If your company has an email database, chances are you’re already doing some kind of email marketing activity.

If not, jump on that bandwagon (we might know some guys who can help…) If you are already doing some, take a step back and think about the strategy behind the emails you’re sending.

The emails you send should work together as part of a long-term strategy to grow your business and present your brand in a particular way to your audience. This is where a drip campaign comes in.

What is an email drip campaign?

Email drip campaigns are an automated, ongoing series of emails delivered to a list of subscribers over a period of time. In this sense, they’re a little more complex than your standard fortnightly newsletter. Written and designed in advance, drip emails are automated using email marketing software (platforms like Mailchimp, Marketo or Campaign Monitor) and then delivered at set scheduled times.

A person receiving drip emails may receive an email every month, fortnight or week over a three-monthly period. Depending on the objective of the drip campaign, each email might provide them with information and useful resources (like blog articles or links to downloadable PDFs) that educate them about your products, reminders about an important event that’s coming up, or encouragement to renew a soon-to-expire subscription. Whatever the objective, all drip campaigns are meant to keep your brand top of mind over a long-term period.

What can email drip campaigns be used for?

Email marketing drip campaigns can be great for brand new leads who have just joined your database. Instead of immediately sending new subscribers promotional emails containing your latest offers, a drip campaign can be used to welcome them into the fold, familiarise them with your brand, and provide them with useful information that presents you as a go-to resource.

They can also be great in the lead-up to an event you’re promoting. Starting with a teaser, you can set up emails over the course of a few months that gradually provide more information to recipients as the day gets closer.

Some e-commerce brands also use drip campaigns to re-market to customers who have abandoned product in their cart, encouraging them to purchase or look at other options.

What makes an email drip campaign effective?

Here are some quick tips for success with email drip campaigns:

  1. Have a strategy in place: The most effective email drip campaigns are ones that are based on a wider digital marketing strategy and have a goal in mind. Rather than sending emails for the sake of sending them, they should be written and designed to get people to take action, albeit over a longer period.
  2. Catch potential customers early: Welcome email drip campaigns are some of the most successful ones, as when people first subscribe is when they’re most engaged. It’s your chance to make a great impression at a peak period of interest, so take advantage of it.
  3. Personalise: Personalisation is vital to success – make reference to why you’re sending this to someone, i.e. because they attended your event last year and you want to remind them it’s coming up again soon. Because they just signed up and you want to welcome them on board. Whatever it is, make them feel like you know and care about them – because you do!
  4. Provide something of value: Always provide something valuable to your recipients – something they can take away with them. You want them to buy your product? Give them something to make them feel it’s not just a one-way transaction.
  5. Test and optimise: Finally, a successful email drip campaign comes from lots of ongoing testing and optimising. You may not get it quite right the first time, but by testing and looking at what did and didn’t work, you can tailor future campaigns so they hit the mark.

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