, Marketing Automation

Don’t Let Your Drip Campaign Become Chinese Water Torture

One of the most effective techniques to move Random Strangers to Raving Fans is to use a “drip campaign”.  In this process you identify a select group of people who fit a particular demographic, or better yet, share a common interest and send them messages.  These messages can be email, voice mail, direct mail, or face to face.

A truely effective campaign provides information relevant to your target customer, comes in regular, but not annoying intervals, and moves the prospect toward a purchase decision.

Sometimes, however, over eager business owners or marketers try to accelerate the process, by sending too much information, too soon, or too often.  The result? Exactly the opposite response, as your prospect not only fails to buy, they tell you to go away, permanently!

As an email marketer, I am usually pretty patient, but recently, Ratepoint wore out their welcome.  How? Well it started innocently enough, with a postcard, an email and an offer for a free trial.  Then there was the phone call during which I asked a few questions. Before the conversation ended I told them I was unlikely to use their product because I was a reseller for Constant Contact and their was no compelling reason for me to change.

Instead of taking the polite no, they moved me into an entirely different group and I became a prospect.   There were more postcards,  more email and more phone calls.  As their sales people became increasingly annoying, demanding to know why I hadn’t activated my trial,  I found it harder and harder to remain polite.  (Lets face it, I am from NY and on a good day it is hard for me to remain polite)

If I would have ever considered trying their product, I am unlikely to now.  The lesson?  Too much marketing is not a good thing.  If someone indicates they are not a prospect, let them opt out, and move on.   Water may erode mountains, one drip at a time, but it won’t move someone to buy.

2 Comments

  1. 1

    Lorraine, your post made me think of a question I’ve been pondering lately. What is a good interval (between messages) to use for an email DRIP campaign? Especially if you have a lot of educational information to provide. 2 days? 3 days? a week?

  2. 2

    Good question Patric,
    I typically like to leave a week between, but it varies by category, and also what your users sign up for.

    A great example was the ProBlogger 31 days to better blogging. It was a great program. I signed up knowing I was going to get an email a day for 31 days. Bit it was too much. I fell behind, and never caught back up. Although I saved all 31 emails, I never got passed lesson 15.

    After going through his program, I decided to give my readers more time. On general updates, invitations to seminars, I have found a real fall off if I send more than one every two weeks to all but the tightest niche.

    I would be curious what others find works for them.

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