what-is-an-email-drip-campaign-and-how-does-it-work
23 October 2023

What is an email drip campaign and how does it work?

Create effective drip campaigns
Table of contents
  1. What is an email drip campaign?
  2. The benefits of drip email campaigns
  3. The main types of email drip campaigns
  4. 7 key steps to create a successful email drip campaign
  5. Drip campaign examples and templates 
  6. Wrapping up
1.
What is an email drip campaign?

Email drip campaigns have long been a must-have element of integrated email marketing because they help convert new prospects into loyal customers and interact with those who have already become your clients.

We will tell you why email drip campaigns are needed and what problems they help to solve in marketing when they must be used. We also provide email drip campaign examples for inspiration and clear steps to start using them.

What is an email drip campaign?

An email drip campaign is an automated sequence of pre-created emails that is triggered when a person takes an action. You prescribe a drip campaign strategy and set up a schedule for sending emails so that the subscriber will receive them for some time with a specified frequency.

For example, after a site visitor has left their email address to download your lead magnet, they receive a sequence of emails: first a welcome email, then 2-3 days later, a selection of other useful materials from your site, and so on. You politely return them to your site and continue the conversation.

The main feature of drip campaigns is that the right person receives the right information at the right time. If you add personalization to each email, you will get an excellent communication tool that will make each subscriber feel that you care about what interests them right now.

The benefits of drip email campaigns

Now that we understand what a drip campaign is let's see what business benefits they offer.

Here's what email marketing that uses drip campaigns gains:

451%

increase in qualified leads for brands using drip marketing, according to research.

  1. You reduce the cost of attracting customers — you do not lose leads who have already shown some interest in your business but continue to provide them with the information they need to make a purchase. In addition, potential clients move through the sales funnel without the involvement of sales managers.
  2. Make communication with the client less annoying. You know that people prefer to avoid frequent calls from sales managers and promo emails, especially when a person still needs to think about buying. Drip campaigns gently develop relationships and bring people closer to a purchasing decision.
  3. You make interaction with the client as personalized as possible, which leads to an increase in the number of transactions. Each drip campaign email builds on each other, each time offering a little bit of content designed to help solve a problem your prospect is facing.
  4. You get quality leads — drip campaigns tell you about the brand, educate potential clients, and build trust. In the case of campaigns related to abandoned carts, they help continue the order.
  5. Save time by using marketing automation — all you have to do is set up a drip once using email marketing software, and then it runs on autopilot.
  6. Increasing brand awareness — drip emails will help keep your company top of mind and allow your existing customers to refer your business to others in their network easily.

The main types of email drip campaigns

You can set up many types of drip campaigns depending on the specifics of your business. Try using several types of drip campaigns tailored to your audience's different actions. Take a look at the most popular ones.

Welcome emails

Welcome email series is the most popular type of drip campaign. They introduce your company to the new subscriber and thank them for subscribing to news or registering for the service. In this series of emails, you can tell what to expect from your emails, offer discounts, and briefly introduce the product's features. See how the welcome series works in Stripo.

Welcome email drip campaign example

Onboarding emails

This type of drip campaign is similar to welcome emails in that they are also sent early in the customer's journey to your business. However, onboarding emails provide practical information about how your business can help the client. For example, an onboarding series of a SaaS service can tell and show how to get more benefits from it, giving instructions and tips. These emails help you stand out from your competitors and build brand loyalty.

Drip email campaign is a series of emails

(Source: Email from Fireflies)

Shopping cart abandonment emails

This type of drip marketing campaign is one of the best practices for eCommerce businesses. This sequence should trigger automatically if a site visitor places an item in their cart and then leaves your site without completing a purchase. Use a drip campaign with abandoned cart emails to remind people of their intention to buy something and offer special conditions.

Subscription renewal emails

Set up a drip campaign that reminds customers to renew their subscription or when the free trial is ending. This will establish the credibility of your company and make your customers feel valued. In your email sequence, thank them for their cooperation, demonstrate the successes they have achieved with you, and give them a way to contact you if any questions arise.

