New to Small Business? Here’s Your Email Marketing Strategy

Modern technological advancements have changed the world of marketing, meaning today’s marketer has access to several digital platforms to reach prospects.

Search engine marketing and social media networks are useful tools, but email marketing continues to be the most effective digital marketing tool for large and small businesses alike.

Get the small business guide.


As of last year, there were 3.9 billion email users around the world. That’s a massive prospect pool, and they’re people who can be targeted and reached with ease.

With careful planning and research, email marketing can be highly successful in converting contacts to revenue-generating customers. Not sure how to develop a solid small business email marketing strategy? Campaign Monitor can help.

Benefits of email marketing

Email marketing is the distribution of promotional messages via email to a target audiences. Its purpose is to build customer loyalty, strengthen brand recognition, and boost sales. Regardless of how many digital marketing channels develop, email marketing continues to be one of the best ways to contact and engage your target audience.

Email is also one of the most widely used forms of communication. Most people use email several times a day, every day, and with the advent of smartphones, users can now access email from anywhere. In fact, last year, 293.6 billion emails were sent and received each day.

These emails aren’t just person-to-person contact. They’re also a way for people to connect with their favorite companies. More than 70% of consumers prefer email communication as their source for updates from the businesses they follow.

Email marketing is cost-effective, so it’s a terrific tool for small businesses on a budget. It’s possible to reach a large audience for very little investment.

You gain direct access to inboxes of quality prospects while avoiding the costs associated with traditional advertising. For these reasons and more, email marketing is a smart way to connect with your target base, identify new customers, and grow your small business.

Examples of email marketing strategies for small business

Email marketing has been the leading channel to deliver the highest ROI for marketers for over a decade: For every $1 spent, it brings about $38 in ROI. The best part is that this kind of success isn’t achieved only by large businesses.

Several small businesses are excelling with effective email marketing campaigns, and your business can succeed, too, by following these small business email marketing tips.

1. Gather contact information.

Your first step in creating an effective email marketing campaign is to build a quality email list. Create a form on your website to register viewers and capture their contact information.

The form should require only necessary details, like names and email addresses. This will help you earn their trust and build a stable relationship. Clearly explain what viewers can expect when they offer their information and assure them that they’ll receive immediate value from the material you’ll provide.

Use CTAs on your site to encourage people to register to learn more about your business. Offer something of value in exchange for an email address—content upgrades like eBooks, guides, and checklists—to entice people to opt in on your site. The objective is to obtain quality leads who are interested in the products and services you offer.

 Example of a signup CTA to obtain more information

Source: Medium

2. Decide what to send.

There are several types of emails you can send to your contact list. Promotional emails are a great way to alert readers to your current sales and special offers. Loyalty programs for dedicated customers are an effective way to strengthen those relationships.

Email newsletters are a safe method of establishing a connection with your prospects. Not only are they expected, but they can also provide valuable information people find useful.

Transactional emails, like receipts or shipping notifications, are especially effective. These keep customers abreast of what’s happening with their purchase, and they have high open rates because they contain information people need and look forward to receiving. They’ve been proven to generate up to 6 times more revenue than other email formats.

 Example of a transactional email

Source: Really Good Emails

3. Create valuable content.

It’s important to create content that’s relevant to your reader. Do a little research ahead of time and find out what your audience needs that you can provide.

Answer questions, alleviate concerns, and offer valuable information that people will want to read. From templates to writing tools, there are several resources available to help you draft an effective email.

Consider segmenting your audience into targeted categories. Use differentiators like demographics, engagement, and past purchase behavior. With this information, you can tailor content and increase open rates. Whatever message you create, be sure to include a clear CTA that relates to the topic of your email.

 Example of content based on past purchase behavior

Source: Really Good Emails

4. Design for mobile applications.

Email access is no longer limited to stationary locations. Mobile platforms are becoming more prevalent and a way for people to remain connected while on the go, so an important aspect of email optimization includes ensuring your campaign is mobile friendly.

