Ultimate UX Design Guide to SaaS On-Boarding, Part 3: Drip Campaigns

SaaS customer onboarding is the process that users have to experience while initiating their journey as a customer on a company’s software application. Customer onboarding comes from the experience that employees previously had to undergo while joining a firm.

The onboarding process sets the tone for a good user experience. Long story short, special emphasis should be given to make the on-boarding process as flawless as possible.

The SaaS customer on-boarding process is based on 6 comprehensive aspects:

  1. Sign up form
  2. Welcome email
  3. Drip campaigns
  4. First login product tutorial
  5. Data import notifications
  6. Check up calls swag

All the aspects of the process play an equally important part in forming a desirable reputation for the brand in the eyes of the customers during the onboarding process. First, we covered the Sign up form. Last time we discussed the second step to the onboarding process, the Welcome Email. Today we will be focusing on Educational Emails  Drip Campaigns.

The purpose of drip campaigns is to retain customer engagement after that much sought after signup. The nature of drip campaigns is educational for the greater part, as they aim to make the customer aware of the features of your product.

 

Rules of Thumb for Drip Campaigns

Sending educational emails is called engaging in a drip campaign, owing to the frequency with which these emails are sent. The content of the emails within drip campaigns is small and the frequency is consistent, since the idea is to get your customers to gradually use your product to its fullest extent.

  • Introducing a single concept / feature is enough for one email.
  • The idea is to send the emails consistently. Getting that balance will result in successfully creating customer expectation.
  • The objective of drip campaigns is to successfully tempt the customer to try out the feature that you’re talking about in your email. The more of the app they use, the more engaged they will be. So giving a detailed explanation of the feature is not going to work.

 

What are Drip Email Campaigns?

Drip email campaigns comprise a collection of emails that are automatically sent, either in response to a specific user action, or after a specified period of time. These campaigns are one of the main channels of communication / nurturing for your customers.

There are many kinds of drip email campaigns. The most immediate example is the welcome drip email campaign. This is the set of mails that goes to customers over the span of one or two weeks, who have signed up for a free trial. This is one of the initial interactions between a customer and your company and hence, is extremely critical.

it’s vital to maintain a balance and not bombard the customer with an excess of emails.

Transaction-based drip email campaigns comprise emails that produce an automated action. The objective usually is to authenticate an identity or transaction. Examples of transaction based drip emails are: forgotten passwords, confirmations of purchase, verification of email address, etc.

The objective of any campaign needs to be clear. A welcome email campaign is designed such that the customer is sent approximately four to five emails in a span of few weeks. The objective is to ensure that the customer finishes the signup process and starts to use your app.

Like I said before, it’s vital to maintain a balance and not bombard the customer with an excess of emails.

 

Main Types of Drip Email Campaigns

Now let’s look at how drip email campaigns are usually designed. The categories listed are not exhaustive at all, but they give an overview of how most drip campaigns work:

Welcome Campaign

Objective – Completing signup and guiding the customer towards first time use of your app.

Email 1 – Welcome Email

Subject: YAY! You’re part of the family User Name !

Hey  User Name,

Thanks for signing up with  Your App Name ! We’re really excited to have you onboard with us. You’re just one step away from using  Your App Name , so click here  provide link  and we’ll quickly set you up.

If you need any help, click here for our help guides or you can even have a Skype session with me, if you want to have a detailed discussion, I would love to hear from you. My ID is  Skype ID

Thanks and see you soon!
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Email 2 – Use of 1st Valuable Feature

Subject:  User Name check this out!

Hey  User Name ,

Did you know that you can create  application specific thing  using the  application specific feature ? See it in action in this quick tutorial  provide link  we’ve made for you.
You can start using this by clicking here  provide link .

Best
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Email 3 – Tips

Subject:  User Name , what you’ve seen is just the TIP of the iceberg!

Hey  User Name ,

We’ve compiled a few tips that we email our early users about on how to start using  Your App Name .

Tip 1
Tip 2
Tip 3
Tip 4

Click here  provide link  to go to your dashboard now.

Best
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Email 4 – Use of 2nd Valuable Feature

Subject:  User Name check this out!

Hey  User Name ,

Another great feature to use is the  Your App Name . It makes it really easy to create  application specific thing  within a few minutes. See it in action in this quick tutorial  provide link  we’ve made for you.

You can start using this by clicking here  provide link .

Best
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Email 5 – Example of Company That is Benefitting From Your Product

Subject:  User Name , Company Name had this to say about us

Hey  User Name ,

Name of person  is the CEO of  Company Name , the leading name in  service company provides . He/she recently wrote a blog on how using  Your App Name  helped  Company Name  increase revenue by  Number %. Click here  provide link  to read all about it.

Best
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Once first time use of your app has occurred, you can stop the campaign. The objective now changes from getting your customer to use the app once, to getting them to use it to its fullest extent.

User Onboarding Campaign

Objective – Encouraging customers, who are actively using your product, to complete the onboarding process, complete a profile and start using your product more to derive maximum benefit.

Email 1 – Completing Unfinished Flows

Subject:  User Name , just sign below the dotted line

Hey  User Name

Thank you for signing up with  Your App Name ! We’re really excited to have you onboard. You’re just one step away from setting up your account with. Click here  provide link  to complete your account setup.
Great to have you with us!

