You have a new contact! Now what? You have so many different marketing ideas and so many goals you want to reach with your customer, like:

  • Introducing them to your brand
  • Getting them involved in your community
  • Sharing industry knowledge and thought leadership
  • Inviting them to an event
  • Encouraging engagement, like site visits or membership sign-ups

With all of these options, where do you start?

Let ActiveCampaign help. We’re sharing 8 automation recipes that cover a wide range of functions, but all help you reach the same goal: To get the most out of your marketing efforts — while automating them.

In this post, we’ll cover the following automation recipes:

  1. Welcome Series Automation Recipe
  2. 7 Day Drip Series Automation Recipe
  3. Opt-in Incentive Delivery Automation Recipe
  4. Form Personalization Follow-Up Automation Recipe
  5. Contact Last Engaged Date Automation Recipe
  6. Webinar Reminder Email Series
  7. Send New Blog Posts Automation Recipe
  8. Birthday and Anniversary Coupon Email Automaton Recipe

1. Welcome Series Automation Recipe

You create a form, people fill it out and subscribe to an email list, and now you have to send them emails. What kind of emails?

Welcome emails!

More specifically, a welcome series.

What is a welcome email series? It’s a series of emails that you send to your new list subscribers. A welcome series should begin promptly after someone subscribes to your list. A welcome email series should:

  • Give helpful info to get someone started with your business
  • Be personalized
  • Use automations to help send them

Are you unsure of how to create a welcome email sequence? Are you even less sure of how to automate it? The answer to both questions is right here! Onboarding your new list subscribers is a snap with the Welcome Series Automation Recipe.

How does a welcome series automation work?

  1. A contact activates a trigger like “Contact subscribes to any list” and enters the welcome series automation
  2. An initial welcome email is automatically sent following the trigger action.
  3. After a specified wait period, we’ll check to see if those contacts opened the first welcome email.
  4. If they open it, a more in-depth follow-up message is sent.
  5. If they don’t open it, a reworked welcome email with a new subject line and slightly different messaging is sent next.

How do you use this welcome series automation recipe?

  • Since this is a welcome series, we encourage using your main contact list so that all contacts who are added receive this message.
  • If you would like a specific message to go out to contacts based on their list, you can use this recipe multiple times as separate automations to build out a unique series for each of your lists.
  • You can (and should) edit the welcome email draft to match your brand messaging and style.
  • Define the pre-built condition for whether the email is opened or not. To do this, make sure you choose “Welcome Email” from this automation. This is how to see which contacts engaged with the first message here.
  • Create follow-up emails for those who do and don’t open the welcome email. These emails use the same design as the first welcome email and include minor changes like the subject line, call to action, special offer, or a more detailed introduction.

What do you need to use this welcome series automation recipe?

Just an ActiveCampaign account and a contact list!

2. 7 Day Drip Series Automation Recipe

Do you struggle to follow up with every new contact that subscribes to your list?

Nurture new leads and increase engagement with this 7-day drip email automation.

A drip series is a sequence of emails sent out to new contacts, leads, or prospects at specific dates and times. Once a lead subscribes to your email list, they will receive each email in the series at the intervals you choose. This automation recipe sends out one email per day for 7 days, but you can adjust the wait steps so that the emails send as far apart as you’d like.

This drip email automation can help you:

  • Follow up with leads in a timely manner so that nobody slips through the cracks
  • Nurture potential customers or clients
  • Drive traffic to your website
  • Offer exclusive content that provides value to your contacts
  • Send leads personalized emails based on which email list they join

How do you use this 7 day drip series automation recipe?

  • Send sales drip emails to nurture new leads
  • Onboard new customers by sharing helpful setup tips over the course of a week
  • Share a series of content that builds on itself, like a 7-day course
  • Send a 7-day series of ecommerce promotions to your subscribers
  • Send follow-up emails to contacts you meet at a trade show or event (just make sure they opted-in to receiving marketing from you!)
  • Cross-sell and upsell products to new customers who joined your email list at checkout
  • Build excitement leading up to a big product launch or announcement

How does a 7 Day Drip Series work?

  1. A contact subscribes to your email list
  2. They receive the first email of the series
  3. The automation waits 1 day
  4. Your contact receives the second email of the series
  5. The automation waits 1 day
  6. Your contact receives the third email of the series
  7. The automation waits 1 day
  8. Your contact receives the fourth email of the series
  9. The automation waits 1 day
  10. Your contact receives the fifth email of the series
  11. The automation waits 1 day
  12. Your contact receives the sixth email of the series
  13. The automation waits 1 day
  14. Your contact receives the final email of the series

What do you need to use this 7 day drip series automation recipe?

Just an ActiveCampaign account and a contact list!

3. Opt-in Incentive Delivery Automation Recipe

How do you get people to join your email list?

