If you’re into marketing, then you may have probably heard or even used autoresponder platforms such as GetResponse, MailChimp and AWeber. While it’s true that these platforms do offer some great features for marketers, corporations and also large businesses with highly complex and sophisticated email marketing strategies may find them too be a bit too simplistic.
CRM programs are also used for sharing making notes about prospects, clients, keeping track of the status of the relationship and also sharing contacts among others. If the company is large, then customer relationship management programs such as Salesforce or Microsoft Dynamics may prove to be a valuable addition to the company. However, it’s important to mention that they also have some limited functionality when it comes to scheduled E-mails, autoresponders and many other E-mail marketing tools.
Ontraport on the other hand, offers no compromise and it actually packs the best of both words: it’s an autoresponder and a CRM tool in a single package.
Ontraport vs. the Autoresponders
In general, autoresponder platforms aren’t designed for CRM, but mostly for email marketing. Because of that, they may have limitations like not being able to add notes about prospects and clients, which will certainly make it hard for the sales team to keep up with prospects and eventually make more sales. On top of that, while the majority of autoresponders allow users to easily filter subscribers into various campaigns and then adapt the sales message to specific customers, only few of these platforms can actually get this done as effectively and as easily as Ontraport.
Ontraport and Email Marketing
Let’s take a very simple example of an IM. Chris came up with an informational product which is a 6-week long course that teaches people how to play the piano. The way he plans on delivering the course is through his email autoresponder. According to research though, it’s been already proven that a longer series of sales emails greatly improve conversion rates, so that is why Chris also wants to offer a separate 3-week course in which he teaches people how to choose the right piano based on their skill level and other factors, their instructors, and so on.
The initial client flow is that people will sign up on Chris’ landing page for the 3-week course and at the end of the course, they’re going to be offered the chance to take private lessons with Chris on Skype. In this case, Chris manages to run the best possible client flow and runs 3 different autoresponders.
Yet even though he has a nice client flow, what can he do more in order to increase his conversions? Well, it seems he needs a category for people that didn’t buy the initial course teaching beginners how to play the piano. Because of that, he’ll E-mail them with some of his Amazon affiliate links to equipment and products he recommends. After that, he’ll follow up with a drop marketing campaign in order to keep in touch with his subscribers and get in touch once again after the sales series ends. So in this case, Chris will require 5 different autoresponder categories.
In this regard, Ontraport really takes the cake since it makes it a breeze to move subscribers from one group or list into the next and this is also true even if there are automated rules in place that require no or very little manual client entry. Better yet, Ontraport also makes it easy to simply and cleanly subdivide, tag and group subscribers based on pre-defined criteria.
If Chris gets one thousand new subscribers each month, one hundred sign up for his Piano for Beginners course and ten for his private coaching, that is more than one hundred and ten transitions he’s going to have quite a hard time entering with a standard autoresponder. With Ontraport, Chris can easily move his subscribers anywhere and anytime he wants very easily.
Ontraport vs. the CRM
When it comes to email marketing, standard CRMs have 2 great limitations. First of all, they’re very hard to use, especially for novices. That’s because they’re usually designed for corporate clients and not entrepreneurs or DIY-ers. Customer relationship management is also designed for a standard salesforce, so there are quite a few instances where they’re going to be unable to meet the needs of marketing departments and entrepreneurs.
Another important limitation of standard CRMs is the lack of email features that are usually offered by autoresponders. It’s quite hard to send an E-mail series and they usually lack the wide range of scheduling tools and templates that most autoresponders already have.
After you’ve managed to set up an account with Ontraport, you may want to use its knowledgebase in order to learn more about how to make the most of its various features. There are a wide range of tutorials you can check out and they also offer a two-hour setup consultation (free of charge) with new users to ensure their most pressing questions about the product are adequately answered.
Best Features for Internet Marketing
There’s a wide range of great features IMs will love about Ontraport, yet some of the most useful ones seem to be the simple to us landing pages, autoresponder sequences and automated rules.
No matter how great your E-mail marketing campaign is crafted, if you have no subscribers then it’s certainly not going to work. Also, most subscribers are only going to sign up to your mailing list after landing on your page and responding to it. What’s great about Ontraport is that it makes it very simple to design landing pages and forms and they even help you get your landing page hosted for free and integrate it with your WP website.
Another amazing feature you’ll love about Ontraport is the fact that you can easily and quickly set up autoresponder sequences. In our previous example, Chris is able to use a different sequence for his initial course and his Piano for Beginners course, but also set up various drip marketing lists to appeal to his other potential clients.
After you open the Contacts menu, you can then create a new autoresponder sequence. New sequences can be created based on a date or various steps. For instance, if you plan to put out a series or a newsletter in anticipation of a product you want to launch soon, it’s best to go for the date sequence to make sure that your subscribers receive the same message on the right date. However, if you want to send out a sales series, meaning the E-mail will be sent in a series, then it’s recommended to use the step sequence.
