Screaming something from the rooftop might be therapeutic, but there are more effective ways to go about communicating a message.
As a business owner, things happen all the time that you might want to share with your customers, but what is the best way to do it?
Broadcast emails are a tool that you can use to spread an important message far and wide.
In this article, we will explore what broadcast emails are and how they can help your business grow.
What are broadcast emails?
A broadcast email is a single message that is sent to a large group of subscribers to inform them about something.
They are the email equivalent of putting up an ad on a billboard, the goal is to get a specific message out to a lot of people at once.
What is the difference between email broadcasts and email triggers?
Email triggers help you build and nurture relationships with customers on an individual level, while email broadcasts are about trying to cast a wide net to catch a large group of customers. Both are important tools in communication, but they serve different purposes.
While both email broadcasts and email triggers should play a role in your email marketing strategy, there are some key differences between them:
|Email triggers||Email broadcasts|
|Sent automatically||Sent manually|
|Sent as a response to each customer’s individual activity||Sent to a large group of customers to get out one specific message|
|Can be sent at any time||Scheduled to be sent at specific times|
What are the different kinds of email broadcasts?
There are a lot of different kinds of broadcast emails that you can send to your customers, such as:
- Email newsletters
You can use email newsletters as an opportunity to share a lot of different kinds of information about your business. Newsletters are usually sent on a regular schedule, like daily, weekly, or monthly.
Canva is a graphic design platform, this is an email newsletter that they sent to their customers to let them know about trending templates that they can use to design Facebook posts.
This works as a broadcast email because a lot of different customers would find the templates useful and might log in to Canva to start playing around with the designs.
- Product/service updates
Broadcast emails can be used to update your customers about product changes, new features, or changes to your terms of service, really anything to do with the way you run your business.
This is an email from Google letting their users know about a new voice activation feature they can use to play Spotify.
Sending this as a broadcast email is useful to their users because not only does it let them know about the new feature, but it also gives them a little guide on exactly how to use it.
This empowers their customers to go out and try the feature because they were given a head start.
- Sales and promotions
When you have a sale or promotion coming up, letting your customers know about it is a must. Email broadcasts were made for this kind of thing, getting a message out to a lot of people fast, you can send out a promotional broadcast email to get everyone excited about it.
Wix is a website building platform, this is an email they sent to their customers to let them know about a sale they were having.
This is the kind of email that a lot of different customers would want to receive because it gives them a chance to save money on a product that they are already interested in.
Wix increased the excitement of the sale by adding a countdown clock to the email to create a sense of urgency.
Tips for creating successful email broadcasts
- Personalise the emails
Even though broadcast emails are meant to be sent to a large list of people, you should still think about personalizing them to each individual customer.
Doing something as simple as adding a customer’s name to the subject line of the email will make a huge difference. Emails with personalized subjects lines are 26% more likely to be opened than emails with generic text.
- Segment the email lists
When it comes to email, quality over quantity should be the game plan. Nobody likes receiving emails that aren’t relevant to them, and you don’t want your business’s emails to fall into that category.
When you segment your email list, you divide it up into smaller groups. Doing this will help you be more strategic about the kinds of emails that you send, it gives you an opportunity to target specific groups of customers with specific emails.
Let’s say you own a clothing company that sells to both men and women. If you have a sale on women’s clothes, you might decide not to send an email about it to the men on your list.
Segmentation can help you get the message out to the right people, and it also prevents customers from getting emails that are not relevant to them, win/win.
- Keep the emails short and simple
There are over 300 billion emails sent every single day, our inboxes get filled up constantly. We have to go through our inboxes to decide which emails are important, and which ones should go straight to the trash.
When you are designing your emails, try to make them short, scannable, and easy to consume. Plan for the fact that a lot of your customers will only spend a few seconds scanning through your email before they decide whether or not they should care about it.
- Research the best time to send emails
The time that an email lands in a customer’s inbox can make a huge difference in the way that they engage with your emails.
