Email Automation Has Its Day: It Now Beats Cost As A Factor

Email automation has finally gotten the recognition it deserves—from blogger Bob Warfield, who lists it among the top four analytics categories used by master marketers.

Now, maybe you’ve never heard of Bob Warfield. But he makes a good case in a post on EnterpriseIrregulars.

First, he defines email automation as “the ability to know which webpages your email reader has visited.” Then he argues this leads to “awesome personalization” and “helps you get the right information to your email readers, which is in everyone’s best interest.”

It’s no small thing for email automation to come in so high—it was up against technologies like deeper analytics, data embellishment, analytics for online apps and high-end A/B testing. The only categories to surpass it were ad-related, basic and heat-maps analytics.

For his own business sites—enterpriseirregulars and CNCCookbook—Warfield uses email automation, basic analytics, Heatmaps and Facebook Pixel (so he can run re-marketing adds on Facebook).



Why hasn’t he gone further? “I really haven’t felt a need to spend money on the other functions yet,” he says.

It’s funny he should mention money. A recent survey from Adestra and Econsultancy shows that automation capabilities now outrank cost as a factor for companies seeking an ESP.

“With an increased appetite for delivering relevant messages at scale and improving customer experience, automation has driven a move away from batch and blast email and put the customer at the center of communications,” Adestra CEO Henry Hyder-Smith writes in a post on Econsultancy.

Hyder-Smith describes these benefits:

  • High-email engagement — PetsPyjamas, unhappy with its opening email, used automation to power additional communications. One introduced or reminded customers about PetPoints, the firm’s loyalty program, depending on whether they had signed up for it.
  • Another was a holiday promotion. The company sent an email based on whether the person had made additional purchases during the holiday promotion. The results? Increased engagement “across email metrics, including a tenfold increase in revenue,” Smith writes. 
  • Winning Time Back — Future Publishing reclaimed a day and a half per week by automating its magazine renewal process,” Smith continues.
  • Among the many data points involved were the right message to the subscription type, discount and currency. Smith notes there were 192 variants. Future Publishing has since expanded the program to 24 titles. 
  • Improving the user experience — Cash-strapped UK fundraiser NSPCC implemented automation for transactional emails to drive content in its newsletters and for an abandonment campaign. With the latter, it recovered an average donation of UK £38, Hyder-Smith concludes.

Not ready for all that yet? Not to worry: Hyder-Smith reminds us that “no company implemented 100 triggers overnight.”


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