8 best practice tips for email marketing automation.

When it comes to eDMs, it’s all about balance. You don’t want to spam your customers all the way to the unsubscribe button, but you don’t want them to forget you exist either.

Automation is about finding that balance, helping you send emails based on your goals, your schedule and what your customers want from you.

Here’s a look at the best practices for email automation.

1. Start with goal-setting.

You should have broad goals around what you want your eDM marketing to achieve – for example, positioning yourself as a thought leader in your sector. For individual campaigns, narrower goals could include boosting sales numbers or generating a certain number of leads.

RELATED: What is eDM marketing and how does it work for small businesses?

2. Plan ahead.

An eDM calendar lays out the emails you’re going to send and when. This helps you get on a regular email schedule and get the right mix of content. For example you might want to make sure that 40% of your emails are general updates, 30% push sales and 30% share thought leadership articles.

RELATED: How to plan your email campaigns for the year.

3. Avoid spam at all costs.

If you’re sending emails every day or two without segmenting or tailoring to customer preferences, you’re essentially spamming your customers – and that’s a quick way to turn them off. Instead, work out an optimal email frequency – studies suggest that 1-2 eDMs a week is about right – and use segmentation (see next) and subscription preferences to cut irrelevant emails.

4. Segment your list.

Not every customer will be interested in every email you send. Segmentation is the easiest way to send the right emails to the right customer. Essentially, you divide your email list into smaller groups of people, based on what you know about them. You can then create and send emails tailored to their preferences. For example, if you have a number of stores in different areas, you can send emails to subscribers about in-store events or sales based on which store is closest to them.

5. Let customers tell you what they want.

If you sell a wide range of products, subscription preferences are a must. When a customer signs up to your email list, they’ll get a checklist of preferences – for example, ‘General updates, Sports Gear, Toys and Games, Clothing, Makeup and Beauty’ and so on. The customer checks their preferred topic or topics and you send emails to match. It’s a simple way to keep content relevant.

6. Personalisation matters.

The numbers are clear – personalised experiences make a real difference in digital marketing. In fact, 89% of marketers reported a positive ROI as a result of personalisation. In eDMs, personalisation can mean using the customer’s name in the subject line, making product recommendations based on browsing or buying behaviour, or sending a follow-up after a purchase.

7. Save time with triggers.

While you can schedule emails to go out at certain times, triggered emails go out when a customer completes a specific action.  For example, you can set your system to send a welcome email when a customer signs up to your list. Or, when a customer leaves an item in their online cart, it could trigger an email reminder. Triggered emails help you follow up on sales leads efficiently and create a personalised, responsive experience for the customer.

8. Test and adapt.

We say it all the time – testing is one of the most valuable aspects of digital marketing. Test different eDM approaches, analyse the outcomes and adapt your strategy to suit. Test various subject lines, different email times and how often you send to find out what works for your audience. The more you know, the more you can optimise your approach.

Effective, easy email automation.

Plan, test, trigger, personalise – eDMs can be more complex than they seem. But with automation tools and support from the experts, they’re also a powerful way to connect with your customers.

Check out our Email Marketing page for more insights.

Need help with your digital marketing? Talk to the experts at Yellow Pages.

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