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With all of today’s technology and progress, small businesses have a lot of opportunities to attract new customers via email automation.

Drip campaigns are one way that marketers can keep up their contact with customers over time.

Being able to segment your customers and reach them at the right time with the right message can lead to fantastic results in your marketing campaigns.

The aim is to build a relationship with your customers and keep them engaged with your brand without feeling too intrusive.

Let’s look at exactly what an email drip campaign is, how they work, and how to use them for maximum success in your future marketing campaigns.

What is an Email Drip Campaign?

An email drip campaign refers to a series of emails sent out over a period.

The purpose of an email campaign is usually either to get people interested in a product or service or to encourage them to take some action.

The idea of drip marketing is that you send out several emails over time so that they don’t overwhelm your customer.

Drip Campaign Flowchart

An email drip campaign flowchart can help you decide what emails to send and give a general overview of your marketing automation processes.

The layout reminds you what your automated email communications should look like across time.

You can use the infographic to plan out your drip campaigns chronologically and refer back to it whenever you need a refresher on email drip-campaign best practices.

The visual form is accessible for your team members to follow and see exactly where your prospects are on each journey toward their purchase.

What is the Difference Between a Drip Campaign and Mass Email?

A mass email campaign is a marketing automation strategy that sends one message to a large group of recipients regardless of their individual preferences.

They have limited room for customization.

On the other hand, a drip campaign is more personalized and interactive.

Types of Drip Campaigns

Depending on your marketing goals, there are various types of drip campaigns that you can set up.

Here are five types of drip campaigns to consider:

  • Welcome campaign – Onboarding emails introduce new subscribers and welcome them into your community.
  • Retargeting campaign – Re-engagement campaigns work well for keeping customers interested in your brand.
  • Post-purchase campaign – Send tailored messaging after someone has purchased from you to encourage future engagement.
  • Abandoned cart campaign – If someone has added items to their cart but left without making a purchase, send them an email with some special offers or discounts if they return and complete their order.
  • Unsubscribe Campaign – Send one last email when people unsubscribe from your email list to try and recover the lead.

How Does an Email Drip Campaign Work?

An email drip campaign consists of emails sent in succession, all promoting the same product or service.

The concept builds around time-based emailing, where you send out one email per day or week for a certain period.

You can also do it based on an event, such as if a lead fills out a form on your website.

As your subscribers open and read each email, they are reminded about your brand and encouraged to make a purchase.

vector graphic showing an illustration of an email drip campaign popping out of a computer monitor

What Should Be Included in an Email Drip Campaign?

An email drip campaign should include valuable content to keep customers engaged and interested in your products.

Begin with a clear subject line relevant to your audience, followed by a brief but informative email to entice them to click through.

Connect with your leads through short and straightforward messaging and get personal by including non-business information tailored to each individual.

Include images, videos, or links as needed for maximum response rates.

Finally, create urgency at every stage of your email drip campaign to prompt customers to take action and buy from you.

How Many Emails Should Be in a Drip Campaign?

There is no fixed rule here.

The frequency of your drip campaign emails will depend on what you’re trying to accomplish.

Having three to ten emails in a drip campaign is ideal for most businesses, though some might need more and others might need less.

Essentially, you do not want to overwhelm your subscriber, but you also don’t want them to forget about you.

A good rule of thumb is that every email in a drip campaign should have a purpose and be relevant to each stage of your sales funnel.

What Makes A Drip Campaign Successful?

A successful drip campaign has a specific purpose, and it’s not just a product announcement or sales pitch.

It communicates value to your audience by providing helpful information, enticing incentives, and increasing brand loyalty.  

Conducting multiple drip campaigns for each segment of your audience and hitting the mark on timing will enhance your odds of success.

How Much Do Email Drip Campaigns Cost?

The cost of an email drip campaign can vary greatly depending on your specific needs and which platform you use.

Advanced marketing automation platforms cost anywhere from $15 to $1000 per month for small businesses, while enterprise-level solutions are more expensive ranging from $2,000 to over $10,000 per month.

Are Drip Campaigns Effective?

There are ways to create more effective drip campaigns based on what you want people to do and who you’re targeting.

To build a compelling campaign, you need first to identify your target audience and what type of information or updates will be most valuable to them.

This journal, for example, believes personalized email marketing achieves a 25% higher click-through rate than non-personalized email campaigns.

Why Use Email Drip Campaigns?

The use of email marketing automation is one of many strategies that can help your business stand out from its competitors.

With a successful campaign, you can nurture leads and turn them into customers who are more likely to purchase your products or services.

Incorporating an email drip campaign as part of your overall strategy also boosts sales and improves brand loyalty.

How to Measure Drip Marketing Results

You can use email marketing key performance indicators (KPIs) to gauge whether or not an email drip campaign is effective.

These KPIs differ depending on your business goals and industry, but some of them include:

How Is Email Drip Marketing Success Measured?

By tracking the metrics mentioned above over time, you’ll be able to tell if your marketing automation is performing well enough to justify continuing with the drip campaign.

You might need to change what you’re doing to improve on effectiveness.

