If you’re a professional with no email marketing strategy, you could be missing out.
In fact, email marketing should take precedence over other marketing channels. While email marketing may seem old school, it’s proven to be superior to other popular strategies, like advertisements and social media. Why?
Award-winning quality emails regularly generate an average ROI of $44 for every dollar spent.
But you don’t have to be an advanced email marketer to implement advanced strategies.
In fact, virtually anyone can benefit from an email list. All you need is a solid sequence and a good strategy to achieve results. And you’ll continue to achieve results again and again with this one simple strategy: automation.
You might be wondering if automation is worth the effort.
If that’s the case, consider that open rates for triggered emails are a whopping 70.5% more than other types of email. By simply automating your sends, you can more than double the success of your emails.
In short, email automation is the best marketing channel to ensure the growth of your business.
This post will guide you, teaching you how to automate award-winning emails—the ones you’ve already written and the ones you have yet to write.
Understanding email automation
Unlike the occasional one-off email you might send to your readers, automated emails are sent based on specific triggers, like dates, signups, and customer behavior.
This may sound difficult, but it’s actually a very simple investment.
By automating emails, readers and prospects will often receive your messaging (but with very little work on your part).
To invest in automation, simply seek out a trustworthy email service provider that can simplify this process for you.
How to automate award-winning emails in 5 simple steps
Automation isn’t exactly a secret, and yet, not all businesses are using it. And those forgoing smart email tactics could miss the 4.1 billion strong market email marketing provides.
But before you send award-winning emails, there’s some groundwork you need to cover first.
1. Know your target audience
The most powerful aspect of email automation is the ability to send personalized emails to your subscribers. Of course, in order to do this, you have to know your audience.
Getting to know your target audience is simple. One of the easiest (and cheapest) ways to gather information about your audience is by reading comments on your website or social media pages. Comments are a great way to learn what readers are looking for and how you can improve your product or service.
Other ways to understand your target audience include (but aren’t limited to):
- Studying your competitors
- Gathering statistics
Notice how Netflix collects data from its users with a simple, optional survey.
Image Source: Really Good Emails
Once you gather information about your potential customers, write educational content that both promotes your business and actually helps your customers.
Depending on how much information you’ve gathered, you can also begin segmenting your list based on age, gender, and other demographics. By sending personalized content to individual segments, your messages will meet the goals of all award-winning emails: They’ll increase in opens and in clicks.
2. Set goals
Most companies share the same goal of growing business and increasing revenue.
Increasing revenue is cut and dry, but what does it mean to grow your business?
Success is different for every company, so consider what success means for you. Set specific goals for your business, and by extension, your email marketing.
Professional goals can include:
- Brand awareness
- Getting more leads
- Driving sales
- Driving traffic to your website, social media page, or products
- Reducing customer churn
- Nurturing leads
In addition to setting goals, pinpoint the KPIs that will help you monitor the effectiveness of your email marketing strategy.
3. Invest in the best automation software
The success of your marketing automation largely hinges on your automation software. If you’re avoiding purchasing an email service provider for fear of the cost, consider the stats we discussed earlier: Automation increases opens and clicks.
In other words, don’t put off paying for that software. Eventually, it will pay for itself.
Choosing the best marketing automation software may feel daunting with so many choices available. You’ll need one that fits not only your budget but also your goals.
Other factors to consider when getting your software are:
- Features. Most companies excel in software that is either channel-specific or one part of the funnel. The more expensive ones can handle the entire funnel easily.
- Easy integration or API access. A good marketing automation software can easily integrate with other software you use. If not, make sure it has API access so your developers can manage to link it to other parts of your system. This will help you future-proof your system.
- Customer support. Marketing automation software can be complex. This is why you need to research the customer support before settling on your automation software.
These are just a few of the factors you’ll need to research. By reading up on various ESPs, your emails will have the best chance of succeeding.
4. Plan your automation strategy
Now that you’ve laid all the groundwork, it’s time to get practical. Time to write and set up your award-winning emails for automation.
Before you wow everyone with amazing copy, here are the steps to take to make sure your emails hit the right inboxes.
Organize your emails
Email automation involves two main categories: drip campaigns (emails sent at specific intervals) and triggered emails (emails sent based on subscriber actions).
It’s important to organize your emails to avoid any mixups. Carefully determine which emails will be part of your drip campaigns and which emails will be triggered.
Define your triggers
As you plan your automation strategy, make sure your triggers are clearly defined. Special events should be used to send these emails, especially you have a defined customer journey.
Some triggers can include:
- Signing up for your newsletter
- Creating an account
- Purchasing a product
- Responding to a survey
Image Source: Email Marketing Web
Whatever trigger you decide to use, make sure it’s clearly defined and provides a seamless transition to your next email.
Design your workflow
An email workflow is how your emails are sent. It’s a strict series of rules and conditions that determine which emails are sent to your customer. These involve the triggers, the order of the emails (from the first to last), and any other rules you choose to define.
Your workflow is critical in ensuring your campaign succeeds. The triggers, the email sequence, and the timing have to be perfect. Otherwise, all your hard work could go to waste.
5. Create a memorable journey with your sequence
The most important element of your campaign is the sequence itself. The sequence is the main part of your system, and it’s especially visible to subscribers.
Contrary to what some marketers may claim, your sequence is not just a series of emails. It should be a journey for your subscribers. The initial welcome email and every subsequent email should encourage recipients to engage with your brand.
Each of these emails should aim to be award-winning quality.
How do you create award-winning emails?
- Quality subject line
- Extensive personalization
- Optimization for mobile
Hook them with the subject line
Most people decide the value of an email based on the subject line. In an email sequence, it could mean the difference between your subscriber making a purchase from you or opting out of your emails altogether.
Personalization is more critical than ever
With the way inboxes fill each day, it’s difficult to grab a subscriber’s attention. According to research, the average worker receives 121 emails a day. Many of these messages are deleted or go unread.
This is why a personalized email sequence is crucial. Personalization is all about creating timely and relevant content. Research your customers’ interests to make their journey unique and engaging.
Notice how this email from Really Good Emails gives information based on the customer’s specific journey (literally!).
Image Source: Really Good Emails
Optimize your emails for mobile
Studies show emails not optimized for mobile are likely to be deleted in as little as 3 seconds. People often use phones and tablets instead of desktop computers, meaning your emails may go unread if they’re not optimized for mobile devices.
Here are a few ways to keep mobile users interest:
- Use short subject lines
- Utilize a responsive template
- Go light on images
By giving your subscribers a quality customer journey, you’ll keep them engaged and encourage customer retention. This is great, especially since repeat customers are key to ensuring business growth.
Email marketing is valuable, but the best way to benefit from it is through engaging content. Provide relevant content to your customers through personalization and segmentation.
Once you’ve done the research, written award-winning quality content, and arranged your email sequences, automate your emails based on specific customer triggers.
So, go ahead, craft those award-winning emails with marketing automation.