Let’s get personal: Creating targeted email campaigns

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To be effective in marketing you must tailor your efforts to customers’ wants and needs as much as possible in order to build loyalty and increase the number of purchases from existing customers.

For instance, let’s say a particular customer always orders pizza with anchovies – instead of, say, sausage or pepperoni.  Wouldn’t it be great to offer them vouchers specifically for anchovy pizza since that’s what they want? But how do you track this kind of customer behaviour and act on it?

There are numerous software programs, including online email service tools, which help you do just that. For instance, the email provider MailChimp* offers features including:

  • The option to send automatic welcome messages to new email list subscribers
  • Personalised emails based on past customer purchases and behaviour
  • Automatic follow-ups based on customers’ actions within emails.

Get them on board

Let’s say you’re working on building your email list. You might offer a special discount on your website to any customer who signs up for your list online. You can set up a pre-designed email message beforehand in your MailChimp account – including your discount coupon or code – that automatically goes out when someone joins your list.

You can also send out an automatic follow-up message a week or two following your welcome message that provides tips on using your products or services, special offers coming up, or information about an upcoming event.
Give them what they want

If you have an email you send out to all customers – say, a newsletter or sales promotion – you can use MailChimp to track who clicks on what and then automatically act on it. For instance, let’s say you’re sending an email to everyone on your list which gives them 20% off any one full-price item on your website during a two-week period. You include a link to your site and a code for the offer.

With MailChimp automation, you can track who clicked on your link, went to your website and used the code to make a purchase. For the customers who don’t act – or for those who click through to the site and look around but don’t buy anything – you can send an automatic follow-up message a week later to remind them that time is running out.

MailChimp can also help you keep track of those people who spend the most on your site or regularly take advantage of sales. Ultimately, you might want to group these loyal followers into a special list that gets VIP treatment, such as additional discounts or advance sale notifications.

(Note: MailChimp also plays well with major CRM and payment software such as Magento, PayPal, Shopify and SalesForce to help you achieve and keep track of all these nifty things.)

The sky’s the limit

These are just a few of the things you can do with automated emails. Based on your business, list size and desired level of interaction, you can create campaigns and customised promotions that will keep your customers coming back for more.

Ready to get personal with your email marketing? Need help? Contact Breathe Marketing today.

* Note: Other email providers offer similar features – I just use MailChimp most often for clients because it’s really user-friendly, and offers free membership and reports for email lists of less than 2,000. The automated features described here are part of a paid package.


Anna Nixon-Smith

All stories by: Anna Nixon-Smith