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August 22, 2017

6 Must-Haves for an Effective Welcome Email (With Real World Examples)

A welcome email is an integral part of a winning email marketing strategy. It establishes a solid first impression and helps cement a positive relationship with new subscribers.

When a subscriber signs up for your mailing list, it means they want to hear more from you. Whether they’re simply discount hunters or emerging brand superfans, your welcome email brings these subscribers into the fold. With effective welcome emails, you start to build a lasting and committed relationship with your subscribers.

So, what are the “Must-Haves” for an effective welcome email?

To set the mood, let’s take a look at this beautiful email from DogVacay….

welcome email examples

Why This Welcome Email is Great:

They start off with an amazing hero image and an equally nice welcome title to go with it. Moreover, the email copy helps the subscriber discover the brand.

#1. A Recognizable “From” Name and a Striking Subject Line


With any email, the first two things recipients notice are the From name and the subject line. If the From name is familiar to them, they are much more likely to open the email. Use your first name and brand name as your From Name. (This will also help with ongoing brand recognition.)

Some From name best practices:

  • Keep the From name as short as possible
  • A/B test From names
  • Once you’ve chosen them, stick to them for brand consistency
  • Never use an email address as your From name

Subject lines persuade subscribers to open and view what’s inside the email. There is no “silver bullet” length for a successful subject line. The only requirement is that the subject line be compelling enough to warrant an open.

Good subject lines can be simple, like:

  • “Welcome to
  • “You’re almost there”
  • “Thank you for joining
  • “Getting started with

If you’re offering discounts on a first purchase, good subject lines could be:

  • “You are in. Take 20% off on first purchase!”
  • “Welcome to ! Get 10% off, promo code inside!”

You can add humor and fun into the subject lines with #hashtags and emojis. Going one step further, you can try personalized subject lines as well, which have been shown to [increase unique clickthrough-rates by 27%](https://www.experianplc.com/media/news/2016/q2-2016-email-benchmark-report/) and click-to-open rates by 11%.

#2. A Warm Welcome Note/Intro


A welcome or introductory note that says something about your brand can be a good way to help new subscribers better understand your brand. You can introduce them to the features and highlights of your products or services. You can also draw their attention to different sections of your website, offers, exclusive discounts, and other great pieces of content.

Check out this welcome email from Bryan Anthonys…

welcome email examples

Why This Welcome Email is Great:

It has a catchy, brand-appropriate headline and a nice, appealing welcome note. It takes users through their new product launches and promotional offers. It also provides a 10% discount on the first order placed by the new subscriber.

#3. Personalized Content


Your welcome email should be as personal as possible. Collect as much information as you can (connecting site behaviour with upfront questions on your form) so you can tailor content that takes into account subscriber interests and likes. This kind of personalization done in the very first email from you can leave a great impression on the mind of the new subscriber.

According to Sarv.com, when emails are personalized based on the subscriber’s behavior, they get a 300% improvement in response over batch and blast.

Check out this example from Pandora…

welcome email examples

Why This Welcome Email is Great:

Pandora takes the recipient through the brand’s product range. They also personalize the headline and the subject line with the recipient’s first name.

#4. Give the Option to Set Preferences


The content of your email and the frequency at which you send it is a crucial thing in email marketing. It’s a good practice to ask your subscribers to set their preferences so that you not only send them content that is relevant to them but also send it only when they wish to read. Give them the opportunity to modify their preferences by linking them to an email preference center, a landing page on your website. This practice helps in keeping the subscriber engaged with your brand.

Check out this example from REI…

welcome email examples

Why This Welcome Email is Great:

The “Help Us Get It Right” section is aimed perfectly at the goal of sending content that’s specific to the subscriber’s preferences.

#5. Enticing CTAs


While your welcome emails should, ideally, be welcoming your subscribers onboard, being the marketers that you are you can also promote your current offers or a special welcome discount.

Your email needs to have a clear, prominent CTA that leads recipients towards a specific landing page where they can make the purchase. The CTA could be as simple as “Learn More” or “Shop Now.” It can even link to your brand’s blogs or any other landing pages.

Check out this example from ShoeMetro…

welcome email examples

Why This Welcome Email is Great:

This email uses attractive colors to depict the advantages of joining the brand’s email list and a clear CTA to highlight the welcome offer effectively.

#6. Easy Social Sharing Buttons


Giving your subscribers other options to connect with your brand can draw better engagement. Use your welcome email as an opportunity to increase your social reach by including social sharing buttons and links to your social media accounts. This is particularly important for brands who have very active presences on social media.

You can even run a welcome email series, and one of the emails could be specifically designed to promote your social channels and the benefits of following you on each of them.

Check out this example from The Black Tux…

welcome email examples

Why This Welcome Email is Great:

The high-contrast social share options are extremely visible, and the messaging prompts recipients to Follow and engage on social media with really fun copy.

Final Thoughts


A well-planned, well-executed welcome email is one that makes a good first impression and gets your relationship with your subscribers off on the right foot.

What must-haves do you have for your welcome emails? Let us know!


About the Author:

Scott is the VP of Marketing at InboxArmy, a full-service email marketing agency. He has been living and breathing email marketing since 2007. Scott brings a unique perspective to email marketing that combines best practices with real-world-tested strategy and tactics. Check out Scott’s email marketing tutorials & articles on Inbox Army’s Email Marketing Blog.


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