Emails need to be adaptable to several applications, so format content correctly to ensure that all information is accessible, regardless of where it’s being accessed. Don’t miss out on a lead conversion opportunity simply because your message wasn’t formatted for a variety of devices.

Example of an optimized mobile-friendly email

Source: Really Good Emails

5. Map out a schedule.

Maintain consistency with your readership by creating a schedule for your email campaign and be deliberate in your plan.

The leading reasons people unsubscribe from email campaigns have to do with send cadence. Make contact with your recipients more than once a month, but don’t bombard them more than a couple of times a week.

Observe consumer behavior and develop a plan that meets their needs. Our research has shown that the best day for email opens is Tuesday.

As for time, aim for natural breaks in the day when people are accessing email (morning break, lunch, and while lying in bed at night). Start with this information, then use your own data to adjust based on your customers’ needs.

 Example of a scheduled weekly email

Source: Think With Google

6. Track your progress.

A major benefit of email marketing is the ability to learn from your readers. By tracking various metrics, you can analyze the success of your campaign and make quick changes to improve its success. Small businesses will want to track the following metrics for their email campaigns:

  • Open rates show how many emails were actually opened versus how many were sent and undelivered
  • Click-through rates determine how many times links were accessed
  • Conversion rates relate sales to emails sent
  • Referral traffic reveals how many site visits came from your email
  • Bounce rates identify email addresses that are rejecting the emails
  • Unsubscribe rates show how many people are opting out of your contact list
  • List growth rate shows how frequently you’re gaining new subscribers. It’s important to track this information and keep your contact list current and healthy.

All of this information helps you adjust your campaign to ensure your messages are effective and successful in building brand loyalty and increasing ROI.

Email marketing best practices for small businesses

It’s easy to see that emails are an effective marketing tool. Develop a successful email marketing campaign by following these best practices.

Be the guinea pig.

Before you send a message to your contact list, send a test copy to yourself. Check for errors, typos, and broken links. CTA buttons must take viewers to your website. Confirm content appears correctly on a computer, as well as mobile devices. Set your campaign up for success from the beginning.

Send only to people on your list.

Develop a quality email list and only contact people who intentionally sign up for your email communications. Don’t register people against their wishes and steer clear of purchased email lists. These emails result in high unsubscribe rates and, even worse, could damage your reputation.

Make it easy to subscribe and unsubscribe

The goal is to gain subscribers, so make it easy for people to sign up. Include several CTA options to capture contact information. Use autofill features with a checkbox, so all people have to do is click a button.

Likewise, realize not everyone will find your emails useful, and that’s okay. Give them an easy way out. Make unsubscribe links obvious and use friendly wording to keep things light. They may refer you to a friend. Or they could return someday when the time is right.

Wrap up

Email marketing remains a preferred channel for today’s marketers. It allows small businesses to reach a wide target audience affordably and easily. Create a successful campaign by following these small business email marketing strategies:

  • Gather contact information
  • Decide what to send
  • Create valuable content
  • Map out a schedule
  • Track your progress

Email marketing is an effective and beneficial way for small businesses to generate leads and improve ROI. To ensure success, follow best practices like testing your messages, sending only to people on your list, and providing ways for consumers to join and unsubscribe with ease.

We can help your small business develop a beneficial email marketing strategy. For more information, contact our sales team today.

The post New to Small Business? Here’s Your Email Marketing Strategy appeared first on Campaign Monitor.

5 Email Marketing Benefits for New Businesses

The goal of every new business is to generate revenue with a quick ROI. With today’s technological advancements, marketing communication has never been easier. The modern marketer can reach prospects through several digital channels, from search engine marketing to social media platforms.

With so many innovative ways to reach prospective customers, it can be challenging to determine the best marketing strategy for your new business.

The answer is simple: Share your message where your audience will most likely see it. As of last year, there were 3.9 billion email users around the world. Email marketing remains a successful platform for converting contacts to sales. Not sure how to develop a solid email marketing strategy? Campaign Monitor can help.

