Marketing today is all about feeding your audiences the right content at the right stage of their buying journey to get the highest possible returns. According to one survey by Demand Gen Report, 72% of people consume 3 to 7 content pieces before contacting a salesperson or making a purchase decision.
Consumers of every market type receive a very high amount of texts or emails from different companies trying to get their attention. Thus, to stay on top of users’ minds, marketers like you need a solid marketing strategy like Drip Marketing.
Using drip marketing campaigns, you can stay in touch with your users, keep them informed, nurture them, and do a lot more to lead them further in your marketing funnel. But what does drip marketing mean, what are the benefits, use cases, and how you can execute it?
Let’s get to it, starting with explaining what drip marketing is:
What is Drip Marketing?
The ‘Drip’ part here is attributed to the agricultural practice called ‘Drip Irrigation’, where crops are watered in small, steady, and consistent amounts. This enables plants to grow and thrive with the precise amount of water they receive, eliminating the drying and overwatering issues.
Similarly, drip marketing refers to setting a slow and steady flow of messages or emails with 2, 4, 6, or whatever’s right for you to nurture your prospects. It is a type of marketing strategy where you send multiple communication messages to your prospects or clients at predefined intervals over time.
They are pre-written and pre-scheduled marketing content sent to potential customers through email or SMS marketing automation tools based on their previous action or engagement type.
The goal of drip marketing campaigns is to nurture your potential customers and lead them to the final act, which is to purchase your products or services. Usually, drip marketing involves
- Creating automated campaigns
- Setting up a frequency
- Defining triggers or actions
- Deciding content flow, etc.
Most marketers and brands use drip marketing for nurturing leads, onboarding or welcoming new customers, sending purchase confirmations & follow-up with recommendations, and many other cases. You can segment your subscribers into different groups based on attributes like demographics, purchase history, location, stage of the customer journey, etc.
This allows you to reach the right prospects with the right messaging and compel them or prepare them to purchase. However, you don’t want to overdo it by sending too many messages or emails too frequently.
Be thoughtful about your approach and craft your drip campaigns that subtly remind people about your brand or product, teach them how to use it, and lead them to purchase.
What Are the Key Elements of Drip Marketing Campaigns?
Now that you know what drip marketing is, it’s time to know the key elements that constitute the drip campaign. Let’s get to it:
Triggers are a set of events that put your drip marketing campaigns in motion. For instance, your drip campaign can get triggered when a new lead or customer joins your subscriber list, or you want to propel them further down the funnel.
The range and number of triggers differ depending on the complexity involved in your business marketing. These triggers can include:
- Newsletter subscriber
- Adding a new lead to the drip campaign
- Users abandoning the shopping cart
- New user registration or new customer joining in
While the triggers put your drip campaigns in motion, conditions allow you to follow up with users who take certain actions. To continue the campaign’s content flow and targeting, it should fulfill certain conditions.
Defining the conditions of the campaign solely depends on the campaign creator, and hence, they are limited to the creator’s imagination. However, these can include:
- Sending a discount offer after users have clicked on the link
- Setting up an interval between two successive emails/messages if users don’t reply
Actions refer to the actual engagement elements that must happen when specified conditions are met. They help establish the connection between a brand and its users. The actions can range from users clicking on the CTA, redeeming the discount coupon, or simply replying to your text message or email.
Once the users have taken a certain action, you can do the following:
- Move subscriber to another drip campaign
- Remove the user from the campaign
- Notify your team or send an auto-response
- Recommend other products for upselling to cross-selling functionality
Why Should You Use Drip Marketing?
Drip marketing offers a range of benefits, which makes up the reasons why should you use it:
Most brands and salespeople use drip marketing campaigns to nurture leads by crafting targeted text messages or emails. From welcome texts to sales-oriented pitches or onboarding messages, they all form an integral part of lead nurturing. With well-designed drip campaigns, you can propel customers through different stages of the marketing funnel that ends with a purchase.
Another reason to use drip marketing is when you want to drive sales and engagement for your brand by sending targeted emails or text messages. You can highlight special offers or discounts, or promote new product launches to generate interest and prompt response from users.
Moreover, you can extend your drip campaign beyond the conversion to upsell or cross-sell products based on their previous purchases and make them your loyal customers.
Improve Your Engagement
Drip marketing content sent after certain user actions is more likely to be opened and viewed than emails or text messages sent in mass. Through drip marketing campaigns, you can provide a personalized experience to improve your engagement metrics and get higher responses from your prospects.
Welcome & Onboard New Users
By using automated drip marketing campaigns, you can send personalized welcome messages or emails to new subscribers and users. This helps make a positive impression on your users and helps them guide through the onboarding process.
