Email automation has the potential to help publishers, be they traditional, new, media and entertainment, games or apps, increase web traffic and encourage readers to visit their sites.
While publishers create creative content, many don’t fully leverage the potential that email offers to deliver that content. Automated email campaigns can help them reach the right audience at the right time to generate more web traffic.
Here are three ways publishers can and should automate to retain and increase website readers and visitors:
1. Welcome email or welcome string
Almost all editors have some kind of welcome email. However, most are generic and not always useful to include your new subscriber.
Automation can help improve your welcome email or email reach and drive engagement in several ways, including:
Triggered Messages: As a best practice, your first welcome message should be an auto-triggered message, which allows you to send a real-time message to each new subscriber. Many companies bundle welcome messages and send them all at once a day. However, by using messaging enabled, you can continue to interact with your readers when you know they will interact with you right after they visit your site.
- Audience segmentation: If you collected information from a preference center during the registration process, use that information to customize your welcome messages more specifically. This will set a precedent for your new subscriber that future posts will be of interest to you.
- Cascading Mailings: If your company has a wide range of services, products, or offerings, consider upgrading from a single welcome email to a welcome program. Sending a series of emails, each focused on a topic or theme, will help you better present all of your presentations. The welcome sequence can be automated using streaming mail, which sends targeted emails that respond to a decision tree based on customer interactions.
2. Automatic weekly newsletters
Many publishers still create their weekly newsletters manually. By automating newsletter creation, marketers have more time for reporting, analysis, and improvements to their existing email programs. In addition, automation can provide personalized content:
- Automated compilation: Automate the creation of your newsletters with tools to automatically include website content in your newsletters. The automation process retrieves the content by composing the message and executes the email immediately.
- Customized content: Publishers should also use tools that allow them to customize subscriber content based on their chosen preferences or webpage behavior. Automated tools can dynamically populate content for the reader and deliver a personalized newsletter to each subscriber.
- Audience segmentation: If your email program is still in its early stages, you should at least use audience segmentation tools to send different messages to different audiences. The data and knowledge you gain from this manual targeting will be extremely useful when you are ready to automate your newsletters.
3. Re-engagement campaigns
No matter how personalized, personalized, or targeted your emails are, subscribers sometimes stop interacting with your emails. How do you get those subscribers active and engaged again?
If you don’t already have one, create an email program specifically designed to communicate with your inactive email subscribers:
Create business rules – Use the segmentation features in your email system and create a business rule that sends a daily email to subscribers who haven’t opened or clicked your emails for a set number of days. Ideally, this program should be automated, requiring a low level of ongoing deployment and maintenance.
- Offer incentives: Give your subscribers reasons to come back. Indicate upcoming special offers or promotions. You can also include a discount or offer to have them contact you directly again. If your brand has something you can offer in the form of a raffle or whip, use that too. Consider asking publishers for updates to their subscriber profile or asking the subscriber to complete a survey.
- Additional reasons for implementing re-engagement programs: Each ISP uses different filtering technology to determine the appropriateness of a message’s inbox, and while it doesn’t provide specific details about the technology, ISPs monitor how often their users interact with your brand the e-mail. When a user does not open or click on your branded emails for an extended period, you run the risk of having your emails sent to bulk folders or marked as spam.
Virtually all publishers have the same need: to drive more people to their online content. Automation helps publishers do this, effectively delivering their messages to the right audiences with personalized content. The result is greater engagement in the form of more email opens, more email clicks, and more visits to your website, which will generate a higher ROI for the entire program.