What is email marketing?

Email marketing is the distribution of promotional messages via email to a carefully defined target audience. It can be utilized to boost sales, strengthen brand recognition, and build customer loyalty. Regardless of how many digital marketing channels develop, email marketing continues to be one of the best ways to contact and engage your target audience.

For more than ten years, email marketing has been the leading channel to deliver the highest ROI for marketers. It currently brings $38 in ROI for every $1 spent, a rate of 3800%. There are several contributing factors to email marketing’s success.

Email is one of the most utilized forms of communication. Most people use email daily, often several times a day. With the advent of smartphones, users can now check their email from anywhere. Last year, 293.6 billion emails were sent and received each day. These emails aren’t just person-to-person contact. They’re also a way for people to connect with their favorite companies. In fact, more than 70% of consumers prefer email communication as their source for updates from the businesses they follow.

Email marketing is cost-effective, so it appeals to businesses of all sizes. It’s possible to reach a large audience for very little investment. You gain direct access to inboxes of quality prospects while avoiding the costs associated with print advertising. Email marketing is a smart way to connect with your target base, identify new customers, and grow your business.

What makes email marketing successful?

The beauty of email marketing is that it enables you to keep in touch with your audience regularly. From welcome messages to follow-up thank you notes, email is an effective way to engage your audience and build customer loyalty. Personal messages can go a long way, and a customer who feels valued is more likely to support your business in more tangible ways.

 Introductory thank-you offer

Source: Really Good Emails

A recent study revealed that 68% of businesses had lost a customer due to indifference. Email marketing is an easy way to avoid this. Through email messages, a business can further enhance the customer experience and continue to boost ROI.

5 email marketing benefits for startups

As a new business, determining where to allot your marketing spend is critical to your success. It’s vital to generate new leads. However, your marketing strategy should be cost-effective and yield results. Here are five benefits that email marketing offers your new business.

1. Create individualized content with targeted messages.

Email marketing enables you to customize content. Messages can be personalized with the recipient’s name. Emails that include a customer’s first name in the subject line have a higher click-through rate than those that don’t. The more emails are opened, the more information you can learn about your audience. This allows you to discover their needs and pains and helps to develop strong relationships.

 Personalized email with customer name

Source: Really Good Emails

Additionally, you’re able to create customized content by segmenting your contacts. This allows you to tailor your marketing campaign to different target groups, like one-time customers versus return visitors. Identify your prospects’ needs. Consider geography, demographics, interests, and even behavior. By targeting your messages in this way, you’re increasing the relevancy of your content, which can lead to more conversions and higher ROI.

2. Drive traffic to your website.

Email marketing campaigns allow you to include links in your message that take your audience directly to your website. Whether it’s a hyperlink or a CTA button, sending readers to your site can positively impact your SEO. By promoting targeted content, you drive qualified traffic to your site. This tells search engines that you’re providing valuable content, which can boost your website’s online rankings. Higher rankings lead to more visitors, which can lead to higher ROI.

Clear call-to-action button

Source: Really Good Emails

You can drive more traffic to your site by solidifying your email list. Build your database by making signup forms easy to complete. Only ask for the most basic information. Make sure your emails can scale to any device. Most people now access their emails from mobile devices. Therefore, your emails should function on a variety of platforms. Effectively reaching more people can bring even more business to your site.

3. Build brand awareness.

In addition to reaching current customers, email marketing is an effective way to reach people who are unfamiliar with your business. Email is nearly 40 times more effective than social media in gaining new customers. It’s an easy way to share information about your business. There’s also an excellent opportunity to send coupons or discount codes.

 Special offer email

Source: Really Good Emails

Use email to set your brand identity that people will recognize when they receive your messages. People are creatures of habit. Set standards early on for what readers can expect to find in your emails. Display your logo in the same place on each email. Ensure messaging includes corporate colors. Establish patterns in your emails that help create brand recognition. Consistent communications will increase the likelihood that people will think of your business when looking for products and services that you provide.

