Blog > Digital Marketing > How to Automate Email Sequences for Content Marketing

Tips and Tricks for Automating Email Sequences

September 13, 2023
·
9
min read

With so many other things you’ve got to do to keep your business running (and running successfully!) efficiency has quickly become the name of the game.

And content marketing is no different. You’re already producing great, valuable content. You just need a way to directly deliver that content to the right audience at the right time.

If you’re thinking that sounds like wizardry, it’s really not! What you need is an automated email sequence!

If you’re new to the world of email automation, then this blog can be your guide! Today we’re diving into the science of automating email sequences for content marketing so that you can kiss manual, time-consuming emails goodbye and focus on a new and more efficient way of engaging your target audience!

Step 1: Research Your Audience’s Pain Points

If you know us by now, you know that before diving into any kind of marketing project, you first have to take some time to know your audience.

If you don’t have any data ready, then stop what you’re doing and set aside some time to conduct research in a way that best fits you. 

Whether that’s through customer surveys, interviews, industry reports, feedback forms, or advice from your sales and customer support teams is up to you but get that research done because you’ll need it if you want your automated email campaign to succeed.

Once you’ve armed yourself with some valuable information from your customer base, we find it helpful to create a customer persona.

Customer personas are fictionalized representations of an individual in your target audience. No, they’re not a real person, but they represent a real person that might be interested in your offerings down to their demographics, goals, wants, and needs.

Getting into the head of one of your customers helps you better understand where your audience is coming from, their pain points, their needs, and what solution they’re looking for from you.

Step 2: Devise Your Strategy

A chess pawn surrounded by charts and graphs. A successful automated email campaign first needs a winning strategy.

Once you know who you need to reach and how you should tailor your messaging, it’s game time, baby!

Now you’ll decide how you’re going to guide these folks through the customer journey from the awareness stage up until that conversion and beyond.

Here is what you’ll need to do to get that done:

Understand Your Marketing Funnel

Your marketing funnel represents the stages a potential customer goes through before making a purchase or taking a desired action. The stages might vary slightly depending on who you’re talking to, but typically they consist of the following:

Awareness — At this stage, potential customers are just becoming aware of your brand and the products or services that you offer. Usually, they’ll have stumbled upon you while scrolling social media, through paid advertising, or other marketing efforts. The goal at this stage is to capture their attention.

Consideration — At this stage, your potential customer might be actively researching and evaluating their options, wondering whether or not it’s worth it to purchase from you. They might be comparing your offerings with your competitors, reading your customer reviews, and researching more about your company.

Conversion — At this stage, your potential customer takes a specific action! Congrats! Whether that’s making a purchase, signing up for a newsletter, or requesting a demo, they’ve decided to give your brand a shot!

Retention — Here is where the focus shifts to retaining your customer because your relationship shouldn’t end once you’ve made a sale! The focus here is on providing a positive post-purchase experience, delivering on the promises you’ve made, and building a relationship that encourage repeat buys.

Advocacy — What you’ve been waiting for. You’ve built up a relationship and trust with your customer and now they’ve become your brand advocate, leaving positive reviews on your website, sharing your posts on social media, and recommending your products and services to their friends and family.

Each step of the journey is very important, so you’ll need emails that speak to your customers at every point to keep them moving through your funnel.

Segment Your Audience

 You’ll also need to segment the folks on your email list.

You might have a special way of doing this but if not, common criteria for segmenting your audience are:

  • Demographics
  • Behavior
  • Preferences
  • Purchase History
  • Engagement Level
  • Email Interaction

Effective segmentation allows you to send more targeted and personalized emails based on who your audience is so that your messaging better resonates with each of your segments. This will give each email you send more relevancy and increase the likelihood of your recipients finding some value in it and moving further down your funnel.

Create Content to Share

Still with us?

Great. Because now that you’ve got your audience segmented and you’re ready to meet your potential customer at whatever stage of the funnel they’re in, it’s time to find the right content to share.

And in order to automate emails for content marketing, you first need to have … content.

Whatever content you create is up to you, just be sure it’s valuable and aligns with your brand!

This could be an interesting blog post, a helpful how-to guide, an intriguing white paper or case study, or whatever else your team can create.

The point is that it must address your customer’s pain points, hold value for your audience, and, most of all, be enjoyable to read.

Step 3: Start Your Automated Email Marketing Campaign

A megaphone amplifying something. It's time to amplify your awareness through an automated email campaign!

The prep work is done and now it’s time to set up your automated email campaign.

