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5 types of marketing automation to enhance your marketing strategy

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5 types of marketing automation to enhance your marketing strategy

Shelby Boock

Shelby Boock
Jun 24, 2020

It’s no new concept anymore. Still, the potential complexity of implementing marketing automation has some marketers skeptical as to whether or not the investment is worth it. In fact, according to Emailmonday, only an average of 51% of companies are currently utilizing marketing automation and 58% of B2B companies are just in the planning phases of adopting the technology.

But does it really have to be so complicated?

What if I told you there are types of marketing automation strategies that are easy to implement? Assuming you have the right tools in your marketing tech stack — like a CRM with accurate, up-to-date data; a fully functional marketing automation tool; and an integration between the two — marketing automation can be simple (and fun)!

Let’s talk about five simple marketing automation examples you can implement easily, while building and maintaining prospect/customer relationships and creating internal efficiencies.

  1. Automated welcome emails
  2. Automated customer milestone emails
  3. Re-engagement emails
  4. Event promotion, reminders and follow-up
  5. Automated drip campaigns

1. Automated welcome emails

Automated welcome emails help establish a level of trust with new subscribers. Generally, the emails are triggered from a simple subscription or content request form submission. You receive these emails after you’ve signed up to receive a new type of content or provided your email address and other basic contact information to a new brand. Often these emails don’t require any action and are simply used to say thanks for subscribing. They also set additional expectations around the type of content you will receive and how frequently you’ll receive it.

Sometimes, automated welcome emails can serve as a form of double opt-in, asking the new user to confirm their subscription. This double opt-in approach is great to ensure healthy lists, full of users who truly want to receive and engage with your content.

2. Automated customer milestone emails

Automated milestone emails are a great way to build deeper relationships with customers and subscribers. Based on the data available in your CRM, you can easily build automation rules that trigger emails to deploy to remind customers of important dates. It might be time for routine maintenance or you’d like to wish them a happy birthday, or recognize other fun milestones they might not expect (but would appreciate).

Milestone emails are a simple, yet effective way to drive existing customers back to your site for additional conversions and sales. For example, the CTA on a maintenance reminder email might drive traffic to the applicable maintenance services that you offer or even encourage recipients to schedule a service appointment. And post-purchase emails, sent out a period of time after a product or service has been purchased, might include CTA’s promoting add-ons or upgrades available, driving users to those product pages and encouraging additional sales.

3. Re-engagement emails

Re-engagement emails help keep your lists clean and email performance metrics strong by weeding out bad email addresses and contacts who may no longer be interested in your content. They can be triggered by inactivity for a certain period of time based on set up of various fields within your marketing automation tool or CRM. For example, if a contact hasn’t engaged with emails for the past 60 days, an email notification can be sent asking them if they’d like to update their preferences or if they’d like to opt out all together.

While it can be hard to let go of precious contacts, this approach helps keep uninterested users and dead email addresses off of your lists. It also offers a better user experience. Keep in mind that bigger lists are not always better, especially if the content is not relevant to a large number of the recipients. Automated re-engagement emails can quickly guide users to your preference center to make subscription updates. 

It’s important to remember that a properly functioning preference center with a great user experience is a key contributor to the effectiveness of automated re-engagement emails.

4. Event promotion, reminders and follow-up

Marketing automation can also help create efficiencies for teams coordinating events like webinars, seminars, and trade shows. Think about the various events or webinars you’ve attended in the past and which of them offered the best experience. It’s become a general expectation that once you’ve submitted a registration form, you’ll get an immediate confirmation email with additional information you need prior to the event. You’ll also likely expect a reminder or two leading up to the event among other communications. Emails for event promotion, reminders, registration confirmation, and follow-up information can be built into workflows and/or automation rules. They are then triggered by the completion of a simple registration form, taking those deployments off of the plate of sales or marketing team members.

Using marketing automation to streamline your event communications is a win/win for both the users and internal marketing and sales teams. The automated emails can be easily personalized, are relevant and timely, and enhance the experience for the end user. You can also capture the registration list, and manage and update data automatically, easing the workload of the internal teams.

5. Automated drip campaigns

Automated email drip campaigns are most commonly used to promote content topics relevant to users based on their behavior on and engagement with a website. They also take into account demographic data collected and stored over time. 

Automated drip campaigns often involve adding a user to a journey or workflow upon completion of a specific action on a site. For example, if a new lead completed a form to download a whitepaper, you now know some basic information on this user based on their responses in the form. You also know the type of content they are interested in.

After some time passes, an automated email is set to send an additional relevant piece of content or offer, triggered by the initial form completion. From there, the lead follows a journey relevant to their individual interactions and interests based on the information collected along the way. Maybe the lead opened the first email offering new content, but didn’t click through to that content. No problem! You can build the workflow to send them a slightly different piece of relevant content a week later. Maybe that content will resonate better.

Automated drip campaigns can be as simple or as complex as you want. Some may only consist of a few emails triggered simply by time frames to space the content offers out. Others may have complex logic and rules built in to further customize the journey to each individual user. It’s easy to get ambitious when planning your first automated drip campaign, but remember, it’s always best to start small and build on the level of complexity later. There’s nothing wrong with launching an automated drip campaign with only a few emails and monitoring the performance at first. You’ll most likely gain a lot of valuable insights from this first phase, which will be useful as you start to build upon that campaign.

Taking the first step

Though these 5 types of marketing automation are common, they are by no means an exhaustive list of how you can enhance your marketing campaigns. Start with small, simple strategies like these to get comfortable and more familiar with executing different types of marketing automation. You’ll naturally find other ways that it can benefit your team and overall organization.

Still feeling like you’re not ready to take this on alone? We’re happy to help! Contact us to learn how Two Rivers Marketing can help you meet objectives and grow your business with marketing automation.


Shelby Boock
Get to know Shelby

Digital Strategist Shelby is a passionate marketing professional constantly working to stay ahead of trends in the ever-evolving world of digital marketing. In her free time, she enjoys staying active, reading, dancing and spending time with friends. Reach out to Shelby if you’re interested in talking marketing automation or CRM strategy.