4. Track with ease.

Email marketing allows you the opportunity to see the effectiveness of your campaign easily. An important metric to track is your open rate. Be sure you’re using compelling subject lines to entice people to open an email. Click-through rate tells you the number of people who click on the links in your messages. Clicks per link offer you further insight into the type of content your audience prefers.

Example of a compelling subject line

Source: Newoldstamp

Conversion rate shows how many new users you’ve converted with your campaign. Unsubscribe and forwarding rates reveal how people perceive your messages. Are they removing you from their contacts, or sharing you with theirs? Regardless of which information you track, set a campaign goal that includes a CTA. If people aren’t getting to your site, it’s time to re-evaluate your messaging.

5. Create brand advocates.

Email is one of the simplest communications to share with others. With the click of a button, your current customers can do your promoting for you. If you build a strong relationship with your client base, they can become advocates for your products and services. Word-of-mouth advertising is taken to a new level with email marketing. Make it easy for people to share your information by including clear CTA buttons that encourage readers to do so.

Consider special discounts to people who help promote your business. Ask long-time members to share your message in return for premium access to a new product. Encourage customers to refer a friend to build your contact database. Develop strong relationships with your current customers. Brand loyalty can lead to new prospects, exponentially increasing ROI.

Example of a refer-a-friend benefit

Source: Really Good Emails

Email marketing best practices for small businesses

It’s easy to see that emails are an effective marketing tool, and you can develop a successful email marketing campaign by following these best practices.

Run a test.

Before you blast a message to your contact list, send a test copy to yourself. Check for errors, typos, and broken links. CTA buttons must take viewers to your website. Be sure content appears correctly on a computer as well as a mobile device. Don’t give this campaign an excuse to fail.

Schedule with intent.

Be deliberate in your email campaign schedule. Studies have shown that the best day to reach an audience with email is Tuesday. Keep this in mind when setting your campaign. Use your own data to adjust based on your customers’ needs.

Send to a healthy list.

Develop a quality contact list and only target people who sign up for your email communications. Don’t use purchased email lists or enroll people against their wishes.

Wrap up

Email marketing remains a preferred channel for today’s marketers, as it allows businesses to reach a wide target audience easily and affordably. Email marketing allows your company to:

  • Create individualized content with targeted messages
  • Drive traffic to your website
  • Build brand awareness
  • Track analytics with ease
  • Create brand advocates

Email marketing is an effective and beneficial way to boost business and improve your ROI. To ensure success, follow best practices like testing your messages, scheduling with intent, and sending to a healthy list.

We can help your new business develop a beneficial email marketing strategy. For more information, contact our sales team today.

The post 5 Email Marketing Benefits for New Businesses appeared first on Campaign Monitor.

6 Email Personalization Hacks You Can Use Right Now To Boost ROI

This is a guest post from Bamidele Onibalusi at Writers in Charge.

How often do you feel that your email marketing is missing something important?

That deficiency manifests in low open rates, high unsubscribe rates, and meager conversions. All of these are symptoms of one major malady: subpar email personalization.

Companies that do personalize see quite the opposite. According to a 2019 study by Monet:

  • 93% of businesses that use advanced personalization increased their revenue last year.
  • 77% of the top performers who exceeded their revenue goals also had a documented personalization strategy in place.

There’s even more data proving the immense power of personalization, especially when it comes to ROI. But, rather than focus on the outcomes too much (for now), let’s administer the treatment.

6 Personalization hacks

If your email marketing needs an effective ROI cure, here are six actionable personalization hacks worth using.

1. Use email quizzes to capture content preferences and boost engagement.

Comprehensive customer data is the pillar of personalized marketing.

But how do you collect it without the dreaded customer surveys and feedback forms?

One word: quizzes. Luckily, quizzes are nowhere close to losing their popularity, and they’re easy to implement.

When BuzzFeed’s data science team perfected the formula for viral quizzes, the company’s website traffic grew nearly three-fold:

Source: Business2Community.

