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12 Effective Steps Of Best Automated Marketing Emails

automated marketing emailsBest ways to get the best out of Automated marketing emails –

Millions of emails are sent by businesses to customers or prospective customers every day but there are some with higher open rates and those with less. The conventional method of email marketing was focussed on sending a promotional mail, followed by another mail after an interval. With more and more email service providers sorting primary, social and business promotion emails, the users have the choice to delete without even opening a promo mail. Just as repeated cold calls from different companies turn offensive for customers so does repeated promo emails.

In such a scenario sending automated marketing emails to people who have shown an interest in the company or product is now becoming more acceptable and result in better customer engagement. Automated marketing emails are sent to people when they satisfy a certain criterion or perform an action on website, social media that acts as a catalyst for sending a message. Automated marketing emails have the following important features- they are timely, very hyper-relevant and personalized instead of a being a generic promotion message.

Here are twelve ways to get the best out of automated marketing emails.

  1. The importance of a welcome message

Somebody may have visited your website for the first time an signed up for a service or membership. Once the name, email and other details are captured, a welcome message can be sent to a subscriber. An eye-catching personalized email to a new customer will show how much you care for him or her.

A majority of first visitors to a website aren’t willing to buy a product or service but needs to know more about the company and its products, the values you stand for, your track record and so on. Instead of manually sending a message each time someone signs up or registers on your site, tools such as Mailchimp can be used to automate the sending of emails. The email templates, content all can be saved and send once a person signs up on your site or it can happen through social media also.

The first introductory mail can be scheduled to be received the same day or in succeeding days, followed by follow-up emails which also can be automated. Creating a ‘wow’ factor is essential for the success of a welcome message. An extra-wow can be created if the welcome mail has a 10% or 20% discount offer especially given to the new member.

  1. Order confirmation

You may be a product manufacturer having an e-commerce site or a service provider. When someone orders a product online and pays, you can establish your credibility and customer satisfaction by sending a confirmation email. This can be automated and it should contain the product details, value, tracking or reference number, contact information. (email, customer care number) and a tracking link if possible. These steps will make the customer assured of having disbursed the money and assurance of getting the product or service within a specified time frame.

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  1. Sending bills or vouchers

Automated marketing emails can be used to send bills and vouchers for an online or an offline transaction. The following email was sent immediately on a purchase at Decathlon Sports from their Kochi outlet. It contains a thanks message for rating high on customer satisfaction and also attaching a soft copy of the bill.

Automated Emails

  1. Customise leads based on lead scoring

When classifying visitors to your site, it is better to segment them according to how close they are to the company as a customer. For eg., they may be segmented as a prospect, cold prospect, warm, customer….. It is possible to have automated programs such as Eloqua or Marketo. MailChimp also enables businesses to have a lead scoring model using its Automation settings. These are available to subscribers who are in the premium category and pay $10 per month.

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The lead scoring model evolved will help the company to send personalized messages according to how high they score on the lead charts. Idea is to generate lead scores for the prospects not from a single campaign but several campaigns.

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  1. Reward your loyal customers

The automated marketing emails mechanism can be used to announce rewards for existing customers who have shown high loyalty to your products. Such customers can be given bonus points and also cash rewards for referring friends and relations. For eg., Citibank routinely sends emails regarding reward point of Rs 9999 for five referrals.

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Engaged customers are more likely to share company products, offers, and other information within their personal and professional networks.

  1. Use Pre-filled forms for greater engagement

It is common practice to get an invitation to a webinar or any company event through email. It may lead you to a landing page with a form to be filled and submitted. Any user may be getting a dozen such emails daily and hence it makes sense to have a pre-fill personal data form that just needs to be verified and submitted. This reduces the burden of the user and leaves a good impression about the company.

Lead Pages, a lead generation tool can help you with automatic pre-population of forms. The data has to be entered by the user only once and in all future signups, the data will be automatically pre-populated. If Lead Pages is integrated with MailChimp, automation will be easier to implement.

  1. How to get connected to customers with abandoned carts

In an online or e-commerce site, it is not uncommon for people to add several things to a cart but not confirming the order or pressing the buy button. They might have abandoned the carts due to a variety of reasons such as delivery charges, slow network processing, or error messages appearing on transactions. Such people can be sent automated marketing emails reminding them of their abandoned carts and requesting them to continue with it. An additional offer of free delivery may be enticing for the customer. This shows that the company cares about the customer and his or her order.

