The most advanced email marketing services offer custom workflows where you can specify triggers based on actions (such as opening an email or making a purchase) or on inaction (such as ignoring emails). With these services, you can also set up a series of emails (such as tutorials) to be sent to segments of users, and you can pause or stop a campaign at any time. You can also move contacts into new segments once they have completed tutorials.
How do you create a good email campaign?
Your goals and objectives need to be different for whether it's an eblast (promotional email) or regular enewsletter. Eblasts are great for getting quick leads/sales, while enewsletters are better for staying top of mind, educating customers on new offerings, or providing helpful industry updates. I have found them to be very successful, but what works and what doesn't requires testing (of both the subject line and creative) and varies per business. Best practices for both types include have...
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Additionally, we anticipate email marketing will become more personal as companies get more adept at obtaining and using personal data. Marketers will be able to pinpoint their customers' locations from wearable and mobile devices more accurately. They will then use that data to send targeted emails and personalized automated emails based on behavior, location and other personal information, and automatically reformat emails depending on what kind of device the recipient is reading the email on, like a smartwatch or tablet.
But do drip campaigns really work? Yup: According to research collected by the team behind the email-marketing suite Emma, relevant targeted emails produce 18-times more revenue than globally-broadcasted ones. Perhaps that's not so surprising, since they also found that people who read your drip emails are far more likely to click the links in them, with a 119% increase in click rate from drip emails.
Anne: How many "contacts" do you have on your list. Most plans charge by the number of contacts. Some charge by the total number of contacts, some by the contacts per list (which means you pay for duplicates if a single contact is on multiple lists due to your segmentation activities). As both Ray and Gee indicated, most email service providers will meet your functional requirements. I have used MailChimp successfully but switched to ActiveCampaign because of the marketing automation...
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But with an automated drip campaign, you can re-engage those waivering customers and lead them back to the "buy" button. Whenever users leave an unpurchased product in their cart, use a drip to follow up and confirm that it’s still available. You don't even need to be selling physical products for this to work. With an app, for example, use a specific sales page—perhaps one that breaks down the benefits of your pro-level plan compared to the basic one— as a trigger, and send some follow-up info to anyone who visits that page but doesn’t convert.
Whether you're onboarding a new customer or keeping a user engaged, the sequence of your sends plays a crucial role in the success of each campaign. Consider how much information your target user needs, when he or she might need it, and why. Over on his blog, Jason Delodovici wrote a great post about a drip campaign that he spearheaded, noting the order he chose for each email—from signup to sale—and why.