MailChimp goes beyond email marketing and launches support for Facebook ad campaigns

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MailChimp has long offered its users an easy way to manage and run their email marketing campaigns. Now, for the first time in its long history, the company is going beyond email marketing with the launch of a new tool that lets its users create Facebook ad campaigns right from the existing MailChimp dashboard.

The company may be best known for its email platform, but as a company spokesperson noted, its mission goes way beyond that. MailChimp wants to become a holistic marketing platform for businesses (and I would expect that at some point in this process, it’ll change its name to reflect that). As mobile, social, and messaging become more important, that means MailChimp needs to go where its users’ target audience is — and the one place these users definitely are is on Facebook.

As MailChimp notes, 16 percent of its more than 15 million users are e-commerce companies — a number that has increased 46 percent over the last year. Almost half of MailChimp’s current revenue also comes from exactly these customers. Given that many of these companies are probably already using both MailChimp and Facebook Ads, there are some clear synergies here.

If you’ve ever designed an email newsletter in MailChimp, then the process of building Facebook Ads and campaigns should feel pretty familiar.

Unsurprisingly, MailChimp will let its customers use their email lists to target their existing fans and customers, but it will also allow them to target a Facebook “lookalike audience” that has characteristics that are similar to existing MailChimp subscriber lists, as well as simply targeting a specific audience on Facebook.

MailChimp will not charge its users any fees on top of Facebook’s usual costs (which start at $5 per day for the click-based ads) and will allow them to track their campaigns right inside of their existing MailChimp dashboards.