Back to all episodes

Automated E-Commerce Emails

Stay up to date!

Subscribe to our podcast for weekly motivation and actionable advice to build your dream business.

We talk with Franco Varriano from RareLogic behind the app Rare.io that makes building automated e-commerce email flows very simple.

Transcript

Jesse: What’s going on, Richard? How are you?

Richard: Great. I’m excited again. Always, this time of the week.

Jesse: We are always excited to talk e-commerce, even though it’s might be nerdy to some people, but, if you are listening to this podcast, you’re probably excited as well.

Richard: Yeah, it’s not just because it’s Friday, since we record it on Friday, that’s not the reason, right?

Jesse: So, today we’re going to talk about automated e-commerce emails and maybe a little bit of a mouthful, but I think everybody knows they should really be spending more time on emails. If you don’t know, then it’s our job to convince you that you really should be, because it seems like, that’s kind of, to me, that’s the easy money in e-commerce.

Richard: Yeah, I mean, you’re going to hear all kinds of people talking about got to be on social media and you got, I mean, you heard in the intro, we think you should be on Instagram too, you should be anywhere your customers are. But, one key thing, that’s actually — they are your customers, but they’re on someone else’s platform, and email is always a way to get them back on your playground.

Jesse: Yeah. So, Instagram, Facebook, they’re all awesome and of course we encourage you do that, but that is not your playground. That is not your football, if Instagram says, you know, tomorrow, this is my ball I’m going home, you know, you’re out of luck. So, one way to prevent that is of course to have your own website, but even more, so you have to build your own email list, like, period. There’s no, you know, if you really want to make it in e-commerce, like, long term, don’t forget that, please, build your email list. So, this is, this should really help out with that.

Richard: Yeah, and today’s guest is going to be great. We’ve always heard the traditional, you know, “Start a newsletter” and this and so, it’s great to actually hear from someone who’s built a software, that actually is built it around thinking e-commerce first. So, I’m excited.

Jesse: Yes, absolutely. So, let’s bring in our guest, this is Franco Varriano, Head of Growth and Partnerships at Rare.io. How’s it going, Franco?

Franco: Going well, thanks Jesse, thanks Richard. I’m excited to be here.

Richard: And that’s Rare.io.

Jesse: Rare.io. Oh, man…

Franco: It’s used to be Salesforce.com thing, right. Sometimes it’s Rare, sometimes it’s Rare.io. But this is the URL people are looking for us.

Richard: And such team player he left the “I” out.

Jesse: You know, when you work at a company called Ecwid, that’s Ecwid.com everybody, just, you know, I understand the pronunciation, so we got out there. So, Franco, you know, what does Rare.io do?

Franco: Yeah, absolutely. So, I mean, we’re basically a personalized email marketing service, built specifically for e-commerce merchants in this case Ecwid, because we have done some other stuff on a couple different platforms, we started testing the waters many-many years ago and, you know, have basically taken our application and the success, that merchants have seen over Ecwid to help Ecwid merchants succeed with their personalized automated email marketing.

Jesse: That’s awesome, now, you know, for people that haven’t, that they are, like: “Oh, yeah, I know what email is, I know it what newsletter is.” You know, what do you mean by automated email. What’s, you know, break that down for somebody that’s brand new.

Franco: Yeah, absolutely. I mean, I’m sure we’re going obviously dive into some of the more advanced stuff, that you can do with that. But, basically, as you guys are saying in the intro, you know, having an email list, that’s your database of customers, they belong to you. You can reach out to them anytime and it’s way easier, way less expensive to convince somebody to buy from you again, than it is to try and acquire a brand new customer. So, holding on and building an email list is really gold. And, so, what we help merchants do is really find the opportunities and find the gold in that email list through a bunch of personalized algorithmic or AI based data segmentation, which again we can talk, we can highlight some things to do as beginners, but, basically, you know, once you have that email list of customers that belong to your customer database, you want to be able to reach out to them as frequently as possible. And, so, that’s where you’ll do things, like, newsletter or individual campaigns for specific sales or specific milestones, sometimes tied to a calendar event, like, Halloween is coming up or something like that. But, automated is the, that’s where the real gold comes in, because now you’re making money in your sleep. Now you don’t have to tip something up specifically.

