In the words of W. Edwards Deming, leading management consultant and statistician:

Profit in business comes from repeat customers, customers that boast about your project or service, and that bring friends with them.

This is where behavioral email marketing comes into play!

It considers the behavior patterns of your existing customers while preparing email marketing campaigns. Successful behavioral marketing can lead to more conversions and can keep your customers happy.

What is Behavioral Email Marketing?

Creating of email campaigns that targets email subscribers based on their behavior pattern is known as Behavioral Email Marketing.

Behavioral email marketing takes into account your existing customers rather than looking for new customers. Such emails are triggered as a result of user action.

Your existing customers are more likely to repeat an order than new customers. Why not personalize the entire experience for your prospects in order to entertain them and persuade them to take action? Personalization is a crucial factor for your overall marketing strategy. With technologies like AR reshaping the marketing landscape, email marketers can learn a lot from the massive success of Pokemon Go and how it helped email marketers.

Your current customers are already on your email subscribers list and creating specific email campaigns that intelligently study their behavior is bound to boost your conversions.

Get Started With the Wheel of Consumer Analysis

The very first step involves understanding your consumers by conducting a thorough analysis which we call the "Wheel of Consumer Analysis."

The Wheel of Consumer Analysis (WCA) studies the following factors:

1. Affect and Cognition

Affect refers to how people feel about certain things. If I feel positive about mutual funds, then I will invest in that.

On the other hand, if I find mutual funds risky, I won’t invest. Hence, consumers make decisions based on how they feel.

Cognition refers to what people are thinking about at the moment. If people are caring about their health, they are more likely to buy an apple than a burger.

Wheel of Cosumer Analysis

2. Consumer Behavior

It measures the physical actions of the user. Some people quickly compare and buy products while browsing online; the decision to purchase the product can be made swiftly. On the other hand, some people might take a few days for product comparison before they complete the purchase.

3. Consumer Environment

It takes into account the environment of the customer before preparing a marketing strategy.

For example, let's say customer A comes from a wealthy family and customer B comes from a poor family. They both go to a store to buy a pair of pants. Customer A will likely spend less time exploring and more time purchasing based on his wealth.

However, customer B will likely shop around before purchasing an affordable pair of pants. Customer behavior is influenced by circumstances and environment.

Before preparing an effective behavioral email marketing strategy, it is important to gain insights about your email subscribers and see what actions they take depending on the environment, affect, and cognition.

Now, Segment Your Email Subscribers

Once, you have all the data and stats as to how a user reacts, segmentation is the next big step.

Sementing Email Subscribers

Create categories and subcategories of subscribers based on the following criteria:

  • Past 7 days subscribers - These are new subscribers - you want them to learn more about the services and products your business offers.

  • Past 30 days subscribers - These are your 1-month-old customers, so it is the perfect time to incentivize them with some sales offers.

  • Preferences - Ask your customers how often they want to receive emails. Ask them if they wish to receive similar offers in their email. You can segment your customers based on their respective answers.

  • Demographics - It is possible to segment your email subscribers based on their gender, age, sex, religion, etc., if it is beneficial to your business.

  • Interests - Do your subscribers love music? Food? Travel? Clothes? Humor? Create categories based on their interests.

Buzzfeed Email to Subscribers

  • Location - A person living in London would appreciate offers coming from their area and not from New York.

  • Inactivity - People who remain inactive for a long time can be approached differently. Images are a great way to drive people into action. You can easily download free stock photos from platforms like Burst. But remember to use just one image per email and test the email before sending it to the subscribers.

  • Yesterday Visits - Customers who visited your website yesterday can be targeted using special discount coupons in order to close the order.

  • Abandoned Form - People who abandoned the form can be emailed separately for completing the process.

  • Abandoned Cart - Similarly, people who abandoned the cart can be sent specialized shopping cart abandonment emails having helpline numbers or chatbot assistance who will guide them to complete the transaction in a hassle-free manner.

Email to Fab Subscribers

  • Type of Purchase - People who repeatedly buy a particular product each month can be given special discount for bulk buying or can be offered a special discount.

  • Clicks - You can segment audiences as per their past click behavior or page browsing habits.

  • Conversions - Sending a thank you email as soon as the customer makes a purchase is a good gesture. Moreover, you can provide some coupons for the next purchase and instantly capitalize on the sales.

Trigger Emails Based on the User Actions

Behavioral email marketing is all about targeting customers based on their actions. The emails need to be accurate, timely, and easy to scan.

Tools like Mailshake allows you to schedule automatic follow-up emails and customizes the message for every subscriber. The below screenshot displays the setup of an automatic email reply campaign.

Automatic email reply campaign

One of the most fascinating features of this tool is the "lead catcher." The tool quickly sorts mail on the basis of opens, clicks, and replies and adds them to the queue so that you can work on your leads faster.

Lead Catcher in Email Tool

Whether you are creating first-time emails, reply emails or repeat email, the most prominent feature of any email is the Call To Action (CTA). The CTA elements should be clear and it should fix the pain points of the customer. Here are some examples:

Partial Inactive Customer - If the customer is partially inactive, then you need to start sending emails to fulfill the onboarding process.

Pinterest email to inactive customer

Completely Inactive Customer - Send highly focused emails with a large CTA and no distractions to convince the prospects who signed up but never took any action.

Asana email to inactive customers

Leverage the Power of Browsing History - The browsing history of the customer shows intent.

Most of the big brands often check the user’s browsing history and send emails that solve major pain points.

AirBnB email based on search history

Confirmation Mail with Sales Booster Add-Ons - When you are sending a confirmation email to the customer, why not include some more products in it to get some extra sales? This is what Dollar Shave Club does in this email example:

Dollar Shave Club email campaign

Turn on the Power of "Hail Mary" Emails - "Hail Mary" emails are the ones that put in one last effort to convert an inactive customer.

For example, extending the trial period of a software might convince the customer to buy it.

Shopify example of a Hail Mary email campaign

There are hordes of examples like the ones provided above. However, the main purpose here is to understand why it is imperative for your business to start behavioral email marketing. The behavior pattern you identify and the email you create completely depends on your business’s user persona and customer behavior.

The purpose of a business is to keep running and keep growing. Customer retention is a crucial element of every successful business. Behavioral email targeting is one of the best ways to keep your customers engaged and make them order more and order often.

Have you used any specific tricks in your behavioral email marketing strategy that worked extremely well for you? Please let me know in the comments below.