I have found that welcome email campaigns can be a bit of a hit or miss affair; something I have learnt over the past couple of months first hand.

I’m not going to lie, I like a flutter now and again and have previously signed up for Betfair and PKR’s sites, both of which, had an active welcome email campaign that followed subscription.

I have also taken to legal digital music downloads since I converted from Vinyl to CD and have signed up to Beatports’ service.  These companies will be the three I’m intending to use throughout this blog post.

As I’ve said before, striking just after purchasing/joining is the best time to start opening a channel with your recipients as their interest is at a maximum.

PKR’s and Beatports were both generic welcomes just explaining the system which was all well and good and my interest was maintained.  Betfairs’ though took it in a different direction and outlined every section of the site into categories for me to try.

It presented a bonus scheme for actively betting in each of these categories – the more you used the site, the more bonus you would receive for doing so.  Now, whether you agree with gambling or not, you must admire the inventiveness of Betfair’s team for coming up with this.  Straight away I was much more active on the whole site (not just the football section) looking at all the other available betting options I could participate in.

This is something that I really think needs to be addressed.  We always say to email marketers to only send something relevant in your emails or you risk turning the subscriber off from the messages.  This still applies to welcome email campaigns, if not more so, as these messages are the first impressions of your company you are sending your new recipients.

Now we come to content and frequency of your welcome campaign.  After I’ve signed up for something, I expect to receive a few messages in the first week or so from the service just outlining what they offer etc.

The problem with this for me as I’m a doer not a reader.  Instruction manuals are things that are left in cellophane wrappers and are only opened as a last resort.  So to send repeated help guides is a bit tiresome for me. 

Unfortunately, PKR did just this, and it has left me not actually reading anything they send me as I found that nothing they sent me was of any interest to me in the early stages.

But, send me instructions with a little bonus for myself, and all of a sudden my (email reading) ears have pricked up.  Beatport managed to successfully do this by giving me a free cd to download.  Lovely.  Betfair were obviously continuing their bonus payout emails and had even been updating me on what I had and hadn’t done in a scorecard format so I could try out new things and receive more bonuses.  This in my eyes was a great piece of personalisation added onto a well thought out campaign.

Now I understand that not many companies can really match what Betfair did on their welcome email campaigns but I thought I’d show you how my personal interest in each of my examples differed due to content and how it hindered anothers’ due to the frequency of emails.

So when thinking about your welcome email campaign, make sure you have in mind a series of interesting emails.  I think as well, additional discounts and bonuses are a great way to not only gain a repeat purchase/use in the short term, but it also encourages a higher level of interest in future campaigns you will send.

If though, your welcome campaign isn’t going to have these bonuses or freebies in, then try to think about the frequency of your campaign.  Too many emails can really begin to put people off from your messages and you could sever your links with them straight away.

Instead of spreading out over 5 emails, try and condense your emails to 2 or 3 and instead of having long explanations or instructions in each email, give them the subject headers and let them search for what they want to read.