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#74. 4 Simple Ways to turn One-time Seasonal Shoppers Into Lifelong Customers

Written by Vira and Alissa
3 min read
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This week the Mad Scientists are in the lab cooking up an exciting batch of new content for 2022. To tide you over, let’s rewind the clocks a year and break down (again) the best ways to turn those one-time holiday shoppers into loyal return customers!

Return customers are your real moneymakers. They are 9 times more likely to convert than new leads and spend 3 times more on average than one-off customers! But how do you entice them to come back when the sales and holiday excitement have worn off?

That’s where the Email Einsteins come in. Your hosts Vira and Alissa, break down their most effective strategies to make the most of all those new shoppers you gained during Black Friday & Cyber Monday. Let’s make the most of all those new one-off shoppers.

You’ll learn

  • One underused strategy to entice shoppers to come back for more. 
  • How to set up an effective post-purchase flow.
  • Two loyalty programs & how to implement them effectively. 
  • Our tips for adding value to your customers beyond selling great products. 
  • How to master the cross-sell and the up-sell in your flows.

Links mentioned in this episode

Andriy: Hi, thank you for listening to Email Einstein. This is Andriy, the founder of Flowium. I have a quick announcement to make. We've got great news for you. Now, listening to our podcast comes not only with practical advice from our host, and valuable insights from our guests, but also prizes. If you enjoy our podcast, take a moment to leave us a review on Apple Podcast, and we will send you a pair of coolest Flowium socks. And since we know you may be busy later, pause this episode now, go to Apple Podcast and share your review with our community. After you do, go to flowium.com/socks to request the prize.

Vira: The ways to turn your seasonal buyers into your loyal fans, yeah. That's going to be a good one. That's going to be probably one of the last episodes of our Black Friday Cyber Monday holiday saga. Stay with us and thank you for listening.

Alissa: Welcome to Email Einstein, a podcast by Flowium. It's time to start honing your inner marketing Einstein. Tune in for the data driven tips that'll make you a marketing genius. Here, you'll find email marketing formulas and tips, straight from the brilliant mad scientists at Flowium. It's time for your emails to start earning more money. It's time to unleash your Einstein.

Alissa: Hello. Hello, everybody. Welcome to another episode of Email Einstein. I'm super hyped right now because we've been having lots of fun team interactions. It's Friday, we're feeling good. You guys are listening to this on a Tuesday, so I hope that our Friday fever gets passed on to you. It's contagious, I'm telling you, it's contagious. So, as always Vira and Alissa here, we are two email marketers at an email marketing agency called Flowium. We are so passionate about email marketing, and because we love what we do we want to share our insights with you.

Alissa: Flowium is one of the fastest growing email marketing agencies in the world. We specialize in providing a premium, full service e-commerce email marketing experience for all of our clients. Our service is tailored specifically for your business and is designed to help increase your online retail revenue. We deliver the right message, to the right person, at the right moment. That's what we're all about here at Flowium. We have a phenomenal episode in store for you. So, Vira, take us away. What are we talking about today?

Vira: Yeah. We have a really good one. Spoiler alert. This will be the repurposed episode from our last year. It was so good, we decided to share it with you guys again. And we are creating, in the meantime, we're creating some really exciting content for 2022. But in the meantime, go ahead and listen about the ways to turn your seasonal buyers into your permanent purchasers, into your loyal fans. That's going to be a good one. That's going to be probably one of the last episodes of our Black Friday Cyber Monday holiday saga. But we have so much fun content for you guys for the next year. So, stay with us, and thank you for listening. Let's do this.

Andriy: Are you ready for Black Friday Cyber Monday and other holidays? Is your marketing strategy set, and up to speed with new trends? I'm excited to announce that we released our first Flowium book, which covers the latest email marketing strategies for Black Friday Cyber Monday and holidays. You can grab your own copy today at flowium.com/holiday. This book will help you to maximize customer growth and revenue through the busiest season of the year.

Vira: The pro tip of the week. At least I know you have prepared something fun. So, hit us with your pro tip of the week.

Alissa: This one I'm excited for. This is one of the pro tips that I've been most excited for recently. So, our pro tip of the week is to consider incorporating a bounce backflow. Now, this is not something that we've actually talked about in detail on any of our episodes, but definitely a flow that is worth looking into. Klaviyo actually has a really, really great article on bounce back that explains a lot more the logistics, how it works.It gives a case study in there, but without going into too much detail that's something that you can definitely look at later on. The idea of a bounce back flow is very similar to that of a bounce back coupon that you would typical receive in a brick and mortar store, when you make a purchase. So, typically you would go into the store, you make a purchase, you buy, and then you get a coupon with an incredible offer that's only valid during a very specific period of time, and almost forces you back into the store to take advantage.

