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The good news is that many such tools are available to help you with various aspects of your marketing program, including marketing automation, customer engagement, and omnichannel marketing.
Two of the best tools are Braze and Mailchimp. Both are popular digital platforms for companies looking to streamline and scale up their marketing functions, get closer to their customers, and build mutually-beneficial relationships with them. However, choosing one between Braze vs Mailchimp is very challenging.
This article will answer all questions so you can better understand each platform, and more importantly, make an informed choice that is best for your marketing program, brand, and customers.
What is Braze?
Braze is a vertically integrated platform that’s purpose-built for customer engagement. It offers a flexible, open ecosystem and a host of channels to help you promote your brand and reach every member of your target audience on a personal level.
Your customers likely prefer some channels over others to engage with your brand, whether it’s during the awareness, purchase, or post-purchase stage of their customer journey. You need to identify these channels and ensure that you connect with each customer on their preferred channels.
More importantly, you must send them the right message at the right time on those channels to acquire them, retain them, and keep them loyal to your brand. Here’s where Braze can be a very useful tool in your marketing arsenal.
Braze is designed to help you improve your two-way customer engagement abilities with omnichannel marketing, in-the-moment iteration, and Artificial Intelligence (AI).
The platform includes tools for email marketing, SMS marketing, customer journey management, journey mapping, customer analytics, and more. Thus, one unified platform will help you manage all your brand communication and advertising, and deliver responsive, hyper-personalized experiences to each customer on every channel.
What Can You Do with Braze?
If you are looking to enhance omnichannel customer engagement in a focused and scalable way, Braze is a great platform choice. Braze will help you personalize onboarding journeys and make a great first impression on new customers with content like product feature emails, in-app messages, mobile push notifications, and more.
You can also orchestrate responsive, cross-channel experiences for existing customers to keep them engaged and “stuck” to your brand.
Leverage this data to classify and segment your target audience, design personalized messages for every channel, and orchestrate personalized email and SMS campaigns that will wow your subscribers. Thus, you can send unique messages that resonate with every customer and compel them to stay with your brand for the long-term.
Here are some of the things you can do with Braze – easily, scalable, and in real time:
- Engage in personalized, trust-building conversations with every member of your audience.
- Automate transactional messaging to stay connected with customers without substantially adding to marketing overhead.
- Set up intuitive and effective one-on-one campaigns across all the digital channels that matter to your brand and customers.
- Build automated, cross-channel, customer-centric journeys and email campaigns for any customer and marketing goal.
- Promote your products to a captive audience via personalized and automated SMS marketing, mobile push notifications, in-app messaging, in-browser messaging, and more
In addition to simplifying these day-to-day marketing activities, Braze can help you continually optimize your marketing and customer engagement processes.
The Braze Predictive Suite is based on powerful Machine Learning technology that leverages data to help you determine the best engagement strategy and add more value with every customer interaction and campaign – for you and them. You also get access to Braze Intelligence Suite that will help you optimize every campaign and cross-channel customer journey for the best possible results.
Braze integrates with 50+ tools and apps across the web, Android, and iOS universes. It also works seamlessly with leading technologies like AWS, Snowflake, and Looker. Take advantage of these integrations, plus its open ecosystem, SDKs, and flexible APIs to scale up your marketing program across all your digital channels.
All in all, Braze is one of the best platforms to enhance customer engagement with automated marketing, personalized interactions, targeted messages, and intelligent data insights in real time and at any scale. For all these reasons, leading brands choose the Braze customer engagement platform.
Who is Braze For?
Braze is suitable for small businesses, medium-sized companies, and large enterprises. Basically, the platform can be used by any firm looking to enhance their customer engagement capabilities and deliver meaningful experiences on every channel and every stage of a customer’s brand journey.
With Braze, companies of all sizes can set up cross-channel marketing campaigns to attract and retain more customers, strengthen customer relationships, and capture customer loyalty and brand advocacy.
That said, Braze is so full of features that it can be difficult to navigate and use for smaller marketing teams, freelancers, and individuals. For these users, working with a team of Braze experts like InboxArmy is an effective way to make the most of the platform’s capabilities and capture the maximum ROI from their investment.