Here’s how you do it:

Choose Your Email Client

You have plenty of choices here, so choose an email client that meets your needs. Here are some popular choices.

  • Mailchimp
  • ActiveCampaign
  • HubSpot
  • MailerLite
  • Constant Contact

Each of these clients has email automation software ability, automated workflows, and provides you with metrics so you can see how your campaign is performing.

Create Lead Magnets

Lead magnets can help you gauge who’s interested in your offerings so that you can target them accordingly.

A simple way to do this is with the content you’ve already created. Try publishing previews of your blog to the social media platforms of your choice. You can do this via an engaging caption paired with your hero image or maybe with an especially interesting excerpt.

Whatever it is, keep it true to your brand. It has to make people want to click, read, and subscribe to your list.

Send Your Marketing Emails

While your socials are busy generating leads for you, go ahead and send a snippet of your content to your full email list. 

Be sure you send your emails with a great subject line too (more on that later this week!), because email marketing can only be successful if your recipients see your emails. A good subject line is the best way to get your audience to click and read.

And once they’re in there, you want something engaging and interesting to keep their attention. Pair that sneak preview of content with a header and a nice graphic to catch as many eyes as possible

Since you’ve segmented your audience, you can also use different subject lines, graphics, or body copy to hook them in and keep them reading.

Be sure you’re keeping track of your metrics, so you can know who in your target audience will require lead nurturing or the next email in your sequence!

Set up Automation Triggers

While your automated campaign is doing its thing, you should be helping it out as much as possible.

Most email clients come equipped with email marketing automation tools that make it possible to set automation triggers for your recipients. The specific buttons to click vary depending on your email platform, so it’s just best practice to first read your platform’s tutorials and FAQs before building out sequences. 

Doing so will prevent costly errors and save you time and hassle down the road!

Once you do have your platform figured out, set up a series of emails that are ready to go as soon as a recipient clicks your blog link or otherwise engages with your content to move customers along that funnel once they’ve already expressed some interest in your brand! 

You can also set up triggers for those who interact with your website, like and follow you on social media, answer your surveys, and more.

Be sure your email sequences flow naturally after that initial email, leading your customer seamlessly through their journey using nurture emails and other valuable content to encourage your lead to convert.

Step 4: Retargeting

In a perfect world, all of our recipients would convert, but the truth is that some of your future brand advocates still need further retargeting before they see the value in your brand.

In order to encourage some of your target audience down your funnel, it’s necessary to use retargeting techniques to make sure they have every opportunity to take advantage of all of the benefits your products and services have to offer! 

Here are some ways to do that:

Nothing Wrong with a Gentle Nudge

Your automated campaign should have an additional nurture email that is set to go out after a specific amount of time to all of the recipients who ignored your first email in case they just didn’t see it.

Sending automated emails to potential customers who left an abandoned cart behind in your eCommerce store is also a great idea. 

You never know who just needs that gentle nudge in order to convert.

Give the Socials Another Shot

If your blog snippet post generated some action for you on your socials, it never hurts to keep going to that same well.

Publish another social snippet a little while later to keep your brand fresh in your target audience’s mind and give folks another chance to see your content if they missed it the first time.

More people are online during the weekend, so you can also give a boost to your most successful social post during that time.

Step 5: Repeat the Cycle

Now all you’ve got to do is repeat the cycle! 

Did something work out great for you? Try to see if you can catch lightning in a bottle twice and do it again. Maybe you’re onto a great blog post topic? Maybe the images you’ve chosen are very engaging. 

On the flip side, if things aren’t going so well, it’s not the end of the world, friend! These things take time to get right.

Tweak your design and marketing strategies as needed until your metrics start to improve and you get the results you’re looking for.

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Need Some Help with That?

If all of this just sounds great, but you can’t possibly have enough time in your day to get it all done, then you’re in luck!

Designity is here to help.

With a dedicated Creative Director taking the reins of your email marketing campaign, you can reap all of the benefits of your campaign while still having the time to do your job and focus on growing your business.

Designity has the top 3% of US-based creative talent as well, including graphic designers, copywriters, and social media and email marketing experts to help you set up your campaign, create sweet, shareable content, monitor your metrics, and help you get the engagement you’re looking for!

Check out our automated email campaign services and see what we can do for you!

Are you ready to add a dose of efficiency to your email marketing strategies?

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About the author:
Sara Lopez
Sara is a Texas-based copywriter.
Interested in content collaboration? Email at press@designity.com
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