Alissa: So, like Gap is a brand that I've seen do this very often, where you go in, you'll shop, you'll spend $100 or whatever it is, and then they'll give you a bounce back coupon in the form of Gap cash, which is like $50 off your next purchase, and it's only valid in a month's time for three days. So, at that point you're like, "Oh, I have to be here next month for three days, so that I can take advantage of this coupon." Same idea with the bounce backflow. With the email however, it does work a little bit differently, obviously, because we're not in a brick and mortar store doing this. So, once someone actually makes a purchase from your website, they'll get a follow up email within about 10 minutes, with a special offer on a product that either compliments what they just purchased, or on a best selling item of your choice. This item is typically lower in value. The offer is usually good for about 60 minutes, and it will also get added into their shipment with their original purchase.

Alissa: This is just such a great way to convert your potential one time customers into two time customers. And as Vira mentioned already, once you pop, you can't stop. AKA, if someone buys from you twice, they'll most likely come back for more. So, this is a really quick, innovative, fun way to incorporate a strategy that will convert your one timers into two timers, and then hopefully loyal customers or die hard fans over the course of time. So, that's our pro tip of the week.

Vira: And that's actually a really good one, and I feel like it can be not just the pro tip, but the entire section on how to turn your holiday buyers into your regular, because it's a big one. I know you talked about Gap. I know that Gap is doing that online promotion as well. So, they are just upselling something cheap, but probably their margins are really high on that product.

Alissa: Right.

Vira: But the price is super low. I remember they were doing white t-shirts for $5 or something.

Alissa: Yeah. Yeah, exactly.

Vira: Something super cheap, just to turn you from that one time purchaser status into a return customer. So, that's actually a big one. And, yeah. Thank you Alissa, for mentioning it because, listen. As merchants and as marketers, we often fixate so much on that sales/conversion, especially with the first one, so much that sometimes we just forget about the importance of engaging with customers after they place that very first order. So, we almost often abandon those people, and while making a sale might be your end point, in reality, especially in email marketing industry, it is just the beginning of your hopefully long term relationship with a customer. And here are some fun facts about the returned customers. It is 10 times more expensive to get a new customer than it is to sell something to your existing customer. I knew that the price of acquisition is high, I just didn't realize that it is 10 times more expensive. It's crazy.

Vira: And also here's another fun fact. Existing customers are nine times more likely to convert and spend 500% more than new customers. So, usually your returned customers, their order value is much, much higher. So, now you probably understand why Amazon does everything in their power to convince you to buy that Prime subscription, and why Costco is making sure that you will buy their membership. So, yeah. Just so many things become obvious to you when you start to work in this industry. So, because attracting these new customers cost so much more than retaining the existing ones, you might want to invest in those relationships, and you want to nurture your relationship with your customer.

Vira: And probably the easiest one, and something that we urge all of our customers to do, is to create a post purchase flow if you don't have one yet. I just read this quote from HubSpot, I think it was HubSpot, I'm not sure, recently, and it made me laugh. So, they said that the post-purchase email flow is the Harry Potter of email marketing. Often neglected, given barely any attention, and forced to live under the staircase of e-commerce email marketing. I love this expression, honestly.

Alissa: That's great. That's great.

Vira: It's so accurate, right?

Alissa: Yeah. I think we even do it internally sometimes too, browse abandonment, cart abandonment, exit intent, and then post-purchase are like, "Yeah. We'll get to that." But it's a big one. It's a really big one.

Vira: And I don't know about your customers, Alissa, but for my clients this is one of the high earners, this flow. I was actually surprised when I first started working with Flowium. I was surprised how much revenue the post-purchase one generates. It's insane. And well, if you want to turn your holiday shoppers into return customers, do not ignore your post-purchase flow. And maybe it's a bit too late for you to... Obviously, it's too late for you to do the post-purchase flow for the beginning, but maybe you can introduce those customers into later stages of the flow, so you can still create some sort of relationship with them. Or just create a good post-purchase flow for next year. It's never too early to start preparing for Black Friday Cyber Monday if you are in this industry. Or just in general, post-purchase flow is a great, great flow to have.

