Author Archives: Jordie van Rijn

About Jordie van Rijn

Jordie is an independent email and marketing automation consultant. Entrepreneur Magazine titled him “One of 50 Online Marketing Influencers to Watch”. He is the founder of the international platform for Email and Automation Software selection and well known trainer and keynote speaker.

Transforming email subscribers into sales-ready leads


You have 50,000 email subscribers in 17 countries. Congratulations! But how many of them are really buying your products? The number of email subscribers by itself, is, as you can guess, pretty useless. It is the combination with quality and proven process that makes the difference. So how do we get from mass marketing to mucho business?

1. Moving beyond engagement requires insight

While an engaged audience is a tremendously valuable asset, engagement is no guarantee for sales. A marketer should be much more interested in conversions and the path that leads thereto. So we are not looking to increase opens or clicks, we are looking to connect, engage, earn trust and ultimately, create value. With that in mind email marketing is going strong as one of the cornerstones of marketing. In fact, 89% of marketers say that email is their primary channel for lead generation.

So if the intent is to move your potential customers down the sales funnel and along the customer journey to convert subscribers to clients, this is what should be measured. If you can’t measure how far along they are or how what has led to a conversion, fix that first. No-one wants to market in the dark.

2. Consult the funnel

With every piece of marketing content, treat it like a piece of the puzzle and make a habit of returning to your marketing and sales funnel for reference. Recognize the stages of the marketing and sales funnel.

In which buying stage does this particular piece of content sit? To which prospects does it appeal and how does can it help move him or her to the next stage?

The content needs to be tailored for the prospect at the right stage. This helps a company become intentional about messaging – you may even consider manually writing follow-up emails, as opposed to automating them. It might sound like a strange idea, but even as a temporary measure, it can help get you in the habit of thinking granularly about personalization. When automating follow-up, at the very least, make sure you provide a compelling message fitting your product or service that matches the stage of each individual contact.

3. Segment, then segment further

Not only is segmentation based on sales funnel stage a smart move, but you can also further personalize the experience. Of course, you can segment your email subscribers a hundred different ways: by demographics, buying frequency, interest in high value versus low value items, etc. These days there is more interest in behavioral information and Psychographics.

pillars of segmentation

Regardless of how you decide to slice and dice your email list, the aim is to resonate and bring a subscriber to action. So it is not only building the right segmentation model, but also making it feel like a personalized experience that is “always on the ball”.

Don’t forget the impact imagery can have here. In B2B and B2C pick a wrong persona, or wrong (too general) industry as a hero image can feel very disconnected for the subscriber.

4. Make use of behavioural activation messaging

What we used to call Email autoresponders was once an exception and advanced email methodology. But those (low conversion) days are over. Today, it’s neither very complicated nor expensive to track the behavior and actions of your subscribers and use this information to created triggered messaging sequences.

Although basic automation will make your life easier, triggers are your key to 70% higher open rates and 150% higher click through rates. A trigger is the action, event, or behavior completed by your subscriber (like making a purchase or abandoning an item in a shopping cart), which you track, in order to automatically send a relevant email as soon as the event is triggered.This is the one and only context in which I will suggest that you get “trigger happy.” The trick is to not sit and wait until a visitor or subscriber triggers an event sequence, the data that drives the triggers is a micro conversion by itself, so the new goal is to tease people into revealing their (intended) behavior.

This is the one and only context in which I will suggest that you get “trigger happy.” The trick is to not sit and wait until a visitor or subscriber triggers an event sequence, the data that drives the triggers is a micro conversion by itself, so the new goal is to tease people into revealing their (intended) behavior.

5. Use mid and late stage content

Your subscribers will often appreciate when you give them something of real value, for free. Well, not really for free. Because what we are looking for is getting a feel on who is ready to buy.

Content can be a way to build a positive relationship and experience. Even better, it proves your worth instantly and helps to establish you as a thought leader or specialist. As long as your content doesn’t suck, the trust paves the way towards conversion.

Even if you haven’t started with lead scoring tactics, Webinars can be a good way to see who is ready to promote themselves to sales ready leads. At the same time attendees can see how your solution fits their needs, and a demonstration of how your offering can help them.

Connect, engage and close

Email marketing is excellent for staying top-of-mind and presenting new products or features. Ultimately, your email marketing campaign needs to drive sales. In order to convert your subscribers into customers, keep their sales funnel stage and status at the forefront.
Work consciously on moving them down the funnel toward purchasing. Segment your list, and personalize your emails to provide the right information at the right time to the right audience. Establish trigger emails so all of this can work while you sleep. Provide genuinely valuable content and remain transparent, informative, and inspiring.