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Ready to Pull the Trigger on Exceptional Customer Engagement? 10 Ideas for Trigger-Based Emails

While online shopping has become easier than ever before, exceptional online experiences still stand out and help cut through the clutter. For example, I was recently shopping (not at work) for a very nice purse but when I went to purchase it, the item was out of stock. It was very disappointing to say the least! So imagine my happiness and delight a few days later when I received an eMail from the company letting me know that the item was back in stock, along with a link back to my shopping cart. Purse heaven!

In today’s multi-layered marketing environment, building this type of customer engagement is becoming essential if you want to truly connect with your audience. While it is now relatively easy to create and deliver content across a multitude of channels, maintaining customer engagement has paradoxically become harder due to the resulting deluge of content! Fortunately, marketing teams can still build engagement in today’s digital space – but it takes careful planning and anticipation of how, when, and where customers will be interacting with your content.

Trigger-based emails are one powerful tool that can help nurture lasting customer engagement. These event-driven emails are automatically generated based on a lead’s interaction, such as clicking a specific link or visiting a certain site or page. Using a combination of a marketing automation platform and trigger-based emails, we are able to react in real-time to a prospect’s direct behavior. By systematically using trigger-based emails to act quickly while the opportunity is still available, you can increase your conversions, build engagement, and ultimately increase revenue.

There are several benefits to trigger-based emails. Trigger-based emails have been proven to show more open and or click rates than any other type of email in any industry. In fact, Epsilon has found that triggered Emails have a click-through rate 152% higher than non-trigger emails. (Non-trigger emails include batch, nurture, and/or linear email campaigns.) Additional advantages to using trigger-based emails include increasing brand awareness and creating added customer loyalty. One of the optimum benefits to using trigger-based emails is the potential to increase operational efficiencies within your own company. Once the trigger-based email campaigns are built into your marketing automation platform, you can set them up, turn them on, and let them run automatically.

Trigger-Based Emails

Below is a list of 10 ideas to ‘trigger’ your creativity around these types of emails:

If you are ready to take your customer engagement to the next level, here is a proven list of trigger-based email ideas:

  1. When lead score falls below a certain threshold
    • Assuming you have lead scoring set up in your marketing automation system, establish a re-engagement campaign to launch the moment that lead gets to the lower threshold score in your system
  2. When a lead score climbs above a certain threshold
    • Create an email with a link to a landing page with a form to contact sales (fast track to sales campaign for high scoring leads)
  3. When a lead opens but doesn’t click inside an email
    • Try sending the same content in a second email with the same subject, but render the content differently on the page (same CTA)
  4. When a lead downloads a resource from your website
    • Send a thank-you email containing a link to a landing page with a form to submit a question about the download content
    • Gather all the questions with the answers to create a Q&A page about that content
  5. When a lead clicks on an ad for a conference on your social media site
    • Send them an invite to visit your booth at the conference
  6. When a lead subscribes to your blog
    • Send them a welcome email (always welcome them after registering for anything) – within that welcome email invite them to subscribe to your blog, social feed, or newsletter
  7. When a known prospect likes something or shares something on your Facebook page, LinkedIn page, Twitter feed, or YouTube channel
    • Send them a thank-you email with the opportunity to sign up for your regular blog or newsletter email
  8. When a prospect visits your events webpage
    • Send them an email invitation to an event in their area (localized campaign)
  9. If a lead took one action in a series but not the next
    • Send a follow-up email with a different subject, prompting the same CTA again
  10. Relationship marketing
    • If your customers have purchased something in one area, send related product or service information when a purchase is made or a contract is signed

These are just some initial ideas to get you in a brainstorming frame of mind when considering some of the actions you are requesting your prospects to take in all of your digital marketing efforts. You can then use a marketing automation platform such as Marketo to create trigger-based emails that not only enhance your communication efforts, but also provide relevant, real-time, on-demand messaging.

Realistically, you cannot control what your prospect will do or when they will do it. But fortunately, you do have the opportunity to systematically plan what YOU do and how YOU respond to their triggers, thus building engagement and putting the ball back in their court to take action!

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Angela Dalmas
Angela is a marketing automation specialist, as well as a talented designer and strategist. A legendary Customer Realist, she is Marketo Certified, and a Marketo integration specialist with SFDC, WebEx, GoToMeeting, InXpo, StrikeIron, CVENT, Webhooks, API, LeadPages. When not building out powerful marketing automation campaigns, she enjoys spending time in beautiful North Carolina.

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