Automating marketing tasks. Open source tools

Automating marketing tasks

In our article Previously we had explained the usefulness of marketing task automation tools. Now is the time to look at two good open source options available.


There is one thing I have to note. IThe internet is full of lists of "open source" or "free" programs for whatever. When one reviews in depth, one finds that very few of these programs meet the conditions.s established by the Free Software Foundation or the Open Source Initiative.

As in general these are not blogs not dedicated to computing, they are likely to believe that the terms free and open source software apply to solutions that include a free to use mode.

To be clear; Neither HubSpot nor Mailchimp are open source, although they do have free plans

Automating marketing tasks with open source solutions

For the purposes of this article, the most relevant differences between open source and commercial solutions are as follows:

Accommodation

Open source solutions require hiring a server. the installation of an operating system and all the necessary programs for the automation manager to work. This includes; web server, programming language support, database engine, etc. You also have to take care of updates.

In reality, some web hosting providers may have plans with some of the solutions we discussed already installed, reducing much of the work.

If you opt for commercial services, they work with a shared server among many users. Only you will have access to your account and your data (in theory) but you have no control over the software used or the possibility of adopting additional security measures.

Costs

I did not do the test, but it is possible that for moderate use, the solutions we recommend can be hosted on a home server. but, for a massive use, the best is a virtual private server. The monthly cost of a VPS can cost around 6 dollars. The cheapest Mailchimp payment plan starts from the 9.

Flexibility

Payment services mean a great time saving because they have standard solutions which undoubtedly includes most of the things that users may need. You just have to plan the campaigns, get the contacts and that's it. The issue is if you need some kind of customization, or you should go to a higher plan or run out of it.

Open source solutions have no limits in terms of their performance (beyond the technical limitations of the server) Once you have finished the configuration procedure, the possibilities are limitless.

Two options

mautic

Es the first that you should try. From the Drupal developers themselves, allows you to do everything you need to attract potential customers,  contact them through email and social media campaigns and engage them with landing pages and content download offers.

With the integration of third-party services, you can contact clients via SMS and WhatsApp.

A great feature is the ability to automate campaign decisions. For example, if client X does not open the emails sent to him, he is removed from the list. On the other hand, if the client Y shows interest in a certain subject, more offers are sent to him on it.

I installed Mautic on a virtual private server. It took a bit of googling (I followed three different tutorials) but it wasn't too complicated.

OpenEMM

OpenEMM it is the open source version of a commercial program called EMM. Nor it has the full capabilities of Mautic, but is sufficient for the creation of marketing campaigns of modest proportions.

Among its features is the ability to associate the sending of the email to a later date or event, use html templates, segment the audience by behavior, track who opens the emails and view statistics in real time.

The two programs we are discussing have their interface translated into Spanish.


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