The Culturally Offensive Reason ConvertKit Isn’t Changing It’s Name To Seva. Plus, how could ConvertKit pricing tiers be improved, to serve customers more ‘selflessly’?
Last month ConvertKit, the email service provider fan-favorite of bloggers, announced that they were going to change their name to Seva.
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At first thought, it seemed like a nice sounding word, paired with a mild inconvenience for affiliates to now change all of our promotional materials.
But Then, Things Got Awkward
We then read the press release from ConvertKit, to see the meaning behind the new name, and it was all very…no.
Our new name is inspired by the Sanskrit word meaning “selfless service” and the Hindi word meaning “service”. We can’t imagine a more appropriate description for how you’re building your business or what we’re here to do as a company. We’re playing a different game because we believe the future belongs to creators. The creators who believe selfless service is how we all win. And we’re all in on building that future together.
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Selfless Service? By Profiting From A Sacred Word? Oopsie..
By now, you would think that a Western company would know not to take a word related to a religion and or culture which they are not a part of, and use it to hawk their products.
The Internet was quick to point this out, and fortunately, ConvertKit took it seriously and listened.
Within a few days, we started to hear from many of you who had genuine concerns about the name and its deep connection to religion and culture for Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains, and more. You asked if we realized the cultural and religious implications of the word we had chosen.
As we became increasingly aware of our ignorance on the deep meaning of this sacred word….Seva is not just a word that means “selfless service.” It’s not just a word that means “serving without the expectation of anything in return.” It is a holy and sacred practice that involves giving generously to others out of love, tied so deeply to spirituality that it cannot be separated from spirituality itself.
Whether it’s cultural insensitivity or simply lack of knowledge, mistakes happen. ConvertKit handled the issue with sensitivity and professionalism and apologized.
So because of this, ConvertKit will not be changing it’s name to Seva.
How Is ConvertKit Serving Us, Selflessly, Exactly?
Have you noticed that the way ConvertKit chooses to communicate with their customers (the creators) always feels a bit…odd?
ConvertKit sends out marketing emails from time to time, usually to promote a new product they launch/sell or an event they are hosting.
Which is cool, I enjoy reading marketing emails and participate/buy when I can.
But its the language ConvertKit chooses to use that is strange. They tend to go in deep about how they are serving us (their customers) so we can ‘earn a living from our content.’
CovertKit’s mission, for example, is “To help creators around the world earn a living from their work.”
We earn a living from our work because we work hella hard to run our businesses. We don’t earn a living from our work because an email service provider has allowed us to.
Obviously, this is not the interpretation that ConvertKit had in mind when coming up with their mission statement. But this is how it sounds to some.
I had a conversation this morning with one of my mentees, Amanda. We are both happy customers of ConvertKit.
As our opt-in forms do what they are supposed to, our automations send when we want them to, and our newsletters deliver on schedule.
Amanda expressed her thoughts on the language they use to communicate with us by saying:
“ConvertKit, you are an email service provider, and a good one, why don’t you just stay in your lane and be that?
We don’t need all the gooey stuff about trying to ‘help creators earn a living’ when you charge us creators an arm and a leg just to use your service. Just be good at delivering our newsletters, thanks.”
Ok, This Is So True. ConvertKit Is Pricey.
ConvertKit pricing is set up in a way where you pay more depending on how many subscribers you have.
You can try it free for a month, but after that, the bottom tier plan starts at almost $30 per month, and that only covers your first 1000 subscribers.
The features that come included in all ConvertKit pricing plans are all very awesome things such as:
- Visual automations
- Customizable forms
- List & subscriber management
- Unlimited email sends
- Subscriber tagging
- Integration with other apps
The way ConvertKit pricing is set up, you don’t get more features the more you pay. In fact, everyone gets the same features no matter which plan they are on.
This can be good or bad depending on where you are at.
Because the more subscribers you have, the more expensive it gets, and you don’t get any additional features even though you are paying double what someone else is.
With ConvertKit pricing, because of the huge increase in price for different subscriber counts, it can feel like you are being penalized as you successfully grow your list.
They also don’t have a free plan, like other platforms offer for subscribers with smaller lists.
So I get why ConvertKit customers could feel uncomfortable when ConvertKit says they are ‘serving you’ so you can ‘earn a living as a creator.’
Related: 6 Chill Ways To Make Money Blogging
How Do You Earn A Living As A Creator?
You earn a living as a creator by selling the things you create.
Yes, your list and your email marketing is very important. But the company you use to send those emails from isn’t going to make or break your business.
Even if the company you choose to subscribe to is the expensive one.
When companies tell you how well they are serving you, and ‘allowing’ you to earn a living from your work, while simultaneously draining your margarita fund… it can feel a bit icky.
It’s like they are trying to take credit for the success in our businesses, simply because we communicated to our customers via their app.
Personally, I love Using ConvertKit For My Email Marketing
The platform is very easy to use and manage my various campaigns from, and I have been a customer for a long time.
As a blogger, you need an email service provider, but it isn’t necessary to use ConvertKit, as there are more affordable providers you can use, like MailerLite which in all honesty is just fine when you are starting out and budget-conscious.
But if you have the budget for it, ConvertKit is the way to go, as you have access to more in-depth features.
I use it to seamlessly manage my Profitable Blog Toolkit membership with success. You can become a member and get instant access to my resource library of exclusive content and tools, for free by signing up below:
However, ConvertKit Could Stand To Lower Their Prices
As someone who works with new bloggers and small business owners primarily, I see firsthand how budget is usually the biggest issue for people.
When you are in the early stages of starting a business, every cent counts.
After the most important expenses are covered (web hosting, WordPress theme, social media automation tools like Tailwind and SmarterQueue) there usually isn’t much money left in a new blogger’s monthly budget.
They aren’t serving anyone selflessly when their potential customers aren’t even considering subscribing because the prices are so out of whack.
I’d love to see ConvertKit offer a free plan for people with less than 1000 subscribers so that new creators could grow within the product. I believe it would lead to more long-term customers for them in the end.
Thinking of starting a blog? This FREE course has you covered!
What Do You Think Of ConvertKit’s Decision To Not Change Their Name To Seva?
Also, what do you think of ConvertKit’s pricing? Is it on point, or could it be improved?
Could ConvertKit pricing tiers be improved to serve their customers better (and more selflessly?).
Leave a comment!