Jesse: And, Franco, so yeah, I mean, the first things we’re talking about there, that’s, maybe what people are more familiar with, that’s newsletter’s and that requires you to, you have to get creative and find, yeah, “it’s Halloween, I’m going to do a Halloween sale.” But what you’re talking about now with automation is a little more next level. So, what would be some examples of that?

Franco: Yeah, absolutely. So, I mean, there’s common places to start and Rare does a good job of making it easy for Ecwid e-commerce merchants to kind of jump in and do that, so common things, like, welcome campaigns, abandoned cart emails, order follow-ups, that kind of stuff. Anywhere, where there is an automatic trigger that can happen somewhere inside your business, where you can reach out to people day or night, because again, commerce is global, these guys, you know, are potentially buying from your store from all over the world. So, you don’t want to delay they’re, waiting for you, the busy store owner, or, you know, your bigger team your director of marketing or something like that, you have to write up, you know, each individual customer, their individual email or wait for that next opportunity to upsell them. You want emails going out and making money 24/7.

Jesse: That’s perfect. I mean, that’s the whole dream of e-commerce, right. Like, I want to make money while I sleep, how do I do it?

Richard: Yeah, Jesse is just start using it, right. He makes money on his e-commerce store, every time he sends out an email and still dreads sending emails, he needs more automation.

Jesse: Yeah, automation, that’s then you don’t have to get, you don’t have to be as creative every single month through, every time you need some money, so. So, an example of automation be, like, OK, you mention when people sign up for your newsletter or maybe, you know, when they place a sale, is that, like, a such of the triggers before the automation to kick in?

Franco: Correct. Yeah, I mean, so, there’s a bunch of common ones things, like signing up for newsletter, buying a new product, looking at, you know, the website, maybe add some things into the card and not completing the order. So, there’s a bunch of common trigger points where, you know, to go from sort of amateur to new to intermediate to expert, you want to deliver a better service in front of mind to your customers and just try to make sure that you’re helping them cut through the noise and see that there’s a special offer available to them right in that moment and capitalize on that intent to buy, or to browse, or even reward them, you know, they placed a certain amount of orders and you’re looking to do a loyalty campaign. It’s always nice to let people know that you appreciate them and, kind of like we said just a few moments ago, it’s easier to convince somebody who has an established relationship buying from you. They know that your products are legit. They like the quality, they like the customer support, they like how fast it gets to them. It’s way easier to convince them to come back and continue to buy from you, than it is to say, you know: “Hey stranger, I’ve got something that you want to buy, here it is.” You know, right, it does not have that relationship there. So, that’s where automated emails can come into play. An automated, you know, may carry a bit of a negative connotation, like, it’s not personalized, but that’s where Rare comes in a way to help make those deals that go out feel very real, and look very real, and be very specific versus, you know, that traditional newsletter that where you’re blasting your entire email list: “Hey, come take 10% off, you know, and shop.” That’s not super personal, if everybody is getting the same offer on the same product. That’s not really interesting.

Richard: And so, it’s kind of, we won’t go too deep, because again to get a little bit complicated, but just as as e-commerce fans, Jesse and I really geek out on this stuff, it sounds as if, you still have to work on the flow of what that actual email would say, or is Rare actually creating the email for you? You’d still have to figure out the flow, like, if this happens then that and you stuff to write out the tax, write the AI’s not that, like, or…

Franco: Not, it’s a bit of both, I guess. So, I mean, so, Rare as a product we’ve got lots of starter templates ready to go for you to apply to your store. We’ve got the most common formulas or trigger points set up for things, like, welcome emails or abandoned carts, you don’t have to try to imagine where should this fit into my business. We’ve already identified the most common and most critical areas for you to free to just set up an email for, so, that’s all in the software, when you sign up and go ahead and create it.

Jesse: Yeah, I love that, especially for newbies, where they might, if you’re listening this podcast and saying: “Yeah. All right, automation, I’m going to do it.” And then, that’s all you have, you know, that’s hard.

Richard: So, basically they would just go into their vernacular, their vernacular then, right. So, you got your templates over jumping in there, but again getting excited. So, you got the templates, it’s pretty much there. Here’s the 80 percent of what you’re going to need and now you put in your 20 percent that makes it unique to your customers, your vernacular, your site, your product.