Vira: And the best part is, you set it up once and it works for you. So, this is your little employee that is doing the work while you are not doing anything. So, what's to include in that post-purchase flow? So, I'll just give you some ideas, you don't have to implement all of them obviously, but this is just something that we are doing with our clients. So, email number one, as your order confirmation. So, thank you for your order email. It's not the end of your customer journey anymore. It's just one of many, many little steps. And by the way, it doesn't have to be boring. Why not make it fun? Why not nurture your customer through this email? The goal of this first email, and the flow in general, is to reinforce the buyer's decision, and let them know that, "Hey. You made the right decision going with our brand." So, you want almost to help them to eliminate that buyer's remorse.

Vira: And the very first order confirmation email allows you not only to thank your customers for their purchase, but also maybe answer some of their questions, and in a way introduce them to your brand, and nurture those relationships with them. I just found this really cool example. I found it a while ago. It's from the brand called CD Baby. Honestly, I don't even know if they are still around, because I mean, who uses CDs anymore? But I really loved this email. It was the first email of their post-purchase sequence. I'll just read it.

Vira: So, "Your CD has been gently taken from our CD Baby shelves, with sterilized contamination free gloves and placed onto a satin pillow. A team of 15 employees inspected your CD and polished it, to make sure it was in the best possible condition before mailing. Our packing specialist from Japan lit a candle, and hush fell over the crowd as he put your CD into the finest gold lined box that money can buy." I just thought it was so funny and so witty, and so on point and on brand. Be creative with this email. It doesn't have to be a boring thank you for your order email. You can get creative with this one. So, it's a good opportunity for you to introduce your brand to your new customer.

Andriy: Sorry for interrupting the show. This is Andrew, the founder of Flowium. I'm very excited to introduce you to our free, Ask Me Anything calls. This is the sales page free calls, which you can schedule starting January, 2021. We promise to keep our conversation sales pitch free, just you and your questions about email marketing. You ask, we answer. On those calls you'll get to connect with our team one on one, and receive actionable advice on what can work in your case. We have limited availability of spots, so go to flowium.com/consultation to reserve your spot.

Vira: Email number two, it depends what you want to say in that email, but often we are sending your customers to your FAQ page, if you have one, Frequently Asked Questions, because believe me, your customers will have a lot of questions about the product, even before the product arrives. So, in this email you can build excitement for the arrival, maybe answer some most frequent questions about the product, and you can link that email to your FAQ page, just to make your customers and search engines very happy. You can talk about some popular questions in the email number two.

Vira: Email number three, you can talk about your social media, if you have any, maybe Facebook community, or cool Instagram page or something. Introduce your customers to your social media. In the next emails, you can do some relevant content about the products that you will be upselling later in the flow. For example, one of my clients, they are selling the different kind of teas, so they are doing the shots and herbal teas, and stuff like that. So, we are doing the five detox tips, how to detoxify your body in a natural way. And one of those tips is actually to use their detox tea. And then, in next emails, email numbers six and seven, we are cross-selling that product that we briefly mentioned in previous email. Alissa, is that something that you are doing with your clients?

Alissa: Yeah.

Vira: The content?

Alissa: This is such a great strategy, and I think this is why, Vira, for you and for some of my clients as well, the post purchase flow is one of the higher generating flows for revenue, because you're cross-selling or upselling other products, that it's very highly likely that they would be interested in. So, they've obviously made a purchase, they've received it. They like what they see, they like what they got, and now you're providing them that additional content that's really going to take what you're trying to cross-sell or upsell to the next level. So, you're showing them that there's a problem. You're showing them that you have a solution and then you're selling them that solution. So, it's virtually impossible for someone to say no, as long as it's a relevant offer.

Vira: And the best part is, because you are doing the relevant content, it doesn't feel like you are trying to sell something all the time, because people don't like those aggressive CLC emails. So, think about the value that you can bring to your customers. And I'm sure Alissa, you have more examples about that, like cross-sell, upsell stuff, because we will cover it later in the podcast as well. But, yeah. That's actually a big one, guys. So, this is your chance to convert your one time holiday buyers into regular or returned customers. And believe me, a lot of those people, they will convert even before you give them some kind of offer, or even before you will cross-sell, upsell, just because they will start building the relationship with your brand, and that's super, super important.

Vira: Another big one is the request for the feedback, but here, be really, really cautious with the timing. The timing could be tricky because it's determined by your shipping times. Ideally your feedback emails should be sent a few days after your customers have received their purchase. And it can be tricky, especially when you have both international customers and the US, or Canada or whatever, local customers. So, be careful not to send these emails before the customer actually have received their orders. And Alissa, I think you had the issue like this with one of your clients, because of the holiday delays, right?