What does this have to do with email marketing? Quizzes can help you poll and segment your audience in an entertaining, interactive manner.

The best part? You can also see the results of your audience’s replies and use those to guide your product and content recommendations.

In short, quizzes do several great things for your email marketing:

  • Help collect customer feedback and gauge preferences
  • Show you what types of content/deals/promos hit the mark
  • Serve as an interactive method for micro-segmenting your list
  • Boost engagement stats, thanks to the interactive component

Case in point: one wedding-planning company decided to improve its product and content recommendations. After prospects signed up for the newsletter, the company prompted them to visit a dedicated landing page and indicate their preferences:

This Paperstyle quiz is an example of simple email personalization hacks

Source: Whereoware.

Based on the selection, they moved the customer to the appropriate list and sent them a personalized drip campaign.

The results were fantastic: open rate grew by 244% and click-through rate increased by 161%.

If you already have a good sense of customers’ general preferences, you can also use an email quiz to help them with further product discovery.

Harry’s email is a great example of how this can be done (with a bit of humor).

Interactive quizzes make for great data: use them in your email personalization hacks.

Source: Really Good Emails.

2. Add personalized price-drop emails to your email mix.

Everyone loves a good deal, and few people can resist clicking on that sweet price reduction. Especially when it’s for a product they’ve eyed for a while.

Listrak research found that price-drop alerts had the highest open and click-to-open rates among all types of transactional emails:

Add personalized price-drop emails to your list of email personalization hacks. This graph shows benchmarks.

Also, be aware that 69.57% of shoppers will abandon their purchase. That’s a lot of revenue left on the table.

Retargeting them with a quick price-drop alert can help you recoup some of those unspent dollars. Ladder says that a well-executed price-drop campaign generates a 16% increase in ROI.

Here are several best practices for price-drop emails:

  • Timing is everything. Alert the shopper once the discount expires.
  • Target users who’ve clearly shown interest in a particular product (added it to favorites, placed it in the cart, or accessed the product page multiple times).
  • Split test different micro-copy, CTAs, and visuals to see which formulas perform best.
  • Don’t mash several price drops into a single email. Focus on pitching the particular product the user’s been eyeing, and briefly mention other discounted goods in the same category.

Here’s a nice price-drop example from Etsy that highlights the discount and instills a sense of urgency with a quick disclaimer that the deal may be gone any time:

Source: Pinterest.

3. Let users personalize their email marketing settings.

No one wants to admit this, but email fatigue is real. An average professional dispatches and receives 121 emails per day.

The volume of traffic passing through personal inboxes is enormous too: Over 111.1 billion consumer emails go in and out every day.

So here’s a bit of unconditional advice: Sometimes slowing down with your email marketing might be the right thing to do.

Take a look at Spotify and their glorified user preferences center. Instead of introducing double opt-ins, they were among the first to let customers personally choose what type of communication they want to receive:

Source: Spotify.

Allowing users to select when, how, and how often they want to be emailed reduces the likelihood of unsubscribing.

Also, it allows users to stay in control of the relevance of emails. This, in turn, helps you with segmentation and can ultimately lead to higher open rates.

From a tech standpoint, enabling custom email preferences isn’t that hard either, as a lot of email marketing services will sort things out for you.

And here’s some inspo from Bespoke Post on how to inform subscribers about their new notification options:

Source: Really Good Emails.

You can learn more about setting up an email preference center from our previous post.

4. Introduce dynamic email content.

Dynamic email content isn’t a new trick in marketing books. But it’s still one of the most effective ones. According to a OneSpot report:

  • Sixty-five percent of marketers name dynamic content as their best email personalization tactic.
  • Sixty percent also said that introducing real-time data to emails (i.e., location or weather) proved to be highly effective.

The biggest appeal of dynamic content is that it suits companies of any size, at any level of email marketing maturity.

You can start experimenting with basic tactics and gradually build up to more sophisticated campaigns, incorporating several personalization hacks at once:

Source: Venture Beat.

