Looking for the best tool for email marketing automation? Wondering if ActiveCampaign is the right tool for your business?
You’ve come to the right place. In this article, I will walk you through every aspect of ActiveCampaign and help you decide if it is the right marketing automation tool for your business.
That being said, I recommend sticking to the end to find out its advantages, limitations, and my personal opinion about it.
What is ActiveCampaign?
ActiveCampaign is an all-in-one marketing automation software with an in-built sales CRM.
It enables you to nurture potential leads, create automated campaigns based on numerous conditions, and provide an intuitive drag-and-drop builder to build and edit emails easily.
ActiveCampaign tags itself as the best customer experience automation platform. It provides a wide range of features that can uplift you to unlock the competitive edge in building loyal customer relationships.
If you want to explore ActiveCampaign along with reading this review, sign up with the below-mentioned link, which will get you a 14-day free trial.
Having said that, let’s explore each feature in-depth and see if the ActiveCampaign is the right automation tool for your sales and marketing team.
ActiveCampaign Review: Features
In this section, I will give a complete breakdown of all the features and functionalities that ActiveCampaign offers and help you experience the tool from my perspective.
Here are the key features of ActiveCampaign –
- Marketing Automation
- Email Marketing
- Email Deliverability
- CRM & Sales Automation
- Lead Scoring
- Advanced Contact Segmentation
- On-site Tracking
- Messaging & Chatbot
- Landing page & Form builder
- Analytics & Reporting
Now, let’s dive deeper into each feature.
1. Marketing Automation
ActiveCampaign is highly popular for its incredible automation features. The visual automation builder is flexible and straightforward to use. You need to just drag and drop the elements to create the workflow, and all the changes are saved automatically.
As you can see in the above image, it is possible to add multiple triggers based on your requirements. Also, there is a possibility of adding emails to the automation flow by clicking the ‘+’ icon.
Another aspect that will add life to email marketing campaigns is personalization. ActiveCampaign lets you accomplish this by enabling you to add dynamic content and personalized elements to your email copy.
ActiveCampaign’s automation capabilities work seamlessly beyond your expectations. It provides a decent range of automation templates that you can use to build automation for –
- Follow up sequence
- Upsell and Resell
- Increase referral traffic
- Team collaboration
And many more…
2. Email Marketing
ActiveCampaign provides six types of email campaigns to get started. The different types of campaigns it offers are as follows:
- Split Testing
- RSS Triggered
- Date based
With the help of its simple drag-and-drop email editor, you can move blocks and design a perfect email body within a few minutes.
Additionally, it allows you to hide and show specific content blocks on mobile devices for better design and experience.
To make your life easier, ActiveCampaign provides stunning email templates that you can easily customize – you can style elements, place blocks, and be formatted to include various functionalities.
It also allows you to create your own templates and reuse them for future campaigns. So, it’s clear that ActiveCampaign will save you a lot of time and energy in designing email campaigns.
3. Email Deliverability
Email Deliverability is a major challenge in the success of email marketing campaigns. ActiveCampaign ensures that all of your emails get landed in your subscribers’ mailboxes as it provides spam checking functionality.
By keeping an eye on spam checks, you can make sure that the emails you send are entirely legit and error-free.
ActiveCampaign offers one of the highest email deliverability rates ensuring that your emails reach as many people as possible in their main inbox (not in spam or promotional tabs).
4. CRM & Sales Automation
ActiveCampaign’s CRM offers indispensable features as it completely takes care of all the activities needed to build a perfect sales pipeline.
It ensures a smooth flow of activities by notifying your sales team when a new contact is captured, creating new tasks, updating the deal’s status, and automatically nurturing leads for further follow-ups.
You can automate your sales funnel, and segment leads based on their activities. It is also possible to send notifications to your sales team when it’s the right time to follow up with the leads.
It lets you track your team members’ performance and assign tasks to them manually or within the automation. This enables team cohesion and brings all crucial data to your fingertips.
Another compelling feature that ActiveCampaign offers is the lead scoring and win probability.
The win probability uses machine learning to calculate the conversion probability of your deal so that you can identify whether it will turn into a long-lasting customer or not.
Since lead scoring is a critical concept for marketing automation, let me explain it in detail in the next section.
5. Lead Scoring
ActiveCampaign’s lead scoring tool empowers marketing and sales teams to identify the most potential lead by assigning points to contacts based on their engagement.
There are two types of lead scoring that ActiveCampaign offers: Deal scoring and Contact Scoring.
