five email automation examples

Email automation examples help you learn what other companies are doing so you can better decide how to leverage marketing automation technology.

We don’t know what we don’t know.

If you’re just getting started with email automation, it’s hard to know where to start. Even if you’re somewhat of a pro, you might still find plenty to learn from these examples.

We’ve got five email examples for the following use cases:

  • Incomplete user task
  • Website visitor viewed specific page
  • Highly engaged website visitor
  • Win-back email for previous customers
  • Quiz email for user onboarding

1. User didn’t complete task (InVideo)

Automated email example for InVideo

Email type:

This email from video ad creation tool InVideo is sent when a user begins to create a video using one of their templates, but does not complete the process.

The email trigger here is the user’s incomplete task.

InVideo is a newer startup so they’re going above and beyond the standard incomplete task email by also asking users to take a survey about what went wrong and schedule a meeting.

Why InVideo sends this email:

Just like ecommerce companies might send an abandoned cart email, SaaS companies are wise to send an incomplete task email. There are a lot of benefits to doing so:

  • Get users to log back into the product if they felt stalled or unsure how to proceed
  • Get new users to experience the “Aha” moment before they churn completely
  • Remind users that their task is incomplete (in case they got busy, or simply forgot)

As a newer startup, InVideo isn’t just sending this email to better onboard new users and inspire existing users to log back into their platform, they’re also sending this email to collect feedback.

Not every company will be in the position to hop on a phone call every time a user doesn’t complete a task, but for companies that are still building their product and are hungry for feedback from actual users, it can be smart to take the opportunity to dig deeper.

How you can benefit from something similar:

Take stock of your product. If a user doesn’t complete a task, what is likely to be the reason? What would the goal be for your email? Would it be to just get them to log back in and complete the task, or is the goal of your email to also collect feedback about what went wrong?

If you’re uncertain why users don’t complete tasks, then some customer feedback (in the form of a survey or recorded user sessions) would be really smart in order to help you build out an automated sequence that really helps people.

First figure out what the problems are, then build your email content around what you discovered so you can automatically help other users experiencing the same issues. And of course, update your UX to fix anything you find.

2. Website visitor viewed an important resource (InVision)

Email automation example

Email type:

Here’s the deal—not very many companies send emails based on pages that website visitors have viewed, and since GoSquared can help you send this type of email, it’s very exciting to see one out in the wild.

This email from InVision is sent to leads who have viewed The New Design Frontier landing page.

Without even downloading the report, a lead will still receive this email.

GoSquared has the technology to trigger these sort of emails to captured leads and users.

Why InVision sends this email:

Clearly, InVision has decided that anyone who checks out this report could be a great fit for the enterprise version of their app. InVision is waiting to only send this email to leads who have downloaded this particular report.

Even if you’ve just viewed the page, InVision will send this to leads who were captured from downloading something previously, or because they are using the free version of their software.

Essentially, why only send email to people who have downloaded a certain report, if you can also email people who have viewed the landing page?

How you can benefit from something similar:

Perhaps downloadable guides and lead magnets are essential to your business. If so, you can follow the above example very closely. If not, you can use the same technology to send emails you have viewed other important pages like:

  • Pricing pages
  • Product pages
  • Feature pages
  • Demo request pages
  • Contact pages

Knowing which pages a visitor has viewed can give you context to start a conversation or inspire action via email.

3. Highly engaged website visitor (DesignBetter.co by InVision)

Email marketing example

Email type:

This email is a simple request to share DesignBetter.co with friends. The CTA button takes the user directly to a pre-written tweet to share on Twitter.

To sweeten the deal, there’s the chance to win a notebook. Hey, why not?

And to increase the chance of sharing even further, this email is sent only to new users who are highly engaged. Typically, this type of email is triggered based on when someone signed up and how many pages they have viewed or long they have been on the site.

For example, inside of GoSquared, you could create a smart group with this criteria:

New email subscriber fewer than 10 days old AND viewed 4 or more pages OR time on site is greater than 5 minutes.

