web designer + digital marketing educator


Web design





Flodesk Email Marketing

If you’re on the hunt for the prettiest email marketing platform, hands down Flodesk wins. It it why I loved them so much – that is right, that is past tense. I had to break up with my all time favorite email marketing platform, the beauty that was Flodesk.

I referred countless clients to them as well as trained my clients who work with me 1:1 to Become Socially Savvy, how to seamlessly manage their own email marketing. Flodesk has the most aesthetically pleasing email builder and it simplifies email marketing. This is why I loved it so much and taught all my clients to use it who had struggled with the tech aspects of Mailchimp, Converkit and ActiveCampaign to name a few.

Flodesk and I had a wonderful relationship and naturally when my lovely client, Food Network chef Melissa Mayo came to me to help her launch her new Healthy Living is Beautifully Reset Challenge, I got so excited about moving her to Flodesk from Mailchimp. Beautifully designed emails were going to hit inbox’s and it would be a great new teaser to her new website and re-brand launching in 2021 that I have been helping her with.

The emails and the the welcome sequence were all designed and ready to go, I brought over all our lists and countless hours later, went to hit send ready for launch when we got a message from Flodesk saying that our lists needed to be reviewed first. This was on a Thursday, I quickly contacted support and to be honest wondered how such an oversight could happen. Surely, they would have something in place that would warn you lists needed to be reviewed before I even hit the upload button? Turns out they don’t.

No live chat, no phone number, no other way to contact anyone at Flodesk, Melissa and I took to contacting them through Instagram and still nothing. On a Monday, four days later we finally heard from the review team, “Hi Jess, Everything should be in good sending order in your account. Please try and send your email again and let me know.” I should note at this point that we had been sending emails through Mailchimp without any issues and used all the same lists.

Finally, sigh of relief, we can launch, and I wanted to put behind the fact that it took this long for Flodesk to help us and explain to us what was the problem with the lists in the first place. First email goes out and we launch the welcome sequence which goes to everyone who signs up and has some super important information about the reset challenge.

On Tuesday, I go to send the second email for the launch sequence, and again I receive a notice that our account is on hold and our lists need to be reviewed again. I panic inside. I email Flodesk and quickly realize everyone who is signing up for the challenge is now not getting the welcome email either. Same thing happens…..we hear from no one, no support whatsoever and it screws our email marketing launch. I am now manually having to contact each sign up and I just keep sending SOS emails to Flodesk.

On Thursday we finally hear back and we are told due to the high volume of bounces that is why our account was put on hold and our Shopify list does not show opt-in records for everyone on that list, only a small amount. I am all for having compliant healthy lists and I understand the importance. However we had no issues sending emails to the same lists from Mailchimp so we had no idea these bounces would be an issue and we were always under the impression anyone who purchased on Shopify opted in to our email marketing.

I start by deleting the list that had the highest number of bounces, their are over 9,000 subscribers on this list and contact Flodesk to see if we can get back to this launch and then I will go clean that list up after. They get back to me on Friday, a day later, that just deleting the list is not enough, but I need to go through and manually remove everyone, all 9,000 plus subscribers!! The level of anger and frustration at this point is beyond anything, so many hours of work, and I take us back to Mailchimp to redo the launch.

So what is the moral of this Flodesk Email Marketing story, they failed greatly on customer service. That is something that no matter how big or small as a company you take care of your people always. I am a one women show and my clients have always been able to reach me in their moments of need. Offering above and beyond customer service has always been a core value for my business.

For that reason I vet every business, tool and system that I use before I refer it a client or teach them how to use it. I want to support companies that understand how important customer service is and at the very least take responsibility. If Flodesk would have put in place something that when you go to upload your lists warns you that lists need to be reviewed and it can take several days, clearly explaining that their support is very limited, we would have done our launch with Mailchimp and then moved to Flodesk at a later date. So many hours would have been saved, the email marketing launch would have been so much more successful, and this story would not have been needed to be share.

I have since moved on and tried other email marketing companies. While doing my search I noticed all the emails hitting my inbox came from Convertkit and are just plain text. Rarely do I see more then one image. While I was still feeling sad about my beautiful Flodesk emails, I figured nothing like diving into another trial and error to find the right email marketing platform so I can share the goodness with you guys and you don’t have to go through the above experience.

Well turns out Converkit has live chat, a wonderful support team and I got an email right away letting me know my lists needed to be reviewed, 6 hours later they were approved and the process was so seamless. I ended up going with Campaign Monitor myself, because their email builder was simpler but I see the attraction to Converkit.

The most surprising thing of all, I have had a higher open rate since leaving Flodesk. When choosing the right email platform for you the most important thing to consider is deliverability because you want your people to be easily getting your email in their inboxes and not in spam or promotions tabs.

So pretty emails isn’t always the answer after all.

If you got this far, here are the email correspondences I had with Flodesk. I wish them all the best, I hope they make improvements stat because they are a women owned company I loved supporting and I think every company has the chance to do better.

Thoughts, feelings, comments, drop me a DM over on the gram @sociallysavvystudio, that is my favorite place to communicate.

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