Why I switched to ConvertKit from ActiveCampaign - My ConvertKit Review

In 2021, I moved from ActiveCampaign to ConvertKit. In this post, I want to give you my unbiased ConvertKit review after roughly 1 year of using it and sending over 455,000 emails.

My Convertkit review: It's an easy-to-use email marketing platform for creators. Sending campaigns, creating sign-up forms, integrating with 3rd-party software like WordPress or ThriveCart, or segmenting your email list is super easy. I have not used their "Earn" features yet, so I cannot speak to those.

Here's a current screenshot of my ConvertKit dashboard to give you an idea of my email list size and email newsletter performance:

You can see that the click rate is pretty rubbish, but I'm happy about my average open rate of over 35%. That's way higher than the industry standard for "corporate products" (in the end, my courses mostly sell B2B) of 16.4% that Smart Insights is showing in their 2022 statistic.

Before I dive into this ConvertKit review, let's go over what makes a good email marketing tool in the first place and why you want to have one as a content creator.

What makes a good email marketing tool?

Email marketing is a great way to stay in touch with your audience and keep them up to date on your latest projects. But with so many different email marketing tools out there, how do you know which one is right for you? In this blog post, I'll give tips on finding a good email marketing tool and explain why I chose ConvertKit.

When it comes to email marketing, there are a few things you'll want to keep in mind. First, you'll want to ensure that the tool you choose offers a good selection of templates. That way, you can quickly and easily create beautiful emails that will grab your readers' attention. Secondly, you'll want to ensure that the tool you choose offers a wide range of features. That way, you can tailor your emails to fit your specific needs. And lastly, you'll want to ensure that the tool you choose is easy to use. Nobody wants to spend hours trying to figure out how to use a complicated email marketing tool.

Why I Moved To ConvertKit

I moved to ConvertKit from ActiveCampaign because I struggled with email open rates. I sent out daily newsletters for months but couldn't get my subscribers to open them.

Here's a screenshot of the amount of content I was creating:

Email newsletters screenshot as part of my ConvertKit review

I was so determined to make email marketing work that I even created an entire process using Jasper.ai and Notion. With that process, I was writing and sending email newsletters almost daily:

Yet, on average, my open rates from my email newsletters sent through ActiveCampaign were stuck below 5%. Sadly, I didn't take screenshots from those I could put into this ConvertKit review.

After doing some troubleshooting and learning a lot about setting up email accounts for sending newsletters, I realized that my ActiveCampaign emails were going out from a blacklisted server IP.

I contacted their support but sadly they weren't able to fix the problem and get the IP off that blacklist (or move my account to a different email server on their end).

That's when I decided to have a fresh start with my email marketing using ConvertKit.

Why I Chose ConvertKit

I knew that a few of my friends were big fans of ConvertKit, and many Virtual Summit Mastery students hosted virtual summits through ConvertKit.

After chatting with their pre-sales support, I got a free migration of my entire list and most of my automated sequences - which were over 100.

While not all automations were migrated successfully, we picked the most important sequences and the ConvertKit staff made sure those were all set up and running smoothly.

They did an outstanding job of setting up triggers, tagging, delays, and all the important details that make email automations work so well.

For me, nothing is more important than having solid communication with my email list and building my brand using email newsletters.

I can attribute single emails to getting me well into four figures in sales, that's why my email list is my holy grail in business.

If you've read more of my content, you know that I'm big on getting clients through content marketing.

Without email, this strategy is doomed to fail.

ConvertKit ticked the most important boxes that I was looking for:

  • Easy to use and set up
  • Integrate with WordPress and ThriveCart
  • List segmentation
  • Automated sequences for onboarding new subscribers, selling, and delivering virtual summits
  • Good customer support
  • High deliverability (based on reports from my friends)

ConvertKit Review: The Good Things

Let's shift gears in this ConvertKit review and talk about the good outcomes I saw after using ConvertKit:

Email open rates increased.

After moving to ConvertKit, my email open rates tripled from 5% to 15%.

I attribute this change to getting off that blacklisted server IP and finally being able to hit the inboxes more reliably.

As you can see in the screenshot above, I'm now averaging 35% open rates. When I send campaigns to "unopens", I can get the open rate for a single campaign to well over 40%.

I could only dream of those numbers before using ConvertKit.

Sending out email newsletters is a breeze.

It's just so easy. The ConvertKit team replicated my email layouts when they set up my account initially.

All I have to do is to clone previous email campaigns and update the email body and subject lines.

I use some cool snippets to personalize emails from my friend Jason Resnick. They get copied over every time I duplicate an email newsletter.

Segmenting the recipients of my daily email newsletters works like a charm, too.

I should mention in this ConvertKit review that I've set up pre-defined segments (cold subscribers, subscribers currently in promotion, etc) that I can pick based on the topic and target audience for each newsletter.

Building automated sequences is easy.

I could add 10-15 positive outcomes to this ConvertKit review but that'd make the review much too long.

Let me, therefore, finish the positive results of moving to ConvertKit by raving about the automated sequences.

It is so easy to build sequences for onboarding new subscribers, promote evergreen webinars (and follow up to sell the offer), and add segmentation logic to the sequences (e.g. based on tags or day and time).

What I'm missing from ActiveCampaign

This ConvertKit review isn't meant to simply pitch ConvertKit as the best email tool ever - there is one thing that I am missing from ActiveCampaign.

Maybe I simply haven't found this feature yet...

I don't know how to make email subscribers skip ahead in sequences based on the current day in relation to a special day like the start of a virtual summit.

In ActiveCampaign, the automation has a "Goal" feature. My automation would add the start date of a summit to a custom field for a new subscriber when they signed up and then the subscriber would skip to the "Goal" that matches the current date.

This is handy when you have one onboarding automation for an event that can start two months out, but you still want to use that automation just one week before the summit starts.

Your subscribers would simply skip the emails being sent out in the 8 weeks before the summit and would jump to the email that goes out the week before the summit if they signed up just one week before the summit.

It's hard to explain without a video and it's not a common use case if you don't host virtual summits.

But I wanted to bring this up to keep this ConvertKit review balanced and transparent. This feature would be great to have for me personally, it probably won't bother you.

Conclusion after 1 year of using ConvertKit

To cap off this ConvertKit review, let me say that it was the right move to switch from ActiveCampaign to ConvertKit.

The engagement of my email subscribers is way higher.

I get more responses and opens.

It's easy to send out almost daily newsletters and grow my brand using email.

I highly recommend ConvertKit if you're a creator or run an online business.

Hey, I'm Jan!

Jan Koch

I run the Uncommon Solopreneur to help solopreneurs like you and me get paid for our content.

It's great to have you here!

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