Credits for sending fee

Hi,

just signed up for this great looking service.
Assigning credits to specific clients and doing the billing to them myself will be the way to go for me, as described in http://www.campaignmonitor.com/blog/post/2729/billing-update-allocate-email-credits-to-specific-clients/.

However, if I'm correct, the client will still have to pay a 500 credit sending fee for each campaign. My problem here is that the price for this is related to the price they have to pay for every recipient being sent to. That means, if I charge them eg. 3 cent per credit for every mail sent, the sending fee will automatically be $15. But I would like to keep the sending fee lower at $5 or $10. Seems that's not possible?

Thanks,
Stefan

Diana Diana, 7 years ago

Hi Stefan,,

The send fee is a fixed amount, so if you set it at $5 (or 500 credits) it's always going to be that amount, it won't change. The per-recipient amount will be set at what you specify (3 cents for example) but it will go up and down with the number of recipients.


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D. Potter
Campaign Monitor
Stef, 7 years ago

Thanks Diana,

thought that send fee amount ($5,...) was only valid when the clients would pay themselves with their credit card, not with the credits. That solves my problem.

Diana Diana, 7 years ago

Hey Stefan. I think I might have misspoken a little bit, sorry. If your clients are paying with credits (or basically if you're set to pay FOR your clients rather than they pay for themselves) then it's always going to be with the standard fees of 500 credits and 1 credit per recipient (or the $5 plus 1 cent per if you're paying by credit card) and then you can manually bill them yourself at whatever rate you want. If they're set to pay for themselves then it would be the $5 send fee (or whatever you set it to be, but it stays fixed at that amount) and the per recipient fee (1 cent or more and it stays fixed).

Hope that makes sense!


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D. Potter
Campaign Monitor
Stef, 7 years ago

Diana,
makes sense, but then I was right the first time and the "problem" still exists: my clients have to buy their credits upfront (ofcourse, otherwise there are no credits to send emails). But if I bill them like 3 cent per credit, that means they will pay $15 (~500 credits) for the send fee... Just because there's no separation between the credits for the send fee and the credits for the mails. Right?
It would be nice if we could define ourselves how many credits our clients would have to pay for the send fee (could be even 0).

Diana Diana, 7 years ago

Stef,

Your clients don't have access to buy credits. You would buy the credits and then bill your clients for whatever your fees are. So if you tell them it's $10 per send and 3 cents per recipients you'd just assign the credits to their account but bill them at your set rate. Does that make sense?


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D. Potter
Campaign Monitor
ChrisInCincinnati ChrisInCincinnati, 7 years ago

Would it be possible (and maybe it is and I'm missing it) for us resellers to buy credits, the client(s) pay(s) at whatever marked up rate we asign, and, instead of CM charging us $5 and 1 cent per recipient, you ding our pool of credits?


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colinr, 7 years ago

Is there any news on this?

We plan to buy credits up front and then allocate them to clients. However, explaining the 'sending fee' is going to be tricky (trust me, explaining email credits can be tricky enough at times). It would be better if the clients were never aware of this aspect and we could decide how to absorb it with other costs.

I've not actually used CM beyond personal testing yet but I'm assuming clients can see how many credits they have if I assign them, therefore will notice that their list of 2,000 uses 2,500 credits.

roshodgekiss roshodgekiss, 7 years ago

Hi folks, just to update this thread, clients can now purchase email credits. You can now choose to charge your clients for email credits at the base rate, or a marked-up rate as set by you. This was a new feature in our recent update.

@colinr When you allocate credits to a client and your client then proceeds to send a campaign, CM isn't particularly verbose about how many credits have been taken out of the client's allocation. However, the client can see these details in 'Billing', but simply in terms of credits, not the monetary cost of each.

When invoicing the client outside of CM (as you would if you are allocating credits), you can ultimately absorb this with other costs - instead of making '2,500 credits' a line item, consider charging in terms of 'Campaign delivery to x recipients', or, 'Send to y recipients, with $x delivery fee', thus decoupling pricing from the number of credits allocated to their account. Credits can then be used as your internal accounting metric and explained as such. Just a thought.

Take a look at our resource on charging for email marketing for some more ideas on this.


