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How-To Guide For Beginners: Email Marketing Automation

Successful brands are doing more than merely closing a one-time deal with a customer. The best companies build mutually-beneficial relationships with their customers that equate to a higher customer lifetime value — meaning, these customers are going to stick around for a while. While most brands know that email marketing is a worthwhile investment and driving forces for sales, many are still using it to market with blanket emails and seeing little return.

But, what if we told you could save time while nurturing your leads into loyal customers?

If you want to increase your bottom line, you need to implement intuitive strategies like email marketing automation. Today’s customers want personalized emails that are relevant to their lifecycle stage. As the brand, you have the opportunity to control and guide the customer journey.

What is email marketing automation?

Email marketing automation works on a basic trigger and action system that you outline in your email marketing platform. For example, imagine you are Instagram, and a new user signs up for your app. You can trigger an email that explains to the user how to upload their profile picture, how to find followers, and how to make the first post. It would be an inordinate amount of time to send an email every time a new person signs up! That’s the beauty of email automation, you can set up the email once and then as more people continue to meet the trigger you defined, the email will continue to be sent to them without you ever having to lift a finger.

Automation can be crafted to appeal to varying list segments, action-based decisions by the user, date-based, and more. You can determine what triggers work for your needs.

How can I get started?

One of the most prominent ways to implement automation is through your newsletter opt-in

When someone visits your website and submits their email address knowingly for marketing purposes, they’ve specifically asked you to communicate with them. Nurture that relationship by sending an automated welcome email.

Your welcome email could be one email or a series of emails that release on a timed sequence. Welcome emails should include a few sentences that tell the story of your brand, how you’re different, and what they can expect from you. It should be paired with stunning visuals or videos, supplemented with external links to your website, and incorporate calls to action. As your experience with automation grows, you should continue to build upon the automation email into a longer, more personalized campaign.

What are some creative ideas I should consider?

As you learn to scale your marketing automation, think about what value you can provide to customers. Automation is only limited by your creativity.

Here are some ideas.

  • Offer a birthday coupon for subscribers
  • Feature trending products or resources
  • Showcase customer success stories
  • Request feedback on products or services
  • Ask for reviews
  • Share how your brand is giving back to the community

Pro-tip: As you map out your automation, keep in mind the lifecycle of your customer. Is the content in your automation going to be relevant 3 months from now?

Here are some welcome email examples for inspiration to get started:

Lush Cosmetics

Talk about stunning. Lush Cosmetics sends a beautifully crafted email both visually and through content. Immediately Lush welcomes you and expresses gratitude for joining their email list. And, they include a button to get to know the brand more in-depth.

Lush then incorporates a featured products list to inspire your shopping interest! The close by encouraging users to stay in touch via their other marketing platforms. Well done, Lush!

Michael Kors

Right off the bat, Michael Kors sends an offer email explaining all the exclusive perks you’ll receive as a VIP member, including an annual gift and free shipping and returns. Immediately you feel like a priority customer and are encouraged to take advantage of the special benefits. They also provide instructions on how their reward process works.

What makes Michael Kors memorable is how they focus on educating customers and making them feel special.

Michaels

Michaels uses its welcome email to showcase the brand. It hits the nail on the head with the lively image that looks like a big craft project with bold, beautiful colors – scissors, paint brushes, tape, and sparkles.

Another standout feature of this welcome email is that Michaels makes it immediately clear what value its future email communications are going to provide from creative project inspiration to in-store events.

The email closes with links to shopping categories encouraging users to browse the website.

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