Email marketing is an easy, great, and effective way for brands to improve customer retention. More than 60% of B2B marketers believe that email marketing is the most effective channel for revenue generation in digital marketing. While it is great to acquire new customers, it is just as important that you keep the ones you already have. It takes a lot of time, energy, and money to acquire new customers. If you’re in marketing, you probably already know that on average, it costs 5 times more to acquire new customers than to retain existing ones. Simply put, It is more difficult to convince new customers to trust your brand than existing customers. So how do you ensure your customers never fall out of trust (and hopefully love) with your brand? That’s where retention email marketing comes in. Customer retention email marketing is a great way to keep the interest of your customers and deepen their connection with your brand. Let’s delve deeper.
What is Retention Email Marketing?A retention campaign is a type of email marketing that communicates with existing customers to increase their engagement, loyalty, and satisfaction with your brand. They are designed to bring existing customers back again by helping them get the best value from a brand's product while emphasizing their importance to the brand.
How Does Retention Email Work?The primary aim of every retention email campaign is to get your customers to stay loyal to your brand through heightened engagement and customer satisfaction. Like many other types of email marketing, it specifically targets a segment of your contacts ie. existing customers, and sends them a message at the right time. There are many strategies for retention, but the key to every successful retention email campaign is segmentation. This is because a segmented list will usually perform better than a mass campaign. Segmentation improves targeting and personalization, which in turn increases open and click-through rates, reduces bounce rates, and lowers the rate at which customers unsubscribe from your list service. This equally leads to an increase in email deliverability. See what's included in our email deliverability packages. Based on customer behavior and data from automated email marketing platforms, your retention email groups/segments generally include:
- The Loyalists: These customers come back every time. They buy frequently, click through always, and are always looking forward to engaging with you and your brand. Prioritize these people by giving them special discounts, referral codes, and bonuses to make them feel appreciated.
- Casual Fans: These customers buy every now and then. These are the average customers who engage with your content and buy your product but are not fully committed to your brand. Give them something to get them excited and generate interest.
- The Ghosts: These customers have stopped engaging with your brand for a long time. You might want to give them the benefit of the doubt by reminding them that you miss them and value them while also reminding them of the problems your product and/or service can help them solve.
Benefits of Retention Email MarketingCustomer retention is crucial to the growth and success of your business. That's why companies are advised to use retention email marketing campaigns. Here are some of the benefits of retention email campaigns:
1. Increased CredibilityRetention email marketing is an effective strategy to convince your customers that you’re the perfect fit for them. So, sending reminders on the value they can derive from your product, service, or brand is a great way to retain them. Get to this by stacking your emails with valuable content that will make customers view you as an authority in your industry.
2. Improved Brand RecognitionNot all customers will remember your product after purchase. But you can change this narrative and enhance your brand recognition among existing customers through retention email marketing campaigns. The more you send your brand’s offerings and promotions to your customer, the more likely they will remember you whenever they need them.
3. Increased SalesExisting customers are the most valuable because they already love and trust your brand. They are willing to make additional purchases if they feel appreciated and convinced that they are receiving genuine value. Creating a special offer and sending discount emails will help to drive up sales.
4. Building Better RelationshipsRetention email marketing campaigns allow you to build strong connections and relationships with your customers. While it’s almost impossible to reach all your customers directly by phone, email marketing can help you bridge the gap. By making your existing customers feel like they're part of your brand’s family, you inspire them to keep coming back.
Types of Retention Email MarketingThere are several types of customer retention email marketing campaigns. Although these emails fall under different categories, they have the same purpose; they help you retain customers. Here are some of the most effective retention email marketing campaigns that help to reduce churn rate.
1. Welcome EmailsA welcome email creates a strong and engaging relationship from first contact. Welcoming your customers onboard is the first step to getting them acquainted with your brand and retaining them for the long haul. Whether they’ve just signed up for your newsletter or placed their first order, you should show your customers that you appreciate their effort and that you’re interested in establishing a relationship with them. For instance, LinkedIn sends its users a welcome email immediately after signing up. Retention is not something you do as you move down the road, but something you start at the very beginning.
2. Thank You EmailsSometimes, a simple "thank you" is all it takes. A simple thank you or thumbs up with no hidden agenda can work wonders for your customer retention strategy. It can be a “thank you for subscribing to our blog/newsletter”, a congratulatory thumbs up for buying your product, or trying the paid plan of our service with no hidden agenda and less friction. The aim of this type of email campaign is to incite emotion in the recipient and make them feel loved and appreciated.