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colinr, 7 years ago

Thanks for the reply. I agree with that post on charging for email marketing that it needs to be as simple as possible - a lot of clients don't understand this stuff, even if it seems really straightforward to us. Ideally we'd poll people about usage up front and charge them a flat rate based on that, just means we'd have to keep an eye of people stepping out of line (or encouraging low-users to get their money's worth).

Stef, 7 years ago
roshodgekiss :

Hi folks, just to update this thread, clients can now purchase email credits. You can now choose to charge your clients for email credits at the base rate, or a marked-up rate as set by you. This was a new feature in our recent update.

Unfortunally this new feature doesn't solve the problem if we want to buy credits upfront and then assign them to our clients. In that case - and colinr's example - the clients needs 2500 credits to send 2000 mails. If we charge them 3 cent per credit, that means they have to pay $15 sending fee (~ the 500 credits). But what if we only want to charge them $5 for the sending fee? We need to be able to set the number of credits for the sending fee for our clients, or the total cost for the 500 credits sending fee. That would solve this problem.

I understand your suggestion about decoupling pricing from the number of credits, but that only works if we assign credits to our client for just one campaign. If the client buys like 10000 credits and wants to use them to send several smaller campaigns (not yet defined how many) that's not possible because we don't know yet how many sending fees will need to be charged. It would work if we want the credits for the sending fees to be at the same price as the other credits, but not if we want to charge less for the sending fees.

BraceRosso, 7 years ago

A very similar exchange took place on the comments section of the feature announcement that clients can now purchase their own credits.  Basically, many of the problems or challenges we face as designers / agencies would be solved if CM could find a way to profitably make the per-campaign fee variable.  If making email campaigns more relevant through better segmentation can help increase open rates and click through rates, then the 500 credit flat rate is counter-productive for all of us.  It's discouraging clients from sending more targeted campaigns to their various lists or segments.  Many of us are advising clients to send more campaigns with better targeted content, but the reply from the client is, "if I follow your advice, can you at least reduce my per-campaign fee..." but our hands are tied to provide that kind of pricing flexibility.

Here are some options I suggested in the comments of the feature announcement.  Would love to hear that CM is heading in one of these directions:
1) Least favorable, but at least a step forward: Make 500 credits the minimum, but allow us to mark up per campaign fees separately from per-email rates.
2) Better, but still limiting for agencies... a bigger step in the right direction: Lower the minimum credits per campaign to something like 250 or 300 so that we have a lot more flexibility to encourage clients to send more targeted campaigns.  This could ACTUALLY RESULT IN CM GENERATING MORE REVENUE BECAUSE CLIENTS WOULD FEEL MORE COMFORTABLE WITH SENDING MORE CAMPAIGNS. There’s a sweet spot in there that maximizes the number of campaigns sent per account, and I don’t think it’s at the flat 500 credit mark.
3) Offer CM account managers a complete control over per-campaign rates (even zero) in exchange for a pre-purchase minimum or an annual fee.  This would allow us almost complete pricing freedom to compete more aggressively with alternative platforms and continue to advise clients to keep writing and creating targeted campaigns to smaller segments of their lists.

roshodgekiss roshodgekiss, 7 years ago

Hi again Stef & BraceRosso, many thanks for your comments in both the forum and the blog. As per our previous announcement, we've been looking at ways to make our pricing structure more flexible. For example, whether the fixed 500-credit delivery fee when using email credits should be revised to encourage smaller/more frequent sends. As always, we'll let you know if there are changes to our pricing structure.

Many thanks again for your feedback on this.


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Mathew Mathew, 7 years ago

@BraceRosso

Regarding your 1) above, you can already markup campaign fees separately if you let client's pay by credit card, just FYI

Although any suggestions about what maximises the number of campaigns sent is purely speculative from the outside, we do appreciate your feedback, and it is always something we are looking at.


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BraceRosso, 6 years ago

Mathew, you're correct about 1), but if I do that I will be sacrificing potentially significant margins, because I can't pre-purchase credits for a discount then sell them back to my clients and let them pay with a credit card via the CM interface.  I'd have to invoice them, and they'd then see that each campaign is charged 500 credits.

While you're right about maximizing the number of campaigns is speculative, I think it's hard to argue that more flexibility would result in a degradation of how the platform is used.  I think we all agree that more relevant messages to smaller, more targeted lists/segments is an email marketing best practice.  The flat 500 credit fee does not support that practice.

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