Email marketing is one of the most powerful ways to speak directly to your ideal audience and current customer base. The key to success, however, is sending the right message to the right person at the right time.
After all, what you want to say to a prospect you’re nurturing down the path to purchase is probably different than what you would say to a loyal existing customer. But managing each one of your contacts and manually sending emails is overwhelming, time-consuming, and likely not feasible.
That’s why we use automations through ActiveCampaign. Let’s take a look at how this powerful tool enables you to achieve that right-message-right-person-right-time gold standard of email marketing.
So how do automations work?
We’re about to tell you… but it’s going to be easier (and way more fun) to show you!
Click the button above, check it out, then meet back here when you’re ready!
What is an automation?
As the name suggests, an automation is a sequence of events along a prospect or customer’s journey that is executed automatically.
The goal is to take repetitive tasks — like follow-up emails, notifications, confirmations, or service reminders, just to name a few — off your plate. It’s not about substituting real, authentic human interaction, but rather freeing up your time to make more of those meaningful connections. In the words of ActiveCampaign, automations allow you to “automate what’s repetitive so you can focus on what’s most impactful.”
But now, imagine that the Crock Pot could automatically adjust the recipe for you along the way.
Imagine you could tell it “If the chicken isn’t tender enough at hour 4, increase the cook temperature,” or maybe “When there’s 30 minutes left of cook time, add 1 cup of shredded cheese,” or anything else so that your meal turns out exactly how you want it without you needing to manually execute these steps.
Automations don’t simply follow a linear “business recipe” — they evaluate how your contact, whether that’s a customer or a prospect, is reacting. Then, they adjust accordingly so that you have the best chance of engaging that contact.
And they do it for you automatically.
Examples of automations
If you clicked the button above, then you have now experienced one example of a simple automation: the follow-up email. A contact requests something — this could be anything from more information about a topic to a discount on a product or service — and the automation delivers it to them.
So how else can you combine the power of automations and emails? We’re glad you asked! Here are a few more common uses.
Abandoned Cart Series
For an e-commerce brand, the abandoned cart series is a must. You’ve likely experienced plenty of these in your own inbox!
The setup is quite simple. If a customer adds something to their online cart but doesn’t complete the purchase, a typical abandoned cart series will send them an email encouraging them to complete the purchase 1 hour later, 1 day later, and 3 days later.
According to ActiveCampaign, 3 out of every 4 online shoppers will abandon their cart — and about 10% of that otherwise lost revenue can be recovered by simply setting up an abandoned cart series.
We’ve all heard the sales adage that people buy from people they know, like, and trust. The goal of the Welcome Series is to familiarize a contact with your company and brand to help you build that know-like-trust factor.
A good Welcome Series contains valuable information and fun content like a checklist, infographic, event invite, or discount code. The more you build the positive association, the more the customer or prospect will look forward to seeing your name in their inbox.
Automations can not only deliver emails from the Welcome Series, but also tailor the next steps based on how the contact reacted. For example, if the contact never opened the first email, the automation can resend that email with minor changes.
Or, if they clicked a link about a certain product or service, that could automatically trigger a new automation with more content about that specific thing.
That way, you can make sure each contact in your Welcome Series is receiving the most important information and content AND seeing what is most relevant to them personally.
Follow-Up Service Reminder
For service-based businesses, automations can help you remind customers to book their future services.
So rather than setting yourself calendar reminders to follow-up and trying to track which customers have followed through, you can let the automation handle it for you!
Endless automation opportunities
There is truly no shortage of ways you can combine automations and email marketing to achieve your business goals. From webinar reminders to product launches to nurture sequences for customers who haven’t purchased from you in a while, this powerful feature enables to reach your contacts with the right message at the right time.