Likewise, a customer who hasn’t returned with a repeat purchase for a long time can be mailed a comeback soon message which goes on to prove that you are valued as a customer. An offer for exchange of product with attractive benefits or a new offer can be enticing for the dormant customer. Abandoned cart emails can help the company grow richer-according to studies it helps them earn $5.64 per mail. Outstanding indeed while the most other emails earn less than $1.

  1. Plain-text looks have more readability

Emails are like letters, the more personal touch it has, the more it will be read. Email text that appears as plain-text but are HTML-enabled have a 20% higher click-through rate than other forms of text material, however, fancy or colorful they may be. Formal language and appearance can be a hindrance to getting more engagement with the customers, experts said.

  1. Keep customers happy with after sales messages

Most consumers have a feeling that some companies just ignore them once the product is sold. Until then their marketing team may have called or met several times to get business. Once the sale is done, a thank you email can be sent immediately in an automated manner. This can be supplemented with Feedback forms. It can also be used to update customers on new product launches and suggest useful add-on products that may be used with the product. For eg., a computer hardware company can give reminders about a mouse, printers, and devices that go with the product. A mobile phone manufacturer can enlighten the customer with the suggestion about a selfie stick or screen guard that the company manufacturers.

There is a great way to gain customer confidence and satisfaction- inform them of an expiration of a subscription, membership or updating of license. Life and general insurance policyholders often receive one or two reminders just ahead of their next premium renewal. Similarly, anti-virus programs are usually licensed for a year and just ahead of expiry most companies inform users about the impending expiry, new offers and how to renew their subscription. This goes on to reinforce the message that the customer is quite important for the company.

GoDaddy, the domain name and storage solutions provider, keeps reminding customers about impending expiration date and new offers related to renewal. The expiration date can be included in the emailing software which helps in rapidly sending series of reminder messages. This helps in retain customers as the marketing wisdom goes, retaining an existing customer is easier than converting a new one. According to analysts, it costs five times more to get a new customer compared to retaining an existing one.

  1. Automation is about an integration of various tools

Sometimes a little manual intervention may be needed in automated marketing emails but for the most part, it should happen automatically. For the entire effort to be successful, all tools used with the email software should be integrated. This is possible with tools like Zapier. So there is no need to invent them again.

The advantage of Zapier is that is composed of a trigger and action mechanism. An action in one application triggers another action to happen in the email management software. It integrates well with the Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software and an email is captured every time a new sale is made, a new registration or inquiry is made.

  1. Educate the customer about the product don’t go for the hard sell

Automated sales emails campaigns can be used in a serial manner educating the customers about their pain points, what your product can deliver, how it differs from competition, and so on. This gives the feeling that the company is not in hard-sell mode and genuinely helping the customer arrive at a decision. It can include testimonials from customers, case studies and also suggest resources which give more information about the product. For eg. a new concept like cleaning robots for homes can be first promoted with a generic introductory mail, followed by how it is used in homes, how it works and helps the consumer. It can be followed up with testimonials, links to newspaper articles and so on.

  1. Reminding customers about events and sources for information

A Canada immigration company or an overseas educational consultant can send registered candidates information about their upcoming events, and sources of information within your company and outside including blogs, websites, webinars etc. When sending emails for registration for live events and webinars, it should not be a one-off affair, some customers may need a few more reminders to rope them in. For some service providers such as overseas consultancy, job consultancy, or interior decoration services, the company should ensure more touch points to interact and make the consumer confidence. A buy decision doesn’t happen in a linear fashion and it is useful to understand all possible paths a consumer might take before he triggers the buy button.

Conclusion

The success of an automated sales emails campaigns goes beyond the twelve major points listed above. It should have a personal touch to it- some companies capture birthdays and wedding anniversaries to send greetings or make offers. Some offers can be related to festivals and events in a particular geographical region or community.

Then as with any other form of written and visual communication, automated sales emails also need to have good compelling headlines and copy with suitable call-to-action buttons (Buy, Register, Join). Call to action buttons were found to increase sales conversions by 28%. The automated campaigns become successful only when there is a proper evaluation of the results based on visits, customers, revenue, new business value etc.

According to some studies, the average revenue per automated email is $0.02 while birthday reminders result in $0.07 while abandoned cart email brings the highest revenue.

There is talk in marketing circles that email marketing is dead. Far from being true, automated sales emails campaigns can be given the better return on investment (ROI) and help the company to have a gentle and humane approach to consumer pain points and solutions to address them.

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