Succeeding with Lifecycle Email Marketing: Segmenting and Engaging

Tips on getting started with lifecycle email campaign execution

Lifecycle email marketing has created a buzz with many businesses looking to provide a better email experience to customers.

We first talked about lifecycle email marketing at the end of 2011. In that article, I wrote about seven times when an email could be useful during a lifecycle email campaign. Today, I want to discuss more in-depth plans for executing a lifecycle email strategy.

Starting your lifecycle email strategy

To begin your lifecycle email program, you need to classify and segment your audience members. Some of these segments can contain smaller groups within them. For instance, you should have an Active segment, which is comprised of people who engage with your brand and make purchases. You could further segment the purchasers by product or service as well. A look at a highly segmented list of a digital publisher could likely have a segment for single-issue buyers, subscribers, and attendees of live events.

People who are on your email list but have never made a purchase can be considered prospects. This segment enjoys your content enough to stay active on your list, but they aren’t willing to pay any money just yet. You can further segment this group by breaking it up between people who have commented on your content, and those who have not.


Finally, you have the segment of inactive members. These individuals may have registered with your website to get a specific free report and haven’t been active since. In other instances, they could be fake names or email addresses from spamming boys. If you regularly perform 181 purges, it is these inactive members that you will be getting rid of. However, before removing these names from your list, it may be worth your time to send one final email communication that informs them of their pending removal, reminds them about your content, and offers them an incentive to become an active user.

Types of engagement

Methods of engagement vary by the type audience member you are communicating with.

New members need to be educated about your company before the relationship can develop further. If a visitor came to your website through search, and found a blog article informative or a free report of interest, they still only know a little about your organization and the content you provide.

An introductory email should tell them more about your content, the publishing schedule you follow, and what they can expect from interacting with your brand on a normal basis.

After time, when your audience member becomes familiar with your brand and interacts with it more frequently, targeted promotions can turn a subscriber into a buyer.

Next week we will continue to discuss the process of lifecycle email campaigns. In the meantime, are you operating a lifecycle email program? Please share your experiences with the community by leaving a comment below.

    Dominique L.

    I love your series. Note that new tools such as (yes, I am biased) can provide dynamic segmentation capabilities based on customer usage (in case of an online service or digital software product). That then opens up a whole new set of triggers to use for lifecycle marketing.


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