12 email marketing workflows you need for your business

Shane Herring
Shane Herring

Course Developer at Atomic Education



Whether they’re automated or not, workflows start when certain events happen in your business. Having a workflow ensures that your business process are error free and increase customer satisfaction. They also have a role in developing a strong relationship with prospective and current clients.

In this article I tell you the 12 email marketing workflows you need for your business.

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    Welcome workflow

    Welcoming someone who has made the decision to actively engage with your business is a great way to start building a relationship with them. You can thank them, remind them what they’ll get or send links to your most popular articles or offers.

    Your welcome can be a single email or a series of relevant emails sent over a period of time. Whichever you choose to do, it’s important you send the first email straight away.

    If you haven’t setup a welcome sequence, start with one email. Now. Then, create a sequence of 3-5 emails.

    Subscribers who receive welcome emails are 33% more likely to engage with your brand.

    Topic workflows

    Trigger: Visitor registers their email address to receive content

    You should use this workflow if: This is workflow is great if you are using content marketing.

    Many business offer products that aren’t closely related to each other. An example is a photographer whose genres are weddings, family portraits, and newborns.

    When someone downloads content related to wedding photography, your workflow delivers information centred on this topic. You could create a workflow that sends a sequence of email that contain information that is wedding related. Recommended venues, hints and tips for the wedding day are some simple ideas.

    It’s an ideal way to segment leads because they’re asking for information in one area of your business.

    Once you have a segmented list with a demonstrated interest in a subject, it is then possible to craft an email marketing campaign, drawing upon all the related content you have. Sending the content to a lead primes them to associate your brand with value, and eventually nudges them into the sales cycle.

    Creating a great lead magnet could increase your conversion rate by 30% or more.

    Lead nurturing workflow

    Trigger: A contact has spent a specified amount of time at the top of your sales funnel.

    Why you should have this workflow: If a contact has downloaded your top-of-the-funnel lead magnets, it’s a sign they’re ready for a little bit more. The purpose of this email campaign strategy is to educate the prospect further, build awareness of your organisation and products, and build trust. All this makes it more likely that the lead will end up buying from you.

    Once you have delivered your lead magnet to your prospect, they may not be ready to buy just yet. The purpose of a lead nurturing workflow is to establish a meaningful relationship and get that prospect ready for your sales process. Buy nurturing your lead, your conversion rate will increase and you will build a solid foundation with your customers.

    Just as content is used to collect good quality leads in the first place and keep up the flow of value to those leads, it can be then leveraged to push the leads into the next lifecycle stage of a customer journey.

    If the contact is a lead, try sending them emails containing more middle-of-the-funnel content that might upgrade them to a marketing qualified lead (MQL) or an opportunity in your sales process. This workflow could include content and web pages you’ve identified from an attribution report?analysis as influential in converting leads into customers — perhaps content like customer success stories/case studies, free trial offers, or product demos.

    Nurturing a lead will increase the the purchase value 47% of the time.

    Event workflow

    This starts when: Someone has registered for and/or attended an event

    Why you should have this: Engaging with people before and after an event is a great way to build trust in your brand.

    Having a workflow that delivers reminders, information such as local accommodation, parking shows you care about the person. The thing to be aware of is managing people who register at different times before the event. For example, if someone registers 3 days prior, you won’t want them to receive the 7 day reminder but you do want them to receive the welcome email.

    An after the event workflow can give them access to online resource, offers, and promote future events.

    Be careful though, if you send out an after event thank you for attending email, what would that do to the trust you’ve built if they didn’t attend? Have two after event workflows, one for those who attended and one for those who couldn’t make it.

    Evangelist workflow

    This starts when: An existing contact keeps returning to your website, opens emails, or shares emails or page content.

    Why you should have this: You should be continuing to build a long term relationship with your contacts.

    There many actions someone can take to show that they’re highly engaged with your brand. Lead scoring is a great way to do this. Each action someone could take is allocated a certain number of points. When you’ve implement strategies such as link tracking in emails or site tracking on your website, you can allocate points to your contacts. This workflow can be triggered when a contact accumulates a predefined number of points. This can either send them a gift or send you a message so you can reach out to them yourself.

    Re-engagement workflow

    This starts when: Contacts have not opened emails, followed up on free trial or otherwise interacted with your brand for a specified period of time.

    You should have this workflow because: List management is an important part of managing your email metrics. Keeping inactive contacts on your lists will impact your metrics.

    Before you starting trying to re-engagement the contact, ask yourself why they’ve become dis-engaged. It could be that your email subject lines are the problem.

    Have you been following up with your past customers? Or have your relationships fallen by the wayside?