Alissa: Yeah. Yeah, yeah. USPS really messed up how quickly people were receiving things. And so, they were getting this feedback email, and our client was pretty upset and he was getting horrific emails back. I mean, people can be brutal. Your customers can be brutal, so just make sure you avoid that brutality, and just be very, very careful about timing, because it's better to send that request for feedback way, way later, than it is too soon.

Vira: Yeah. For sure. For sure. And other examples of emails that you can include into this sequence can be replenishment email. So, like refill your order email. But here timing is crucial as well. So, don't be too, too aggressive. Maybe for one product, it can be good to send it two weeks from when the product would normally run out. But for other products, maybe you'll need more time, because it's an international brand and it requires more time to, I don't know, to put together, or to send, or whatever. However, if you have a lot of international customers, the delay might need to be even longer. So, be careful with this one, but this is a good one as well. We've done it a lot of times for our supplement brands, for cosmetic brands that we are working with. That's a big one.

Vira: And of course, another big one, and we will talk about it in details, is to invite your customers into your loyalty programs. If you have the loyalty or rewards program in place, post purchase flow is your time, is your place to shine, or your time to shine. So, there is no better way to incentivize an engagement than, "Hey. Thank you for your purchase. You've earned gazillion points with your purchase. How do you want to spend them?" So, this is just the rough ideas obviously, you'll have to adjust it to your brand. But this is something that again, you set it up once and it works for you. So, do it, and if you have any questions about it, just send us a message and we'll be happy to assist you with this one.

Alissa: Yeah. This is a really good one. The Harry Potter analogy is so true.

Vira: I know, right. It's so cool.

Alissa: It's so true. So, number two, and this is going back to one of the emails that Vira had mentioned within the post purchase flow is, cross-selling complimentary products. So, this is our second tool or trick on how to turn your one time customers into second time, third time, fourth time forever customers. So, obviously we've talked about segmentation a ton in our past episodes. I mean, virtually every single one. So, it's not really surprising that segmentation does play a role in how you keep your one timers coming back for more. When you're cultivating a loyal customer base, it's really important that they get the full experience of your brand. And really there isn't a better way for them to have that full experience than to own or experience all of the products that you sell. If the customer made a one time purchase, now more than ever, is the time to cross-sell a product that perfectly compliments the one that they originally purchased.

Alissa: So, an example of this is, one of the clients that I actually work with directly, they sell Personal Protection Equipment. So, in the form of gas masks, hazmat suits, mask filters, that kind of thing. These masks and the items that they sell, are by no means inexpensive. It's actually a very expensive product, because it's so high quality. However, in order for someone to have the full experience with that brand, there are tons of components of their Personal Protective Equipment, their PPE, that they would need to own in order to have the full kit. And again, the full experience. A gas mask, buying a gas mask is really just the beginning. In this new year for this client, our biggest focus is actually ensuring that all of the customers that we have as subscribers, are owners of the complete set. And also, not just the complete set for themselves, but also for their families and loved ones too, because they sell children's masks, baby protective gear, pet protective gear. There's tons of stuff on there that's really good-

Vira: Pet protective gear?

Alissa: Yeah.

Vira: Is that a thing?

Alissa: Yeah. So, there's a... Gosh. I don't know what it's called, but it's like a little box or a little bag or cubicle, where you can put your small pets into it, and it protects them from any lethal gas for up to, I think it's 12 hours or something like that.

Vira: Wow.

Alissa: So, it's like, if we were to have a nuclear war, for example, your dog would be safe. Which is nice, right? That's the tear jerker in most of these crazy world movies is, "No, not the dog." So, the dog is protected. So, because that's a main goal for us, for this client, as we progress through this year, we obviously need to find a way to accomplish that. What we're looking at doing is either automating this, or doing it campaign style. The automation can be tricky, so for the sake of simplicity for this episode, we'll just go down the campaign route, and explain how that would look.

Alissa: So, typically the way you would start is you would create a segment based on what item the customer has purchased. So, in this case, let's go with an adult gas mask, and how many times they made a purchase with the brand, which is once over all time, because again, you're focusing on these one time purchasers. You would then create your campaign that pitches the complimentary item. So, in this case, for example, it would be a mask filter or a hazmat suit. And the mask filter basically gets attached to the mask, and the filter is really one of these things that you can buy over and over and over again, and you technically can't have enough of it. So, this would be a really good one to use to get people to continue purchasing, because when you're talking about preparedness or home preparedness, the likelihood is that people will want to stock up more on these filters.

