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Thrive Leads, Icegram faceoff

Last updated on June 23, 2016

The Easiest Way to Get More Email Subscribers, Faster.

That tagline by Thrive Leads surely grabs eyeballs.

But is it that effective? And how does it compare with Icegram?

We took a close look at Thrive Leads and offer you a comparison so you can make your choice quicker!

The Background – Thrive Themes…

Thrive Themes, the company behind Thrive Leads, has had a very successful stint in the WordPress themes market. Their conversion optimized themes are very good and they’ve grown a good fan following in a short span of time. Shane Melaugh – the founder – is an experienced online marketer and you see his touch in all their products.

Interestingly, Shane is also one of Putler’s long time customers and a big fan. Putler is an ecommerce analytics tool from the same team that brings you Icegram.

Many people were eagerly waiting for Thrive Leads and it was expected to catch up like fire. And that is what it did.

When you reach the homepage of Thrive Leads, you have to watch a video (very educative, but can be a deterrent for people who’re already familiar with the concepts). A few minutes into the video, and then see the product information links.

Pricing – let’s get money out of the way first…

Thrive Leads has 3 pricing plans.

  • Agency License: $588/yr
  • Unlimited Sites: $97/yr
  • Single Site: $67/yr

In contrast, Icegram is free, but with paid addons. If you took Icegram’s Super Bundle – which includes many of its premium addons, the pricing works out like this:

  • Developers License (25 sites): $499
  • Multi Site (5 sites): $199
  • Single Site: $99

The prices provided one year support and upgrades in both cases.

So overall, Icegram is much easier to get started with (free). And if you take all the addons, you get more features than Thrive Leads, at comparable pricing.

Feature Breakdown

Let’s run through Icegrams v/s Thrive Leads in terms of features.

Icegram provides

The free version has Campaigns, Messages, and four message types: Popups, Messengers, Action Bars and Toast notifications. You get in-depth targeting rules and ease of use as well.


There is a bunch of addons that you can use to extend Icegram.

  • Themes Pack 2014
  • Analytics (free)
  • Behavior Triggers
  • CTA Actions
  • Geo Targeting
  • Stickies
  • Badges
  • Overlays
  • Ribbons
  • Sidebars
  • Inline messages
  • Remote
  • Exit Redirect
  • Interstitial messages
  • Lovable theme pack
  • Split Testing
  • Tab
  • Theme Pack 2015

What’s included in ThriveLeads

On the other hand, Thrive Leads competes with something similar…

The features it provides are:

  • Light Box Popups (similar to popups in Icegram. Also has exit intent functionality included in Icegram’s Behavior Triggers addon)
  • Header Sticky Ribbon (like the Action bars of Icegram)
  • 2 Step Optin Forms (with Icegram you can do this with some JavaScript or CTA add-on)
  • Optin Forms / Widgets Inside Pages or Posts (similar to Inline addon of Icegram)
  • Slide In Forms (similar to Icegram’s Messenger)
  • A/B testing (similar to Icegram’s Split Testing addon)

Both plugins provide a good range of design templates and extensive targeting rules. Both also provide good analytics and reporting features.

So where do they differ?

It’d seem that both Icegram and Thrive Leads are very similar – and indeed they are. But there are subtle difference that give an edge to one over the other.

Here are a few differences to consider.

  • Icegram is a free WordPress plugin. You can use all the basics without paying a penny.
  • Thrive Leads has an elegant visual drag and drop designer. Icegram uses WordPress’s built in editor.
  • Icegram allows embedding any content inside your message – text, pictures, videos, forms or even JavaScript/CSS.
  • Icegram has addons that you can buy if you need. So you can mix-and-match.
  • Thrive Leads’s A/B testing features are stronger than Icegram’s Split Testing as of this writing. Icegram’s implementation is easier to use, flexible, and they are catching up on features…
  • Thrive Leads is focused on opt in forms. The main intention is to grow your subscription lists.
  • Icegram is general purpose. You can use it for optin forms, but can also use it for any kind of marketing, promotional or user education purposes.
  • Icegram has more features, and many more message types than Thrive Leads if you put all the addons together.
  • Both plugins allow you to run unlimited campaigns, unlimited messages within them. Embed them anywhere using shortcodes. And display using flexible targeting rules.
  • Both plugins are ease to use. We personally find Icegram easier and more task oriented than Thrive Leads.
  • Icegram has some useful and unique addons. For example – Interstitial messages, Overlays, Badges and Sidebars. Or Exit Redirect, Remote and Geo Targeting. None of this is available in Thrive Leads.
  • Icegram’s Remote plugin lets you run Icegram campaigns on any other site – WordPress or otherwise.

Conclusion – what’s the verdict?

Thrive Leads is a very good option for showing optin forms and inviting visitors to sign up to your mailing list. It’s easy, offers great design control and superior A/B testing suite.

Icegram is free, with optional paid addons. It can be used for optin forms or any other promotional / marketing / user engagement purpose. It offers great flexibility and wide range of superior addons and extensions.

What’s your verdict?

If you’ve used Thrive Leads / Icegram do post your comment below and tell us your opinion!

5 thoughts on “Thrive Leads, Icegram faceoff

  1. Hi.I am having a slight problem.This plugin is amazing.But when i embed HTML code from chimpmail, click on call-to-action button takes to their thanks page.I am using this HTML code in pop-up which is sitewide, so i dont want them to get redirected after filling the form and instead i just want them to submit the informaton, and move on to the article for which they came.

    1. Hi Fawad,

      The functionality that you are looking out for is implemented in one of our add-ons i.e CTA Actions. Kindly check it out here

  2. Hi, I’m looking for a plugin that creates a nice optin form at the end of all posts. I know Thrive does this, but after a look through Icegram’s features, I can’t see this anywhere. I don’t want to add it to the post content itself – I want to be able to just assign one optin box for all posts (or be able to choose different optin boxes for different posts). Is this possible with Icegram?

    1. @Damien: You can certainly do that with Icegram. The “Inline” addon for Icegram allows embedding Icegram messages after post content (apart from other options). You can show one optin form for all blog posts or different for different posts (using targeting rules).

  3. I personally use Thrive Leads.
    It’s honestly one of the best tools I’ve ever purchased online and could not be happier with it’s features and support!

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