Reports suggest that 90% of online startups fail to succeed, and 22% of them unable to take off due to marketing problems. The online landscape boasts a cutthroat environment where hundreds of businesses pop up in every niche every day. This competitive environment makes it harder for new ventures to survive for long. Even established companies need to mend their ways and adopt a proactive approach to keep their foothold intact.
Therefore, a website-based business or an e-commerce store has to be on top of its marketing game to see through the shaky beginnings and ensure long-haul survival and growth. They can’t afford to run their promotions like traditional offline brick-and-mortar businesses that usually start and end with a particular campaign with long gaps in between.
Online businesses need to set up a dynamic marketing regimen that boasts a streamlined workflow. This streamlined promotional setup allows them to stay ahead and do better than competitions. Various systems and procedures can be used to establish a seamless marketing workflow. Email automation is one of them.
What Is Marketing Workflow and Why It Is Important?
Before we delve into discussing email automation’s role in establishing proper marketing workflow, it is imperative to understand its core concept and why it is important. Marketing workflow is essentially a series and sequence of steps and actions that develop and execute promotional plans and customer engagement. You can create workflows for particular campaigns, as well as your standard marketing procedure.
When you devise a marketing workflow, you settle on the order of operations and also determine the rules and requirements for their execution. Establishing a marketing workflow is essential for various reasons.
- It helps you operate your marketing in a self-sufficient manner
- Your marketing and sales team can work without any conflict and confusion
- You can simultaneously execute multiple successful campaigns
- You get to improve your marketing ROIs
- You can focus on other aspects of business instead of stressing over marketing and promotions all the time
Email Automation for Marketing Workflow
Email automation, if done right, can help you maintain the yielding workflow of your direct digital marketing and drip campaigns. Email automation enables you to run your lead nurturing campaigns in a semi-autonomous manner where customers are reached out when they take specific actions regarding your business. Once the email automation gets going, you can run your marketing and sales funnel with minimal oversight.
Here, we will discuss how email automation can help you establish different components of an efficient marketing workflow.
Welcome Email – Greet New Signups and Subscriptions
As the name suggests, a welcome email is a greeting message that you send to users when they sign up or register on your online platform. Besides thanking and greeting them, you can use the welcome email to inform users about new product arrivals, active discount deals, and what your plans for your business are.
Composing and sending out a welcome email is no big deal if you have to do it once in a while. However, when you are getting multiple signups and registrations every day, it becomes challenging to keep track of every single of them. Consequently, you may miss welcoming and commemorating many new signups.
You can sort this issue out with email automation. Programs like Mailchimp let you set triggers for welcome emails. This means whenever a user will sign up and subscribe to your website, a welcome email is triggered and sent out to them. You don’t need to assign a person to track new signups and send them welcome emails when you link your new registrations with email automation software.
Apart from a single email, you can also set a welcome sequence chain through automation triggers. The sequence emails come in handy when you have to outline more of your business and promotional stuff. Also, customers are more likely to notice a string of emails from the same address in their inboxes.
Automate Lead Magnet Follow-ups
The lead magnet highlights the incentives you offer users in exchange for their contact information (usually email). Lead magnets offer twofold benefits. First, they help you expand the database of your potential customers. Second, they enable you to push more prospects in the right direction in your sales funnel.
However, putting the lead magnet tab on your website (e.g., offering a free eBook in exchange for submitting your email address) is not enough to successfully persuade people to do business with you. You will also need to follow up on this exchange with an email that further adds value to what you have provided to the prospect earlier. For instance, if your lead magnet offers an eBook on home renovations, your follow-up email should cover the relevant topics.
Again, email sequence is a good way to execute lead magnet follow-up. You can offer more value and do better persuasion through multiple emails. Also, a customer who has provided you their email to download the eBook is more likely to open the follow-up emails and engage with you.
Instead of taking care of all these backend details of lead magnet manually, you can set it up on email automation software. By synchronizing your lead magnet with email automation, you can nurture many of your leads without working on them individually.
Establish General Lead Nurturing
Many people believe that the entire lead nurturing process requires you to manually work on contacts to turn them in leads and prospects. However, that’s not the case. If you manage to establish your marketing workflow through the right type of email automation configurations, you can nurture leads in a self-reliant manner.
We need to mention here that conducting general lead nurturing through email automation doesn’t involve many complex processes and procedures. For instance, you can start by sending automated emails to your contacts that have browsed through certain categories and content on your website. These emails should be relevant to the topics they showed their interest in (based on URLs).
