Pull the Trigger: 5 Campaigns You Should Be Running Right Now

Melanie Alfano, Marketing Strategist

Melanie Alfano, Marketing Strategist

More consumers now expect to receive relevant emails that deliver just the right message at just the right time, but how can you keep up with such demands? Building and maintaining a truly personalized email program seems daunting, but it doesn’t have to be. By using the customer data you’ve gathered and their shopping behavior, you can craft a number of triggered messages.

Triggered messages are some of the most effective emails you can send – and one of the easiest ways to drive revenue. They also tend to result in much higher overall engagement compared to scheduled sends. And they do a lot of the heavy lifting so you’re free to focus on other important priorities.

Here are the top five revenue-returning triggered campaigns you should be sending right now:

1. Cart Recovery

We’ve all been there. You add a few items to your online shopping cart with every intention of buying them but get distracted before following through, or you decide to wait and do a little research before pulling the trigger. Don’t let those potential sales slip through your fingers!

When a shopper signs in at your site or abandons their purchase at checkout, their email address is cookied, so take the opportunity to remind them of their latest online shopping trip. This first message can be considered transactional, which doesn’t require an opt-in. But any subsequent messages in a cart recovery series can only go to those who have opted in to your marketing program.

You might send a simple reminder, or you may go a step further by offering resources to help answer questions that might have prevented them from buying. Think size guides, shipping/return policies, store contact information or warranty details. To add a sense of urgency, you might use an incentive or some “last chance” language in your email. No matter the message, be sure to reference the items that were abandoned in the cart. But limit the items you display to five or less, and invite shoppers to view their cart to see the rest.

Sportsman’s Warehouse took the time to establish an automated cart recovery program, and their efforts paid off. They found that those messages open at a rate 155% higher than promotional messages and convert at 12x the rate of those emails.

2. Browse Recovery

What about shoppers who spend lots of time on your site perusing your products but fail to add any to a shopping cart? The same strategy applies. Analyze the individual browsing data for your visitors, and see how you can encourage them to follow through.

Unlike cart recovery, your customer must be opted in to qualify to receive browse recovery messages. Using browse data, you might target users who have recently viewed items within a specific timespan or perhaps those who viewed a qualifying number of items within a certain category. Or you may want to set up a product threshold campaign to contact shoppers who have viewed the same item within a specific period of time. You can sort the items they viewed based on browse history or even product feed data, and can throttle your messaging or set exclusions if necessary.

Brooks Sports added browse recovery to its marketing arsenal, sending an email to subscribers who browse on a product with an image of the browsed item. Results: A 61% open rate, 24% click rate and 7% conversion rate with revenue of $1.44 per email.

3. Welcome Series

Your welcome series is your opportunity to introduce new contacts to your world. It’s the time to flaunt the many reasons why you should become one of their new favorite brands. At this point, you have a clean slate with the subscriber, and we all know that first impressions mean a lot. So make these messages count!

Thank new subscribers for signing up, and point out your competitive advantages. Support your social media channels or even your top-selling items. You may even offer an incentive to encourage them to come back to your site ready to shop, or invite them to tell you how often they’d like to hear from you.

Dr. Denim has seen great success with their welcome series: a 5x higher conversion rate than their average marketing email. The brand has also seen a staggering open rate of 69% and a conversion rate of 20%, generating a 2 Euro return on every email sent.

4. Post-Purchase Series

It’s so much harder to convert a one-time buyer than a shopper who hasn’t purchased yet.  Only 32% of customers place a second order in the first year as a customer. But once they’ve placed two orders, the likelihood of them placing a third goes up to 50%.

Consider the many ways you can help your customers see the value in your product and your brand. Offer instructions on how to care for the product they’ve bought or a reminder to buy again when it’s likely time to replenish their supply. Think positively, and encourage all those happy customers to give feedback on your products or even share their purchase via social media. Think about what buyers of a particular product might want to buy next, and prepare dynamic product recommendations based on order or product feed data. The possibilities are endless.

One brand finding success with a solid post-purchase program? Everlast. Open rates for their series, which strives to build brand awareness while encouraging additional purchases, are 65% (412% above that for a promotional email) with conversion rates of 7 to 8%.

5. Loyalty Program

Consumers who join your loyalty program are potential brand advocates. They’re often some of your best customers, so be sure you treat them as such.

Many of your emails to this group can easily be triggered to allow for timely, relevant sends that target the group with the right information at the right time. Have multiple tiers to your loyalty program? Send a celebratory email when a customer reaches a new level, or reach out with periodic reminders of how many rewards points they’ve earned. Invite this group to refer a friend to your brand or participate in a social contest that involves sharing a photo of your product with a particular hashtag and maybe even an incentive.

Colby Saenz, ecommerce marketing manager for Sportsman’s Warehouse, offered that 43% of the retailer’s sales volume flows through their loyalty program. With the potential for numbers like that, you should make a point to devote some time to messaging for that audience.

These are just a few of the many triggered messages you can use to engage your customers and drive revenue. Some are easier to set up than others, but the effort will be well worth it  Just like a well diversified stock portfolio, you must take the time to make the right investment, but once you do, it will pay off in dividends and then some.

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