Franco: Exactly, correct, yes. So, I mean, the cool thing about it, and I’m sure we’re going to get to this maybe a bit, so, hopefully, I’m not jumping the gun, but, you know, when you’re thinking about email marketing a lot of other names might jump out like Mailchimp or a constant contact or something like that. And that’s great, because you’re coming from a perspective of: “I’ve got an email list or a database of customers and I want to get some news out to them.” And traditionally the best way of doing that was just a newsletter which sort of, you know, most of the time just recaps company news or blog posts, but it’s not really commerce focused. And so, you know, for a long time, if you’re using that kind of software that kind of tool, you’re then trying to figure out, like: “OK, well, how can I quickly pull, you know, my product picture and now I need the description and I need how many reviews there or I need the price.” And what happens if somebody buys that, how does that integrate with, you know, Ecwid in terms of lowering my inventory count. Well, with Rare that was built specifically for e-commerce email marketing, you know, with the direct integration for Ecwid, we do so many things on the back end there in terms of if you do want to start from scratch or, you know, customize a template that we’ve got in there, you’re able to find your products right there in the interface. So, you don’t have to go digging around the Internet or digging around you know some on your computer to find “Where did I keep, you know, that product shot or that description or group”, you know, back and forth with your site and copy and paste will do an amazing job of pulling all that product information right into your email for you.

Jesse: So, it also sounds as, if even though you have a lot of feature sets that could almost go enterprise or could go to enterprise level, that a beginner could come in, utilize your software and, you know, will direct them exactly where Rare.io later and they can look at the price and all the different stuff. But it looks from what I can see here, like, they get started right away and literally take the place of Mailchimp right now, and then may be or may not use all those feature sets, but they’re not going to have to move into a whole new software and learn a new way of working with that they could just grow as their business grows.

Franco: Yeah, absolutely. I mean, that’s the goal is to, you know, kind of as we’ve mentioned is, as you build that email list, which is your gold, or your customer database and you almost customers, you want to be able to continue to get the most out of that list as possible and make smarter product recommendations each time and maintain that relationship with each individual customer at once, so that’s where some of our AI and all the stuff that we do behind the scenes that we’ll get into in terms of smart timing and smart product recommendations. To y make sure that each email that we send is not something that you have to sit down and think, you know, hours about, like: “Hey, you know, Richard bought this last time, so I’d better make sure that this time that I’m reaching out to him I’m going to do this.” It just allows you to do it, you know, at scale in an automatic way.

Jesse: Yes. I mean, Jesse here with a question on. So, let’s say someone has a store, you know, they sell bikes and they also sell apparel, right. So, maybe, somebody that buys a bike might be interested in several things and buy parts and such, but somebody that bought apparel, maybe they’re just going to stick with apparel. Does your software give somebody the ability where: “OK, they bought a bike. Let’s say in a month or so we’re going to give them, you know, offers on bike tires and things like that.” Is that kind of what we’re talking about?

Franco: Yeah, absolutely. So, I mean, all those kind of settings are configurable and it really depends on the merchants and what they need and how many products that they have in their store and that kind of situation, but in the context you described, yeah exactly. If somebody comes in and buys a bike it doesn’t make sense, you know, for fifteen hundred bucks or whatever, it doesn’t make sense to keep recommending bikes every time is there an email. Obviously, they need more stuff and there’s only so many bikes you can buy in a year, unless you’re really making bad choices, but, you know, you totally will need you know helmet gloves, you know, the racing jersey, maybe some footwear, maybe need some new pedals, maybe need a water bottle. So, those kind of related products or other smart things, you know, if somebody seems to be buying from one specific brand collection for example, look I’m not an avid cyclist, so I’m not sure. But, you know, I’d imagine that, you know, a manufacturer of clothing supplies and accessories, you know, if you tend to be a fan of them and you tend to be buying those products, it doesn’t make sense to show you products from a brand, you know, brand B that you might not like as much as brand A. So, as the system sees that, you know: “Hey, this customer in particular on your customer list on your email list tends to be buying, you know, brand A. Well, let’s show them more brand A stuff.” And, if, you know, somebody tends to be buyer across the board then they get a little bit of everything, but people tend to have favorites and things that they look for, right, I mean, the funny part about e-commerce sometimes is that as merchants we sort of forget our own biases as individuals when we go shopping. You know, everybody tends to have some affinity towards certain products and certain things and so, you know, we tried to take that information that an individual give us by browsing your site by having purchase history and just automate that process of view the strong or not needing to keep track of all these of personal preferences, that the software takes care of that for you.

