5 Email Workflows You Should Be Using in Your Sales and Marketing Automation

5 Guidelines for Effective E-mail Marketing

Email workflows are important parts of a winning sales and marketing automation. You just can’t neglect them. In essence, it’s all about sending the right, highly targeted, and personalized emails to your email subscribers, leads, and customers you have on hand.

Each email sent has a definite purpose: converting leads into sales. But it gets tricky if you don’t know the type of workflows to use and how to set it up properly.

I’ll guide you in this article. Let’s get started.

1.Welcome/Training Workflow

A welcome/training workflow is an important part of your email marketing campaign because it creates the first impression about you and your brand. And you don’t get a second chance to make a first impression.

email workflows sales marketing automation crm

When a user subscribes to your email list, you need to send a series of valuable content to them. This series of content is organized in a workflow. You don’t have to send welcoming messages manually to every new email subscriber. That will be boring, time wasting, and ineffective.

Having a welcome workflow means you can send these messages automatically to your new subscribers at the time you have specified.

Normally, the first email in the sequence should be sent to a subscriber immediately they subscribe to your list. If you promised them an ebook or a video tutorial, they should get it as soon as they subscribe and confirm their account (optional).

Setting up a workflow is pretty simple, especially when you’re using a robust CRM like HubSpot and AgileCRM. This screenshot explains it better:

email marketing lead generation

A welcome/training workflow could look like this:

  • The first email is sent to your subscriber immediately after sign up. This is usually the first chance you get to introduce yourself and your business. Make it brief, interesting, and persuasive. It’s like meeting someone for the first time, you don’t have to spill all your secrets during the first meeting. This is not the time to advertise your product or service as it can repel your new lead. It’s about shining a spotlight on your business. The main aim of this message is to let your subscribers have knowledge of what your business can do for them.
  • The second email is sent 2-3 days later. This is to familiarize with your subscriber. You use this email to give them more details about your business and what you do. You can also send links to the most important and popular posts on your website. Through this, your subscriber will be able to see if they need your service.
  • The third email in the workflow can be sent a week after subscription. This is to show your subscriber that you’re a credible business that can meet their needs and solve their problems. In this email, you can share customers’ testimonials, the positive experiences they have had using your products, and how they have loved your brand.

2. Engaged Contact Workflow

The truth is that all leads are not created equal. Some contacts on your list are attentive readers of whatever content you send to them, while some don’t even care. You can create a sequence of content for contacts that are engaged with you.

There are several ways to persuade “engaged” prospects and customers. One of the most effective is when you utilize positive social proof.

Research by The Wall Street Journal showed that testimonials, success stories, customer base, and the like are commonly the most proven strategy for getting people to pay rapt attention.

testimonial success stories email marketing

Your email marketing software can tag subscribers automatically using the triggers you have set for the workflow.

This depends on how you define high engagement. Is it reading 5 of the most important posts on your website? Or watching your videos? Or clicking through from emails to your website? You can set any activity as a trigger for high engagement that will automatically add a contact to this workflow.

It is easier to send more content to this list. In fact, it is advisable to share your top content with them as they’ll like it and probably share it on social media.

3. Lead Nurturing Workflow

When a lead has an interest in your welcome workflow emails, it is a good start, but you’re still yet to achieve your ultimate aim of turning your lead into a loyal customer. Businesses are getting lots of results from this type of email workflow — and their leads (i.e., email recipients) are happy as well.

A lead nurturing workflow helped Crowe Horwath, a public accounting and consulting firm to hit a 133% ROI after just 7 months. It also got 75% to 80% open rate for nurturing emails.

lead nurturing workflow email

For a subscriber with heightened interest, it is important that you move them to the lead nurturing workflow.

Since you have successfully moved your lead from the awareness stage to the interest stage, moving them to the sales stage should be your next target. Make sure you define your objective in your lead nurturing campaign or workflow.

lead generation through sales funnel stages

At this point, your lead is in the middle of the sales funnel and you want to make them a marketing qualified lead. Your job at this stage is to convince your potential customer to take the crucial step of buying your product.