How to Set Up an Email Drip Campaign

Email drip campaigns are a great way to nurture prospects or customers into buying from you.

You can set up yours by following these steps.

Choose a Drip Campaign Software

The first step in setting up your drip campaign is choosing software that allows you to create and send out emails.

Your choice of software will depend on how many contacts you have, how frequently you want to email them, and what type of information you want to send them.

Select a platform based on what features you need to accomplish your goals.

An essential sales and marketing company should include email design and templates, reporting & analytics, campaign scheduling, and customer relationship management (CRM) integration.

Pick out a service provider that offers these features or some combination of them.

Ensure you clearly understand the pricing packages before signing up.

Some services offer free trials so take advantage of those to test their functionality before committing to a plan.

Identify Your Target Audience

Identifying your target audience is one of your most essential tasks.

It will help you create a sales funnel that makes it easy for your potential customers to buy from you.

Analyze your customer base and learn about their interests, concerns, and pain points.

Defining your buyer personas will also make it easier to determine what type of content you should create for your drip campaign.

A buyer persona refers to a character drawn based on accurate data about your ideal customers.

You can build out a buyer persona based on demographic and psychographic information.

These factors include:

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Income level
  • Marital status
  • Location
  • Occupation (industry)
  • Hobbies/interests

The more detailed your buyer personas are, the better they will be able to serve as a guide when creating content for your email drip campaigns.

Craft Your Message

After you’ve decided on your target audience, develop compelling content that will resonate with them.

The more engaging your emails are, the more likely people will open them.

Your email drip campaign should focus on one main topic at a time.

Break down your case into smaller pieces and make sure each piece of content is compelling enough to stand alone.

Include actionable tips in your email automation so subscribers can take advantage of what they learn right away.

Plan Out Your Campaign

A well-thought-out campaign will help you stay on track and give you room to experiment with different strategies.

A vital step is planning out what content and offers are going into your drip campaign.

Brainstorm ideas for each email in your drip campaign.

Create a spreadsheet where you can list all of these ideas in order.

Outlining will help keep everything organized and make sure that you prioritize the most important ones.  

Determine the required resources needed to execute each idea.

It’s essential to know how much time it will take to create any assets or collateral for your campaign.

Create a budget based on the campaign’s financial needs.

Make sure to include other areas such as design, development, and copywriting.

You can hire freelancers if you don’t have internal resources who can complete specific tasks for your campaign.

If you decide to hire freelancers, make sure they are familiar with your industry and understand your target audience.

They should produce high-quality work that aligns with your brand identity.

Initiate Your Campaign

Once you’ve got your drip campaign set up, it’s time to get things started.

The best way to do that is by sending a welcome email.

Warming up will help you build rapport with new subscribers and entice them into reading more of your content.

Your onboarding emails should include a brief overview of what they can expect from your emails.

Build up the suspense by giving them a preview of upcoming content or offering some incentive for signing up.

Evaluate Results and Adjust

Assess the performance of your email drip campaign and pay attention to how many people engage with each message, what actions they take, and what links they click on.

You can even send out a survey during or after your campaign to get direct feedback from your audience.

Keep track of what works and what doesn’t to improve results continually.

Tweak subject lines, modify content, and experiment with and days of the week to see which elements positively impact engagement rates.

Ultimately, your email drip campaign results should have a positive return on investment (ROI) for your business.

Drip Campaign Tips

Here are five tips to help you run a successful drip email campaign that people will look forward to receiving each month.

Prioritize the Right Metrics

Focus on specific KPIs and set goals accordingly for your drip email campaign.

This will help you understand which metrics truly matter, so you can spend your time focusing on strategies that drive results.

Personalize Your Email Messages

Don’t just blast an email out to all of your customers.

Make it personal.

Offer customized messages for different groups of customers on your email list, segmented by date or product category.

You’ll be able to create drip email campaign content that resonates with them emotionally, ultimately leading to higher engagement rates.

Different Campaigns For Different Objectives

Each product or service you offer will likely have a unique audience, even if it’s an offshoot of your primary business.

Create a separate drip email campaign for each product type and tailor each one to its specific audience.

Create a Clear Call to Action

When writing a drip campaign, it’s essential to include a call-to-action (CTA) at every stage of your message.

A good CTA encourages engagement while giving readers options based on their preferences.

Use the Right Platform

Select a platform that’s best suited to your business.

Ensure the cost of setting up, running, and managing it is worth it in terms of marketing ROI.

Are Email Drip Campaigns Worth it?

We evaluate the benefits and drawbacks of drip campaigns to help you decide if they’re suitable for your business.


  • A drip email campaign allows you to increase customer engagement
  • It helps you promote relevant content about your products
  • Lets you nurture prospects into a sustainable marketing funnel
  • You can use a drip email campaign to re-engage your lead base


  • It needs significant time and dedication to execute correctly
  • Campaigns are subject to trial and error, especially when starting out

If you can create a drip campaign that people are excited about and open every email you send them, it will positively impact your business overall.

Wrapping Up

Businesses can use email drip campaigns to increase customer engagement and ultimately drive more sales.

Your business can create an effective drip campaign to keep customers coming back for more by following a few simple steps.

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