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Email Autoresponders are the New Black

If you look closely at reports about email marketing, you will see an interesting trend about email autoresponders. Adoption of autoresponders has been going up.

But the real stat that floors me is that, even with that upward trend, autoresponders, or triggered messages, accounted for just a tiny posrtion of outbound marketing emails. How is it that low?

Don’t get me wrong, as an email marketing professional whose primary concerns are inbox deliverability, domain reputation, and ESP/ISP relations, email autoresponders always prove to be a thorn in my side. But that doesn’t mean autoresponders aren’t highly effective email marketing tools when used responsibly — less “set-it-and-forget-it” and more “automated-and-observed.”

Birthday emails and post-sign-up rewards messages go very far to foster online engagement and brand loyalty while triggered reengagement campaigns give companies the benefit latching back onto wayside-bound subscribers before it’s too late.

If you’re playing the digital marketing game correctly, you probably have a wealth of data about your email subscribers at your fingertips, waiting to be manipulated by a scheduled autoresponder series designed to encourage a purchase, elicit a donation, or whatever it is you crazy email marketers do on the Internet these days.

Point is, if you’ve got the data, there’s no reason you shouldn’t be using an email autoresponder series to mine that data. Here are a few helpful tips to get you started:

  1. Autoresponders need love and attention just like any other email campaign. Nothing screams “Amateur Hour” to subscribers like an out-of-date or poorly thought-out welcome message or birthday reward.
  2. Don’t go overboard. If you see success with one series, don’t assume they’re a solution to all your email marketing problems. Test, test again, and then test some more.
  3. Take care of your lists. Overlap between lists can inadvertently happen, so make sure your message-sensitive autoresponders aren’t going to subscribers who shouldn’t see them or to whom the content won’t be relevant.
Scott Hardigree
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