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What is drip email marketing?

June 9, 2020

Drip email marketing is a B2B lead generation technique, commonly used by B2B companies to build stronger relationships with leads. It works by moving leads through the marketing funnel until it’s time for the sales team to take over.

A drip campaign consists of a series of automated emails that go out on a timeline, or when a user acts in a certain way. It’s about getting the right information in front of the prospect at the right time. 

In this article, we’ll look more closely at drip email marketing, including why it works and how you can do it. Let’s go.

Why is drip email marketing effective?

Drip campaigns work because not every B2B prospect is ready to buy from you when they first meet your brand. A buyer may come across your company and think, for example, that it would be something they would be interested in next year when they have a new budget. As a marketer, your job is to keep them engaged until that time comes.

With a drip campaign, you can use that time to provide value to your prospect with informative marketing content. You can start a relationship, have a two-way conversation and build trust.

You can also create drip campaigns that closely match your prospect and the position they are currently in. When you segment your leads in this way, you speak directly to your prospect.

Email drip campaigns are cost-effective, scalable and measurable. You can use lead scoring to track how each recipient interacts with your emails. With the right software, once you have crafted your messaging, your drip campaign works away in the background, delivering qualified leads excited to buy. 

And it works. Research by Marketo found that B2B companies that run drip campaigns generate 50% more sales-qualified leads at a 33% lower cost.

Where does it fit into the sales cycle?

B2B sales teams love prospects who have been through a drip email marketing campaign. When the sales team come to speak to the prospect, they know that the email campaign has done a lot of the hard work already.

The email campaign will have started building a relationship with the prospect. It will have educated them about how the product works and the problems it solves. It will also have measured the prospect’s responses, so salespeople can assess how engaged they are. 

Drip campaigns should also have the prospect placing more trust in the sales rep. The emails have already established credibility and provided value. It makes the salesperson’s job a lot easier.

How does it work?

Before you start your email drip campaign, there are a few things to consider.

Firstly, who are you going to send your emails to? You don’t want to blast your entire database with the same campaign, as it will not be relevant to a significant proportion of your prospects. 

Instead, narrow your focus down to a target audience that you can reach with a super-relevant message. Look at your Ideal Customer Profile (ICP). Create a group for your drip campaign that matches it.

Next, think about the B2B marketing KPIs for your drip campaign. What do you want your prospect to do when they go through your email sequence? Do you want them to call your sales team for a demo? When you have a goal, you will know if your campaign has been successful in reaching it.

Now, it’s time to plan your campaign. How many emails will you send? How often? You don’t want to bombard your prospect; instead, gently walk them through what you do. That’s good lead nurturing

Think carefully about the content of your emails. What will it be? Make sure you go for impact, with sharp subject lines and striking graphics. How will you introduce yourself in an email?

Once you press go on your campaign, keep a close eye on your analytics. If there is a part of the sequence which is not generating enough engagement, look at how you can fix it. Use data to make data driven marketing decisions.

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