Use email to improve your program's performance

Here's what we're covering: 

  • New ways to segment your customers 👀
  • What automated flows (lifecycle emails) drive the most value
  • What one time campaigns can boost program performance

In 2019, segmentation is core to your email strategy. Ecommerce marketers everywhere are thinking of creative ways to slice their store data to reach out to their customers, but most are leaving money on the table for one simple reason: they're not factoring in rewards.

Your rewards program holds valuable data about each customer (even those not in it!) and can create high value segments for marketing. Below, we'll outline how you can increase new sign-ups, engage inactive members, drive sales, capitalize on untapped opportunities & mobilize your most loyal advocates 🚀

NOTE: You'll need to connect Smile to one of our email marketing apps to execute on these strategies.

New ways to segment your customers

If you've already started with email marketing, you likely have done some segmentation such as "haven't ordered in 60 days". What you might not have explored yet are the data points from sources outside of your ecommerce store. Some examples would be:

  • All customers who have left a 5-star review
  • All customers who have enough points to redeem your minimum reward, but haven't done so yet
  • Visitors who leave an email, but don't create an account or make a purchase
  • Customers who have reached a certain tier within your VIP program

This is not meant to be an exhaustive list, but rather shift into thinking about segments in a new way. These data points give us new insights into customers that we can use to drive profitable actions.

Automated flows that drive value

We can leverage the segments we talked about in the last section to build out automated flows, or "lifecycle emails".

Redemption Flow - Drive Sales

One of the highest value segments that exists on your ecommerce store are customers who have enough points to redeem a reward. These customers are already loyal & simply need a nudge to make their next order.

Trigger an email to send when someone enters this segment. The copy can be simple & congratulatory, then walk through some of the rewards they can redeem.

📝 Pro Tip This can also be used in abandoned carts! Remind loyal customers they have points instead of offering more discounts :)

Referral Request - Drive Advocates (who in turn drive sales...)

Ask your customers in their happiest moments to advocate on your behalf. You can work & test to define what these "happy" moments might be, but we've identified a couple:

  • Post purchase, once they've received their product
  • After they've left a positive review

Once you choose an action to trigger this on, create a segment in your ESP. Then trigger an email to send to that segment educating them on the referral program with their personal link in the email.

Account Creation Flow - Build Your Community

A lot of customers visit your store, some will buy & even fewer join your community.

At Smile, we firmly believe growing & nurturing your community is core to growing your brand. Once a customer is in your community, they're more likely to engage, re-purchase & advocate on your behalf. So let's make it happen!

This flow is relatively straightforward and is just augmenting the more traditional welcome flow. It's likely it will make sense to break this into two segments:

  • A visitor who hasn't made a purchase: educate them on the store + the rewards
  • A purchaser who hasn't made an account: let them know they'll earn points when they create an account & share a little more about the program

Welcome To The Program - Drive Engagement

You have a welcome flow for your store, why not for your rewards program! Educate customers on the different aspects of your program & drive them towards a specific next step.

Campaigns that boost performance

While flows will steadily produce value in the background, sometimes you want to go big. These campaigns will help you break out of the "same old, same old" & motivate your community to a specific action! 🎉

  • Drive sign-ups: send an email to all non-members before a major sale (Black Friday, for instance) letting them know members will get early access to the sale
  • VIP perks: give early notice about new products & sales to certain tiers :)
  • VIP perks: ask top tier VIPs for feedback on new products
  • Drive social engagement: send an email to all members asking them to do a certain earning action, ex: share our new product on facebook & earn 50 points. Deep link your CTA in the email to the earning section of Smile & change the facebook share URL to your new product
  • Nurture your community: send an email to all program members with their status in the program, good opportunity to drive some next step (purchase, engage, advocate)

*Bonus* Use new marketing channels

Have email mastered? Our friends at Octane AI & Shoelace have both built amazing Smile Apps that leverage these segments on new mediums.

Octane AI sends a referral request over Facebook Messenger after a customer makes a purchase. Shoelace sends a number of these high value flows as retargeting campaigns on Facebook.

Here's a walkthrough of Octane's Smile App
Here's a walkthrough of Shoelace's Smile App

Other resources:

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