    The thing to be careful about is how long you wait before the re-engagement workflow is triggered. If you send monthly emails then triggering it after two months probably isn’t a good idea. I’d suggest 90 days as a trigger point.

    It costs 7 times more to acquire a new customer than to retain an existing one.

    Abandoned shopping cart workflow

    This starts when: Someone who adds an item to their online shopping cart leaves before completing the checkout process.

    Why you should have this workflow: Selecting a product and starting the purchase process is a clear signal that the person was intending to purchase. You need to be following up to keep their incomplete purchase in front of mind.

    Sending an email that reminds them of their incomplete purchase and motivates them to finish the process will decrease your cart abandonment rate. Some strategies to entice them back include sending them a special discount code or another incentive to give them a reason to return.

    Of the people that place a product in their online shopping cart, at least 68% of them will abandon it

    Up-sell workflow

    This starts when: You have a contact with a purchasing history

    Why you should have this workflow: It is far more expensive to acquire new customers rather than retain existing ones.

    Communication with your customers should not stop after they make a purchase. This is especially true if you have a variety products and/or services. This workflow takes advantage of the opportunity to upgrade or up-sell to your existing customers. You may send them offers for complementary products and services depending on what they purchased previously.

    This strategy is not about squeezing every last dollar you can out of a customer. This can backfire and lose you good customers. It’s about informing customers of complementary products that may help them.

    To make these workflows work well, make sure you track what purchases your contacts make. This could be individual product purchases or purchases from one or more categories.

    It’s estimated that up to 80% of revenue comes in from existing customers.

    Product life cycle reminder workflow

    This starts when: A contact has an upcoming repurchase date for a product or service.

    Why you should have this workflow: When you have products that have a life cycle such as subscriptions or or products top-ups, sending a reminder helps the customer budget for and reorder your product offering.

    Also called renewal marketing, these workflows are triggered a specified number of days prior to a renewal date. For instance, let’s say you service home septic treatment systems. A customer purchased a 12 month contract. Having an automated email sent to the customer two months prior to their contract expiring is a great way to remind them it’s time to renew their contact. Including payment options and you will increase your renwal rate as well as saving time in administration.

    Repeat customers should generate the bulk of your revenue.

    Timely communications can show up to 58% more results than ordinary communication.

    Milestone workflow

    This starts when: You contacts have an upcoming date that is not necessarily directly related to previous purchases.

    You should have this workflow because: Continuing to build relationships with your customers to create loyalty.

    Milestones can take many forms. They can be a customer’s upcoming birthday or wedding anniversary. They can be the anniversary of your business or even your birthday.

    For example, sending an automated birthday email with and exclusive birthday offers make your customers feel like they’re part of your community. They feel like you value them and customers who feel valued are more likely to buy from you over and over again. Price becomes less and less of an issue.

     

    Customer feedback workflow

    This starts when: You have a high or low customer feedback score

    You should use this workflow when: Customer has ranked the product or service high or low after sending them a feedback request.

    This type of workflow has many uses. Not just product purchases. If you have a support desk and send out surveys after a support ticket has been closed, is another example.

    Whatever you use as a trigger, customer input is an important way to keeps customers engaged. Research indicates that getting feedback is becoming an important way for businesses to differentiate themselves from competitors.

    What you need to do first is work out at what score this workflow is triggered. If you choose a range such as 1-5, one being poort, 5 beeing excellent, you could trigger when a score is one or five.

    If a score of 5 is given, trigger your happy workflow that sends them exclusive content, offers, or discounts. On the other hand, if you get a one, you could trigger an email to a support person to make contact with the customer to try and resolve the problem.

    This workflow can be combined with an after purchase workflow that thanks them for supporting your business and links to a survey.

    Anonymous visitor workflow

    This workflow starts: When a website visitor spends more than a specific amount of time viewing a page or scrolls down a page a certain distance.

    Why you should have this workflow: Less than a third of website visitors return so it’s important to engage with them early and turn them into contacts.

    Website visitors don’t usually don’t stay on a page for very long so it’s important to present them with a small, focused and relevant offer. The thing is to not make it too intrusive and too early. A guide is to present your offer when they move close the browser tab, called exit intent, or when the visitor is idle for a specified number of seconds. Heatmaps are a great way for you to get behavioural patterns? to see what works for your website.

    Wrap up

    Whether you automate them or not, these 12 email marketing workflows are something you should be considering for your business. Each plays an important role in engaging with prospective and current customers.

    Do you have a workflow that you think every business should use? Let me know by adding a comment below.

    Enjoy your day.

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