Alissa: In any case, and then what you would do is you would send that campaign that pitches the complimentary item, to the segment that you created, which is a segment including people who have purchased an adult gas mask once, and it's their only purchase that they've ever made with the brand. And the thing that you really want to focus on is making sure that the content you create is based on the fact that this person has made only one purchase with your brand, and that this product fits perfectly with their original purchase. So, you want to sell it, but not sell it, if that makes sense. It's like Vira mentioned, people don't really like to know that they're being sold to, but what you want to do is you want to provide the right content that makes them feel like, "Hey, I'm not being sold to, I'm just being told I can get way more value out of the product that I purchased by purchasing this other item."

Alissa: And a way to play it super, super safe with this whole concept is you can also create a segment of people that have purchased, for example, a hazmat suit or a mask filter in the past, and exclude them from this campaign, in the case that someone opted in multiple times with different emails. So, this is a safety net to make sure that you're really only sending this email out to someone who has only purchased once, and they've only purchased an adult gas mask.

Vira: That's super smart.

Alissa: Yeah. It's a really straightforward, simplistic way of retargeting your one timers, but it's so effective at engaging with them on a personal level. So, so, so effective. You're basically talking to them as if you were there during their first purchase, and you know everything about them, and you understand everything about their life. And getting on that level with your customers, again, super, super effective, very simplistic way to go about it. We do this pretty regularly, but it works, and it works really well. So, definitely something to consider when it comes to trying to convert those one time customers, is just cross-selling a product that really makes sense and compliments really well what their original purchase was.

Vira: Yeah. It's all about the relevance and personalization in a way as well. Something that we talk about all the time, but yet it's so important.

Alissa: The relevance factor. That's where it's all at.

Vira: So, the third recommendation/strategy that we recommend to do is promote a customer loyalty program if you have one. And if you don't have one, why you still don't have one? You should get one ASAP. So, if you have a loyalty program or rewards program in place, post purchase, this period, post-purchase time is your time to shine. Here are some cool numbers that I found on the web, and yes, I do love those numbers so much. We are email marketing geeks, it is what it is. So, as many as 84% of customers say that they are more apt to stick with a brand if the brand offers some sort of loyalty program, 84%. And inviting customers to join your loyalty program, both gives them the reason to come back, and in a way it creates some excitement around your brand.

Vira: And there is no doubt that loyalty programs do bring a lot of revenue. According to Foresters, customers who take part in loyalty programs spend on average $42 more in a three month spend, than those people who don't participate in loyalty programs. And I mean, these are very convincing numbers and you can get this new shopper started right away by maybe awarding some points at the beginning, or giving them some credits or cash back or whatever currency or program you use for completing those basic tasks, like opening account or maybe filling now their profile, or making their first purchase or stuff like that. Some of my favorite loyalty programs that I personally use all the time is Sephora. Actually, one fact that I didn't know about Sephora is that Sephora's Beauty Insider Rewards Program is one of the biggest programs in the US as of 2019.

Vira: And again, this is an outdated number. I'm sure right now, in 2021, these numbers are even higher. As of 2019, the program had more than 17,000,000 loyal members. So, yeah. 17,000,000 girls and boys who were earning the points with Sephora. Members make up as much as 80% of Sephora's annual sales. So, even though it's like 17,000,000 people, it's like 80% of all of your sales, because as we mentioned before, people who are your loyal fans, they do spend more. And basically how it works, customers earn rewards for each purchase based on a very simple traditional points system. But then, the best part is that you can can choose how you can spend your reward points. You can either get the miniature of the product, maybe you can get the discount, the gift card. And because Sephora is expensive, this works really well for them, because in a way they make you spend more, so in the future, you can spend less.

Vira: And they are super, super good with their email reminders. So, all the time you're receiving an email statement with, "Hey, in this month you earned X, Y, Z points. How do you want to spend them?" Or, "Hey, you have enough points to purchase this..." I don't know, a pet dragon or whatever. They have all kinds of crazy stuff. So, I love Sephora. Even though I'm not a makeup person, but their emails and their program, rewards program, oh my God. I do have a gazillion points with them probably. And Starbucks. I talked about them a lot, but even though it's a brick and mortar brand mostly, they do have an online store, but mostly they are brick and mortar. They do have an excellent rewards program that works both online and offline.

