email marketing automation ft image

I know — it’s scary at first.

Your customer relationships mean everything to your business, and you don’t want to damage your relationships with impersonal, automated messages.

Unfortunately, that’s what a lot of businesses send when they start using email marketing automation.

You want to save time, but never at the expense of turning your customers off with dull, lifeless messages, right?

Let’s look at how email marketing automation can help you nurture, not sabotage, your customer relationships:

Step 1: Give your subscribers a warm(er) welcome

When someone joins your email list, they’re highly engaged and eager to hear from you.

So don’t blow it. Create an automated Welcome Email that triggers when a new contact joins your email list.

Automate your emails in Constant Contact

You can customize this email with your logo, brand colors, contact information, and a personal message.

Take a look at the finished product:

Email marketing automation example 1

Jack’s Backyard Bar-B-Que’s logo and contact information are prominently featured at the top, along with a personal thank you, explanation of what they’ll be sending, and a call-to-action button that links to a downloadable cookbook.

Never underestimate the power of thanking your subscribers and offering them something valuable right away. Remember, this initial email will set the tone for how your subscribers feel about your email marketing messages, so making a great impression pays off.

Your welcome email should always include:

  • Your business brand (logo, brand colors, and contact information)
  • A personal thank you
  • An overview of what your business will send in the future
  • Something valuable (A coupon, downloadable content, useful video, etc.)

Step 2: Let your subscribers get to know you.

A welcome email is a great start. But don’t stop there!

Rather than throwing your new subscribers into your regular mailings right away, take some time to nurture new relationships by building a well-planned autoresponder series.

Don’t worry — it’s easier than you think. Create an email and schedule it to send a few days after your Welcome Email to let subscribers get to know you better.

Tip: Scared you’re emailing people too much? Remember this is the time when your list is most engaged and eager to hear more from you. You can send less frequently once they’ve settled in.

This is your opportunity to humanize your business. Show them where to find you on social media, point them to one of your popular blog posts or case studies, or encourage them to pick up the phone for a consultation.

As with your Welcome Email, stay focused on providing value to your subscribers. Why should they follow you on social media? What’s in it for them? Will they learn useful tips? See fun behind-the-scenes videos? Always articulate the benefit of taking an action with you.

Take a look at how Jack’s Backyard Bar-B-Que invites their subscribers to learn cooking tips:

Email marketing automation example 2

Not only will Jack Backyard Bar-B-Que’s subscribers learn some new cooking tips, the restaurant is also demonstrating its expertise and driving traffic to its website. Win-win-win!

Step 3: Get to know your subscribers better.

The third email in your autoresponder series is your chance to hear more from your subscribers. The more you know about them, the easier it is to send personal emails that inspire action.

Send a one-question online survey to find out what they’re most interested in or where they heard about you. Or have them update their profile by adding their birthday. This email should send about a week after your initial Welcome Email.

Here’s one last example from Jack’s Backyard Bar-B-Que:

Email marketing automation example 3

Once you know a subscriber’s birthday, you can create a recurring birthday email to send your subscribers a personal message or gift to celebrate their birthday.

Constant Contact birthday email templates image

Here’s how Suzi’s Sweet Shoppe celebrates their subscribers’ birthdays each month:


By rewarding loyal customers, the shop is driving repeat business and delivering a personal experience for subscribers to look forward to each year. What might seem like a small gesture helps your business stand out from the competition and show your subscribers how much they matter to you.

Conquer your automation fears!

It’s ok to be hesitant at first. Don’t try to do too much at once. Start with a simple three-part autoresponder series to welcome new customers to your email list.

Then, add in a birthday autoresponder as a special treat to remind your subscribers how much you appreciate them.

Want to see how it’s done, step-by-step? Join us for our upcoming Automation Workshop: How to Create an Email Welcome Series to Increase Sales and Engagement.