How To Create An Email Drip Campaign In 5 Easy Steps - Victoria Hockaday
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How To Create An Email Drip Campaign In 5 Easy Steps


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Email drip campaigns generate more conversions and revenue compared to broadcast emails.

According to Forrester Research, Trigger-based emails generate 4x more revenue and 18x greater profits.

These are BIG numbers in terms of email statistics.

However, drip email campaigns only work when you know your audience and the results you want to achieve.

That’s why today I’m gonna break down how to create a drip email campaign step-by-step, so you can create an email sales machine. Sound good?

What Is An Email Drip Campaign?

An email drip campaign is a way to nurture your email list.

In other words, it’s a series of emails that you send to your email subscribers to keep people engaged until they buy.

Ultimately, the goal of an email drip campaign is to capture, nurture subscribers and sell your products or services.

So, in an email drip campaign you’re “dripping” information to your subscribers and your nurturing them to take a desired action. This could be attending your webinar, purchasing your course or signing up to your coaching programme.

Benefits of Email Drip Campaigns

Email drip campaigns affective because they’re a form of “nurture marketing” that helps you to build a relationship with your audience.

Here’s a few more reasons why email drip campaigns are beneficial:

1. They’re conversational. Email drip campaigns are conversational and relevant. Often each email builds on the last email, so they’re a great way to create anticipation and excitement.

2. You keep top of mind. When you keep in regular contact with your audience, you’re “top of mind”. Even if they’re not ready to buy from you there and then, you’ll be the first person they think of when they face that problem again.

3. They build trust. Email drip campaigns build trust because they give your audience subtle proof that you keep your word. If someone signed up to receive a free 10 day course and you delivered it, you’ve got one happy customer who will probably talk about you to their friends.

4. They’re scalable. The same campaign that’s sent to 10 subscribers can be sent to 100,000 subscribers. So, you don’t need to put in more leg work to scale your email marketing efforts.

When Should You Create Email Drip Campaigns

There are around 15 types of drip campaigns that you can create to turn more subscribers into customers.

One of the most effective email drip campaigns are free email courses.

Why? Well, a free email course converts like crazy because of it’s high perceived value.

Think about it. You’re browsing on Pinterest to find the best content on email marketing. You come across a free 6 day course on email marketing. Woah. A 6 day course for free? To me that’s definitely worth handing over an email address. Right?

Now, imagine you’ve signed up to the free course…

Over the course of 6 days you receive 6 epic emails teaching you the most valuable strategies in email marketing. (And from the course you achieve some “small wins”, like getting 20 email subscribers and writing your first welcome email sequence!). Winning!

Now, let’s say that the teacher offers you a paid course to teach you how to make your first $1k with email marketing….

What would you do? Well, there’s a bloomin’ good chance that you’d buy the course!

Right?

In short, free email courses are a game changer for turning more subscribers into customers because they give people a chance to experience your personality and teaching style first hand.

Capiche?

The reason why this email drip campaign works so darn well is because during the process you’ve become comfortable with the teacher and you’ve gained small wins from their lessons. So, you trust them enough to purchase their paid offer.

And during this process you’ve gone from “hey, I’d like a 6 day free course on email marketing” to “hey, I wonder what this course on making your first 1k is about?”.

So, there’s a flow of continuity from the free offer to the paid offer. Does that make sense?

But the email marketing doesn’t have to end there. Oh no. You can use behavioural based triggers to turn more leads into buyers.

For example, if they didn’t open the emails and take action, you can add a trigger (e.g., Interested – product name) and you can send them a follow up sequence with a down sell of the product they showed interest in. Or, you can break down the reasons why they might not of gone through the free email course and invite them to participate in a  different free course.

Here’s a few more types of email drip campaigns:

  • Purchased course
  • Onboarding series
  • Abandoned cart series
  • Unsubscribed series
  • Attended/unattended webinar

If you want to get started with email drip campaigns, you want to brainstorm the several instances where you might need an email campaign based on people’s behaviour. Then you want to focus on creating your first drip campaign, which is likely to be a list-building campaign.

However, many people know the importance of a drip email campaign but they stop because they don’t know what to put in it.

So the question is, how do you plot a drip campaign?

How To Plot A Drip Campaign

Here’s how to plot an email drip campaign in 5 easy steps:

1 Set Expectation and Timeframe

Before you plot your email drip campaign, you want to get clear on your expectations and timeframe. For example, if you’re going to offer a free 5 day SEO challenge, then you’ll want to brainstorm 5 emails that are going to help your audience.

You want to get clear on the expectations of the 5 day challenge. To do this, you need to start with your audience and understand what results they want to achieve from the challenge.

Once you’re clear on your deliverables, you can communicate this to your audience in your emails. 

Doing this will give your audience subtle proof that you keep your promises, which is essential for building trust.

2 Begin With The End In Mind

Once you’re clear on the results your audience wants to achieve at the end of the course, you can break down the steps they need to take to get there.

For example, let’s say the purpose of your 5 day SEO bootcamp is to help people grow their website traffic and feel confident about their SEO strategy.