Vira: And they are running this program through their rewards app. They were actually one of the first brands in The States who developed the entire app for the rewards. The good thing about it is that you need to, as a customer, you need to upload money to your app basically, so you can spend it in Starbucks. And this gives them a lot of information about you as a customer, about your habits, about your favorite drinks and stuff like that. And then, they can customize their offers in the app for you specifically. So, this app is just as convenient and important for them as it is for you, because for Starbucks, this is mostly the data hub basically. So, that's a good one. Yeah. Do you use any rewards programs yourself, Alissa, with any brands?

Alissa: I use Starbucks. I don't ever load any money onto it, because if I load money onto it, gosh, I would be broke. But I do have my card on there. Actually, while you're talking about Starbucks, I'm like, I wonder how many Starbucks points I actually have, so I was just looking at it. But the other loyalty program that I actually use, oh my gosh. I have to shamelessly talk about this is Chick-fil-A. I love Chick-fil-A so much. It's been a horrific pregnancy craving of mine, but I don't even care. So, I actually downloaded the app a really long time ago when I used to work at a brick and mortars store in the mall, we had a Chick-fil-A in that mall. I used to order Chick-fil-A all the time through the app, because they would deliver it to our store directly. They would walk it over.

Alissa: And so, I deleted the app because I was like, I need to stop buying Chick-fil-A, I just need to stop. So, we actually just moved house, my husband and I, we have a Chick-fil-A that's literally five minutes away from us. And so, the other day we show up to Chick-fil-A and I was like, "The drive through line is crazy. This is not going to happen. We're just going to do the curbside pickup." To do curbside pickup you have to order on the app. So, I was like, "It's fine. I'll redownload the app," whatever it is. So, I downloaded the app and I had so many points. I got both of our food for free, totally for free. I could not believe it. I was in shock.

Alissa: So, we go probably once every week, if not once every two weeks. Which again, shameless, but whatever. And so, now I'm like, "I have to keep the app. I'm only ever going to order through the app so I can get all the points because we can, over time, get food for free." We do the same thing for Chipotle. Now, we're not huge on Chipotle these days, but when you rack up enough points and you get a free entree, it's like, "Yes." It's the most... You feel accomplished. It's really-

Vira: I do feel accomplished every time I'm paying for something with my rewards.

Alissa: Yeah.

Vira: I was collecting the points for this freaking $20 Starbucks cup. And I probably spent 300 or $400 on coffee that I didn't even want, just to get that cup for free.

Alissa: Exactly.

Vira: And my husband was like, "I could have bought you that freaking cup." Yeah. But it just shows you how powerful those reward programs can be. And hey, if you don't do discounts, because we work with a lot of brands, they don't do discounts, they don't, that's fine too. The shoe brand TOMS, they don't give customers any discounts either, but they have this loyalty program where you can actually do some sort of charity for every purchase. So, they reward every purchase with some sort of non monetary incentives of creating change through different initiatives. So, they have different initiatives. For example, when you're buying a pair of shoes, TOMS gives the pair of shoes to kids in need.

Vira: Or if you are buying their glasses, they will give some help to people who have issues with vision. Or when you're buying their backpack, they are giving money for schooling for kids, or stuff like that. Or one week of clean water or stuff like that. So, you are basically, even though you are not getting discounts or anything, you can still use your non-monetary rewards and incentives of creating change through different initiatives. And you can basically pick what initiatives you will go with.

Vira: And guys, we talked a lot about the brick and mortar examples here, but in email marketing there are still many ways you can use this, you can use this reward programs. And two programs that we would like to recommend right of the bat, and these are the programs that integrate nicely with Klaviyo, are Swell and Smile. And if you go to episode number 22, we actually talked a lot about different tools, and we talked a lot about loyalty and rewards programs there in detail. So, if you are in search of a good strategy for rewards and loyalty, go to episode number 22. So, this was the third strategy. Just promote a customer loyalty program.

Alissa: Yeah. And the fourth, and I love that one by the way, the loyalty programs. Now, I'm laughing because I'm like, wow. I'm a loyalty program sucker. Maybe not necessarily for e-commerce brands, but I'm just thinking, I'm looking through all the apps in my phone and I'm like, I have so many of these stupid store apps, and it's because of the loyalty programs.

Vira: I know, right.

Alissa: It's so encouraging to spend money.

Vira: I'm literally right now going through the apps. So, I have H&M, I have Zara, I have different... I have McDonald's. Oh gosh.

Alissa: You do? McDonald's has one?

Vira: Starbucks. Starbucks I have, of course I have Starbucks. Too many apps, too many. I do have many reward program apps on my thing.