Why DesignBetter.co sends this email:


In all seriousness, DesignBetter.co knows that they are giving away really valuable information (via their podcast, conversations, and ebooks) that product design leaders probably can’t get anywhere else. It’s not unlikely that their audience would want to share, and the chance to win swag certainly doesn’t help.

It’s also one of those emails that makes you feel like you’re getting a warmer welcome than the initial “you’re now subscribed” sort of email. It’s a bit more persona, despite the HTML styling.

With this email, DesignBetter.co can inspire more sharing from its most engaged new subscribers.

How you can benefit from something similar:

You can copy this to a T and ask only your most engaged website visitors for a share (using the Smart Group filtering criteria mentioned above). You can even offer the chance to win swag, or entry to a special live event.

However, the lead filtering behind this could be used for other campaigns besides asking for shares:

  • Drive engaged website visitors deeper into your funnel
  • Offer a special coupon
  • Offer a resource or guide
  • Schedule a demo

When you’re able to segment out who’s engaging with your site the most, you have the opportunity to deepen the relationship further.

4. Win-back email (Skillshare)

Email marketing example

Email type:

This type of email is called a win-back or a re-engagement, because you’re trying to convert someone who used to be a customer back into a customer again.

Skillshare is offering a special promotion for previous customers. Instead of the standard $12/month for monthly billing or $8/month when billed annually, Skillshare is giving a deal of $4.95/month when billed annually.

Why Skillshare sends this email:

Sometimes, your best new customers are your old customers. In a world with rising customer acquisition costs, no one can really afford to just spend money on bringing in new people and forget about everyone who had converted at some point in the past. Not realistic!

Are you sending win-back campaigns, or are you letting former customers fall through the cracks?

How you can benefit from something similar:

If you have a subscription-based company, you can follow Skillshare’s lead and send a win-back email that offers a good (or great) discount on an annual plan. For service-based businesses, you could offer an add-on service when someone purchases a regular service, or you could offer a discount on a regular service.

For ecommerce, a BOGO deal or a really great coupon applicable for anything on your site would be a great way to inspire repeat purchases from someone who hadn’t shopped with you in a while.

With GoSquared, you can create a Smart Group with criteria to automatically send a win-back email to customers who haven’t had a repeat purchase in a certain number of days or months.

5. Email to onboard unengaged users (Eventbrite)

digital marketing example

Email type:

Onboarding is no easy feat. It requires creativity to stand out in crowded inboxes, and it must be centered around problems that the user is trying to solve—or objectives they are trying to achieve.

Great onboarding reminds users why they signed up for your product in the first place, what they can achieve, and why they should log back in.

Why Eventbrite sends this email:

Eventbrite sends this email to new users who aren’t engaging with the product and using it to create and promote events.

Too often, companies have an initial onboarding email, but they fail to keep in contact with users going forward, especially with inactive users. This is a big mistake. Your inactive users are a very important audience to win over.

How you can benefit from something similar:

If smart onboarding is essential to your business, you should create a sequence for all new users. If your product is fairly simple, you can use the above email as an example, and educate users of your value propositions to entice them to log back in and get started.

What about onboarding for more complex products? In your first email, you’ll want to hit on the main value of your product. In subsequent emails, you should introduce readers to increasingly more advanced features.

Instead of just setting this up as a drip, you can trigger your onboarding emails based on user activity and behavior. For example, a user who has used the core feature more than 3 times (or simply logged in more than 3 times) will get the next email in the sequence to learn about the next feature.

Meanwhile, a user who hasn’t logged in again since signing up will be reminded of the core value propositions of the product.

Email automation allows you to cater your messaging to what a customer needs, when they need it. Hopefully, these email automation examples and the triggering criteria behind them help inspire you to set up similar automations of your own.

Did you know? GoSquared is launching Marketing Automation to help you put your website analytics and customer insights to work.