Transactional email and marketing emails, triggered emails, promotional emails, newsletters – it’s so easy to get lost. There are also different types of transactional emails. So what exactly should you send out? And what would make your marketing messages stronger at the same time?
Instead of giving up on emails altogether, read this quick article to understand the difference between all of these as well as some ideas for adding your brand identity to every email. After all, emails are essential for your business. So make them count!
Here’s what you’re going to learn:
The difference between various emails
Marketing email: primarily promotional or commercial in nature. It’s usually designed to nurture leads through the funnel. Welcome email or offer email are good examples. Typically, they contact some sort of a marketing message.
Transactional email: aka triggered email. It’s purely informational and it’s sent after a user triggers it by doing something. For example, someone can click on “reset my password”, and the system will automatically send them a corresponding email with password reset instructions. Abandoned cart emails are another example.
Newsletter: usually a recap of latest news (hence the name), blog posts, or anything related.
Milestone email: meant to congratulate recipients (birthday, anniversary).
Survey email: sometimes separated, other times included in another email, this one is to measure customer satisfaction and get feedback.
Now that you understand the difference, let’s focus on one type that’s growing in potential and is often overlooked by many. Transactional or triggered emails hold tremendous opportunity – they are eight times more likely to be opened than other types of marketing campaign emails. Why? Because the consumer is likely already waiting for this particular email.
At this point, marketing emails and transactional emails are very distinct in your mind. And we’re going to challenge that.
What if you could elevate your brand through a transactional message? Imagine sending an automated email with plain boring information that actually leads to conversions. That’s like killing two birds with one stone, isn’t it? (disclaimer: no birds were harmed while creating this blog post)
Using transactional email for marketing
Here are some ideas to achieve just that – promote your brand while sending transactional emails. Yes, you can elevate your brand even through password reset emails!
- Order confirmation: add automated product recommendations. Complementing products (a Swiffer refill if someone bought a Swiffer mop) work best. Make it even better – offer to add it to cart right now, before their order is dispatched.
2. Password reset: depending on your site, direct customers to a piece of content they might enjoy. Could be a blog post, a guide, or anything else.
3. Cart abandonment: add an offer to entice customers to complete their order. 10% off, free shipping or a free gift would work well. Just make sure you don’t train your audience to add items to cart, then leave and wait for that offer. So don’t do it every time.
4. Shipping notification: let your customers know where their order is at all times. Give them a tracking link and include something extra. This is a great time to recommend similar or related products.
5. Survey email: send it out when the item has been delivered. Offer an incentive for filling it out (10% off for the next offer) – this will lead to repeat purchases too. Kibble.io, an ecommerce pet store, took it even further – for leaving a text review, you get 10% off. For adding a picture, you get 15% off, and for a video – 20% off. They also have a subscription service, so it’s all aimed at repeat purchases. And it works!
6. Account notifications: when someone just created an account, they’ve already shown purchase intent. Sweeten the deal with an irresistible offer and close them faster!
7. Referral link: offer a discount if customers bring their friends. Word-of-mouth is proven to be one of the most effective marketing tactics, so capitalize on that.
8. Event reminder: when someone registered for a webinar or an event, they want a reminder with a calendar invite and all the details. Depending on the topic of the event, you can also include a relevant piece of content – a link to a blog post or a guide would work great.
9. Double opt-in: customers gave you their email addresses. Make sure that you’re compliant, that your customers really want to hear from you, and that they’re real people. Offer something in return for signing up – make it worth their while.
10. Legal notice: let’s be real, nobody actually reads those. So try to be creative – start with something catchy, use simple language, explain why this matters and why should your customers care. Add a link to your privacy statement, commitment to security, or something similar. It may not seem like an engaging piece of content, but you can make it that way. This will build trust towards your brand.
Quick note: don’t focus too much on email design. Notification emails, email receipts, abandoned carts and other email messages like these don’t need to be too pretty. In fact, adding images may defeat the purpose as an ESP can treat it as a marketing message and send it to a promotions folder. So don’t neglect design completely, but keep the main goal in mind – communicating the message, providing information, and sweetening the deal.
At this point you may be thinking: “OK, yeah, sounds great, but that’s a lot of work. Who’s going to do all that?”
And we totally get you. Time is money, and you shouldn’t spend yours on typing out these emails and adding product recommendations to each email. Let the software do that for you.
With a platform like JetSend, our newest product and a transactional email service, you can set up all of these emails and more. Plus, you can make them not just informational, but also engaging and action-driven. Use the power of transactional emails to surprise and delight your customers and build long-lasting relationships with them. That’s how you ensure that your customer experiences are top-notch.
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