Excel, Coupler.io provides a Mailchimp Google Sheets integration and allows you to export Mailchimp to Google BigQuery and export Mailchimp contacts to Excel.

Another way to export your Mailchimp data is to use a native CSV importer. But this option doesn’t allow you to automate this process, so you’ll need to transfer your data manually every time you want to refresh it.

Launching a successful Mailchimp campaign

To sum up, you can run many different campaigns using Mailchimp. They can vary from regular email campaigns to comprehensive automations, landing pages, and Ad campaigns. For a marketer, it’s rather convenient to have all these instruments gathered on one platform. It allows you to plan and orchestrate your activities more efficiently. 

To ensure the successful results of your Mailchimp campaigns, it’s crucial to carefully analyze your data across the channels. This will help you find out what works best and how to adjust your strategy. For deep analysis, it’s often better to create custom reports and track your metrics on a custom marketing dashboard. This way, you’ll be able to closely monitor the effectiveness of your campaigns and make the most of your data.

Good luck with your campaigns!

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