Share case studies, give access to product demo, and offer free trials to leads who are still on the fence. Help them make a decision by sharing the results they can get.

Most marketing automation tools are designed to make this process seamless. Once the subscriber triggers your definition for an “interested” subscriber.

You can gain a customer much easier because you’re able to seamlessly move your lead from the welcome stage to the lead nurturing stage, right inside the automation tool — without much input from you.

4. Checkout Abandonment Workflow

One of the biggest problems, if not the biggest, in the e-commerce industry is cart abandonment. Business Insider estimates that e-commerce companies lose a combined $4 trillion in revenue per year to abandoned carts. And 71.2% of shoppers abandon their shopping carts.

cart abandonment ecommerce website statistics

Although it can be said that in many cases of abandoned carts, users buy these products from competitors, it is still a valid argument that an abandoned cart is the closest a lead can get to sales. And it could be a source of huge revenue loss.

But an abandoned cart doesn’t mean the sale has been lost forever. In fact, Business Insider further reports that 63% of the abandoned cart is potentially recoverable by savvy online retailers.

There are many reasons potential buyers leave a cart at the point of purchase. They could be discouraged by the number of shipping fees, or surprised their cart has accrued to such huge amount of money. They might even go to a competitor website for price comparison or are unable to find their credit card.

According to a study by Statista, presenting customers with unexpected costs (56%) is the most common cause of checkout abandonment. This is why offering discount should be an integral part of recovering abandoned carts.

retarget customers abandon shopping carts email

When there is cart abandonment, it should trigger the checkout abandonment workflow.

Online retailer Smiley Cookie implemented a three email sequence for retargeting customers that abandoned their shopping carts.

The first email in their checkout abandonment workflow was to ask the user whether there was a problem with checking out. Their second email was to offer the user a 10% discount on their order and the third email was to offer a 20% discount.

Their first email achieved an average open rate of 54% and a CTR of 28%. The second email achieved an open rate of 50% and a CTR of 16% while the third email achieved an open rate of 23% and CTR of 6%.

On average, their triggered email series recaptured 29% of the abandoned shopping carts it targeted, turning them into sales.

5. Product-Launch Email Workflow

Before launching a product, it is important to generate buzz around it to give your product as much publicity as possible. Likewise, you need to communicate with your prospects and customers to keep them abreast of the necessary information ahead of the product launch.

Having a product-launch email workflow with pieces of necessary content for your subscribers creates awareness based on how leads interact with the workflow.

When SamCart was about to launch its checkout page software, it needed to send daily broadcasts to a section of its subscribers who would be interested in their software.

The most important content they needed to broadcast were the 3 videos that explained what the software was all about. In fact, the company had adopted the same product-launch workflow for a long time, and have achieved a 19.6% conversion rate — leading to a $2.3MM in a product launch.

product launch email workflow campaign

By using Drip, they sent out the first video to all their subscribers. Subscribers who watched at least 20% of the video were tagged as interested subscribers and added to the product-launch workflow.

These subscribers got more content to prepare them for the next videos. With this workflow, SamCart knew its subscribers who were interested in the software. SamCart offered the interested leads a free trial for the software.

With the use of product-launch email workflow, SamCart signed up over 3,000 new customers from a list of 25,000 opt-ins. It also engineered a 7-figure launch


Email is an integral part of sales and marketing automation. This is because email is personal to each individual. According to Statista, 98.4% of email users in America check their email at least once daily while 34% check it ‘throughout the day.’

To achieve the best result from email marketing, it’s a wrong idea to blast a single message to all your subscribers or tag them manually.

Firstly, it is very stressful and prone to error. Secondly, it wastes time and money. Email workflows can get you the best results, as well as satisfy your customers.

Since every lead moves through different stages of your sales funnel at different times based on their interaction with your workflows, a well-planned workflow will help you interact with your leads and customers better.