A deal score is a numerical value assigned to open deals in the sales pipeline. It gives an idea of how nurtured a specific deal is, and thus the sales can prioritize them for follow-up and closure.
Whereas a Contact Score is a value assigned to the email contacts – subscribers and resource downloaders. It is useful for marketers to identify the most engaged contacts, and thus the marketing qualified leads.
ActiveCampaign lets you assign points and create specific rules in order to add or subtract points based on various factors like page visits, purchase history, resource downloads, email opens, link clicking, etc.
6. Advanced Contact Segmentation
Segmentation plays a crucial role in delivering a personalized experience to leads, prospects, and customers throughout their journey.
Using segments, you can send the right messaging to the right group of people at the right time.
ActiveCampaign allows you to create segments out of anything based on the data you already have in the database. Here are a few examples of how you can use data to segment-
- Based on contact details: Email, First Name, Last Name, Full Name, Phone, Organization, Date Subscribed, Time Subscribed, IP Address, Tag, and Total Conversion Value.
- Based on custom fields in forms: Any custom fields you create.
- Based on actions & inaction of contacts: Has clicked on a link, Has not clicked on a link, Has opened, Has not opened an email, Has shared socially, Has forwarded the email, Has not forwarded, Has replied to email, Has not replied, In list, Not in list, and Subscribed with a subscription form.
- Based on geographical locations: Country, State, City, Zip, and Area code.
- Based on on-site & event data: Has visited, Has not visited, Was referred from, Visiting device, Total page visits, and Total site visits.
- Based on Deal attributes: Has deal with status, Has deal in stage, Has deal with value, Has deal assigned to, Has a total number of deals, Has total number of open deals, Has total number of lost deals, Has total number of won deals, and Has deal with title.
- Based on Attributions: Has source, Does not have source, Has medium, Does not have medium, Has campaign, Does not have campaign, Has term, Does not have term, Has content, and Does not have content.
ActiveCampaign also allows you to use the ‘AND’ and ‘OR’ logic or the multi-dimensional conditions for deeper and refined list segmentation.
What makes ActiveCampaign segment builder unique is that it is available across the platform. You can create segments from the contact page, contact list page, within the automation builder, and email campaign page.
Basically, ActiveCampaign enables you to create segments out of anything based on the data you already have. And they have made it very easy for you to create as many segments as you want.
Here’s a glimpse of segment builder within the automation builder –
7. On-site tracking
On-site tracking is probably the most needed feature for marketers to proactively target and follow up with website visitors.
By installing a small piece of code on your website, you can actively monitor the visitors and convert them into leads and then into paid customers.
Site tracking in ActiveCampaign offers more features like, you can trigger automation when a contact views any page on your site and applies lead or contact scores based on visits or views of specific pages.
When you combine the data obtained from site tracking with other behavioral observations, you can easily map what your contacts exactly need and target them on other relevant channels, boosting more conversions.
This ultimately helps you understand your customers’ needs and enables you to deliver a personalized sales and marketing experience.
8. Messaging & Chatbot
Along with email, ActiveCampaign offers multi-channel conversation tools, including Facebook messenger, text messaging, chatbot, and live chat features.
All the conversations are managed in a unified interface so that you will not miss even a single detail. When a visitor submits the email address to the chat agent, you can create automation workflows to start communicating with them.
ActiveCampaign’s Chatbot enables you to customize each chat, update the custom field data whenever required, and add tags to contacts, which helps to segment your contacts effectively.
It also lets you send automated text messages which establish robust connectivity with your subscribers. You can send appointment reminders, thank you messages, flash sale notifications, coupon code delivery, etc.
Today, customers want instant responses from brands, and if you can’t deliver, you may lose a potential customer. ActiveCampaign understands this challenge. That’s why they provide a mobile app for iOS and Android devices, allowing your team members to stay active from anywhere and respond to queries instantly.
9. Landing Pages and Form Builder
Last but not least, ActiveCampaign lets you build personalized landing pages and provides a wide array of beautiful templates.
The landing page editor is good but could be improved by adding more flexibility to design elements and adding more features. However, you can easily integrate with other landing page builders for better and convertible landing pages.
Next comes the form builder. It offers different form types which you can embed into your website for collecting potential leads.
Also, note that it is possible to trigger automation when a particular action is done on your form by the visitors.
10. Analytics & Reporting
ActiveCampaign provides abundant reporting options that you can use to analyze campaign performance and optimize it for better results.
It offers different reports like Campaign reports, Automation reports, Goal Reports, Deal Reports, and much more to go.