Next, you’d work out what steps your audience need to take to achieve this. So, you want to brainstorm 10-15 steps that they need to take to move from point a (where they are now) to point b (where they want to be). Once you’ve got several steps, break them down into 3-5 steps.

In this case it might be:

  1. Customer research
  2. Keyword research
  3. Content strategy
  4. How to use Yoast SEO

After you’ve got a firm grasp of the steps, you can plot your emails to address these steps.

So, it might look like this:

Email #1 – How to do customer research

Email #2 – How to find niche keywords

Email #3 – How to create a content strategy + soft sell your course

Email #4 – Optimise your blogs with Yoast SEO

Email #5 – Hard pitch of your paid SEO course

Email #6 Additional value for pure good will

3 Story Continuity

Human beings love a narrative.

This means that we respond to a beginning, middle and end.

So, if you’re plotting your email drip campaign, you don’t want to send random broadcast emails that have no connection.

Instead, you want to write each email with a teaser or cliffhanger at the end.

So, give them an indication of what’s coming up in your next email. (And it’ll skyrocket your email open rates more than you could imagine!)

4 Build Know, Like and Trust

Throughout your email drip campaign, you want to build know, like and trust.

The most effective way to do this is by sharing a personal failure, mistake or challenge in your business. When you share a mistake that you’ve made you show to your subscribers that you’re not just an avatar behind a screen but you’re a real person who’s faced hardship and challenges.

It also helps your audience to connect with you on a personal level, so that they feel comfortable with you.

Share a personal story of overcoming a problem and paint a picture of the before and after. Plus, if you’ve got a case study or testimonials to share that relate to this, plug them in.

5 Build Credibility

Finally, you want to build credibility in your email drip campaigns. There’s a few ways you can go above and beyond in your email drip campaign to dial up your credibility.

One of the ways is to create a killer ‘What This Says About You Email’. Unlike the traditional welcome email that confirms that the subscriber has opted in, the WTSAY email confirms the subscribers motivation for signing up. So, use your WTSAY email as an opportunity to reflect back your subscribers motivations, reasons and intentions for signing up to your email list.

This shows your audience that you understand their problems and frustrations.

Another way to show credibility is to share case studies and testimonials to prove that your strategies has helped your audience. Reviews and testimonials are important social triggers that make people buy.

Follow these steps and you’ll dial up your credibility in no time.

Tips On How To Write Drip Campaigns That Sell

If you want to create email drip campaigns that sell, the main thing is knowing your audience, being clear on the results you want to create in advance and keeping your promises.

Here’s a few more tips:

1. Create email subject headlines that elicit an emotional response. Use your subject headlines as an opportunity to plant an image in your subscribers’ head. Keep the tone casual and friendly, so that it doesn’t feel like work.

2. Short paragraphs. Avoid using big blocks of text, as it’s intimidating for the reader. Use short paragraphs and break up your text, so it looks like a personal note written from a friend.

3. Use the P.S to invite action. Most people will skim read your emails, so use the Post Script at the end of the email to create an open loop or invite them to take action. You could use it to tease the next email you’re going to send. For example, it might look like this:

P.S Keep your eyes peeled for an email tomorrow. I’m going to teach you how to do X. You won’t want to miss what I have to share!

Or you can use it to get someone to reply to your email:

P.S Know what would make my day? Hit reply and let me know what your enneagram type is?

4. Make it feel like a continuous conversation. People don’t want to receive emails from marketing folk. They want to get personal notes from family and friends that feel like they were written to them.

5. Nurture with content. Be generous and give your best stuff away first. Make a list of some of the 5-10 questions your audience might have and educate your audience.

6. Have sharing options. If you want to get more eyeballs on your email campaign, include sharing buttons in the P.S of your email. For example, it might look like this:

P.S Enjoyed what I’ve shared with you so far? Do me a favour and share it with your friends. (Include a link to your landing page). You’re the best!

7. Use urgency. Email drip campaigns offer a great opportunity to use urgency to your advantage. Give them an irresistible offer for a limited time.

8. Use automation. Use an email service provider to automate your email drip campaigns.

9. Continuously test. Use A/B testing to see which pop ups are the most effective for converting subscribers. Try out different email subject headlines to see which ones get more open rates and clicks.

10. Entertain your audience. Tell captivating stories to give your readers a compelling reason to follow you. Play around with creating suspense in your email series.

Wrapping It Up

An email drip campaign is a series of emails that engage subscribers until they buy.

Usually, an email drip campaign has a common theme and “drips” information across a period of time.

You can use email drip campaigns in a variety of instances. It might be to educate newbies, re-engage inactive subscribers and delight customers.

The key to writing an effective email drip campaign is to know your audience and the results you want to help them achieve. If you can keep your promises and educate your audience, no doubt they’ll purchase your product or service.

Keep your emails casual and conversational, so that it feels like you’re speaking to a good friend.

Engage your audience by telling captivating stories, creating suspense and linking together emails with common threads.

Follow these steps and you’re well on your way to creating epic email drip campaigns.

Over to you my friend. Have you created an email drip campaign? If not, where are you going to start?


Victoria Hockaday helps business owners grow an audience and create and sell online courses with ease.

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