May 21, 2019
Drip marketing campaigns
You may have heard marketers talking about drip campaigns. Some marketers also call them automated email campaigns, lifecycle emails, and autoresponders. In this article, we explain what drip campaigns are, why they’re effective, and how you can implement them in your marketing.
What exactly is a drip campaign?
Drip campaigns are a series of emails that are sent out on a schedule and run on automation. You create the emails in advance and then use an automated system to send them out when you want. Essentially, you create a series of emails that are sent at strategic times to accomplish a specific goal. Let’s break this definition down into 3 key elements:
A triggered sequence of emails/series of automated emails
A drip campaign consists of several messages sent in a pre-defined order, always starting from the first message, and every time a new person enters the triggered email sequence.
Sent to targeted recipients of email subscribers
Every person who joins your drip campaign will typically receive the same set of messages as anyone else on the list. But depending on their profile data or engagement, they could be taken down different paths in the drip campaign and sent more personalized and relevant content.
Achieving a specific result/selling the recipient on something
A drip campaign can help you achieve many objectives. Most commonly, companies use them to nurture leads and push people further into their sales funnel. However, you could also use a drip campaign to onboard new clients or users, keep in touch with Salesforce or Pipedrive sales leads, re-engage dormant customers, welcome new followers, and much more.
Why are drip campaigns so effective?
Okay, we get it. Creating and automating emails require a little bit more effort than sending a few promotional emails each month. You may be wondering about the success rates of drip campaigns and whether they’re actually worth doing. The short answer is: yes. Here’s why:
- Higher brand recall: Sending regular emails via drip campaigns, packed with value, helps prospects recall your brand amidst the noise. You’ll never be out of sight, out of mind.
- Increased engagement: Drip campaigns maintain a high level of engagement between a prospect and your brand. This is particularly important since, according to Gleanster Research, half of your leads are not ready to buy or even talk to sales when they first connect with you. A drip campaign, which typically has 3 times the clickthrough rate of individual email sends (Marketing Tech), helps you engage them until they are ready to do so.
- Trust: Prospects usually need more than one interaction with a brand before they’re willing to take action.
Drip nurture campaigns help build trust over time and position your solution as the top choice when it’s time to move forward. To top it off, companies who engage in lead nurturing strategies such as drip campaigns typically achieve a 45% higher ROI.
An example of a drip campaign
Let’s put it into action. Here’s a simple overview of a type of drip campaign you can create using Autopilot’s customer journey canvas. Let’s say our goal for this journey is to nurture leads. This simple campaign allows you to lead contacts down a path with a series of short emails. The emails may comprise links to popular articles, webinars, ebook downloads, or other information that your contact might find interesting.
If a contact engaged by clicking any of your emails, then a personalized outreach is sent from your sales team.
A few final words on drip campaigns
There are several misconceptions regarding drip campaigns. The first is the idea that drip campaigns are a set and forget marketing tactic. In reality, launching them requires some upfront work; but once they’re automated, you can continue to optimize based on results to improve your campaign’s performance. This means you can swap out content, change the order of your sequence, or add and remove emails entirely. Like most marketing tactics, there’s no right answer. You have to test your way to what works.
Another misconception is that automating emails removes personalization. This all depends on how you write the emails. And with solid copywriting, a drip campaign sequence will make every recipient feel like you sent those emails individually to them.
Ultimately, drip campaigns are a smart way to engage your audience. Using the power of automation, you can set up flows for common use cases like following up with new leads, onboarding free trialists, and rescuing abandoned shopping carts. The possibilities are endless.