- Trial period
- Workflow optimization and marketing automation mapping
- Built-in visual editor
- Expensive compared to competitors
- Lacking popular external integrations
Drip is a marketing automation platform built as an “eCommerce customer relationship management” (ECRM) tool. While the database functions of the platform track every digital engagement with a particular customer or audience member, the marketing automation platform offer a series of tools that can streamline any campaign, nonprofit, or consultancy operations.
ESP versus ECRM
On paper, Drip emulates the functionality of a traditional email services provider (ESP) such as Mailchimp. The only real difference is that Drip has a CRM functionality with built-in marketing automation mapping capabilities. But, compared to other platforms, nothing Drip does is proprietary. For example, Drip prides itself on its marketing automation and customer journey mapping, although platforms like Salesforce Pardot, Oracle Eloqua, and ActiveCampaign all have similar functions. But, the basic functionality of Drip is that it is a tool that lets users send automatic emails based on actions the user takes on your site and over email.
The visual editor
Drip has a visual point-and-click email editor for campaigns. Unlike the drag-and-drop editor that graces so many ESPs currently on the market, which provide formatting blocks stitched together, Drip’s editor allows users to click anywhere and create content without dragging content together. Besides the point-and-click functionality, visual editors in this space do share a common use purpose. Any text box, call to action field, image, and formatting capabilities all involve similar rich text editors, various font styles, traditional text editing features, color scheme regulation, GIF image support, and so much more. All of Drip’s emails are built and can be edited in HTML. Users also can access the platform’s text editor to create their broadcast or campaign emails.
Other benefits and experience
Drip has in-platform support via live chat and traditional email support. According to our user satisfaction research, the vast majority of Drip’s users are satisfied with their experience. Many cite the support regime while most adore the visually stunning platform dashboard and surprising ease of use. The home dashboard, for example, is clean and provides adequate navigation for a platform with a functionality of this magnitude. Additionally, we found that using the visual editor was surprisingly relaxed and comfortable to master after a few moments of exploring.
Drip integrates with several third-party platforms so that users may create an augmented experience. The only downside is that the number of integrations that are currently within the Drip ecosystem is limited to just a few dozen marketing platforms while collaboration tools such as Slack aren’t integrated. Regardless, Drip’s integrations include key social media connections, webhooks to other marketing stacks, and links to mainstream CRM such as Salesforce and Insightly. Zapier also hosts a wide range of integrations. The platform additionally offers up its native API so that developers can create custom connections. It also can integrate with most CMS systems to track clicks and engagements on your website to send emails based on actions.
Drip offers two week free trials and migration services for new customers. Once a trial ends, users can choose between Drip’s “Basic” or “Pro” plans at $49 per month or $99 per month respectively. The “Basic” plan offers users full platform functionality while only hosting up to 2,500 subscribers. “Pro” supports up to 5,000 subscribers. For customers with over 5,000 subscribers on their email list, Drip offers custom pricing.
ActiveCampaign, another platform with workflow and marketing automation capabilities, only charges its plans at $39 per month for 2,500 subscribers. Agile CRM, a customer relationship management system with an email marketing capability is also a comparable product with advanced tagging and automation mapping. $8.99 per user is the starting price for premium Agile CRM plans. Mailchimp is only $10 per month but does not feature the email marketing automations featured in this platform. If you’re looking for a “full” experience that offers an enterprise approach, Oracle Eloqua and Salesforce Pardot serve as excellent options with pricing that is usually higher than Drip, ActiveCampaign, and Mailchimp. Compared to these price points, Drip could be expensive for small organizations seeking cost-effectiveness at the lowest price possible, but the premium natures of Drip could also serve as a selling point for organizations unable to deploy an enterprise ESP.
What we think
Drip is a responsive and user-friendly email marketing solution with the added benefit of their “ECRM” framework. For organizations that merely need email marketing automation, Drip could be costly in the long run. Still, it doesn’t disqualify Drip as an effective marketing automation platform for the organizations and campaigns that do utilize it. Organizations that don’t have a CRM such as Salesforce or Agile CRM could deploy Drip as an augmentation to their existing marketing stack or a more advanced option than traditional Mailchimp-centric strategies.
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