The Pros and Cons of Braze
Braze is one of the most powerful and feature-rich customer engagement platforms available today. It provides a wide range of tools for orchestrating:
- Email marketing campaigns
- SMS marketing campaigns
- Responsive, cross-channel experiences
- Dynamic audience segmentation based on live-updating data
- Content and journey personalization by customer, channel, send time, language, age group, and other factors
- Automated customer engagement with in-the-moment iterations, real-time data, and AI
Very few, if any, other platforms can help you with these aspects of your marketing program. Braze also has numerous other useful features for:
- Creating customer-centric journeys with an intuitive WYSIWYG editor (Braze Canvas Flow)
- A/B testing emails before sends
- Creating drip email campaigns for specific marketing goals
- Adding dynamic content to messages to impress your audience
- Creating personalized landing pages and web forms to capture and convert more leads
- Ingesting data from your app, website, and back-end systems to inform and improve your engagement strategies
- Test and measure the impact of every campaign and take data-driven decisions to push customer engagement forward
As a Braze customer, you also get access to a comprehensive resource library containing documentation, user guides, reports, and webinars. Use these resources to better understand the platform’s capabilities and possibilities for your marketing program.
One con of Braze is that it doesn’t provide a free trial. So, if you are not yet ready to put money down on a customer engagement/marketing automation platform, you might want to keep looking before deciding on Braze.
You should also be aware of these other drawbacks of Braze:
- No image library
- No support for building customer surveys
- No list management or subscriber management
- Compliant with ISO27001, SOC 2, and HIPAA, but not with CAN-SPAM, GDPR, and other privacy regulations
- Its Android SDK has been known to crash
- Connected content can be difficult to edit without engineering support
- No online support
Now that you know more about Braze, let’s take a look at MailChimp.
What is MailChimp?
In the world of email marketing automation platforms, MailChimp (or Intuit MailChimp) is the best. It is also one of the oldest and most popular, with a large base of loyal and long-term customers all over the world.
MailChimp provides a wide range of email marketing and automation tools to orchestrate world-class and targeted multichannel campaigns, create effective audience segments, and make your branded content more engaging with AI.
With MailChimp in your marketing stack, you can potentially drive more traffic and sales by setting up triggered email automations based on customer behaviors. You can also leverage pre-built journeys to win new customers, uncover new cross-selling opportunities, reduce abandoned carts, and reengage with existing customers.
Personalized and targeted emails are known to improve customer-brand relationships and brand revenues. MailChimp makes it easy to design and deliver such emails at scale. Moreover, you can improve your personalization capabilities – and results! – by capturing key information like buying behaviors, survey responses, chat interactions, and support tickets through the data-rich MailChimp platform.
What Can You Do with Mailchimp?
MailChimp is a user-friendly way to ramp up your marketing program across email, landing pages, digital ads, social posts, and postcards. Its cutting-edge tools are designed to help you turn emails into revenue and build your brand’s value.
There are tools to set up automated & effective email campaigns, predict which customers to target and with what kind of messaging, create dynamic content to wow your audience, and set up customer journeys to nurture customers and convert more of them at scale.
Some of the other things you can do with MailChimp:
- Create a business website that comes with built-in marketing tools
- Add online scheduling to your website to encourage more people to engage directly with you
- Claim a domain so your target audience can find you easily and engage with you faster and more often
- Set up your online (e-commerce) store and drive more sales with Mailchimp abandoned cart emails and other tools
- Create personalized email marketing campaigns, signup forms, surveys, social posts, and landing pages with high-quality, relevant content
- Automate multiple aspects of your marketing program, such as transactional emails, journey-building, retargeted ads, social media content, and email send time optimization
- Get real-time insights to track marketing performance and identify areas of improvement
The MailChimp platform also provides tools for content optimization, design customizations, and customer relationship management (CRM). Plus, you get personalized recommendations unique to your brand to help you:
- Enhance and personalize your content across any channel and customer segment
- Target customers by customer lifetime value (CLV) and likelihood to purchase to boost revenues
- Set up automations for trigger-based emails, abandoned cart emails, and engagement and re-engagement emails to convert more customers at scale
- Get more opens, clicks, and sales from every campaign
- Market smarter and increase marketing ROI by measuring customer satisfaction and experimenting with new ideas
Who is MailChimp For?
Small and medium businesses (SMBs) and larger companies can all benefit from MailChimp’s growing ecosystem of marketing tools and integrations. You can use the platform, regardless of how many contacts you have. Thus, whether your contacts list is small (500 contacts) or massive (250,000+ contacts), MailChimp has a plan you can sign up for.
Also, MailChimp is known as a user-friendly marketing platform with numerous intuitive, low-code tools. Even so, if your in-house marketing team is new to MailChimp or unaware of the best practices to make the most of this powerful platform.