3. Birthday Email/Special OccasionsBirthday emails or emails sent on special occasions make your customers feel special and remind them that there is an offer only available to them. More so, people love presents and compliments. So, sending an exclusive birthday email to a customer can be an effective retention strategy. Additionally, you can throw in a special coupon, discount, bonus, or even some sort of freebie when you're at it. To further optimize this strategy, send discount emails on their actual birthdays or special occasions. They’ll keep an eye out for goodies, and it’ll show that you care about them as well.
4. Abandoned Cart EmailsThis retention email marketing strategy does not apply to all businesses, but if you sell products in-store and online, it can be effective for driving sales. Did you know that on average, about 70% of shoppers abandon their carts? No matter how many customers there are, that’s a large number of potential sales left on the table. This is why you need to set up an abandoned cart campaign through your email marketing platform. Create a trigger that sends a discount email, for instance, to customers who add products to their cart without completing the purchase.
5. Customer Re-Engagement EmailsYour customers may lose interest, undergo major life changes, or even decide they want to use their money differently. No matter what their reason may be, you should never stop trying to win your customers back. Here, if your strategy includes sending a discount email, then your offer should be very catchy and almost irresistible. A re-engagement email marketing campaign is your last chance to win back those long-lost customers. To that end, make it more appealing and valuable!
6. The Reminder EmailThe reminder email is what you send when you don’t get feedback from a previous email. When a customer does not reply to your email, you don’t want to come across as pushy, but you do want to nudge gently. The fact that they ignored your previous message could be a sign you’re about to lose a customer, so the reminder email is important for retention. Keep it friendly and professional while trying to turn the relationship around with carefully worded follow-up emails.
7. Email NewslettersHave you added a new feature to your app or product? Do you have a blog post on your website? Do you have any announcements? An email newsletter is a type of email you can send to your subscribers to inform them about the latest tips, news, brand or product updates, and announcements. This is also a good opportunity to ask your loyal customers for referrals while offering an incentive for both the referrer and the potential customer being referred.
Automating Retention EmailsAutomated emails are a series of emails, sent automatically to subscribers as a result of their activities in a marketing funnel. The greatest benefit of automated emails is that ROIs get better with less human effort. All you have to do is set up your email automation triggers and conditions, and the automation tool will handle the rest. It helps businesses target customers based on factors like past sales, behavior, and preferences. Automated email marketing is not the same as email blasts or broadcasts because the level of personalization it offers is higher.
Tools for Automated Retention Email CampaignsThere are a good number of email marketing services that let marketers streamline communications with their audiences, and nudge leads into clients through automation. Below are a few that let you lean back in your chair and reap the benefits of retention email marketing campaigns.
1. HubSpotHubSpot is, undeniably, one of the most widely used email automation tools today. Through automated workflows, your email marketing campaigns are quickly streamlined. More so, it can seamlessly create and send professional retention emails to enhance performance. Since it’s powered by the HubSpot CRM tool, you can be confident that your personalization and segmentation processes are accurate. HubSpot features:
- Email Personalization
- Email Segmentation
- A/B Testing and Analytics
- Ready-made Email Templates
- CRM-powered Email Targeting
- HubSpot’s Email Health Score
- Free Email Hosting
2. SendinblueSendinblue is a multi-channel marketing automation tool that allows businesses to communicate with their customers across a variety of channels, including SMS, email, chat, Facebook, and CRM. Its email automation feature allows small brands to grow faster without much human/financial dedication to the technical side of things. Everyone, including less tech-savvy marketers, can use Sendinblue. Its user-friendly interface enables you to create professional emails using a basic drag-and-drop editor, create segments, personalize their content, and reduce sending time with its machine learning feature. Sendinblue features:
- Email Personalization
- Signup Forms
- Customer Support via Chat, Email, and Phone
- Send Time Optimization
- Transactional Email Management
- A/B Testing
3. OntraportOntraport’s email automation features will help you get even more subscriptions. It integrates seamlessly with other email marketing automation platforms and allows you to quickly create forms for landing pages/websites and collect emails that you can re-engage. This platform makes lead management easier and helps to segment clients and leads based on their behavior. Ontraport features:
- Email Personalization
- Email List Segmentation
- Signup Forms
- A/B Testing
- Full Analytics Reporting
- Standard Customer Support
- Campaign Scheduling and Lead Targeting