Your email drip campaign - 4 steps to success

Written by  Tuesday, 19 April 2011 08:41

Drip email campaigns have emerged as one of our most popular e-marketing tactics for nurturing leads.

The reason? Drip email campaigns are formed of a series of promotional pieces, sent out regularly, over a period of time. Each individual email may well serve it's own purpose however the regular sends create exposure for the brand which keeps the products and services in the foreground of the recipients awareness.

Drip feeding your prospects with your email message is much like ‘drip irrigation’ - an agricultural term referring to the method of giving crops or plants small amounts of water, consistently, over a long period of time - thereby making it more resource efficient. Each email builds upon the strength of previous emails in the campaign, with the goal of encouraging a specific response such as such as an inbound telephone call, visit, sign up, or purchase. Effective drip campaigns will keep your recipients informed and aware of your products and your brand. This is key to creating brand loyalty, especially in the first stages of an online relationship.

All good marketers know the importance of effective planning! Use these four planning questions from BrotherMailer to create the most effective email drip campaign for your product or service:

1. Identify the email campaign aim

Your aim needs to be specific - Ask yourself:

  • What is the overall goal of your email campaign? How will you achieve that goal? Do you want to make more sales? Do you need to acquire more/up-to-date data?
  • What is the desired response to each email? What is the exact action you want/need your recipients to take? - Are you driving traffic to your website? Do you need to capture data?
  • What are the key messages for each email? - Do you want to tell your clients about a new product offer? Do you want to recruit volunteers for a charity? Are you informing stakeholders of an important event?
  • How will you optimise your emails to individual recipients in order to reach this goal? - You may want to use dynamic content or triggered sends to automatically generate bespoke emails tailored to your recipients preferences

2. How good is the email campaign content?

High quality content makes the difference between an instant un-subscribe and a loyal email shot hungry recipient. Well-written, informative content keeps your customers and leads coming back for more. Drip campaigns need enticing content as there is a danger the 'drip' could become an irritation if your messages are perceived as boring, useless or even tedious. Clever, funny, current content can help to build anticipation over the course of a campaign, and keep your recipients from hitting the unsubscribe button.

3. Whom is your email campaign targeting?

Whether you have years of profiling on each of your contacts or just the basic information, such as sex, you should always use the data you have to make your message as relevant as possible to your target audience. How many times have you heard a friend or colleague complain about receiving random emails selling inappropriate goods? For the cumulative nature of the drip email campaign to have the desired effect, your message must be appropriate to your target audience. You will lean more from responsive, interested subscribers than subscribers who send your email to trash because your product service is completely irrelevant to their needs. Each campaign offers the chance to learn more about your subscribers, using click through reporting, surveys and analysis tools that show when, where and on what sort of device your emails are opened. This will help you deliver interesting campaigns which hold value.

4. What will your email campaign look like?

Think carefully about the layout and design. A drip campaign is all about consistency so it would make sense to keep the same template for the duration of the drip campaign. The most effective campaigns are simple but consistent, something easily recognisable and familiar which easy for the reader to navigate. Short and concise copy, bite size bits of tantalising information, a minimal amount of images and only the necessary links will all aid your delivery, open and click through rates. Drip campaigns should focus on getting your recipients to perform a specific action with each email shot you send, you do not want them getting distracted along the way.


Author: Yasmin Sheikh