If these well-thought-out automated emails turn your contact into leads, you must have the second round of automated emails ready. This round should be focused on turning regular leads into Marketing Qualified Leads (MQLs). The analytics of the first round of emails (open rate, click-through rate, bounce rate, etc.) will help you determine the right content (a demo, free trial, videos, online events, etc.) for the second round. A successful second round of automated emails can turn your contacts into Sales Qualified Leads (SQLs).
Don’t get disappointed if it doesn’t work like that in the beginning. No one can get this multilevel automated email interaction right in the first iteration. However, after trial and error and ironing out all the kinks, you can establish a self-sustaining lead nurturing program through automated emails that has the potential to move contacts to lead, MQL, and eventually SQL.
In short, email automation-led lead nurturing can completely take care of the part of the sales funnel that marketing teams oversee.
Win Over Customers Again
Marketing is not just about developing new prospects and acquiring new customers. It should also be able to re-engage customers. This re-engagement bit is more crucial for online businesses because they experience higher customer turnover due to market saturation and the digital landscape’s fickle nature.
You need to understand that every customer doesn’t cut ties with a business on purpose. Many times, a customer account with your business goes dormant because they just forget about your venture. Yes, it happens in the fast-paced digital medium that customers often fail to continue their journey with a business due to distractions and exciting offers from other businesses.
Therefore, a business needs to establish a robust re-engagement plan for its dormant consumer base. You need to reach out to all those accounts that have been inactive for a long time or haven’t got back after sign up or a free trial.
Keeping track of all these accounts and reaching out to them manually involves a lot of work. Instead, establish an email automation setup that triggers when a contact remains inactive for a particular duration. You can use different re-engagement emails for different sets of inactive consumers.
For instance, reach out to all those contacts that have gone silent after onboarding (initial signups, free trials) with discount membership offers. If you sell particular products, you can set triggers for re-engagement emails while reminding the dormant customers about the arrival of new variants of stuff they had purchased from you a long time ago.
In short, devise different re-engagement emails for different sections and automate them for different time triggers. This automated and customized re-engagement setup will surely help you activate many contacts again.
Resolve Customer Complaints and Queries
Wooing customers with your USPs and discounts make a large part of any marketing effort. However, some things exist beyond this wooing and baiting. For instance, you also need to ensure your business promptly responds to customer queries and resolve their issues. One should treat this part of customer service as an integral part of marketing because it helps retain existing customers and ensure prospects only move forward in the sales funnel.
In theory, it sounds very doable to entertain every customer query and complaint. However, it becomes almost impossible to handle all customer concerns in time in a practical setting when your sales and marketing teams already have too much on their plates. You can provide your staff cushion and reach out to customers in time by establishing an automated email exchange.
When customers reach out to you through emails with their queries, ask them to select the class/nature of the issue they want to register. This way, you can categorize customer queries and complaints and then set the triggers with customized automated emails. These automated troubleshoot emails will make sure customers can hear from you in time.
Categorizing customer complaints and setting them with the right triggers will also enable you to escalate the issues to the right person in your customer service team.
Improve Engagement for Your Events, Seminars, and Webinars
Social proceedings help businesses conduct effective PR exercise. However, you need to make those events successful in getting the desired PR results. The conventional way to ensure more people attend those events is to assign a team that relentlessly reaches out to potential attendees and persuade them to come. This arrangement needs you to invest a substantial amount of human resources.
On the other hand, you can automate this entire persuasion process. Once your contact has shown interest in an event you are organizing, you can create trigger maps for them where their certain actions and inactions can trigger different persuasive emails. A good email marketing automation system can let you follow up with attendees and persuade the contacts to attend without using a single individual from your marketing team.
Create a Robust Upsell System
Many businesses get clueless about engaging customers and keeping them in the fold after reaching the end of the sales funnel. If you are running a business that offers multiple products and services, you always have the opening to engage customers who have made a sale.
You can do this by sending them out an upsell email. This message will thank the customer for the purchase and then show them other products and services that you offer. You can also include discounts and coupons in upselling emails to incentivize customers to do business with you once more.
If your business is doing well and making dozens and hundreds of sales every day, you may not keep up with sending upsell email on every sale made. So, automate this system. Create emails with different upsell offers for different products and then tie them together with a trigger.
From the above discussion, it has become quite clear that email automation can come very useful for taking care of various components of the marketing workflow. However, you need to be patient while synching your marketing landscape with email automation. It takes time to establish a self-sufficient marketing workflow powered by email automation. You also need to pick the right email automation platform and experts that can seamlessly integrate the platform with your business for all its features.