Any marketer knows the importance of maintaining communication with customers. It should be an ongoing process for potential and existing customers. Manual handling of the tasks can be time-consuming.
But, automation has changed the landscape for marketers. It has brought efficiency to processes that would otherwise take a long time.
Once the teams upload the email list, they can schedule the frequency with which they go out. No more setting reminders to complete such tasks.
And, automation allows for better targeting and streamlining of email marketing campaigns. But, the trick to enjoying the benefits of automation starts with knowing how to do it well. We will share tips and tricks marketers should know.
Email Marketing Automation: What is it
The basic premise of email marketing is to send out targeted messages to subscribers. There are many forms of communication you can use. Such include newsletters, product or service offerings, or information about the company. Additionally, you can use business phone service or cloud phone systems.
Before automation, the team would have to sit down and develop a list. They would have to play an active role in ensuring every person got the communication. But with automation, the software takes over such tasks.
Let’s say you manage an association. It is important to keep members up to date with everything that is happening. Using association management software will make the process faster and smoother. There are many benefits to using such innovations.
- The software allows for the centralization of member data. Anyone in the marketing team can get quick access whenever they need it.
- The membership management software works on mobile sites, tablets, or the web. It allows for remote access anytime the team needs to get in touch with members
- Availability of tools that increase engagement and connection amongst members and admin
- The teams get access to a comprehensive suite of tools for task management
- Members can use the dedicated portal for better engagement
- Sending out mass emails or newsletters is easy with the inbuilt broadcasting system.
Automation can also help the team personalize their communication. Take the example of new members coming on board. It is important to send them welcome messages.
But, it can be easy to overlook this important step due to work pressure. With the right software, the teams can schedule automated welcome emails.
Choosing the right automation is critical to the success of your email campaigns. Determine what your needs are before making a final decision.
Tips and Tricks for Automated Email Marketing
Do take note of the following tips and tricks for automated email marketing.
1. Understand Where Email Marketing Works Best
Email Marketing is about continuous engagement. The direct result is better relationships with customers which improves the chances of conversions.
There are different scenarios where it will work best. These include:-
- Welcome emails for new subscribers. It provides a fantastic opportunity to talk more about your products, services, and brand. The messaging should equip the customer with all the necessary information. It will make their interaction with a company much better. And please, don’t forget to mention why you are a better option than the competitors.
- Abandoned cart emails remind customers to complete purchases. Include subtle cues to get the customer to take the right action. It could be by providing more information. You could also get them to engage by asking leading questions about the failed purchase.
- Win back emails to reawaken interest from customers who seem to be falling off. Now is a good time to throw in some incentives.
- Sunset flows actually encourage customers to unsubscribe. At this point you are wondering, why would a marketer do that? Well, what is the point in keeping a cold lead on your email list? Look at it like ridding your closet of clothes you no longer wear to create space for other outfits. And, email providers will notice when your emails to inactive members start going to spam or junk folders. The penalties include blacklisting, which you can’t afford.
- Milestone emails to remember the customer’s special occasions.
2. Email List Segmentation Is Critical
Your email list comprises different individuals with different needs and interests. You cannot lump them all into one package and treat them the same.
Imagine sending parenting information to a Gen Z. They have zero interest in such information. While you tick off on email communication sent, have you achieved anything?
That is why one of the first marketing 101 rules is to understand your audiences. It allows you to segment them into different groups, depending on specific criteria.
Open rates for targeted messaging are high because you are providing relevant information.
3. Personalize Your Automated Emails
Take the time to think about the content that goes into your automated emails. It can have a great impact on the kind of experience people have.
A customer is more likely to read an email that you have addressed specifically to him or her. That means the dear sir/madam way of doing things is out.
With automation, you don’t have to type in each individual name and address. The software picks up the details from the list and customizes each email.
Don’t you feel all warm inside when you receive a welcome message after signing up to a platform? How about a birthday or special anniversary message. Such communication is pretty standard, allowing for the development of a template.
