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The Marketing Edge - Better customer communication with email automation

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Often, when people think of email automation, they think it’s a cold, impersonal experience with the recipients. However, nothing could be farther from the truth!

Effective email automation can offer your potential customers a better experience with you, your company and your brand.

Email automation can give interested parties exactly what they want when it’s relevant to them, while helping reduce email clutter from the inboxes for those who aren’t interested. While this is a pretty large topic, here are some starting points to help you start thinking about how email automation might benefit your business.

More results. Less time

Good email programs are designed to help you be in two places at once.

Programs can be set up once and then repeated as often as you need. Automated programs can help you nurture sales prospects, stay in touch with customers or help answer frequent questions for your business.

An automated schedule can be set for your email sequence.

Emails sequences can be developed for a number of reasons, including:

  •       A customer visiting your website
  •       A pre-sales or post-sales process
  •       An activity trigger like a birthday, special offer or membership reminders

Establish your goals

The key to a successful email program is to have a focused goal on what you want to accomplish. Your email schedule should consist of multiple messages aimed and helping you work towards those goals.

Example of email program goals may be:

  •       Thanking someone for signing up and present them with a special opportunity, maybe an offer for a free gift or a special coupon
  •       Reaching out and tell someone it’s been awhile since they’ve visited your website or online store and they might want to check out “new” content
  •       Sending an “abandoned cart” notice if they’ve gotten really close to purchasing but haven’t completed the transaction
  •       Creating a training sequence or send a drip campaign of information on a particular subject or topic, with a set beginning and end
  •       Asking for feedback by encouraging your customers to share experiences or write an online review of your services (these requests tend to have a stunning rate of return!)
  •       Promoting special content, such as a blog, or an event.
  •       Sending reminders for things like appointments or renewal notices.
  •       Reaching out and sending a special coupon on someone’s birthday or other occasion

List management

To make sure you’re following best practices, always gain permission before adding names to your email lists. Lists can be as broad or as specific as you need. To get the best results, cater your message to the interests of those on your list. Many email marketing programs have list management tools and provide easy ways for people to add their email address to your list.

Automated success

Modern mass email services increasingly include email automation actions as part of their products. In many cases, these tools can be integrated with other services you’re using to keep all of your customer data connected. While setting up email automation takes some planning to create and execute, the benefit is that once you’ve set up these connections, you can keep winning over lots of customers one at a time - automatically!

(Monique Bouchard is an account manager and content creator for Sutherland Weston.)

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