So you went through the trouble of building up an extensive email list; now what? Are you utilizing your email contact list to its full potential?
Many people spend months, even years on campaigns that build up an email list, but end up with a huge contact list that they don’t know what to do with. So it just sits there, collecting dust, a.k.a opt-out.
When done correctly, email marketing is the most valuable content you can put out there. Yes, people tend to ignore a lot of emails but if you can automate your emails properly, you are guaranteed to get great ROIs.
What is email automation?
It’s a means for creating sequences through workflows that produce meaningful content for your audience. In other words, it allows you to set up automatic emails that go out to a particular audience based on their specific circumstances. You can create lists, groups of contacts, categories, and criteria that need to be met in order for your audience to receive emails tailored to their needs. It eliminates tedious, time-consuming tasks such as compiling contact lists and scheduling emails. Your marketing team will be less distracted and more focused on valuable projects.
AND people much prefer personalized/customized emails over getting spammed with meaningless blast emails that they receive day in, day out. With email automation, your customers will be more engaged than ever.
Firstly, you need to make sure to choose the correct place to set up your automations. Some of our favourite Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software includes Sharpspring, Mailchimp, Constant Contact, and Curve’s own CRM system “Cedar.” Send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org for more info!
Here are the five steps to rocking your email automations:
1. Set Your Goals
You need to have your goals clear cut. This is the only way to go into your automation journey with confidence. If you don’t have clear goals, you will run into problems at every stage, and that will set you back big time.
2. Detect Your Triggers
Your contacts will need to meet certain criteria to be eligible to enter into a workflow. Based on your goals, you need to determine a set of criteria for each workflow. Once you do this, your contacts will essentially trigger a separation into lists. This is where you start to see the personalization of your contacts.
3. Timing is EVERYTHING
Figure out how many hours, days, weeks, months need to go by between each email. The timing will be different for each workflow, depending on the circumstances. If your workflow is about an offer that runs out in a certain amount of time, you will need your workflow to last only a couple of days or weeks. If you have a year-long campaign, maybe sending your contacts an email once every few months will be enough.
Keep in mind that there are optimal days and times to send out emails for a good open rate. You can find them on this HubSpot blog.
4. Determine Your Assets - The Emails
Where in the email journey are your contacts at? Are they a regular customer? Are they new? Have they been sitting in your contact list for a while, not opening anything?
All of this matters for the content you’re providing them with. If they’re new to the subscription, sending a promotional email straight away will turn them away. Give them a warm welcome first. It’s extremely important that the content of the emails is curated for the workflow that it is in.
TEST, TEST, TEST!
Always remember to test out your workflows, because not everything will work out the way you initially plan. One part of the workflow having an issue can cause the whole system to collapse. So put yourself through the workflow as many times as you need to, until it’s perfect.
6. Frequent Reporting
You thought we were done once we set it up and tested it, but there’s one more step. Setting up reports is important to keep track of your email marketing performance. Especially at the beginning of a new campaign, you will want to see your data to know what’s working and what’s not. Plus, it’ll be a confidence boost to see that your contact list is engaging with your content more than ever!
Pro tip: If you don’t know where to begin with email automation, take a second to think about all the time you’ve wasted sending emails manually. Take those emails and set up a workflow so they can be automated. Once you have that set, you will have a clean slate to start with. You can now come up with clear goals, and follow through with them.
Having a functioning email automation helps you maintain a list hygiene, meaning you have a clean contact list, containing people that are fully engaged. Email Automation also makes your business more scalable. Once your business grows, your team won’t get overwhelmed by the amount of emails and contacts they need to sort through.
Follow these steps and you’ll be golden for your next automation!
Still have some questions about automations or need help setting them up? Contact us and we’ll steer you in the right direction.