Triggered campaigns let you send e-mail, build relationships and make money even while you sleep
With its silver bullet mantel long since sullied in the spam gutter, e-mail finds itself in the unfamiliar position of underdog. Discredited for prospecting thanks to plunging open rates and handcuffed by Can Spam legislation, e-mail as we once knew it is dead. Long live e-mail.
But while e-mail has devolved into a lousy way to get a foot in the door, it’s become an excellent way to keep a foot there. Using e-mail to stay in contact with current customers can reap great rewards. You can parlay the cost efficiency that sunk blast-prospecting (it’s so cheap that everyone does it; as a result, nobody opens the e-mails) into a low-cost system for extending thank-yous and special offers to your existing customer base. And the best thing about it is you can set it up to work 24 hours a day—even while you sleep.
Triggered e-mail essentially is a system that automatically sends customer-specific e-mail based on predetermined triggers. It can be time-based, action-based and/or contingent on database events. A little up-front work can yield great rewards.
Triggered e-mail may seem imposing, bringing to mind complex systems like that of Amazon.com, a company built around triggered e-mails that thank customers, alert them of order shipments, ask them to fill out surveys, etc. But triggered e-mail can serve myriad purposes, and need not be complicated.
“Triggered e-mail can be used for relationship marketing or as a ‘one-off’ value add,” says Catherine Symon, account supervisor at True North, a New York-based direct response agency.
Triggered e-mail can be as simple as a weekly newsletter. “If you’re doing regular newsletter content,” says Symon, “and you don’t want to tie up your tech peoples’ time, you could say, ‘Every Monday I want to send a piece of content I have loaded beforehand.’” Then have it automatically sent to your list.