How to use drip campaign emails for SaaS

The other types are re-engagement drip campaigns, retargeting email drip campaigns, post-demo campaigns, confirmation emails, post-purchase emails, birthday emails, and others.

7 key steps to create a successful email drip campaign

Here are seven steps to help you create a successful drip campaign.

1. Identify your target audience and triggers

Determine which target customers will receive emails. To do this, segment your audience and decide which triggers and groups you will use to reach them.

The starting point for a drip campaign could be:

  • action that triggers a specific sequence of emails — subscription, purchase, forgotten cart;
  • demographic information, for example, the customer's birthday triggers a campaign with a promotional code, gifts, and reminders.

2. Define your goal

Understanding the goal makes planning a drip campaign easier and allows you to build it logically. Answer the question of what should happen as a result of the campaign using the SMART method. Make the goal specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-based.

3. Plan your campaign

To ensure the success of your drip campaign, after defining your audience and goal, plan it step by step. Here are some essential factors to consider when creating your drip email campaign strategy:

  • audience characteristics;
  • decide how many emails you will send and in what order;
  • how your emails will be connected to the trigger of this campaign;
  • what numbers will you measure to understand that the goal has been achieved.

4. Prepare copy for all emails

Think through and write the text for each campaign email. Make sure that email copies are logically connected and that every email you send is valid, eye-catching, and contains a clear call to action (CTA).

5. Create attractive email templates

To create an attractive template that you can then use for all emails of one drip campaign, you can use some of the 1400 Stripo's ready-made templates. Thanks to the modular architecture, you can create new emails from ready-made, configured, and saved blocks much faster.

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Case study: How Stripo uses modules to speed up email marketingmodules-case

6. Automate and launch your campaign

After all the emails are created based on your template, export them to your ESP or any drip campaign software. There, configure the campaign parameters — trigger, email frequency, and others. These tools make it easy to create emails and schedule them to be sent automatically based on various triggers.

7. Analyze the campaign

Analyze how all campaign emails perform during and after implementation to understand how effective it is and where improvements are needed. You can work with a subject line to increase the open rate and perhaps with a call to action.

Drip campaign examples and templates 

Let's see what a design and text template might look like for the first email in an onboarding drip campaign. This ready-made template from Stripo designers has thought through all the possibilities for involving the client in working with the service.

Drip email template example

Subject line: Welcome to [service name]! See your first steps

Hi, [Name]!

It's great to have you here. Thanks for choosing us! Let me give you a guide that help you on your onboarding period. We aim to ensure you have a positive experience and get the most out of our service.

I've attached a PDF in which you can see the steps of the comfort onboarding. And the first step is to follow these instructions and customize your account.

Best regards,

[Name], your personal manager

3 email drip campaign ideas for your inspiration

This drip campaign example is the re-engagement email from Halfdays, an outdoor brand for the modern woman. The brand creates intrigue by announcing a new collection, attracting the attention of those who last visited the site a long time ago. The trigger in this case could be that the subscriber has not clicked on links in emails for a long time.

Automated email is a great way to re-engage customers

(Source: ReallyGoodEmails)

Another email example is from City Beach, Australia. It's a birthday email with a 20% discount that the subscriber gets automatically before the birthday date.

Example of effective drip marketing strategy

(Source: MailCharts)

This email is from the abandoned cart drip sequences of Clinique. See how the brand not only reminds you of the item in your cart but also immediately offers additional products and talks about the benefits of cosmetics.

Email marketing campaigns example for product or service

(Source: MailCharts)

Wrapping up

Implement drip campaigns to keep current customers engaged and re-engage former customers. Because these email campaigns are based on marketing automation, they free up the email marketer's time and energy for other tasks while the customized email sequence works for your business.

Create effective drip campaigns with Stripo
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