Whenever a new user signs up or purchases a new product, your drip campaigns become active to send them sequential, pre-scheduled messages.
Another reason to use drip marketing is to create re-engagement campaigns to activate the inactive leads. This allows you to reach out to your prospects automatically instead of letting them slip away and engage them with your brand with an exciting offer or incentive.
Recovering Abandoned Carts
The best thing about drip marketing is that there’s no limitation or cap on creating campaigns. You can just go and create as many campaigns as needed, for instance, a campaign to target users who abandoned carts after adding a product.
Doing so allows you to recover lost sales by setting up a drip campaign. With targeted messages or emails, you can offer a discount or other incentive and compel them to complete the purchase.
How to Set and Execute a Drip Marketing Campaign?
One of the great things about this marketing strategy is that it’s simple to execute. Once you have defined and set up the whole campaign flow, you’d hardly have to make any changes. And we think this is convincing enough to begin your journey with drip marketing.
That said, let’s get to know how to get started:
1. Define Your Goals & Identify Target Audience
The first step to making your drip marketing work for you is to define the goals to achieve. The only way you can do so is if you’ve clearly defined your target audience. It’s vital to define your target market, what they want, how they behave, what their pain points are, their personally identifiable details, and others.
Better yet, create user personas or profiles that define important characteristics of your target market, as doing so can help in forming your goals and enable you to personalize your drip campaigns. Your goals can include boosting sales, nurturing leads to purchase, improving customer retention, generating new customers, or something else.
Regardless of what your goals are, ensure that they are specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound. For instance, instead of creating a goal like “increasing sales”, your goals should look like “increasing conversion rate by X% within Y period for ABC product.”
By clearly defining your goals and identifying your target market, you can perform smart segmentation and group users.
2. Perform Trigger-Based Segmentation
The next step in setting up a drip marketing campaign is to perform trigger-based segmentation. You can segment your target market based on the action or demographic triggers.
Segmentation based on action triggers is where you group your target market into different segments based on how they interact with your brand. Doing so helps you structure your drip marketing campaigns and generate more engagement.
Segmentation based on demographic triggers involves grouping people based on personally identifiable details such as past purchases, prolonged inactivity, or cart abandonment. Doing so allows you to track customer behavior and determine the level of nurturing they require to formulate your drip campaigns accordingly.
3. Crafting Your Messages
Now that you have defined your goals, identified the target audience, and segmented them into groups, it’s time to craft the messages you want to communicate with them. Since drip marketing is a type of slow and steady nurturing, you should emphasize delivering the right information at the right time.
Each of your messages should be crafted keeping your target audience in mind and serve the appropriate purpose to lead them down the intended path. They should pack a value and must be compelling enough to nudge prospects to take immediate action.
Moreover, you can try and run an A/B test by creating different versions of the same message and see what generates more engagement and overall results. But ensure that these messages are crafted based on the goals you defined and help you achieve the same within the specified time frame.
4. Finalize and Launch Your Campaign
At this point, you now have the messages ready to go out. However, before this automated flow of messages begin, test run the whole thing and check if everything works as intended and nothing is out of place.
Map out your drip campaign and finalize it for the launch. Prepare a checklist of questions that need to be answered before you make your campaigns live. These can include:
- How many messages or emails should there be in a campaign?
- What’s the best interval, duration, day of the week, or time of the day for sending them?
- Are messages organized based on content flow?
- Do CTAs in the messages or emails align well with the identified triggers?
- What metrics to track and measure the success of the campaign?
A pro tip is to use an automated SMS or email marketing tool to set off your drip campaigns for increased flexibility and reliability.
5. Assess and Adjust Your Drip Campaigns
The last step of executing your drip marketing is to assess your campaigns and how they perform. Define what metrics and KPIs to track and measure that help you make sense of the data and insights. Based on those insights, adjust your campaigns, tweak your messages, improve CTA, etc. to overall enhance the effectiveness of your campaigns.
You want to constantly monitor your campaigns and adjust them accordingly to get the best open rate, click-through rate, and engagement rate. Doing so allows you to focus on tailoring your messages that bring the desired outcomes for your business.
The key takeaway of this article is Drip Marketing is an essential marketing strategy to automate your communications. They are a series of pre-composed marketing materials and content that automatically begin based on certain triggers such as when customers opt in to receive communication.
The first message or email will go out immediately after they join in, while the follow-on messages are sent after a duration of a certain period or based on the customer’s behavior. However, the important thing is to track and monitor your campaign for how they perform and adjust them accordingly.
That said, you can begin your journey with Drip Marketing by using an automated SMS or email marketing tool to build your customized campaigns. So, take charge of your marketing and nurture leads to push them down the marketing funnel and increase your sales and ROI.