Here are several actionable ideas from our big guide to dynamic content:

  • Adding a customer’s name to the email subject line can boost open rates by 26%.
  • Personalize visuals to the customer’s location and, perhaps, the season. Imagine how your Australian customers feel when they’re receiving yet another snowy and frosty email before Christmas.
  • Pitch different types of informational content based on customers’ past actions on your website. One of your prospects recently compared different car models? Follow up with a “First-Timer’s Guide to Buying a Car.”
  • Companies with higher data maturity should experiment with sending dynamic product recommendations. Airbnb recently improved its act and now follows up users with personalized itineraries for their upcoming trips:

Source: Really Good Emails.

5. Show your customers the VIP treatment.

One of your best personalization hacks is exclusivity because it has an almost toxic pull, and some brands are readily using it. The brand’s entire sales strategy is built upon waitlists and discreet selling to the most dedicated brand fans.

But you don’t have to be a luxury brand to play the exclusivity card. You can try to appear as one by making your most loyal and engaged customers feel truly special.

Setting up an exclusive email list generates several benefits for your business:

  • You create a tribe of highly engaged shoppers who are ready to not just spend more with your brand, but also spread the good word.
  • You can launch time-sensitive campaigns that’ll create the urge to buy and help you move on your stock.
  • Lastly, you can run targeted marketing tests on the most engaged part of your audience to gauge what offers work best before introducing offers to everyone else during the general sales.

This email from BaubleBar illustrates how you can pack a punch in one email and entice a customer with a 12-hour discount and free shipping:

Source: Really Good Emails.

Here’s a quick strategy you can use to create a VIP email workflow:

  • Segment customers with the highest loyalty status and lifetime-value spendings to a new list.
  • Set up dedicated campaigns for them, offering personalized discounts, unique access to certain content/events/promos, etc. Leverage the data you collect to personalize the offerings even further.
  • Start scaling the program and offer VIPs personal referral codes to share with their friends, so that both can claim a discount. Empower your customers to become your brand’s best advocates.
  • Set up a landing page for those referred users explaining to them the benefits and unique perks of joining your VIP program, as well as basic eligibility requirements.
  • Keep nurturing all your fans with personalized email campaigns.

6. Invest in personalized micro-copy.

We’re biased to instantly like people who appear similar to us. A sociological study carried out in 2018 explains why:

  • Meeting people who share our interests and preferences reinforces our confidence in our own attitudes.
  • We find interactions with similar-minded people to be more fun and enjoyable.
  • Learning that a person shares something in common with us makes us feel more positive about ourselves, and we transfer that feeling to the other person.

As an email marketer, you can learn to mimic customers’ language to build that attraction and create a 1:1 rapport with them.

Starbucks does this particularly well. This year, the company deployed a new AI-powered email personalization engine that churns 400,000 variants of hyper-personalized emails each week.

The engine captures individual customers’ behavior and past preferences to craft 1:1 offers in real time.

As a result, Starbucks has seen a:

  • 3X increase in marketing campaign effectiveness
  • 2X increase in email redemptions
  • 3X increase in incremental spends via offer redemptions

Andrea Xue, an independent data scientist, also analyzed data from Starbucks’ rewards app to estimate how effective its personalized offers are for different customer segments.

Spoiler alert: they convert big time.

Source: Towards Data Science.

Less tech-savvy brands can also follow Starbucks’ cue and personalize email copy based on:

  • Customer’s age
  • Gender
  • Sizing
  • Loyalty status
  • Shopping preferences

You don’t need fancy AI for that. Campaign Monitor’s personalization tags will do the trick. Show that you’re not a faceless company, but another human being who listens and cares about your customers’ interests and preferences.

Wrap up

Email personalization is expensive to ignore. Generic email blasts are burning your marketing budgets, bringing little to no ROI in return. What’s worse, every irrelevant email in your customers’ inbox pushes them closer to unsubscribing.

