We all know automation is the key to efficient marketing. But is there more you can do to gain further value from your list? Don’t be afraid to think beyond the obvious; there may be opportunities to automate email workflows you haven’t even considered!
Take, for instance, SmartPak Equine, a national equestrian-supply retailer. SmartPak uses a whopping 40 event-triggered, lifecycle-marketing emails to keep its list engaged and active. What’s more, these automated emails are among SmartPak’s best performers, pulling higher open rates, click through rates and conversion rates than its normal emails. In fact, revenue for triggered emails averages nearly three times higher than SmartPak’s manual emails.
Or look at Hear and Play Music, a provider of music lesson products. Hear and Play started its email program in 2009 with five automated messages. Today, the company utilizes over 170 automated emails-and the results have been astonishing: a 416 percent increase in customer lifetime value, 67 percent increase in click-through rates from the best prospects, and an 18.4 percent improvement in lead-to-purchase time.
Don’t leave money on the table. Automated emails are the ticket to better list engagement, incremental revenue gains, and superior outcomes.
What Automated Emails Should You Consider?
In the 2011 Email Marketing Benchmark Survey, MarketingSherpa looked at the most popular types of messages for automated emails:
While this chart is an excellent place to start if you’re thinking about adding automated emails to your toolbox, we have a few more suggestions of our own:
- Topic-Specific Emails: These emails may be triggered when a contact downloads a specific piece of content from your website. That way, you can make the contact aware of additional content on that topic or help facilitate the contact’s learning process about the topic. For example, if you sell natural health remedies, downloading an eBook on detoxification might trigger a series of educational emails on different aspects of detoxification that relate to the eBook.
- Automated Newsletter Emails: Digital marketing blog Econsultancy gets it right with its Daily Pulse email, an automated daily digest of top stories. The topics selected are customized to the subscriber’s preferences to ensure relevance.
- Next-Funnel-Stage Emails: When a contact downloads multiple offers, this could be a sign he is ready to move to the next stage in your marketing funnel. This can then trigger an email from a salesperson or an offer for a free product trial.
- Promotion Reminder Emails: Keep your promotions front and center with reminder emails, like this one from Shutterfly.
- Customer Loyalty Emails: When doling out incentives, most marketers instinctually think of re-engaging inactive contacts. But don’t forget your most loyal customers! A recent study by Experian Marketing Services found loyalty-focused campaigns have 40 percent higher open rates, 22 percent higher click-through rates, 29 percent higher transaction rates and 11 percent higher revenue.
- Birthday/Anniversary Emails: Okay, technically these could be considered date-triggered emails, but we think they’re important enough to warrant their own category. This email from Starbucks is a perfect example of a birthday treat any coffee-lover would be delighted to receive.
Make sure your automated emails are being delivered. Download our free guide “Email Deliverability: 21 Steps to Success” for help.
Photo Credit: Paul Evans