What Is an Email Workflow? [FAQs]

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Ginny Mineo
Ginny Mineo



So you've got a marketing problem -- one that happens to the best of us. It's not that you're not attracting visitors to your website and converting them into leads -- you've got your business blog, social media, landing pages, and marketing offers down pat.

But once you get your leads in the door, they get stuck in your marketing funnel. They aren't ready to buy your product or service just yet ... so they don't really have anywhere to "go" in your marketing process. And on top of all this, you don't have time to reach out to each lead individually to qualify them as ready to buy.

So how do you get these leads to become interested enough in your company to want to learn more about your products? Enter lead nurturing, the process of turning these valuable leads into customers. There are lots of ways to nurture leads -- we're not going to get into all of them -- but the most basic and time-effective is through email workflows. 

What Is an Email Workflow?

An email workflow is series of automated emails that will be sent -- or not -- based on a person's behavior or contact information. With workflows, you can trigger actions based on any information you have about your leads, allowing you to send the right message to the right person at the right time. For example, you can send a series of emails to:

  • Leads who have viewed a certain page on your website
  • Leads from companies with more than X employees
  • Leads from companies in XYZ industry or XYZ location
  • Leads with a specific website history, like clicks, downloads, etc.

Make sense? The whole reason you want to batch these emails in such ways is so your emails are much more relevant, timely, and targeted than a mass email to your entire list. And, once you set up an email workflow, you can have a series of emails nurture leads in each group until they're ready to buy or get rotated to Sales -- all without you manually sending each email.

Basically, the benefit of email workflows is twofold: You can 1) better engage leads (and turn them into customers) through relevant, targeted emails, and 2) save time by automating the whole process. 

When Should You Start Using Workflows?

More effective marketing? Saving time? Converting more of my leads to customers? Okay, you’ve got me hooked! But how do I know when it’s the right time to start using email workflows in my marketing?

There’s no cut and dry answer for this -- it’s really up to you when you want to start integrating email workflows into your marketing strategy. But there are some indications that it’s time to think about getting started with workflows. If any of these scenarios hit home for you, you should consider using email workflows to improve your lead nurturing and make your marketing more effective.

Indications It’s Time to Use Workflows:

  • You’re generating leads but ignoring the ones that are not immediately ready to buy
  • Your sales team is unhappy with the quality of the leads you’re sending them
  • You’re sending the same emails to your entire list
  • You’re collecting valuable lead information, but not using it for segmentation
  • You’re not targeting your offers and messaging based on your leads’ needs
  • You’re sending or following up to all of your emails manually (and it's getting unwieldy)

Okay, okay! I get it -- you want to get started with email workflows. Download our free ebook How to Use Workflows for Better Lead Nurturing to get the rundown on email marketing automation. Bonus: You'll get some tips for using workflows outside of just emails. So go on, download it and get started!

Image Credit: CelloPics

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