Making your communication more personal, timely, and relevant isn’t that hard, with the right tools. To maintain a strong email marketing beat (with occasional ROI spikes), use the following strategies:

  • Segment your lists with quizzes.
  • Add triggered emails to your marketing mix.
  • Give users tools to personalize their communication preferences.
  • Experiment with dynamic content.
  • Collect more granular data for personalization.
  • Split test different types of messages and offers.
  • Rinse and repeat what’s working best

Need more personalization hacks? Check out Campaign Monitor’s ultimate guide to email personalization, covering all the nuts and bolts of building a 1:1 rapport with your audience.

Bamidele Onibalusi is a freelance writer and the founder and CEO of Writers in Charge. He has been featured and published on top publications that include Forbes, Fast Company, Digital Journal, and The Huffington Post.

The post 6 Email Personalization Hacks You Can Use Right Now To Boost ROI appeared first on Campaign Monitor.

Nature or Nurture? For Long-Term Revenue, Do Both

Nature or nurture? For small ecommerce businesses that seek long-term revenue, nurture is all about using what feels natural to prospective customers and leading them toward buying. But not just any buying. We want long-term revenue as measured in average order value, customer lifetime value, repeat purchase rates, and improved cart recovery rates.

By nature, we mean marketing content, newsletters, emails, and social campaigns that consumers find credible and trustworthy. Authenticity really does matter.

“To win the hearts and business of your target customers, you have to convince them you are trustworthy and authentic,” writes Michael Fertik, founder and chairman of “Being authentic means being accountable and upholding your brand promise. It requires transparency and a dash of vulnerability.”

How do you gain long-term value and revenue from your buyers? At CM Commerce, we’ve been closely studying our customer data to answer this question—and we’re going to dissect one of our customers closely here. But before we dive into that example, we’ll establish:

  • Why being authentic and trustworthy matters
  • Why using an indirect nurture strategy is vital
  • How our customer Pastreez realized long-term value from nurturing
  • Revenue metrics that help prove long-term value from email campaigns.

Why does being authentic and trustworthy matter?

The most obvious answer is this: People want it. But the other less obvious reason is that you can use it to nurture leads.

A 2019 Stackla study showed that 90% of consumers deem authenticity an important factor when deciding what brands they like and support. There is some fluctuation by generation, but an overwhelming majority of buyers are interested in authentic experiences.

Who wants authenticity? Per Stackla’s findings:

  • 90% of millennials
  • 85% of Generation Xers
  • 80% of baby boomers

So how do you use authenticity in your marketing to help move an interested prospect to become a buyer and product advocate? It’s all part of the nurturing process.

Why is using an indirect nurture strategy vital to ecommerce success?

Potential buyers are everywhere, and they review products and ask for advice from friends, family, and co-workers all the time. In fact, 88% of consumers do research online before buying a product online or from a brick-and-mortar store. And if you are a small business trying to attract millennial and Gen Y audiences, 49% of consumers trust small brands to do the right thing.

You need content that helps potential buyers find useful reviews of your products and that highlights your ethics. This can be published on your site’s blog or in other places. It’s just not enough to try to get consumers to buy your product directly anymore. Of course, you will do this and will continually tweak and test your email marketing campaigns.

Yet small businesses also have to stay on top of social interactions and reviews, and they must provide relevant and useful content that speaks to target audiences all the time. That relevant and useful content can and should be used in nurturing campaigns.

Naturally, when you nurture a prospect, it’s selling of course, but in an indirect way. It’s not a straight-up, “please buy this product right now” ask; it’s a soft sell. Here’s an example from custom framing startup Framebridge.

Framebridge email nurture campaign example

Source: Really Good Emails

This is educational content. It helps prospects understand the essentials of what people do with the product. It’s not really about Framebridge at all—but rather about how a person would use the product once it’s bought.

