Sending Email Automatically: An Introduction to Funnels (formerly known as Autoresponders)

Mailboxes visually representing autoresponders

One of the many bonuses of an email marketing platform is how easy it can be to have it run itself. Incentives and offers are automatically sent to new subscribers, current subscribers are introduced to the other services, an email campaign used to systematically launch a new course or product. And all of this is taking place, running seamlessly, like a well-oiled machine.

Sounds wonderful and ideal, right? Of course it does! And what if we told you that with a small amount of setup, you can be sending this out (and more) in no time? We’d be telling the truth, because you most definitely can and during the month of February we are not only going to show you how, but ways to maximize the process as well.

It’s time to discuss one of the FeedBlitz staff’s most prized tools and one of our Publisher’s most valued email marketing tactics: Funnels.

What is a Funnel?

A Funnel is a sequence of automatic email messages sent to selected subscribers per rules designated by the publisher. A Funnel can include a sequence of emails to be sent or a single email. It can contain any information desired by the publisher, be attached to particular email lists or act as a stand-alone list. Different from an On Demand or Newsflash mailing, Funnels are sent automatically when a set action has been completed. Using specific tagging, a publisher decides which subscribers – old or new – will receive this correspondence and on what schedule.

What is the purpose of Funnels?

There are many reasons our publishers use Funnels. While the list below is far from all-inclusive, it does highlight many of the ways we have seen our publishers put Funnels to great use:

  • Welcome Emails – Sent automatically once a subscriber confirms their subscription.
  • Incentive Delivery – Publishers often use a Funnel to deliver an incentive offered for subscription.
  • Reader Rewards – Have a subscriber hit a milestone in their subscription to your site – 6 months, 1 year, etc.? Automatically send them a reward of your choice via email.
  • Email Courses – Free email courses are a great way to increase subscriber engagement or earn a passive income if fee-based.
  • Product Launches / Sales Funnel – Have a new launch coming up in the next few months? Increase interest by creating a new Funnel for interested parties. Automatically send out email correspondence leading up to the launch.
  • Outreach of Services – We can’t always write about everything at the same time on our website, therefore Funnels are a great tactic to employ when wanting to inform your subscribers of your services, past writings, and other offers in a strategic manner.

As you can see, there is a wide array of uses for Funnels. They have also shown to be greatly effective in re-engagement campaigns targeted towards lost or inactive readers during a list hygiene. Creativity, personalization, engagement, these are all reasons Funnels are a favorite tool of publishers and FeedBlitz staff alike.

Homework:

Now that you are aware of the power a Funnel wields, it’s time to think about how you can use them to your advantage. The best way to maximize the effectiveness of a Funnel is to plan out its purpose and functionality. Your homework for this week is to:

  • Think of at least one Funnel (a sequence of emails or a single email Funnel) you can set up that would help increase your branding, offer an incentive, or introduce readers to another service offering.

or

  • Review your current Funnels and select at least one (or one series) that could use an update or TLC.

Once you have your ideas in place and text drafted, we’ll be back next week to walk you through the process of setting up your Funnels. A true set-it-and-forget-it email marketing tactic, once Funnels are in place, they continue to work for your benefit with little to no management.

Have questions on where to find Autoresponders or any of our other FeedBlitz features? Send us an email at support@feedblitz.com, chat, check out our Help Forum, or give us a call at 1.877.692.5489. Our Support and Sales Desk is available Monday – Friday from 9 am to 5 pm EST.

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Easy enough for a blogger to set up in seconds, powerful enough for sophisticated corporate email campaigns, FeedBlitz is an RSS, Email and Social Automation Tool to take your email marketing to the next level. Visit us online to learn more or start your 30 Day Free Trial!


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