Transactional emails are usually triggered based on a customer's action with a company. To be qualified as transactional or relationship messages, these communications' primary purpose must be "to facilitate, complete, or confirm a commercial transaction that the recipient has previously agreed to enter into with the sender" along with a few other narrow definitions of transactional messaging. Triggered transactional messages include dropped basket messages, password reset emails, purchase or order confirmation emails, order status emails, reorder emails, and email receipts.
Given the robust features at the planning and execution phases of email campaigns, we had high hopes for MailChimp’s analysis and reporting — and we weren’t disappointed. Reports include all the standard performance indicators, but it also includes analysis pulled from the millions of emails sent through MailChimp. This enables you to see how your campaign stacks up against the industry average, a level of detail that’s rare among free services. Add to that an integration with Google Analytics and an interactive map that shows where in the world your emails are being opened, and you’ve got a service that seems impossibly comprehensive for a free plan.
Create a time-sensitive promotion that relates to customers’ interests. Offer a discount on the same category of items that they bought in the week before. Living Social frequently uses expiring deals in their email automations, emphasizing how little time is left to snag the savings. They could take it a step further by offering personalized recommendations based on users’ browsing behavior.
Customizing emails go a long way when done correctly. AWeber user and personality test company Truity has seen increased open rates as a result of their personalization efforts, including personality type-specific messages, like the one below aimed at its a specific personality type — ENFP subscribers. Truity uses the “digest” layout in AWeber’s Drag and Drop Email Builder for its newsletters, giving it a streamlined, cohesive look every time it hits your inbox.
Your AWeber account can also integrate with the most well-known shopping cart tools, letting you add new customers each time they make a purchase on your website. If you want to take your marketing efforts to the next level, you can visit AWeber Labs to build your own apps and time-saving tools through the AWeber API. With this kind of flexibility at your fingertips, you can really take advantage of customer data in order to better optimize marketing strategies.
Getting started shouldn't be daunting. Generally, you'll know right away whether you like a user interface (UI) or not, and most of the contenders we reviewed offer free trials so you can poke around before dropping any cash. Luckily, most of these services have modern-looking graphics and uncluttered layouts. These are not the complex business software UIs of yesterday. Be careful, though, as some free trials require a credit card. This means you need to be sure to cancel your trial before you're billed if you're not happy with the service.
Smoking Chili Media’s Alistair Dodds explains that a compelling newsletter is a combination of content, as well as testing. Alistair explains their process as first they, “Draft ideas with the team based on best performing content on our blog from past weeks”. Then they, “Draft ideas of best-curated content the team has read and which we feel will add the most value to our audience”.
Reach Mail is great for business just starting out with email marketing. It offers a free package that enables users to create, schedule and send emails, as a well as a paid version that provides users with more customisation options. The free version is quite unique in the email marketing world as normally these types of tools are only free for a certain period. Reach Mail also includes a nice testing feature which enables users to test their email campaigns on a percentage of their subscriber list.
Newsletters are also a great tool for internal communications. This one from Discovery Creative uses recurring columns so that employees know what to expect in each edition, making the email easier to navigate. Doing this through Campaign Monitor is actually really simple—using the drag-and-drop email builder, you can present information in a compelling and engaging way that doesn’t feel like you’re info-dumping on people who might feel they already know the premise behind the story in each column.
Vertical Response is great email marketing tool for creating professional newsletters as it offers tons (over 700) of designs for email newsletter templates. It also has a lot to offer in terms of editing and integrations (e.g. various CRM software, survey software and more). Additionally, users can create landing pages, conduct A/B testing (e.g. subject line performance), test emails using the Vertical Response test kit and much more.
Bulleted lists make it really easy to see the value in something. “Pull basic business data and put it in with some bullet points, highlight upcoming product changes as well as the outcome of previous changes, highlight one feel-good story from customers/service providers, and include some directional tips on improving customer satisfaction”, says Alan LaFrance from Lawnstarter.
This tool provides multiple templates for almost every purpose, including; newsletter, greetings, promotion templates, giveaways, etc. With the intuitive visual editor tool, you can add your own HTML and CSS to give more personalized look. With the built in spam filter, you can cross check your template and make sure it doesn’t contain any objectionable material.
It’s also important to look at what content has already done well for you. As this content will make a great addition to your newsletter. Amber Ooley from Thrive Internet Marketing Agency says, “I pull the top-performing blog posts and other content from the last week based on Google Analytics, website engagement, and social media shares. Then, I’ll craft it all into a consistent email template”.
Carl: This is what newsletters look like and when they are used. On the flip-side, there are drip campaigns. Drip campaigns are basically a series of emails that you will receive over x period of time. As an example, here’s an email from our friends at MailChimp. You see here it says, “Number 1. Getting Started with MailChimp.” This email is all about using a template or how to create your own, inside their tools. So this drip goes out to any new MailChimp subscriber. So this is the first part of it, then a few days later, you’ll go ahead and receive the second part, which is about collecting subscribers and building your list.
If you are looking for a free email campaign to start with, then Constant Contact provides a great solution for your email marketing needs. If you are just starting out and want to get the feel on how an email marketing campaign will work for you, it is best to start from opting for a free email service than paying for AWeber’s paid email marketing tools.
A good newsletter doesn’t need to be heavily centered on graphics. theSkimm is a newsletter that provides short, snackable bites of daily news to its busy readers (specifically, female millennials). The content is primarily text, but subscribers take the time to read it. Why? Firstly, because the convenient format solves a legitimate problem for them (not being able to stay up to date with current events). And finally, because it’s written in an engaging and relatable tone.
The key here is just not to purposely deceive your recipients. If you are sending a campaign on behalf of ABC widgets, it’s a breach of the laws to put ‘Brad Pitt’ in the From name field to get people to open the campaign. However, arousing curiosity or getting creative with your subject line is perfectly ok, so long as you don’t purposely try to deceive recipients.
The requirements of the Act are fairly straightforward, yet easily overlooked. For example, did you know that if you fail to include your postal address on a commercial email, then the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) could fine you? In fact, each separate email that violates the CAN-SPAM Act is subject to penalties of up to $16,000. There are no exceptions for business-to-business email. All email – even messages to former customers announcing a new product line – must comply with the law.
Address subscribers by name. Personalized emails are more successful. Buffer also suggests to personalize your emails based on need by sending emails that meet different user expectations. This makes them more targeted and more likely to be successful. Some studies show that educating and segmenting your audience will boost your click through rate on emails by up to 50%.