From welcome to reactivation: taking advantage of your messaging milestones
Whatever your product or service, there are opportunities for every business to maximise revenue from your customer lifecycle. Once you set up your lifecycle emails as triggered messages, lifecycle programs will carry on working for you without additional resource requirements.
In this week’s Email-Worx we look at key messaging milestones you can turn to your advantage…
- welcome messages
- transactional messages
- purchase provocation
- reactivation emails
The welcome phase in your cycle of email communication with subscribers is the point at which they are most engaged with your brand and your offering, and most disposed to interact with you further. A shame, then, if all they receive at this crucial juncture in a robotic-sounding transactional message with no warmth, benefit, messaging content or perceived value.
Welcome messages are easy to set up and easy to improve on. They can provide a significant lift to your overall programme by:
- welcoming new subscribers to your programme in a warm, engaging voice
- setting expectations for (and selling the value of) future message frequency and content
- providing additional useful information about your products and services
The welcome phase doesn’t just have to be a single message either. You could use this opportunity to develop a welcome programme consisting of a series of staggered messages designed to set the scene for a long-term, mutually beneficial relationship, by providing useful information showing your subscribers how to get the most out of your products/services.
Always consider the overall impact of your programmes too. For many businesses, a large proportion of new subscribers come from online purchases, so new subscribers are likely to receive a welcome message around the same time as their purchase confirmation. Best practice is for the message to reach the customer’s inbox as the same time as the completed transaction, giving customers the impression of a seamless and joined-up service.
Transactional messages such as Purchase confirmation or Delivery status can go beyond the bare minimum to include timely, useful lifecycle information too. You can use these messages to:
- provide information to subscribers on their recent activity
- cross-promote relevant additional products and services
You can use lifecycle messages strategically to encourage regular purchases and generate additional purchases too. Here are 3 ways to use valuable, timely and relevant messages to get the most out of your existing customers…
- Pre-empt your subscribers’ repeat purchases by sending them specific messages ahead of their regular purchase. This is particularly important for products with a pre-defined lifecycle (eg insurance) but can also be used for regular and seasonal sales, such as travel. Although there’s the opportunity here to test the impact of an incentive, often a simple reminder is sufficient.
- Cross promote complementary products or accessories to customers who have recently purchased a particular product. If you sell printers, for instance, there’s an obvious opportunity to follow up a sale with a message promoting toner, paper and other peripherals.
- Generate additional purchases from existing customers. Say you have a group of customers who typically buy from you once a year. Aim to double the revenue you generate from that group by sending a message 6 months after their last purchase, promoting other relevant products/services. Incentives often perform well here, especially as regular purchasers are likely to be more loyal over the longer term, so justifying the additional investment.
To maintain and protect your subscriber list, your programme is almost certain to benefit from a reactivation programme.
First, you need to work out when subscribers are likely to un-engage. To do this analyse your historic data, and set up a programme designed to keep your subscribers’ attention past the point at which they would usually drop out.
For instance, your analysis might show that fewer than 1% of subscribers ever open another message after not opening X concurrent messages. This will help show you the optimum moment to hit them with an engaging reactivation message.
To make sure you set up the most effective message possible, test a range of different incentives and messaging options.