The same applies to things like promotions or special events. All the team needs to do is tweak the information, depending on what is happening.
4. Cross-Platform and Device Accessibility is a Must
When choosing your automation, only go for those that allow for cross-platform and cross-device accessibility. That means you can use it on different browsers, operating systems, and devices.
The experience should be the same everywhere, without needing any adjustments to configurations. Imagine customers only being able to open your emails on a desktop device. That means you lose out on the more than 55% of internet traffic that comes from mobile devices.
5. Give Subscribers Some Control
The marketing team will collect leads as a standard practice. But, not everyone on that list is interested in what you have to offer. Bombarding such audiences with emails can backfire on you.
As we have stated already, they could send the emails to spam or junk. You also don’t want to be bothersome. Who knows, on a bad day, they could leave a bad review about how pushy you are. So giving the customers a little control include:-
- Giving an easy opt-out option. Knowing a reason why they want out is great. But, don’t peg their departure on answering lengthy questionnaires.
- Allowing customers to choose their preferences. They may, for instance, only be interested in specific information.
- Sending sunset flows to nudge them into taking some kind of action, including leaving
- Get feedback on the type of information they would like to receive. It provides excellent details that can help with proper segmentation. Further, such insights will help with customization or personalization of communication.
6. Think About the Medium of Communication
Many people love video content because it is easy to consume. Marketers gravitate towards it because it increases engagement and interaction. But, in the case of email marketing, you may want to go back to written content.
Keep it precise, and work on communicating, using few words. Make sure the content is scannable and salient points jump out at a glance. Yes, that means including a few subheadings and bullet points.
No one wants to watch a five-minute video when they can scan the email in less than a minute. Should you do away with video completely? The answer is no. But, think about putting a link instead of embedding a video. The recipient can choose whether to watch or not.
7. Provide Subtle Nudges for Recipients to Open the Emails
As stated, putting a customer’s name on the email improves the chances of the recipient opening it.
But, there are other ways you can improve engagement. These include offering incentives like discounts, exclusive offers, and coupons.
Another way is to create a sense of urgency with limited-time offers. The trick is to make them rare so that customers have something to look forward to.
And, we cannot ignore the critical role of calls to action (CTA). Marketers must take the time to learn how to write a powerful CTA. And, that’s not all, even the placement within the email matters.
It is interesting to note that some action verbs can work against you. Words like download, enter, and submit may come across as pushy. They create the impression that you want the shopper to work or give up their energy or time.
Personalize the CTA with words that address the customer directly. Such include me, I, me, and my. Indeed the psychology of writing a CTA is worthy of another topic altogether.
8. Consistency and Timing Are Key
If you understand the target audience well, you may have an idea when they are likely to open emails. Let’s say your customers are stay-at-home moms. Morning may not be the best time because they’re trying to start the day.
Once the kids are off to school, they may take a minute to relax. Over a cup of coffee, they may be open to reading emails. So, aiming for 10 a.m. to about noon would be a good idea.
Getting the timing right is critical if you hope to achieve high open rates. Be ready for a round of testing at different times to see which works well for you.
Sticking to email schedules will let subscribers know when to expect emails. The beauty is automation allows you to schedule send-outs without needing your involvement.
9. Analyze Your Automated Email Marketing Campaigns
You can only know the success of your email campaigns if you keep track of the results. Start with benchmarks or KPIs, against which you will measure performance. Such include delivery rates, open rates, and click-through rates. But, the best indicator of success is higher conversion rates.
Automating email marketing campaigns has so many benefits. There is high efficiency, streamlining of workflows, and higher productivity. Choosing the right automation is critical, depending on your needs.
Develop a proper email list and remember to segment it. This allows for proper targeting resulting in higher open rates. Personalized emails, be consistent, and ensure proper timing.
Do not bombard recipients with tons of emails. Otherwise, you will land in the spam folders. Permit customers to choose whether they want to receive the emails or not.
Finally, do not forget to analyze performance. It is the only way to know what is working or not.