MailChimp is used to organize email addresses and to send marketing emails and newsletters. It’s free for users with under 2,000 subscribers to send up to 12,000 emails/month. After that, there is the option to pay a monthly rate for unlimited emails, or to purchase as you go. The program is accessed completely online, and can have multiple users for the same organization, allowing different people across multiple departments to have access to the same information.
I think this is a great tool for a small arts organization because it’s easy to use, free, and integrates well across social media platforms. An arts organization can use MailChimp for everything from an email marketing blast to thanking guests after a special event. Creating a campaign is easy enough that anyone with basic computer knowledge can accomplish a professional looking email without a major time commitment. Newsletter sign-up forms can be integrated into your organization’s Facebook page and website, so even maintaining lists is simple. MailChimp has built in analytics, which can also be integrated with Facebook, Twitter, and Google Analytics, in order to track social media activity and traffic to your website that come from the emails you send.
While MailChimp has many competitors, I think that it is the best choice for small arts organizations for two reasons. The first is its support options. Since small organizations are working with limited staff, having the ability to get help with a project is extremely important. The second thing that sets MailChimp apart is that it provides unlimited storage space for uploaded images. For arts organizations that want to use lots of images to get their patrons excited, having that storage space is crucial. Overall, I think that the ease of use, social media integration, and support system for its clients are what sets MailChimp apart.