Best
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Email 2 – Tips

Subject:  User Name , what you’ve seen is just the TIP of the iceberg!

Hey  User Name ,

We’ve compiled a few tips that we email our early users about on how to start using  Your App Name .
Tip 1
Tip 2
Tip 3
Tip 4

Click here  provide link  to go to your dashboard now.

Best
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Email 3 – Help

Subject: Help Offered for Help Wanted

Hey  User Name ,

Using  App name  can be tricksy at times. Yes, we used the word tricksy. But it’s true! So we’ve put together a couple of guides for you. Here’s a guide  provide link  for getting quickly started and here’s another one  provide link  to get you up to speed with the best features of  App name . And if you’re the person who loves to dissect software and peer into its insides, we have an extremely detailed Help section  provide link .

Best
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The focus of the welcome campaign is to give the customers reasons for using the product. The onboarding campaign should be geared towards guiding the customer on how to derive maximum benefit from the product. For example users should be encouraged to “complete their profile” or generally complete user flows that are required.

For example if a user signs up for a free trial, he/she will be sent an email, that’ll welcome them. If the user disappears, he/she will be sent a number of emails, encouraging them to return. However, if the user has begun using the product, but hasn’t completed profile details, then it will be the onboarding set of emails that will be activated for sending. These will outline the product benefits that the user can avail by completing the profile.

Product Engagement Campaign

Objective – Getting potential customers back to using the product. These campaigns are critical for SaaS companies that offer freeware solutions. Companies using the freemium model have to make sure that customers who have not paid for their product are engaged and frequently using the product.

Email 1 – Industry News

Subject: What’s going on in the relevant industry industry?

Hey  User Name ,

The  relevant industry  industry is an exciting one to be in! There is constant change as companies come up with new and innovative ways to tackle problems that keep changing with time. We’ve compiled some industry updates for our users so they can constantly stay updated with current trends.

Link 1
Link 2
Link 3

Best
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Email 2 – Product Usage / Features Tips

Subject:  User Name check this out!

Hey  User Name ,

Did you know that you can create  application specific thing  using the  application specific feature ? See it in action in this quick tutorial  provide link  we’ve made for you.
You can start using this by clicking here  provide link .

Best
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Upselling Campaign

Objective – Notifying and updating customers about new features and limitations of current usage. The purpose is to get customers to avail advanced features or purchase a restriction free version of the product, i.e. to upsell.

Upsell campaigns are used to notify customers about new features that have been added or new versions that have been released, or to remind the customer about current usage limitations. The idea is to try to persuade the customer into seeing how, with the purchase of the additional features / new version, he/she can receive greater benefit from the product.

Email 1 – Usage Limitations

Subject:  User Name , you’re holding yourself back

Hey  User Name ,

You’re currently using the free version of  Your App Name . That means you don’t get to use  Premium Feature 1 ,  Premium Feature 2  and  Premium Feature 3 .
Upgrade now  provide link  to use  Your App Name  so that you get the maximum benefit out of it for your company!

Check out this video of how these features are used, and how easy they make the process for you!

Best
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Email 2 – Benefits of Features

Subject:  User Name check this out!

Hey  User Name ,

Did you know that you can create  application specific thing  using the  application specific feature ? See it in action in this quick tutorial  provide link  we’ve made for you.
You can start using this by clicking here  provide link .

Best
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Email 3 – New Version Releases

Subject:  User Name , we just got better

Hey  User Name ,

Your App Name  has now been upgraded to version  insert number . That means a host of brand new features and a completely revamped interface. The features are far more integrated than before, log on  provide link  to activate your FREE 14 day trial! Click here  provide link  to permanently upgrade your service.

Best
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Email 4 – Promotions

Subject: Good things are free, better things just cost $ Insert Price !

Hey  User Name ,

We’re now offering the full range of our services for $ Insert Number ! That means  Insert Number % off! This offer is limited for this month so click here  provide link  to upgrade your service now!

Best
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Renewal Campaign

Objective – The objective is to remind the customer about renewal of subscription.

These campaigns serve to alert the customers to renew their yearly subscriptions. Automating this communication can ensure that renewal reminders are sent on time and not forgotten.

Subject: Let’s start over 

Hey  User Name ,

A year has almost gone by and I’m glad to see we’re still fast friends! It’s almost time for the renewal of your subscription, so click here  provide link  if you’d like to make any changes to your current package. Thanks for using  Your App Name  for so long and have a great next year!

Best
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Transactional Emails

As mentioned before, transactional emails are for enabling your users to reset forgotten passwords, authenticate emails etc. These are also part of the tools of communication that are available to you. These should be designed with care as well.

Subject:  User Name , is that you?

User Name

We got a request for resetting the password of your account. Click here  provide link  to reset your password.
Let us know if you didn’t request this, or better yet, don’t respond and have a good day!

Best
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Conclusion

Drip campaigns are an extremely critical communication channel between your company and potential customers of your product. Therefore the lifecycle of your average customer has to be carefully analysed when you are developing a drip campaign.

To help you get started, we’ve put together an HTML template to help you get started. You can download it here.

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