Outsourcing your email marketing/marketing automation to an external team like InboxArmy can be a great strategy. InboxArmy’s Mailchimp experts can leverage MailChimp and its powerful capabilities to the best possible extent and help you achieve your business and marketing goals.
The Pros and Cons of MailChimp
Most organizations that use MailChimp appreciate its features that enable them to establish a commanding online presence, grow their audience in the right way, and create highly effective multichannel marketing campaigns with the power of automations, data, and AI.
Another advantage of Mailchimp is that it offers multiple pricing tiers. Such flexibility enables all kinds of businesses to take advantage of its capabilities for their own marketing functions and goals. A free version is also available for those looking to set up email marketing for 500 or fewer contacts.
Some of the other pros of MailChimp are:
- Robust marketing CRM for small businesses
- Audience dashboard with pre-built customer segments
- Behavioral targeting and personalization tools to build 1-on-1 experiences for every customer
- Digital asset management tool to easily manage and sync photos, videos, graphics, and other marketing files
- Dynamic content that drives more engagement and results
- Subject Line Helper to craft compelling subject lines that encourage more opens
- A/B testing, easily digestible reports, and smart recommendations for continuous campaign optimization
- Easy list management, subscriber management, and template management
The MailChimp team also provides multiple support avenues, including email, chat, & phone support. Plus, you get access to a comprehensive knowledgebase and repository of marketing tools to make the most of the platform for your marketing program and business.
One drawback of MailChimp is that there is no free trial so you can’t test-drive the platform before purchase. You may also need more flexibility in email designs and templates than MailChimp can provide.
Also, MailChimp will only allow you to organize your contacts by category or tags. If you want to organize them by last name or first name, or if your contacts come from different sources, MailChimp’s contact organization capabilities may not be adequate.
Braze vs Mailchimp: A Head-to-head Comparison
Let’s take a look at how Braze and MailChimp compare with this head-to-head comparison table:
|Email marketing + mobile-optimized emails||Yes||Yes|
|Landing pages and web forms||Yes||Yes|
|Mobile push messaging||Yes||No|
|Ease of use||4.2/5*||4.4/5|
|Phone-based customer support||Yes||Yes|
|Online customer support||No||Yes|
|Suitable for||SMBs, large enterprises||SMBs, large enterprises, freelancers|
In-depth Analysis of Braze vs Mailchimp
Here’s a detailed comparison of Braze and Mailchimp with respect to some important characteristics and features.
Braze does not publish the price of its email marketing solution on its website. To figure out what the platform will cost you, you will have to contact the Sales team directly. In general, the price you pay will depend on the features you choose. Also, do remember that Braze does not offer a free trial or a free low-key version of the platform.
Unlike Braze, the MailChimp pricing structure is available on its website. The price varies depending on the number of contacts in your contacts list. For example, for 500 contacts, the pricing structure looks like this:
But if you have 30,000 contacts, the pricing model changes to this:
A free version of MailChimp is available, but only if your list has less than 500 contacts. If you have more than 500 contacts, regardless of whether you are a small/medium business, large company, or freelancer, you will have to sign up for one of the other paid plans. Like Braze, MailChimp does not offer a free trial but you can always start with the free version and use it for a while before signing up for one of the other paid plans.
2. Customer Surveys
Customer surveys are a valuable way to understand your audience and then use this understanding to inform and improve your digital marketing campaigns. In MailChimp, you can easily create such surveys and collect audience responses.
MailChimp provides a hosted survey form to create detailed surveys that you can then share from your social posts or emails. You can also add a poll or survey merge tag in your marketing emails to ask recipients questions that they can respond to directly inside their inbox.
Also, MailChimp integrates with third-party surveying tools like SurveyMonkey so you can pull in third-party information, create a survey outside Mailchimp, and then link it to your campaign.
Braze does not provide a survey feature within its platform. However, Braze has partnered with other firms that will allow you to create targeted, user-friendly surveys.
One of them is Iterate. Iterate provides smart research and survey design tools that will allow you to learn from your customers and create more targeted campaigns.
You can send out a link to your Iterate survey via a campaign or flow within Braze to enrich your customer data. When the survey recipient fills out the survey, the responses to each question will be defined as a custom user attribute in Braze
Some other survey partners for Braze are Digioh, Ada, and Survicate.
3. In-app/Browser/Mobile Push Messaging
As an omnichannel customer engagement tool, it shouldn’t surprise you to know that Braze supports multiple engagement channels including in-app, browser, and mobile push messaging.