It’s a thoughtful gesture that says Framebridge understands there’s a complete experience going on. The email does not ask for anything in return. In email marketing terms, our sister email company Emma puts it this way:

“Lead nurture emails provide you an opportunity to connect and build trust with your contacts at all stages of their customer journey … These traits can come from being authentic about your products and services, as well as providing educational and insightful information that’s relevant and helpful to your audience.”

Here’s how our customer Pastreez realized long-term value from an email nurture campaign.

During our case study interview for CM Commerce customer Pastreez, an online shop selling French macarons, we discovered some insights about long-term revenue from direct and indirect sources.

Direct revenue is fairly simple. For example, if you sent 100 emails and made $500 from them, then $500 is the direct revenue. But when Pastreez added nurturing, the effect was a force multiplier.

The Pastreez lead magnet is simple and enticing. Customers sign up through the website pop-up and can receive seven macarons for free. Once they’ve received the voucher for the free macarons, they are then included in an email nurturing campaign to encourage sales over time.

Pastreez nurture email campaign example

After completing an online order, the team of French chefs gets to work on the macarons, putting together a personalized box that’s delivered fresh to a customer’s door within three days.

The campaign’s direct revenue appeared promising: an additional $10,000 for Pastreez, spread over the 2,500 email recipients in a three-part email campaign.

But that wasn’t the end of it.

A few revenue metrics help prove long-term value from email campaigns.

Pastreez saw three extra benefits from its email nurture campaign:

1. Higher average order value

Customers who went through the Pastreez email campaign using CM Commerce had a 23.57% higher average order value (AOV) compared with customers who didn’t experience the campaign.

AOV has legs. It can boost customer lifetime value and direct revenue. Imagine if your AOV is $300. That nearly 24% bump means an additional $70 in sales—for every customer.

2. Higher repeat purchase rate

Another hidden benefit of an indirect method is watching the repeat purchase rate increase. Pastreez customers who experienced this email campaign made 2.56% more purchases than the rest of the brand’s customers.

Repeat and loyal customers are the best. Here’s why: It’s easier to sell to engaged customers who purchase repeatedly. Also, repeat customers tend to spend 3% to 15% more than new ones.

3. Improved cart recovery rate

Our data shows that 10.7% of customers who receive cart recovery emails return to make a purchase. But Pastreez’s rate was off the charts. It had a 50% increase in the overall cart recovery rate, which means the email campaign was effective over the long run. This nurturing method had momentum that encouraged prospects to eventually buy from Pastreez, even though it took two to three emails to make it happen.

The overall value of nurturing and using ready-to-go tools can be best summed up by Pastreez’s co-founder:

“Before CM Commerce, we were paying for multiple Shopify apps to get the features we wanted,” says CEO Anthony Rosemond. “CM Commerce brings all the key offerings we need as a growing ecommerce business into one place. The traffic sent to our site by CM Commerce converts higher than any other traffic source, with a 23 times return on every dollar we spend.”

Wrap up

The benefits of email nurture campaigns that include relevant content and an abandoned cart recovery strategy are deep. They can be a force multiplier over time—especially given their positive effect on repeat customers.

Nurturing may be an indirect marketing and revenue method, but it should encourage you to look beyond more obvious sales metrics.


  • Being authentic and trustworthy matters.
  • An indirect nurture strategy is vital.
  • Long-term revenue value can come from nurturing, in metrics such as average order value, repeat purchase rates, and improved cart recovery

From welcome emails to re-engagement campaigns and beyond, we seamlessly integrate with your ecommerce platforms—Shopify, WooCommerce, and BigCommerce—so you’ll have all the features you need to exceed your goals.

CM Commerce features:

  • Pre-made conversion campaigns to recover revenue from abandoned carts
  • Follow-up segmented and personalized emails for cross-selling
  • Product reviews that spotlight your happy customers and build trust (and sales)
  • Automated feedback to increase repeat revenue
  • Ready-to-go templates or custom versions, coupons, and rewards with your branding

Try CM Commerce today for free.

The post Nature or Nurture? For Long-Term Revenue, Do Both appeared first on Campaign Monitor.