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Are you sending happy birthday emails to your customers?
If not, you are missing out on a golden opportunity to improve customer retention and loyalty in your store.
Why Do Birthday Emails Work In Increasing Retention?
- They delight your customers- this is the one day a year when every person wants to feel special, celebrate with your customers and associate this positive feeling with your brand.
- They Generate revenue- birthday emails have 481% higher transaction rate and 342% higher revenue than promotional emails.
- They re-engage customers- remind inactive customers about your store and get them back to purchase again by using their birthday as an excuse to communicate with them.
How to Collect Birthdays
- Customer accounts- use customer accounts as a way to collect birthdays, by adding a mandatory birthday field in your store account creating form.
This way you will get birthdays from both potential customers and existing customers who have already purchased from you. On the other hand, you will not have the birthdays of people who have bought from you, if they did not create an account.
2. Post-purchase- collect birthdays after customers already purchased from you, either off-site by email, or on-site by using your order status page with apps like ReConvert.
With this method you’re asking for birthdays from people who’ve already agreed to engage with you, so they are so much more likely to give it to you. On the other hand, you cannot collect birthdays from customers who have not already purchased from you.
What to Put In Your Birthday Emails?
This is the most important component of your birthday emails, give your warm birthday wishes to the customers.
Don’t be overly promotional, the kind of feeling that you want to give to your customers is that you genuinely want to celebrate with them, not just sell to them.
Make it personal, fun and don’t forget to have character. If you have any information about your customers like gender, age, job, family status etc, try to adjust your content accordingly.
2. An offer they can’t refuse
While you don’t want to be too promotional, you do want your emails to convert the customers to use their birthday offer and buy from your store.
Make sure the offer you give in your birthday campaign is something unique that your customers simply cannot refuse. If you offer 10%-15% off on things like signing up to your mailing list, offering the same discount on a customer’s birthday would seem pretty disingenuine.
So when including an offer in your birthday emails, make sure to make it special and if you can, adjust it to your customer’s interests and previous purchases.
3. A call to action
As with every promotion we send out, we want the action to be as clear and easy as possible for the customers.
Birthday emails are not different in this regard, you need to have a call to action bringing your customers back to your store. Add a button calling the customer to redeem his offer right now, and make sure it stands out against the rest of the email.
To improve conversions, you can also mention that the offer is only valid for an X amount of time, and that is not an offer that will repeat again.
In order to make the birthday email engaging, you need to have fun, colorful images that scream birthday celebration.
You can add a gif to animate the email, or even use a video wishing the customer a happy birthday and explaining the offer.
Make sure your graphics maintain the brand’s general voice and color scheme, while also making the email pop up and stand out in your customer’s eyes.
When to Send Birthday Emails?
1. On the day of the birthday
The most straightforward approach to birthday emails is sending one email on the day of the birthday, inviting your customers to enjoy a special birthday offer.
2. A week of celebration
The next approach of using a whole week of celebration allows you to send more than one email, and give your customer the option to redeem his offer for a longer period of time.
Send the first email the day before the birthday, hyping up the upcoming day, and let the customer know that a birthday offer is on its way to him.
Send the second email on the day of the birthday, and from there you can build your flow to behave differently whatever a person opened the first and second email and or redeemed the offer.
For the next 6 days after the birthday, send reminders regarding the offer that is about to expire. Make sure not to send these emails to customers who have already purchased.
3. Birthday month
This is possibly the most effective approach because it gives the customer the biggest amount of reminders and the longest time frame to redeem his offer.
With this approach, you make the birthday month of the customer a celebratory month, where he gets a special offer on your store for the ENTIRE month. The email sequence will begin on the first day of the month, explaining the monthly birthday celebration and the offer.
You will then send a weekly reminder of this birthday promotion, either reminding the customer to take advantage of the offer or even giving him different offers if he took advantage of the first one.
On the day of the birthday, you will send a birthday wishes email whatever the customer took advantage of the offer or not.
Similarly to the week of celebration approach, adjust the content of your emails according to the actions that the customer took.
Birthday Automation on More Than One Platform
We’ve been talking throughout this article about birthday emails, simply because this is the term that most digital marketers are familiar with. But we are all also aware that email open rates are on a downward spiral.
Customers are directing their attention to different platforms, and because of that we strongly recommend that you not only send birthday emails, but also take advantage of other platforms that might give you even better results.
Emails are the classic option, and you should definitely still be using them. Despite lower open rates, a lot of brands are still seeing amazing results from email marketing.
In order to use automated birthday messages through emails, you need to have your mailing list synced to an email autoresponder that has a birthday automation available as part of the service ( MailChimp and Klaviyo for example).
2. Facebook Messenger
Whatever we’re talking about birthday wishes or any other promotion, you need to use Facebook messenger. Most people are on Facebook, and most people open all of their Facebook messenger messages.
While there are some limitations to Facebook messenger marketing, you can still squeeze quite a bit of traction out of there.
Plus, your customers are used to going to Facebook to see birthday wishes from their friends and loved ones, so it is the perfect platform for happy birthday messages from your brand as well.
3. SMS messages
Unlike emails, most of us can’t really ignore when a new SMS message comes up on our phone.
Sending SMS messages to celebrate your customers’ birthdays is a super effective way to catch them on the go with a notification they are most likely to open. By including a link in the message, you can get them to your store to redeem their birthday offer.
Sending SMS to your customers doesn’t have to be complicated, with apps like SMSBump, you can send automated birthday wishes for prices that are affordable for businesses of all sizes.
Wrap It Up
When sending birthday emails we need to think first about the feeling that we want the customer to feel- we want him to be excited and delighted that we took the time to celebrate his birthday with him, but we also want to entice him back to the store with an offer he cannot refuse.
There are a variety of different approaches that you can use, but whichever one you choose, it is important to be genuine and warm, as well as to send more than one email to make sure you catch your customers’ attention.
This is a guest contribution from Ruth Even Haim. Ruth is the Co-founder of StilyoApps and head of content marketing. 6 years of IT experience serving in the army as an officer, 1 Year as a team & project manager at Ewave. Owned &ran multiple Shopify stores Including Stilyo.com.