Mobile and web push notifications are a great way to send time-sensitive messages and reengage lapsed customers. Similarly, interactive in-app and browser messages will help you capture customer attention and increase engagement, especially if you combine them with email marketing.
Mailchimp is a feature-rich and powerful platform to get to know your audience, simplify email marketing, leverage behavioral targeting, and create on-brand websites, eCommerce stores, organic social posts, and targeted digital ads.
However, it does not support in-app messaging, browser messaging, and mobile push messaging so if you are looking to add these channels to your audience engagement strategy, Braze may be a better choice than MailChimp.
4. Data, Analytics, Reporting
MailChimp includes powerful analytics capabilities. The platform will analyze your audience engagement numbers and provide Smart Recommendations (personalized guidance) to help you optimize your marketing approach with each campaign.
It also provides a Content Optimizer feature that will compare your email campaigns against best practices and then provide suggestions to improve your copy, imagery, and layout, and make every email more engaging.
Also, all your data is available in one centralized place so you get a holistic view of performance and sophisticated, actionable insights for future campaigns.
MailChimp provides reports for audience insights, campaign revenues, and benchmarking, as well as an audience dashboard with tools to understand your contact data and act on it quickly to maximize your marketing bang-for-your-buck.
Like MailChimp, Braze also provides robust analytics capabilities. One major difference between the two platforms is that MailChimp doesn’t claim to harness real-time data whereas Braze does.
With Braze, you get real-time analytics capabilities to understand the performance of all your campaigns and improve them across platforms and channels. Moreover, the data is live-updating so you can build more precise audiences and act faster on customer behaviors and preferences in the moment to reach every customer on a more personal level.
5. Build a Website or Online Store
MailChimp is a platform to not only market your business online, but also to get it online. For example, if you don’t already have a business website or eCommerce store, you can set up both with Mailchimp. With Mailchimp’s Website Builder, you can easily create, customize, and promote your website, even if you don’t have design or coding experience (or skills).
Plus, the website will be SEO-optimized so you can expect good traffic via Google and other search engines. You can also claim a custom domain to build your online presence and then connect it to your MailChimp website with its Websites & Commerce plan (paid).
Similarly, if you are a B2C business, you can set up your eCommerce store with MailChimp. The platform comes with numerous built-in marketing tools to help you drive traffic, reach more customers, drive more sales, and deliver seamless brand experiences to every shopper via your online store.
Braze does not provide tools to set up a website or online store. The platform is mainly designed for omnichannel engagement, so if you already have a website (or store), it will help you get the right message to your audience on any channel of their (and your) choosing. However, if you don’t yet have a website or store, you will have to look elsewhere (e.g., MailChimp) to set them up.
1. Braze vs Mailchimp: which platform is easier to use?
For digital marketing or customer engagement experts, both Braze and MailChimp will be fairly easy to use. But in general, Mailchimp is somewhat easier to use because of its low-code or no-code marketing tools, intuitive design tools, and advanced automation tools. If Braze is your platform of choice, you will benefit more by working with an external team of email marketing consultants like InboxArmy.
2. Braze vs Mailchimp: which platform is cheaper?
The price of Braze would depend on the features you select while the price of MailChimp would depend on the number of contacts in your contacts list. Thus, it’s impossible to say which platform is “cheaper”. Also, instead of focusing only on this aspect, you will benefit more by first understanding your marketing needs and then choosing the platform that best fits those needs.
3. Braze vs Mailchimp: Which platform is better for email marketing?
Both Braze and Mailchimp provide user-friendly email marketing tools. Thus, you can use either platform to create audience segments, build customer journeys, and create stunning campaigns. That said, MailChimp is widely considered one of the best email marketing platforms available today so if this is your focus area, you might benefit more from MailChimp rather than Braze.
Braze vs Mailchimp:? Which One Should You Choose?
The answer to this question is: It depends.
Neither Braze nor MailChimp is “better” than the other. If your primary goal is to enhance your omnichannel customer engagement, Braze is a good choice. But if you are looking to streamline your email marketing program and get better results from it, MailChimp could be the better option.
Both platforms come with unique features that could benefit your marketing program and brand. Choose the platform that best matches your requirements and goals. Get to know each platform better and do a head-to-head comparison to determine whether you need Braze or MailChimp. We hope this article helps you make the best choice!
If you need more 1×1 advice or support to determine whether you should add Braze or MailChimp to your marketing stack, contact us. We are a full service email marketing agency and can help you clarify your goals and choose the platform that is most likely to help you meet them.