Omnisend analyzed over 2 billion emails and found that everything from the time of day, to the day of the week, to the day of the month has an impact on how well the emails perform.
The best time to send your emails will depend on your customers, so it would be a good idea to try out a few different times to see what works and what doesn’t.
If you have customers across different timezones, you might want to think about segmenting them so that you can get the timing right for every customer, no matter where they are.
Broadcast emails help you reach a large amount of customers
Broadcast emails are an important part of an email marketing strategy because they help you reach a lot of people at once to communicate something important with them.
Unlike triggered emails that are more related to nurturing relationships with customers on a small scale, email broadcasts are about reaching as many customers as you can to get a message out. Both are important, but they each have their own place in your strategy.
Reviewed: David van den Bos
Business owners need to be masters at juggling. No matter which direction you turn to, there is something important that needs your attention, and it can feel like there really is not enough time in the day to get everything done.
It can feel overwhelming to look at your email list and try to think about how you will have the time to manage each customer on that list. This is why triggered emails can be a saving grace.
Triggered emails are sent automatically, there isn’t someone sitting behind the computer sending each and every email.
In this article, we’ll look at what triggered emails are, some real-world examples of triggered emails, and discusshow you can start creating your own triggered emails.
What are triggered emails?
Triggered emails are sent automatically to customers based on actions that they take, they aren’t manually typed out and sent by a human.
Triggered emails are different from other kinds of email marketing because they are not meant to reach a lot of people at the same time, but rather just one customer at a time based on how they interact with your business.
Triggered emails are a reaction to what customers do. They respond to a customer’s activity and send emails to them based on what they could potentially need at the different stages of engaging with your business.
Why are triggered emails important?
What a customer needs from your business when they first sign up will be completely different from what they need after they have made their first purchase.
Buyers needs evolve as they engage with your company over time. We call this evolution a “buyers journey”.
Successful businesses understand and anticipate their various buyer’s journeys and respond to their customers accordingly.
Triggered emails can act as a guide to help them move from step to step.
- They keep customers updated about their accounts
It can be frustrating to have an account on a website that is difficult to access and manage, experiences like this can have a hugely negative impact on customer experience.
Having email triggers that are tied to specific account-related issues will help your customers manage their accounts in an easy, fast, and efficient way.
- It helps you meet customer expectations
When a customer deals with a business online, the expectation is that they will receive email communication from them. Effective email communication keeps customers updated on their accounts and purchases and helps customers to build trust in a business.
This is especially true when a customer purchases something from an online business, they want to see that their money has gone to a place they can trust, so sending them information that updates them about their orders is a must.
How to set up email triggers
- Create an email trigger map
Before you start designing the actual emails that you will be sending, you’ll need to figure out exactly what emails you want to be sent and at what times.
Below is a diagram showing three typical buyer’s journey scenarios and the various triggered emails that could be sent.
The more customers you have, the more email triggers you will start to use. This is why mapping it out will help you stay on top of the emails that are being sent.
- Design your emails
You’ll need to design everything about the actual emails from the subject lines, to the copy, to the images that you want to use.
Remember that this is a situation where one size definitely does not fit all. Each buyer situation is different and thus different email triggers are needed.
- Save the triggers
Once you’re happy with how the triggers will work and you’re happy with their designs, you just need to save them and start sending them out to customers.
Examples of email triggers
- Welcome emails
Welcome emails are the emails you send to people that have subscribed to your business for the first time. It’s best to trigger these emails so that they send immediately after someone signs up to your email list.
74% of new subscribers expect to receive a welcome email, it has become a standard of email marketing.
This is a welcome email from TripAdvisor, they send this email to new subscribers right away. This helps them to set the tone for what their relationship with their subscribers will be like moving forward.
- Transactional emails
Transactional emails are sent to update customers about the purchases that they have made from a business.
Having these emails set up as triggers is a good idea because when money is involved, people want to have up-to-date information about their purchases.
A few different kinds of transactional emails are:
- Order confirmation emails
You can set up email triggers so that as soon as someone places an order from your store, they will be sent a confirmation.