Different steps can be added to the sequence, including rules, tasks, but also E-mail which makes it a breeze for your clients to buy products via E-mail. It’s also easy to add any number of steps you want and have the peace of mind the E-mails will be delivered at the exact time you select.
Switching subscribers from one list to another and automating listen maintenance is very easy with Ontraport. For instance, you can create a list where you’ll assign the rule that anyone who won’t open their E-mail for 90 days can be dropped from your list. It’s also simple to transfer customers who bought something from you and add them to your Clients list. If you want, it’s also possible to make a rule so that you can target clients who visit your website for a certain amount of time or spend a certain amount of money on your products.
Given these simple automation rules, it’s very simple to use Ontraport to run your business and have the peace of mind your subscribers are only going to receive targeted E-mails.
True Multi-channel Marketing
Probably one of the features the majority of Ontraport users are going to love the most is the possibility to easily automate sequences across various marketing channels. For example, you can easily communicate with leads by posting them a postcard or even via two-way SMS. This is possible not only via E-mail and across social platforms, but also outside the internet world. Because of this very feature, Ontraport manages to stand out a lot compared to other CRMs out there and help businesses reach clients and leads where there’s much less noise to compete with.
Excellent E-mail Delivery Rates
Ontraport has its own dedicated Internet Protocol addresses, which means that your E-mail delivery rate is excellent and allows you to easily avoid the spam box.
Highly Segmented Reporting
Thanks to UTM variables, everything is tracked with Ontraport, meaning you can easily know your client lifetime value, CPA and the specific content campaigns or lead sources that generate the best return on investment.
Great Customer Support
There are hundreds of positive reviews online about Ontraport’s amazing customer support service which consists of very savvy techs that are more than happy to educate customers and help them make the most of their CRM platform. Better yet, the company also holds a yearly conference and has an excellent amount of educational content to make sure clients can make the most of their software.
Ontraport Pricing & Coupon Code
There are currently 2 payment options that Ontraport offers and each of them comes with a different amount of resources. Given the fact Ontraport has a great interface, both of these plans will incorporate the features you need to get your campaign running fast and easy. On top of that, you’re also going to get integration with mobile platforms and WP, personalized landing pages, postcards and personalized URLs, meaning that you don’t need worry about purchasing extra third party extensions. To make it even better for the user, Ontraport also includes 2 hours of consultation.
The Pro payment solution is the first payment plan that Ontraport offers and it’s a great choice for bloggers or small companies, since it allows only two users. There’s a limit of 25 thousand contacts though and you can send up to 100 thousand E-mails per month. So this means that if you have 25 thousand contacts, then you can only send them four E-mails per month. In terms of pricing, Ontraport Pro will run you $297 dollars per month.
If you have a larger company, then Ontraport Team allows up to ten team members who can work on the same project and use the CRM to do so. And while the number of contacts you get with the Team plan is increased to 100 thousand, the number of E-mails you can send per month stays the same, 100 thousand. In terms of pricing, Ontraport Team will run you $597 dollars per month.
Basic features found in both Pro and Team packages:
- CRM (including mobile access, automaton and lead scoring).
- Integrate (social websites, integration with shopping carts, API, open source, etc).
- Services (hire a concierge team or get support).
- Publish (member only areas, easy to use publishing tool, landing pages, etc).
- Automate (setting up and creating your own automation rules).
- Partners (tracking, automating the sign-up process, creating partner program, etc).
- Payments (coupon codes, payment plans, recurring billing, order forms).
- Marketing (event management, Facebook integration, ontramail, etc).
Depending on your needs, you can choose to automate the payment plan and include extra features, such as:
- 100 thousand more E-mail messages (for 99 dollars per month).
- Extra users (47 dollars per user).
- 100 thousand more contacts (99 dollars per month).
In terms of price, it’s clear that Ontraport doesn’t come cheap and this may be a turnoff for some smaller businesses and entrepreneurs. While it’s true that when put head to head with an autoresponder, Ontraport is clearly a lot pricier, when compared to a traditional CRM, it’s very clear that it offers excellent value. It’s a lot more user friendly than MailChimp and AWeber, yet it also requires a lot more time and effort to set it up properly, because there are fewer pre-designed E-mails and templates at Ontraport.
If you’re a WP user, then Ontraport will easily integrate with it. However, if you use task management programs such as Bitrix, Trello and Asana, you’ll find that integrating with any of them directly is not yet possible.
Overall, Ontraport is an excellent platform for larger companies or companies that have a diverse or large marketing funnel. It makes it easy to set up your campaigns fast by providing you features you love in your favorite autoresponder along with the top features of an excellent CRM.