So, I thought this would be easy. I’m looking for a church email list management solution that I thought would be pretty simple. But apparently the features I want aren’t that easy to find. Here’s what I’m looking for:
- The ability to send emails to different segments of a master list (youth, prayer requests, announcements, etc.)
- An opt-in form online for subscribers with the ability to have users choose from multiple subscription lists and manage their preferences in one place
- Here’s where I’m having trouble:
- The ability to send a message to a list segment (i.e. youth only) from my email. I don’t want to have to log in and do a huge HTML email template thing. So, I want to send an email to something like HopeLutheranRandomYouthEmailString@email.com and it automatically initiates an email to everyone in the youth segment of my list.
- The ability to add people who are allowed to do the above. I want the secretary, the lady who manages our prayer chain, and the youth intern to be able to send out emails to their lists as well.
With all the advanced email marketing solutions out there, I figured this would be no problem. In fact, I don’t really even need a fancy HTML newsletter. I just want to get information out to the appropriate groups. I’ve researched the following options and they don’t work for whatever reason:
- LISTServ – This is really the solution I am probably looking for, but it’s kinda complex and expensive. I’m still unsure if it has the ease of use for subscribers to manage their preferences, too.
- MailChimp – Everyone I talk to who has used MailChimp loves it, but it won’t do what I want. I love their subscription forms and user management. It would be easy for anyone to subscribe to and manage different email lists. The problem is that there is no way to send from email directly to a list without logging into the MailChimp website.
- ListBox – This almost had what I wanted, but there was no way for users to add themselves to multiple lists at one time. Each separate list needed a new form to be filled out.
- JangoMail – I think this might do what I want, but it’s a bit pricey compared to the others.
I feel like I’m looking in all the wrong places. Surely there’s a way to do what I want to do for a reasonable price. For the amount of functionality a service like MailChimp offers at a great price, I really don’t want to pay through the nose for the simple features I’m looking for.
Does anyone have any suggestions?