Jesse: Yeah that’s super cool, because as a merchant, you might have a hunch on a couple of these things, but first you have to actually have the right hunch and then you have to set up all these different emails that say “if person X buys product Y, then send email Z” and, you know, my head is already exploding on this. So, I mean, I think that’s awesome, that this software can basically has this AI in there they can just start figuring that out for you.

Franco: Yeah, absolutely. I mean, it doesn’t have to be that complicated, but I mean you can end up seeing, you know, if you were to try and keep track of this stuff manually, you know, you almost end up with like a football playbook with all kinds of different things happening. But, I mean, if your business isn’t simple was: “Hey, this is a monthly subscription box and, you know, you just need to renew every quarter, provide your feedback or, you know, there’s a few products upset here and there,” it can easily handle that, just as well as it will handle something super complicated, where, you know, you may be shipping a bunch of different cycling parts and accessories internationally to a bunch of different time zones and a bunch different currencies. So, Rare definitely is able to help scale that through and throughout those different samples.

Jesse: Yeah, that’s perfect, especially for people that, you know, are getting a basic idea of what we’re talking about, but say: “Man, I really don’t want to set that up, I really just want to push the easy button on this and have email start making money for me.” So this is AI and AI needs data in order to work… How long does it take Rare to start seeing these connections and start sending the right emails?

Franco: Yeah, absolutely. So, I mean, on the back end we extract a lot of that complication for merchants. So, based on we’ve been in business for over six years, and, like I said, across a couple of different platforms with some with, you know, servicing merchant and a bunch of different industries, so, we’ve been able to collect and gather a lot of really interesting data that feeds back into the templates, that feeds back into the preset recommendations, when you say: “Hey, I need a welcome campaign.” So, we take care of you’re a smaller store, we’re basically giving you see data to start with based on what we’ve seen work. Now, assuming your own customers start to interact with those emails, or they interact with your website, or they start racking up some purchases through those emails, then we can actually start to tailor it a little bit more individually to them. But, you know, if you’re brand new, you’re just setting up your Ecwid store today and you recognize that, even though it’s not super sexy, email marketing is probably a good channel for you to build and own over time and invest in over time, you can plug Rare and right away today and it will start learning as you start to add those customers, as people start to sign up your welcome email, you know, as people have abandoned their carts, you know, come back and purchased, it will learn who those people are and what’s happening and what the best is, you know, what the best products are to show them.

Richard: So, even though it’s nothing like Google Analytics, it’s like Google Analytics in that it’s better to have a connected to your website, even if you don’t use that data in the beginning, it will be useful later. So, in this particular case, you might not be using all the feature sets, but in the background without you doing anything, Rare is learning more about your customers, so as you decide to use the other feature sets, it’s ready to go.

Franco:: Yeah, absolutely. Exactly.

Jesse: Yeah, I think something that’s really interesting to me is, I take a look at, you know, of course we told people to build email list before and usually people put up a sign-up link and then, when the customer who signs up that email they get an email back that says: “Thank you for adding your name to our newsletter.” Period. “Goodbye.” And, you know, wow, I think this is just such an easy thing to do, like, oh why wouldn’t it be the first, yeah “I thank you, and here’s a video of me showing off my products and then in a week there is another email that, you know, I don’t know talks in more detail about the factory or the source” or, and of course you want to throw in a sale there at some point too. So, yeah just a huge missed opportunity. And if I could just plug into some software and have more than half of that email was written for me, you know, I’m pretty excited about that.

Franco: Yeah, absolutely, and I think that, you know, in today’s world where everybody is glued to Instagram and, you know, Facebook or whatever you’re competing for customers attention, you’re competing with other notifications from a messaging app from the social network. So, if somebody is on your site and sees enough value, either or discount, you know, offer ethics into a newsletter or some, you know, special sales that only they would see or a members only section or word depending on your business model how you’re organizing that, you only have a split second to capture their attention and throw on their site and they see no value to give you their personal information, that email address where you can start to build that relationship with them, because that’s what they’re opting into they’re saying: “Hey, you have something that I want or there’s something in your brand that I really like and I want to be a part of it.” It’s a community movement kind of thing, but they’re busy they’re going to forget about you. And, so, 74% of people maybe that status change you know they expect an instant welcome email right then and there and kind of like saying you know don’t just make it out: “Hey, thanks for signing up. We’ll be in touch in a month.” Not, like you still have their attention. Make that super actionable. Start sharing your mission and what you’re all about. Give them a place to start, especially if you have an extensive catalog or something like that, like they may not know what the best products are, what do what do other community members like, you know, what should I buy, are there any starter kits or is that kind of stuff, like. They’re excited, they’ve given you that attention they bopped it in, so make it easy for them to take that next step and don’t wait a month to make that sale, go ahead and start, you know, in a positive and reinforcing manner just let them know that: “Hey, we’re here for you. Here’s some cool stuff that you might like to know, either about us, either about the community that you’re joining or about, you know, some of the products that we have on the site, that we think you might like as somebody who’s new here.”

