Buttondown vs. Campaign Monitor

Campaign Monitor is a tool that's focused on ecommerce stores with big ad budgets; Buttondown is affordable and polished.

CampaignMonitor's splash page describes it as an email marketing platform, and that's what it is: a large and powerful tool for eCommerce platforms like the ones it calls out as happy customers: Ripcurl, the Red Cross, and other million-dollar organizations that have entire marketing departments devotes to their tooling.

If that's your use case, then Campaign Monitor is likely a good fit; it offers things like automated "email journeys" and A/B testing behind a hefty price tag. Campaign Monitor's ideal user is a marketer, not a writer.

Buttondown, on the other hand, is a small, elegant tool for producing newsletters.

The minimalist interface makes it easy for you to write great emails; the automation acts like the editorial assistant you wish you had, by checking for typos, broken links, or malformed images; the portable subscription widget makes it really easy to grow your audience from wherever you host your site.

And then Buttondown gets out of your way. Buttondown's emphasis is on speed and ease of use over complex featuresets or powerful automation.

Migrate from Campaign Monitor in mere minutes
Buttondown has a step-by-step guide for migrating from Campaign Monitor to Buttondown! Here's the deal: if it takes you more than ten minutes, you get a free month of Buttondown.
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FeatureButtondownCampaign Monitor
Free for your first hundred subscribers
Archives
Embeddable widget
Analytics
Markdown support
Drag and drop image uploading
Email scheduling
Free RSS support
Clean, usable design
Smart embeds
Autosaving
First-party API
Paid subscriptions
Third-party integrations
Privacy-first
Multiple newsletters
'Pay what you want' mode
Discussion threads

Kind words from happy writers

I’d also like to add that @buttondown is an absolute joy to use. Hats off, Justin!
Elliot Jay Stocks
Creative Director, Google Fonts
Shoutout to @buttondown and @jmduke for building an amazing bootstrapped product for newsletters, all while being very open to feedback and connecting directly with customers 🙏 Easily one of the most enjoyable product experience I've had.
Den
Head of Ecosystem, Netlify
if you are looking for "newsletter tool for hackers" i tentatively believe the answer is @buttondown full api, compose in markdown, good docs for setting up domain auth, simple subscribe form HTML that you style yourself (or not)
Brian David Hall
Author, Your Website Sucks
I really like @buttondown as a blogging platform, it has the simplicity of Substack but the corporate culture is less toxic.
Chad Loder
Extremism researcher
I worked with @buttondown and asked for some new payment support beyond the supporter single tier / pay-what-you-want options. Justin was great and built it in just a couple days.
Dan Hon
Author & consultant
I write nonfiction and I use @buttondown buttondown.email/Changeset - indie, GREAT personal customer support, very nice default styling, all the options I want including ones to protect my readers' privacy
Sumana Harihareswara
Open source maintainer
I use @buttondown because it does exactly what I need (manage subscribers and send markdown emails), not more and not less 👍 As a bonus it's made by an indie dev which I love!
Max Stober
Founder, GraphCDN
If you’re considering running an email newsletter, or if you already run one and are considering a change of provider, I highly recommend @buttondownemail. Super-easy app, very fair pricing with a generous free tier, and exemplary support. 💯
Peter Gasston
Technologist and speaker
imo @buttondown is easily one of the best-designed services i’ve used in recent years, if you have a substack you should really consider switching!
Kabir Goel
Engineer, Cal