Best Email Drip Campaign Examples of 2019

The truth is that email conversion rates are about 40 times higher than those recorded from social media. As a marketing channel, email is both reliable and cost-efficient, in terms of being able to adapt to ever-changing trends.

With great reach comes great competition. Did you know that projections put the number of active email accounts across the globe in 2019 at over 5.5 billion and the average worker gets more than 120 emails every day?

Before you even start to engage with your audience through email, they’re likely already overwhelmed by their inbox messages. So how do you rise above the noise and get your subscribers’ attention? Read on for some email drip campaign examples that can inspire you to create relevant and competitive content.

What is an email drip campaign?

An email drip campaign uses pre-written and automated messages. Like most marketing efforts, its goals are to maintain engagement and drive conversions. This type of email campaign is the marriage of a marketing concept and a modern email marketing tool.

The former is drip marketing. The philosophy is persistence based and maximizes the capability to provide ongoing value. Many email drip campaigns share tidbits of information over days or weeks, sending email sequences on a preset schedule.

The latter is email automation, a standard feature offered by most email marketing services. Instead of manually sending every email, marketers can set up triggers—such as opt-ins or purchases—and have a campaign run on its own.

Why are email drip campaigns effective?

Autoresponder emails make setting up drip campaigns fast, easy, and very affordable. For each dollar spent on drip marketing in 2016, the average ROI was about $38. Even without constant effort, constant and always relevant emails keep your brand in your subscribers’ minds.

Email drip campaigns and the targeted message sending they’re known for can free up valuable time in your schedule. Modern technology allows marketers to respond consistently and effectively to specific subscriber behavior—even when you’re focusing on other tasks.

Automation in email also means that your best work doesn’t go to waste. For example: write and perfect a welcome email series once and have it sent to each new subscriber upon signup.

While multiple email drip campaigns run in the background, you could be reviewing performance metrics or working on other marketing messages too. Revenue can trickle in even when you’re on vacation.

How do you craft an email drip campaign?

Ready to make your email marketing job a whole lot easier? Here’s how to create an email drip campaign, step by step:

  • Have a purpose or a problem to solve. Your campaign needs an end goal before you can flesh it out. Without this, you may find it hard to choose a trigger or set parameters—such as the number of emails and the content of each message.
  • Segment your distribution list. Cultivating optimized subsets of subscribers can help boost conversions. Segmentation leads to more pertinent information delivered to more interested people.
  • Set up your email sequence. How many emails will you need to craft? What’s the sending schedule of each email? It’s important to finalize this before working on the campaign. You don’t want to write something only to have to scrap it later on.
  • Write marketing emails. Aim for an evergreen quality, from the subject lines to the CTA. Remember that these emails may reach people months or even years after you initially create them.
  • Improve the campaign as you go. If you feel the need to adjust certain elements, do so. Email drip campaigns aren’t set in stone. You can use A/B testing if you’re unsure whether a change will help or hurt your metrics.

Many email drip campaign examples are long and complicated sequences involving multiple emails. This doesn’t always have to be the case. Some are only one or two messages long.

Here are 6 great email drip campaign examples.

You can use several email drip campaigns to keep in touch with a single distribution list. However, you must remember that too many emails at once can stress your audience—sometimes to the point of unsubscribing.

Review your triggers and segments often. Keep tweaking your email drip campaigns. Find an optimal design that keeps your subscribers interested without burning them out.

Take a look at the following email drip campaign examples:

1. A welcome campaign

This is the first impression you make on subscribers, so you must get a welcome email drip campaign right. This shouldn’t be hard, because you’re already starting with an advantage: Welcome emails have open rates 50% higher than the average for all emails.

As email drip campaign examples go, you don’t want to stick to a simple “Hello.” Make that high open rate work for you. Urge subscribers to download free content, add purchases to their cart, or leave a testimonial.

 Headspace email showing an example of a welcome message

Source: Really Good Emails

The Headspace email above looks like a generic email, but it really could be the start of a steady drip of information. Helpful content on meditation and seasonal discounts may follow this initial welcome message.

2. A sales push

If you’re a retail brand, email drip campaigns like this are your bread and butter. Taking note of pain points and buyer behavior will allow you to figure out how to make a case for a sale or two.

A customer adding items to their ecommerce cart or making an outright purchase are common triggers for sales pushes. With these triggers, it’s apparent that the customer is open to buying at least one of your products.

Uniqlo email showing an example of a retail message

Source: Really Good Emails

Other than sending invoices and asking customers to confirm payment details, these email drip campaigns usually thrive on upsells and cross-sells.

In the Uniqlo email above, the point is to announce that a sold-out favorite is back in stock. The cross-sell happens as other product collections—new arrivals, men, women, and kids—appear underneath the main section.

3. An informational course

Sometimes revenue isn’t the point. An email drip campaign doesn’t always have to make increased revenue its goal. Growing your distribution list and sharing important information are also valid goals.

Common examples of this type of email drip campaign include email-based courses or guides, like the one below sent by POGO.

POGO email showing an example of an educational drip campaign

Source: Really Good Emails

The POGO email features a visualization of the campaign’s complete email sequence. The inclusion gives subscribers the chance to opt out early if they’re overwhelmed or not interested.

4. A survey series

Surveys or testimonial requests are interactive ways for you to involve your subscribers.

At the heart of these email drip campaigns, you’re asking for customer feedback. Remember that activities like this cut into your subscribers’ free time or work hours. It’d benefit everyone involved to have a short campaign email sequence.

WYR email showing an example of a survey message

Source: Really Good Emails

The WYR email above shows a very engaging type of survey-based email drip campaign. The point of this email—already deep into its campaign’s messaging sequence—is to ask “would you rather” questions. Underneath the main section, there are results of a previous email’s “would you rather” question.

To top it all off, eye-catching illustrations add drama and interest to the survey.

5. A milestone celebration

Sending milestone messages—whether it’s for brand-specific achievement or a customer’s personal triumph—helps foster stronger connections between you and your audience.

For example: you can create an email drip campaign for subscribers’ birthdays or signup anniversaries. Regular progress updates are great examples of highly personalized and consistently engaging emails too.

 Withings email showing an example of a milestone update message

Source: Really Good Emails

The Withings email above lists activity goal badges, likely information based on data collected by the wearable tech the company makes. Messages like this remind customers of your brand and encourage them to keep using your products.

6. A re-engagement bid

Even your most loyal subscribers will have moments or a turning point when they won’t engage. Don’t let inactive people stay too long in your email list. Purge your subscriber base regularly to keep engagement rates healthy.

You may create a re-engagement email drip campaign to see if you can get non-responsive people to weigh in and choose to remain in your email list.

Framebridge email showing an example of a re-engagement message

Source: Really Good Emails

The Framebridge email above is short and sweet: a heading, five sentences, and an orange CTA.

Wrap up

An email drip campaign uses pre-crafted emails set in an automated sequence. It keeps subscribers engaged while encouraging them to act and increase conversions. Behavioral or transactional triggers lead to the delivery of the emails.

To craft an email drip campaign, you should have a problem to solve and a segmented list. Once those are set, consider the ideal email sequence, write the messages for it, and then keep improving elements of the campaign as needed.

Ready to try your hand at using email drip campaigns? Take one more look at the examples above and dive in. Below are some email drip campaign examples you may want to take inspiration from:

  • A welcome campaign
  • A sales push
  • An informational course
  • A survey series
  • A milestone celebration
  • A re-engagement bid

Ready to create engaging emails that convert? Get some practical advice from Campaign Monitor’s 2020 take on effective email marketing strategies.

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