Use opt-in incentives, aka lead magnets! A lead magnet is anything you give your audience in exchange for their email address. Lead magnets help you increase conversions and build an email list that grows your business.

How do you use this opt-in incentive delivery automation recipe?

Opt-in incentives can include:

  • Checklists
  • Reports
  • Courses
  • Webinars
  • Videos
  • Ebooks
  • Spreadsheets
  • Templates
  • Discounts
  • And more!

The more valuable the opt-in incentive, the more likely someone is to share their contact information.

Once a contact signs up for your email list through an opt-in form, you need to deliver their opt-in incentive. This automation delivers the opt-in incentive to a lead after they submit the email capture form.

How does an Opt-in Incentive Delivery email automation work?

  1. This automation begins when a form is submitted, but you could use the contact being added to a list or a tag being applied, to trigger the automation. It’s really a matter of preference and what makes sense to you. The important thing is just that the automation begins when they request a resource or lead magnet from you.
  2. This step of the automation tags the contact with an interest tag. You can use these tags to send more targeted follow-up and create segments of contacts. Edit the tag to indicate the topic of the opt-in incentive (to indicate what the contact’s interest is).
  3. This campaign should send the contact the incentive you offered to get them to join your list. With ActiveCampaign’s Dropbox integration, you can add PDFs directly to your campaigns.
  4. Automation ends

What do you need to use this opt-in incentive delivery automation recipe?

An ActiveCampaign account and a contact list. Depending on the opt-in incentive, you may want to set up your Dropbox integration to add PDFs easily to your campaigns.

4. Form Personalization Follow-Up Automation Recipe

When your email subscribers fill out a form, how do you use their individual answers in an automated, personalized email?

Personalize your emails with each contact’s individual form submission using this automation recipe!

A customized form or landing page asks for specific contact information in exchange for something.

You might offer:

  • A subscription to your email newsletter
  • A course
  • A free trial of your service
  • A coupon or discount code

When visitors submit the form, you want to send them personalized, automated emails based on their answers. It’s the perfect way to introduce personalization to your email subscribers and let them know that you will only send them information that is relevant and important to them.

This recipe pulls each contact’s answers from the form fields and uses those fields to segment your contacts by applying a tag.

You can tag or segment your contacts by:

  • Industry
  • Job title
  • Product interests
  • Customer status
  • Age
  • Geographic location
  • Experience

How does a Form Personalization Follow-Up automation work?

  1. A contact fills out your customized form with their individual answers
  2. The form responses go to ActiveCampaign
  3. Each contact is assigned a tag based on their responses (according to the form’s custom field and the if/else conditions the user creates)
  4. The contact receives messaging based on the tag OR (Optional) The contact enters an email automation based on the tag
  5. (Optional) The automation pulls the responses into the email with conditional content, creating a personalized customer experience

What do you need to use this form personalization follow-up automation recipe?

An ActiveCampaign account, form, and a contact list!

5. Contact Last Engaged Date Automation Recipe

How do you monitor your email contact’s engagement levels? Are you looking for an easier way to find your most engaged email contacts? What about your least engaged email contacts?

With the Contact Last Engaged Date automation recipe you can see the last time a contact engaged with your emails. The automation updates a date-based custom field to reflect when your contact opened or clicked a link in an email. This lets you automatically segment your contacts by engagement.

A custom field is a piece of information tied to a specific contact. It helps to tell the full story about a contact and store the information that you know about a given subscriber. This information can be pulled into email campaigns and automations for a more personalized customer experience.

This automation recipe tags your email contacts, or updates contact information when:

  • A contact opens an email
  • A contact clicks a link in an email
  • (Optional) A contact commits any action that a user uses to determine engagement. This could be submitting a form, taking an action on your website, or making a purchase

You can use this information to:

  • Monitor email activity and engagement
  • Filter your email contacts by engagement
  • Segment your contacts based on specific criteria
  • Target the right contacts for re-engagement email campaigns
  • Identify and remove unengaged email contacts
  • Improve your email deliverability

How does a Contact Last Engaged Date automation work?

  1. The automation is triggered whenever a contact opens any email or clicks a link in any email you send to them.
  2. The automation then updates a date-based custom field to show the date of the last email engagement

What do you need to use this contact last engaged date automation recipe?

An ActiveCampaign account, a date-based custom field, and a contact list!

6. Webinar Reminder Email Series

How can you use email marketing automation to boost your webinar attendance? Are you looking for a pre webinar email sequence or a pre-event email marketing strategy?

If you’re wondering how to promote a webinar (or other event), look no further! The Webinar Reminder Email Series automation recipe is perfect for webinar reminders or general event reminder emails.

Develop your webinar email marketing strategy by sending a webinar reminder email drip over a set period of time. This automation recipe requires a date-based custom field for the webinar date, and sends gentle reminder emails of the upcoming event.

