Many email marketers continue to search for the right frequency, asking, "How many emails can we send before we drive away too many subscribers and turn increased short-term gains into lowered long-term results?"
To me, however, the key question is "How do we send more relevant emails more often but with fewer resources?"
Enter automation and trigger-based messages. While low in volume, triggered emails can deliver off-the-charts results. Three examples:
Interestingly, these automated "right time, right message" emails enable marketers to touch many of their subscribers and customers not only at an increased frequency, but with significantly higher relevance. Done correctly, these triggered emails may also increase subscriber engagement with your regular broadcast or segmented emails.
Answering Marketer Skepticism on Lower-Volume Messaging
Triggered and "lifecycle" messages allow you to send a greater variety of tightly focused messages to relatively smaller segments of your database. On any given day or week, however, only a small percentage of your database would receive a communication from you.
Many marketers believe that low-volume programs can be successful by themselves but not generate enough revenue on a grand scale to replace high-volume broadcast messages.
They're right, too. Perhaps only a few percent of your customers receive a purchase confirmation in an average week, or 2% receive a birthday greeting.
However, these more-relevant triggered messages can produce returns that are many times greater than your broadcast messages.
Add the incremental revenue from that birthday message to the other revenue from a strategic set of 10 to 12 automatically triggered emails, and you begin to see the potential.
Is This the End of Broadcast?
Not by a long shot. Automated messages, which send a greater variety of messages but to relatively smaller segments of your database, will supplement rather than replace your broadcast messages.
You can communicate more often with customers via more timely and valuable messages. They work so well because they are based on behavior, preferences and demographics.
But broadcast and targeted/segmented messages still deliver significant results because of their sheer volume, frequency, brand reminder and luck of timing.
Also, most triggered messages for ecommerce companies go to existing customers. So, you need broadcast and segmented emails to convert prospects into paying customers.
That said, automated messages provide these advantages over traditional broadcast messages:
How to Add Triggered Messaging to Your Email Marketing Strategy
If you don't use triggered messages now, or if you deploy only one or two, you don't have to boil the ocean to take your program to the next level.
Start by adding a message that delivers the most value, such as cart abandonment, a welcome series, and adding cross-sell/upsell content to transactional messages.
Test content, layout, offers/no offers, timing and cadence. Then, add another triggered message.
There are literally dozens of lifecycle/triggered-type messages you can deploy. Here are just a few examples:
The next time your boss says "Send another email," seize the opportunity to gain support for adding more "set it and forget it" triggered messages, rather than another "pray and spray" message based on hunches rather than customer behavior and interests.
I would love to hear your experiences with triggered messages and how you are balancing them with the demands for sending higher-volume broadcast messages.
Until next time, take it up a notch!