Alissa: But again, it's like you said, it's just additional proof that shows it works, because even us who are in this business, we understand what these loyalty programs do. We get sucked in.

Vira: And how they work. I know.

Alissa: It works. It works, it works. It works. So, our fourth and final strategy on how to turn your one time customers into loyal customers is to ramp up your content marketing, and this is a big one. It's pretty generic. You can take this in any direction that you want. But one of the things that I found personally makes our clients most successful in the email marketing world, is having the ability to provide or add value to their customers, aside from the actual products they sell. And sadly, this is actually something that we see a lot of brands miss the mark on. Which is sad, but it's also not surprising, because when a company's profits start to go sour, just across the board, not even in e-commerce, what's usually the first department that gets flushed? It's always the marketing department, which is usually the worst department to flush when your sales are going back.

Vira: Oh, yeah.

Alissa: It's such a crucial mistake that so many people make, putting all this effort into creating a beautiful website with an amazing product, an incredible customer service department, beautiful packaging, it just doesn't cut it anymore. That's not enough for you to be successful and make it to the top, when it comes to your competitors. What you need to do is you need to add the value, again, aside from the product that you're providing. Anyone can a great product, and anyone can hire someone to design a great website, but it takes a very special someone to take the time to actually understand their customer, what they're missing, what problems they have in their lives, and how they can provide additional value. And this is where your content seriously comes into play. Business owners, and even the clients that we work with, they tend to overlook their blogs, their articles, and their YouTube videos. You have some clients that hop on board with us, and they're like, "Ph, we have a blog section of the website, but it hasn't been updated since 2003."

Vira: So accurate.

Alissa: That just doesn't cut it. And in the beginning, we get it. It's really exciting to start creating this content for these different mediums. "Oh, I'm going to write a blog post about this, because I'm so excited about my brand." Over time obviously, you get logged down. There's a lot that you have to keep up with, in the eCommerce world, but also with your product. Making sure that you're hiring people as your business grows, et cetera. So, it is hard to maintain. We get it. But guess what? If it was easy, everyone would do it and everyone would be successful in it. So, it's clearly worth doing. Aside from the promotional emails, the emails that we see do best for our clients are the ones that provide some form of educational content, or even an entertainment factor to their subscribers.

Alissa: And in this time of year, January specifically, even leading into February, March, sometimes that's all you have to lean on, as an e-commerce brand. People are hungover from spending during the holidays, so the only thing that you can really do is give them relevant content that they don't need to pay for. But make sure that you're reviving your blog page, getting some engaging YouTube videos on your channel that even go through DIYs of how to use your product better. Or an unboxing video from a customer that's added to your YouTube channel or whatever it is. Send out downloadable content guides that will connect with your audience.

Alissa: Anything that is relevant to your product, anything that is relevant to your audience, the struggles that they go through, the pains that they go through, the problems that they have, make sure that you really hunker down and focus on ramping that content up, because your customers will ultimately thank you. And your revenue, later on in the year, will also thank you too. And again, this is one that like, it's so hard because sometimes I want to step out of my email marketing role and be like, "Hey, listen. I'll write your blog post for you, because you just need them," to our client, because it's just-

Vira: I know.

Alissa: It kills me. You see stuff that's from 2010, and you're like, "This is so irrelevant. The information on this is beyond irrelevant," but they don't have anything else. They don't have anyone on staff that's willing to write. And so, we're stuck. We're limited with the kind of content that we can provide to their customers, and so their campaigns start to suck, which is really the most blunt way to put it.

Vira: And another mistake that people are doing, and that's something I've noticed is that they are trying to be everywhere. They are trying to be on YouTube, TikTok, I don't know, national television, blog. They're trying to be everywhere at once. And yes, it might be a good strategy if you do have a lot of staff who's willing to do it regularly. But if not, just go where your customers are. If you are selling supplements to 70 year old people, I'm not sure if TikTok is the platform to talk to them through. Maybe go to, I don't know, Facebook. It's sad, but Facebook is a platform for old people now. And I'm still there. I'm still very much there. So, I agree with you, Alissa. It's all about being systematic and posting something, it doesn't have to be anything extraordinary. You don't have to do the PhD dissertation for each and every of your blog posts. It can be something as simple as, I don't know, sharing customers stories. It's a huge one. It's a huge one. And it is very much overlooked.

Alissa: Yeah. For sure. And even with a customer story, one that I know that works really well for a lot of your clients Vira, is that before and after idea of sharing the customer story-

Vira: Gosh. Yes.