A custom field is a piece of information tied to a specific contact. It helps to tell the full story about a contact and store the information that you know about a given subscriber. In this case, the custom field corresponds to the date of the webinar that a contact has registered to attend. This automation recipe uses that date-based custom field to trigger a reminder email for the event.

You can use this automation recipe for:

  • Sending webinar invitations
  • Providing webinar announcements
  • Email marketing for upcoming events
  • Giving updates to your webinar description
  • General webinar or event reminders

How does a Webinar Reminder Email Series automation work?

  1. The automation is triggered when a contact registers to attend a webinar or other event
  2. The automation reaches a goal of “30 days until webinar” (You can change when the reminder emails are sent. In this example the reminders are set to send at 30 days, 14 days, 7 days, the day before, and the day of the event).
  3. The automation waits until the contact’s timezone is 9 am (You can change the time the webinar reminder email goes out)
  4. The automation sends out the first meeting reminder email
  5. The automation waits until the second goal is reached (14 days until webinar)
  6. Email 2 in the webinar email sequence is sent
  7. The automation waits until the third goal is reached (7 days until webinar)
  8. Email 3 in the webinar email sequence is sent
  9. The automation waits until the fourth goal is reached (day before webinar)
  10. A webinar reminder email or event reminder email is sent
  11. The automation waits until the final goal is reached (day of webinar)
  12. The final reminder email is sent
  13. The automation ends.

What do you need to use this webinar reminder email series?

An ActiveCampaign account, a date-based custom field, and a contact list! Optionally — you can use this automation recipe alongside webinar software tools including:

  • GoToWebinar
  • WebinarNinja
  • Zoom
  • StealthSeminar

7. Send New Blog Posts Automation Recipe

You publish some great content on your blog, and you want your list subscribers to know about it.

Naturally! How do you send new blog posts to your subscribers without creating a new email every time?

There’s an automation recipe for that — the send new blog posts automation recipe.

This automation recipe automatically sends new blog posts with an RSS feed to automatically send out a new blog post email when your feed is updated.

And not just one blog — if you want, you can set it to send every 5 new blog posts, or however many you want.

And you can customize this automation to automatically send a new blog email whenever you want — just name the time, day, and subscribers.

How does a Send New Blog Posts automation work?

  1. Pull your RSS feed from your blogging platform.
  2. Click on the start trigger box that says “RSS feed [LINK]” and insert your RSS feed link. Then adjust your other settings like how often the RSS checks for new posts, and how often to send a new blog posts email. You can also select who you want to receive it, either all contacts or a segmented group of contacts, such as those with a tag of Blog Subscribers or those on a list for Blog Members. You can add additional conditions here if you want to.
  3. Alternatively, you could add your blog subscribers to a list called “Blog subscribers” and then create a condition that checks whether the contact is on that list.
  4. Click the Send New Blog Email box and then click Create New Email to create your campaign. Design it for your brand. Ensure you use an RSS content block so that your new blog posts show up in the email. You can decide things like how many posts are shown and other design elements using the RSS content block. You can choose to have this blog send immediately, or use Predictive Sending to send at the most optimal time.

What do you need to use this send new blog posts automation recipe?

Just an ActiveCampaign account, an RSS feed, and a segmented contact list!

8. Birthday and Anniversary Coupon Email Automaton Recipe

Do you want to make loyal customers feel special and celebrated? Add this special day coupon automation to your coupon marketing strategy.

This automation helps you celebrate customers on a specific date, like their birthday or the anniversary of them signing up with you.

You can use this birthday and anniversary coupon email automation to send your customers…

  • Birthday wishes
  • Birthday rewards
  • Birthday promotions
  • An anniversary email
  • Loyalty promotions
  • Special birthday offers
  • Anniversary coupons

…all of which reward customers and build customer loyalty

The trigger in this automation uses a date-based custom field for an event such as a birthday or anniversary. Feel free to adjust the settings to what special day makes sense for your business. It is currently set to trigger on the month and day of the custom field and then send out an email.

How does a Birthday and Anniversary Coupon Email automaton work?

  1. The automation’s trigger checks to see if today is a contact’s anniversary or birthday. (You need to create a date-based custom field for this automation.)
  2. If today’s date matches the date-based custom field, the automation is triggered
  3. The contact enters the automation and receives the special promo email
  4. The automation waits 1 week
  5. The automation checks to see whether or not the contact has clicked a link in the email
  6. If the contact has clicked a link in the email, they are assigned the tag “Used Special Day Coupon.” The contact then exits the automation.
  7. If the contact hasn’t clicked on a link in the email, they exit the automation without being tagged.

What do you need to use this birthday and anniversary coupon email automaton recipe?

Just an ActiveCampaign account, a date based custom field, and a segmented contact list! Optional: an integration to generate a coupon code and an ecommerce integration to check for a purchase.