Triggered messages are substantially more likely to be opened and interacted with, with opens often exceeding 50% and click through rates reaching double digits. If done right, triggered messages can also be more useful to the receiver and improve customer experience. However, most organisations are still using triggered messages like an afterthought. Your customers are probably already receiving triggered “transactional” emails, like order, subscription, or registration confirmations. However if these aren’t being touched by marketing, you’re losing out on sales, subscribers, and engagement opportunities. A few weeks later, your recipient might receive your carefully crafted monthly email newsletter, which they’re now much less likely to open because the recipient has half forgotten who you are or why they care about you. It’s not a very nice way to start a relationship with someone who just put their hand up to buy or hear from you.
[Tweet “What’s missing in your triggered messages?”]
In some cases, “broadcasts” may still have their place. However, adding in “triggered” interactivity, or making better use of your existing triggered messages, can make those messages so much more effective and deliver huge boosts to your results. This is because triggered messages are always timely and respond to user interaction with your brand, so they are expected and you are far more familiar to the recipient when they receive your message. Here are some of the ways our clients have used the immediacy and high open rate of triggered messages to their advantage:
Boosting sales and marketing goals with welcome & re-engagement emails
Shell’s welcome email sells one of their key added value features (the ability to download all locations to a vehicle’s sat nav) to make it easier for customers to actually buy from them. This is a great way to highlight a helpful feature that also helps drive purchases.
Surprising customers and building loyalty and brand love with birthday emails
In addition to remembering their customers’ birthdays, PG Tips also provide their loyalty “Cuppa Club” members ten points to put towards their next reward. This is not only a lovely way to establish warm fuzzies, it also reminds customers about the goodies they’re saving towards and provides a perfect excuse to spoil themselves! Check out some more great examples from Litmus.
Adding value and helpfulness based on context
As our recent post on the Ashton Media blog highlighted, quality content is not enough. With more organisations creating content, context is becoming increasingly important. There are a few ways you can be more contextual – whether it’s with data that the customer enters, or inferred data.
Using form fields to trigger useful, contextualised messaging
Foxtel’s welcome email for new customers includes a huge array of personalised content to improve customer experience, ensuring it’s easier for Foxtel to provide services easier. All the usual helpful transactional data is confirmed (the account number and product type) to make it easy for customers to identify themselves if they ever need to call Foxtel:
Hitting two goals with one data point
Following their successful “Hit the Button” promotion, Toohey’s Extra Dry used the postcode data collected on the entry form to highlight a local special deal on the promotional product. This offered entrants more chances to win, supported their retail partners, and helped boost further sales from the promotion.
Using inferred context
Sydney Airport offer free wifi, and when a user takes up that offer, they receive a one off welcome email. Since wifi users will be located within the Airport, it makes contextual sense to use this opportune moment to provide the shopping guide. Instead of sending this at a later date via a newsletter when it is no longer directly applicable to the recipient, Sydney Airport effectively target based on the right time and place. In this context presenting the shopping guide is useful and relevant rather than coming across as disruptive.
Growing subscribers and customers with transactional email
Seaworld UK offer website visitors a free DVD to build excitement and anticipation about their attractions. In their triggered email following up with those who order their DVD, they give a gentle nudge to send the same free DVD offer to friends, helping them cost effectively grow relevant potential customers.
Of course, making better use of your triggered messages is a good start – but it’s helpful to change the way you approach communicating with your customers too.
Reconceptualising campaigns as conversations
One of the greatest advantages of 1 to 1 digital channels is that you can have hyper relevant conversations with your customers, but at scale. Even better – using marketing automation, it can be efficient too. However, many marketers still batch-and-blast. For example, a 2014 Automated Marketing Report by Forrester showed that 94% of marketers don’t segment their customers to send behavioural and lifecycle email campaigns. Great marketers in the age of digital need to be good listeners attuned to the “digital body language” that customer data provides, and respond accordingly. Crafting effective triggered messages is an easy yet valuable way to consistently “action” the actionable customer data you’re amassing.
Wishing you could make more use of triggered messages, but don’t think you have the ability to implement? Check out our post on how we’re making automated campaigns easier and visual.