Alissa: ...that you have direct images. So, it's using a lot of user generated content where you're showing before and after, before someone had the product, and now after they have the product. That stuff goes so far. It's small things, small, small changes. You don't need to write 5,000 pages worth of a blog post.

Vira: I agree.

Alissa: Just small little bits of content. They go so far.

Vira: Customers love it and search engine love it too.

Alissa: Yeah.

Vira: Even putting together the FAQ section that we talked about, it's not just for your customers to find the useful information. It is mostly for CEO, believe it... Or SEO not CEO. For SEO, believe it or not, for the Search Engine Optimization and the blogs as well. If you want to be on top of the search engines, you've got to put some work. You've got to create some content, something even simple, but you've got to do it.

Alissa: Yeah. Couldn't be more true. So, there you have it. Your four ways to turn your one time customers into loyal customers. Everyone, thank you so much for listening. We hope that that content for you, was as helpful this year as it was last year. We sometimes like to repurpose some stuff, it just makes sense. Sometimes we need refreshers. I know I go in and listen to some of our much older podcast episodes, even though I speak them, and we do the research behind them, it's helpful for us. So, we hope it's helpful for you.

Alissa: As always, don't forget to subscribe, share this podcast with your friends. If you like what we do, leave us a review and make sure that you visit flowium.com/socks. Once you do leave that review, you can take a screenshot, add in your info into that survey or that form, and we will get you your free pair of socks. I've actually been wearing mine, not all week, because that's gross, re-wearing socks. But I wore mine earlier this week, because it's been really cold here in Florida.

Vira: It's not, Alissa. Tell them how cold it is.

Alissa: Okay. Listen. I can't even say, because I'm embarrassed.

Vira: It's embarrassing to say out loud, Alissa.

Alissa: It's 73 degrees here in Florida.

Vira: You poor thing.

Alissa: 23 degrees Celsius. Listen, our house has retained the cold from the night, so I'm cold. I'm sitting here in a Sherpa recording this, because I'm freezing. Vira laughed at me, and it's okay if you guys are laughing at me too, I'm a Florida girl. My blood is thin. I don't know what you want me to tell you. But anyways, those socks are awesome. They're very high quality. I mean, that sounds funny, but yeah. They are high quality socks.

Vira: It should be illegal wearing socks in where you are, Alissa. It should be illegal. We're going to confiscate your socks and send them to someone. No, we will not. No, we're giving you brand new socks, you guys, so leave us a review and we're going to send you the brand new beautiful socks, with a lovely letter and everything.

Alissa: Yeah.

Vira: So, do that. Do that. Also guys come back next Tuesday, because next Tuesday we'll have a brand new episode and we'll be talking about three new email marketing automations to try in 2022.

Alissa: I love it.

Vira: Brand new. You've never tried them. Probably you've never tried them before. We love them-

Alissa: Probably.

Vira: ...of them. And we want to share them with the world. So, come back next Tuesday. And thank you so much for listening.

Alissa: Bye guys.

Vira: Bye.

Alissa: Thanks for listening to Email Einstein. Can you feel that? Your marketing brain just got a little bit bigger. We ask that you please use it wisely. You've got all the theory you need to get out there and start boosting your sales, because great emails equals revenue squared.

Andriy: You just listened to an episode of Email Einstein. If you enjoyed it and want to continue getting valuable insights from our hosts, let us know. Go to Apple Podcasts, find our podcast by searching email marketing, leave us a review and we'll send you a pair of Flowium socks. We know you may be busy later, so take a few minutes to pause this episode now, go to Apple Podcast, and share how you are enjoying this podcast with our community. After you do, go to flowium.com/socks to require the prize. Thanks, and come back for more e-commerce email marketing knowledge next Tuesday.

Meet your hosts

Vira Sadlak​

Vira Sadlak​

Podcast host, marketer, traveller and a life lover from Vancouver, Canada

When she’s not at her computer, conquering the world of e-commerce email-marketing, you can find her climbing one of the Pacific Northwest Ranges.

Alternatively, try her email at vira@flowium.com, and she’ll probably shoot you back a list of her favorite cat videos.

Alissa Horta

Alissa Taggart

Alissa is an email marketer that is passionate about relevance!

Her main goal with all clients is to create a strategy and campaigns that are unique to the customer-base. Her favorite part of her role as an account manager with Flowium is to meet with her clients as she loves people. She lives with her husband and growing family in Boca Raton, FL.

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