In a previous blog post, we talked about gathering data and using SMS messaging to create a VIP experience for sports team fans – and fans of other brands too. The question now becomes, how do we engage our fans in the off-season or during downtime? ClickDimensions' campaign automation feature offers a solution, allowing you to keep your fans in the loop and design unique paths for participants to follow as they interact with your messaging.
So let's set the stage. In today's technological age, your season is never really over. Fans are continuously keeping an eye on what is going on with your team, and you want them to be just as engaged in the off-season as they are during regular season and post-season play. The best way to do this is by educating and informing fans through a series of interactions while providing them with valuable and exclusive content, and an automated campaign can accomplish exactly that.
Here's what you need to get started:
- Marketing lists that can be broken down into segments (season ticket holders, suite owners, casual fans, etc.). Each can be tied to a dedicated campaign automation.
- Email templates that provide the fan with all of the information they need.
- Web forms to obtain current information.
Once you have the above, you will want to spend some time deciding the paths you want fans to take in the campaign automation. I recommend sketching this out on a white board or using a flow chart program, which will give you a visual aid to work from as you start building out your campaign automation.
Now let's dive into the campaign automation builder. This can be found by going to Marketing -> Campaign Automation in your CRM environment. Once you have saved your created record, you will see the builder option in the top navigation ribbon. The builder will show a grid with trigger and series options on the right side pane, which can be added to the builder in a simple drag-and-drop fashion.
You have multiple options for how fans can enter the campaign automation. The trigger options are:
In this example, our trigger will be "Added to List." This means that when a fan is added to one of the marketing lists we have set up, they will automatically be placed in the corresponding campaign automation. Note that this trigger will only work for contacts and leads added to the marketing list after the automation has been published.
Once the fan is in the campaign automation, they need to have a path to follow. Using the series tool, you can choose to send them an email or take other action. There are also wait and date timer actions that are highly recommended. You want to space out your communications so that fans are not bombarded with emails from the team to the point where they no longer want to receive them and end up unsubscribing.
Using campaign automation, you have the ability to create positive and negative paths for individuals in the automation. Whether they take a positive or negative path is determined by the interaction in the previous series. For the first series in the example above, I decided to look at whether or not the email was opened in the preceding series. If the email is opened, the recipient will continue down the positive path and receive the email in the next series. If the email is not opened, they will proceed down the negative path where I have set a wait step and will then resend a variation on the first email.
I have also added a form submission trigger. The idea here is that you want to continue to gather updated data from fans. So by sending a link to a web form in one of our emails, we can continue to do that. You might ask, why would they fill out this form? The answer is gated content. Giving fans a valuable informational download for completing a form will help drive conversions.
Once you have finished building your campaign automation, it needs to be published. Please note that is recommended to test the automation by starting with a test marketing list, shortening the wait steps and running internal team members through the automation.
And remember that there is no single way that campaign automations have to be set up. That's why they're a great place to experiment with new and exciting ways of interacting with your fan base. Whether your end goal is ticket sales or just simply keeping your fans in the loop, campaign automations can help you continue to turn your fans into brand ambassadors.
Written by Matt Privateer, ClickDimensions Marketing Success Manager