The Report tab will list all your automation, the number of people who interacted with your automation, and how many of them completed it.
It also displays the open trends based on hour and weekday which lets you alter your time-frequency of sending emails to achieve the highest ROI possible.
You can also view a complete breakdown of all your deals based on various criteria such as status, value, type of pipeline, duration, etc.
It also lets you create custom reports based on automation engagement trends, deal value based on forecasted close dates, etc., to build a high-level data-driven strategy.
Having talked about the broad range of features that ActiveCampaign offers, let’s now jump into other essential aspects – integration and pricing.
ActiveCampaign 3rd-party Integrations
One of the essential features that we look for in a tool is its integration capability with other tools, especially those you are already using. Right?
Fortunately, ActiveCampaign provides an overflowing set of integration options. With more than 850 apps ranging from accounting to CRM and CMS, you have the complete freedom to choose your most wanted applications for better automation and data flow.
Some of the popular integration apps available are Salesforce, WordPress, Shopify, Facebook, Google Analytics, Unbounce, and more.
In case any of your existing tools are not available in the list, you can always use Zapier to connect ActiveCampaign with other tools.
How much does ActiveCampaign Cost?
ActiveCampaign has four pricing plans, mainly based on the features you can access. However, the monthly billing increase for each plan is based on the number of contacts you store.
Here’s the breakdown of each plan for up to 500 email contacts –
- The Lite plan starts at $15/month with a good range of features for small businesses.
- The Plus plan starts at $70/month, backed with Lead scoring, SMS marketing, CRM, and much more to boost your business.
- The Professional plan starts at $159/month, offering additional features like the win probability and split automation.
- Lastly, the enterprise plan starts at $279/month, which acts as a complete powerhouse of sophisticated features.
Apart from this, ActiveCampaign offers a 14-day free trial, allowing up to 100 contacts and 100 email sends. During the trial, you will have access to all its features so that you can test it thoroughly and decide which plan suits your business need.
Pros & Cons of ActiveCampaign
Now, you know all the features and tools that ActiveCampaign has to offer and how useful they can be for your business. So, before making a verdict, let’s take a look at its pros and cons.
Advantages of ActiveCampaign –
- ActiveCampaign offers a robust automation builder that is easy to use, and you can build automation for anything using various trigger options available.
- It guarantees high email deliverability, which helps in fulfilling your campaign objectives and goals.
- It provides an integrated sales and marketing platform to keep the sales and marketing team in sync.
- It provides various analytics data in the report, measuring the ROI and letting you make strategic decisions.
- It allows for free implementation and migration service from your existing software, which can be a tremendous advantage for starters.
Limitations of ActiveCampaign –
- The learning curve is a little high for beginners.
- It offers a lot of advanced features, which can be overwhelming for beginners. I’d recommend starting with the Lite or Plus plan and upgrading once you understand the tool.
- The price of each plan increases as the number of contacts grows, which can affect your monthly budget.
Is ActiveCampaign the right automation tool for your business?
ActiveCampaign is undoubtedly one of the best email marketing software and it is the perfect tool for any organization that understands marketing automation and how to leverage it properly.
So, my question to you would be – Is your team ready for ActiveCampaign?
In my experience, not every business is ready to adopt an advanced marketing automation tool like ActiveCampaign and I recommend ActiveCampaign to companies that fulfill the following conditions –
- You have a compelling website.
- You have a dedicated marketing team of at least three members.
- You have a defined marketing strategy in place.
- You have defined ideal customer profiles and buyer persona.
- You have identified your customer touchpoints.
- You have determined your preferred marketing channels, and email marketing is one of them.
These are some of the important elements to make marketing automation successful for your business. So, if your company doesn’t check any of the above conditions, I’d suggest you to better focus on it or opt for basic marketing automation tools like Convertkit.
And if your company checks all these conditions, ActiveCampaign is the best tool for you to automate your customer journey and other repeat marketing tasks. So, use the button below and kickstart your journey with a 14-day free trial.
Here are some of the common questions that I and my team have been asked about ActiveCampaign.
Can I use ActiveCampaign for free?
ActiveCampaign doesn’t have a free plan, but it offers a 14-day free trial that allows up to 100 contacts and up to 100 email sends. With its free plan, you will get access to all its features under the Professional Plan.
Can I get discounts on ActiveCampaign?
ActiveCampaign offers a 20% discount to non-profit organizations such as NGOs. So, if your organization comes into that category, you can claim the discount.
Do you have more questions? Need our help with making a decision? Tweet us at @ecomsutra and we will try our best to get you your answers.