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Email is hard

I spent most of the morning moving back to Mailchimp from Mailerlite. I was happily using Mailerlite since 2020 but as the platform evolved it started moving away from my simple needs.

Last year Mailerlite changed to a new tech platform and changed the editor. I didn't bother switching because I don't really send custom emails anymore. I had my RSS feed set and working and that was all I needed.

But they were about to turn off the old platform so I needed to convert pretty quickly. That's when I found that the RSS-to-email feature (the way I send blog posts to my friends) was now part of the paid plan. Argh. I don't use this nearly enough to justify $175USD per year, so it's back to Mailchimp.

Moving back isn't trivial. It may have been better to start a brand new account. The issue I hit is that folks who were with me in 2020 (when I moved to Mailerlite) and then unsubscribed, were back on my email list after transferring everything back. I'm hyper-vigilant about only sending emails to folks who asked for them, so it took a few hours of combing through lists and comparing and making sure everything was the way it needed to be.

It shouldn't be this difficult, but email is tricky. I want people to have the ability to sign up for email updates if they like what I'm doing, but more importantly, I want that they can unsubscribe really easily with no hard feelings. But other than that, my needs are really low key and simple.

I'm not trying to monetize anything. I'm not building a brand or selling a product or trying to become an "influencer". I just want to share stories and interesting things with my friends. But it seems that anyone who is sending emails to folks on a list is thought of as an 'email marketer' and that's who the platforms are going after.

I'll keep looking for a simpler solution, hopefully free and open source, but in the meantime, it's back to Mailchimp.

PS - I don't mind paying for software. It's good to support the folks who are building decent tools. But in this case I'm an edge case for the big email marketing platforms. When I find something that fits 'for me', I'll gladly pay for it.