Amazon always sends their customers order confirmation emails right after the purchase is made. These emails are sent automatically, there isn’t a person behind each email.
This is much better for the customer because they’re able to see that their purchase was successful and that there weren’t any issues.
- Shipping confirmation emails
As soon as an order is ready to ship, you should let your customers know so that they will be ready when it arrives.
The trigger for this email will come from the business itself, a trigger can be set for the email to be sent as soon as the order is ready to go.
This is a shipping confirmation email from the fitness brand Fitbit. This email gives their customers everything they need to know about the order, like the products that were purchased, the order number, and information about how to track the order.
- Abandoned cart emails
If a customer fills up their online cart on your website but leaves without completing their purchase, it can trigger a follow-up abandoned cart email.
This is an email from Headspace, a meditation app. They sent it to their customer to remind them to complete their purchase.
There is a balance when it comes to abandoned cart emails, you don’t want to come off too strong or forceful to your customers when asking them to complete a purchase. This email from Headspace is lighthearted and they use some humor to keep the tone positive.
- Account-related emails
These emails help customers manage their accounts on your website. Account-related emails are arguably the most important emails to trigger because they are often used to resolve urgent issues.
Here are some examples of account-related emails:
- Reset password
If someone forgets their password, it would be frustrating to have to wait a long time for the password reset email to come through.
Let’s use Pinterest as an example, if someone is trying to log in but can’t remember their password, they can click on the “forgot your password?” button.
They will be asked to fill in their email address and this will then trigger a password reset email that will be sent automatically to their email.
This is an email from Pinterest telling the user how to reset their password. The faster this email comes, the better the user will feel about their experience with the business.
- Unusual login notification
Sometimes when a user logs in to a website from a new device or location, they will get an email asking them to confirm that it was them. This is done as a safety precaution to try and stop hackers from getting into other people’s accounts.
The trigger, in this case, would be a login that is unusual or different from the user’s common activity, the email would be sent automatically to the user to update them about it.
This email from Airbnb is letting the user know that someone tried to log into their account from a new device. This gives the user an opportunity to confirm if it was them, or if it is actually suspicious.
Content delivery network Akamai, in its Q4 2017 State of the Internet/Security report, claimed that 43% of all online login attempts are malicious, meaning that there are a lot of hackers out there trying to get into other people’s accounts.
Tips on creating effective email triggers
- Design in advance
While email triggers can save you a lot of time in the long run, you will need to take the time to design both the email trigger map as well as the actual emails themselves.
Investing this time in the beginning will save you headaches down the line, so it is definitely worth it.
- Run some testers
Before you start to roll out your email triggers and automations to your customers, it would be a good idea to run a few testers on the different triggers to see if they work properly.
See how they look on different email providers like Outlook and Gmail, on desktop and mobile, and on different devices. If the emails look good and the triggers work properly, you can be more confident once you start sending them out to real customers.
- Create clear CTAs
CTA stands for Call To Action, it refers to the action you want your customer to take.
When a customer receives an email from you, your CTA should be clear to them so they know what you want them to do.
Especially with an email that was triggered by a specific action, you want it to have a clear and obvious message so that the customer understands why they got the email, and what they need to do with it.
For example, Netflix triggers emails to be sent to users right after they finish streaming a show or movie. The CTA in this email is the white box that says “Find Something New”
With this CTA, the users know that Netflix is encouraging them to go and find something new to watch. Greater engagement with a brand can lead to greater loyalty in the long-run and thus better customer entrenchment.
Email triggers help you and your customers stay on the same page
Gone are the days when emails had to be manually sent one by one to each customer, triggered emails have changed the game.
Reliable and stable communication is at the center of a good business-customer relationship, and email is a tool that can help you build that relationship.
A great triggered email strategy can help you free up time and improve communication with your customers. Since the emails are all set up in advance and sent out to your customers automatically, you will gain time to invest in other parts of your business.
On the customers’ side, their experience will be improved because they will be up-to-date on all the information they need from your business.