Richard: So, does this Rare also, well, obviously, you’re tracking that users what they’re doing and figuring out what would be good to recommend to them. Are they also keeping in mind, are you also keeping in mind other users and what you’d see other people’s patterns and maybe recommend like “Other people kind of, other people are doing this you might want to look at this”, so even if they’re brand loyal you start to see a bunch of other people use and just say: “Shimano, back to the bike stuff.” And then they start going over to another brand or they see something that works well with that brand, do you start kind of working with the other users data too?

Franco: Yeah, for sure. So there are some some of that cross pollination, especially if there is a limited size catalog or they seem to be slowing down in some of the purchasers, depending on what’s happening globally on the site, you can start to see some of that stuff come into the recommendations, but we try to tailor it as much as possible to the individual, but it’s really based on the business and the store size. So, you know, everybody gets something a little bit different depending on who they are and who they’re trying to sell to.

Jesse: Yeah, that’s awesome. I think there was something you said too, Franco, that like I think it’s important to stress to people, that when people are on your website, if they give you their email, they expect to hear from you and they probably expect to hear from me a couple of times, so you’ll really like, I think a lot of people are afraid to send emails sometimes, they feel like they’re spamming, or, you know, “I really shouldn’t do this,” but, you know, you said it right that people are expecting to hear from you and this is the opportunity where that that attention that they’ve now given you, there’s a lifespan to it, if you don’t let them know, you know, like let’s say you wait a month for your next newsletter, you’ve really lost the opportunity and that person is not there. They don’t like respect you for waiting a month to send an email there. They’re like: “No, I signed up, I want to hear your story,” so.

Franco: For sure, and they have probably bought from a competitor, you know, 30 days is way too long. In the age of fast shipping and being able to find anything at your fingertips, you know, I would have moved on and gone and gone to the next person, if I hadn’t heard from, you know, certain vendor or whatever. Yeah, so, capitalize on those opportunities, capitalize or want attention and go ahead and make the sale.

Richard: Yeah, especially for those people who sometimes use it as they get this, give us your email we’ll give you this digital download, and they don’t even, you know, they’re on to something else. They don’t even go look at the digital download yet. Now you wait for a while and you send an email and you didn’t do anything. Sometimes, I’m sure, I don’t know the exact stats, but I’m sure there’s a pretty high percentage that are, like: “Who is this again, like, I don’t remember who this is?” You don’t do some sort of indoctrination series of some kind.

Franco: Yeah, exactly. I mean, you know, talking about emailing in 30 days or the old kind of newsletter paradigm towards email marketing, you know, each individual is different, not only in the product recommendations that they want to see, based on purchase history, or what they’re looking on the site, or wish list, or whatever, but each individual now also, you know, we all know, it’s a busy world. We’re all kind of on our own schedule, so, you know, you shouldn’t just send your emails every Monday at 9:00 a.m.. You know, I shop at night and that’s when I have free time and it’s, you know, on my iPhone when I’m on the couch. So, Rare also takes into account that smart timing sort of element to it is, you know, welcome emails, you definitely want instantaneously, they like I said giving you your attention for other things, other campaigns, other automated emails, you want it to happen when that person is ready for it and when they’re most likely to buy from your store. So, Rare also takes that into account of saying: “Hey, you know, we’re some emails that need to go out right away.” And that’s baked into the template, we recommend not changing it. But then there’s other emails where, you know, you as a store owner, think: “Hey, I’m going to blast everybody, you know, Tuesday at 9:00 a.m. or Monday at 9:00 a.m. and kickoff the week, well, you know, Monday morning at 9:00 a.m. that’s when I’m emptying my inbox from all the emails I’ve got over the weekend, to start fresh in the week, you know, that’s another element to keep in mind.

Jesse: So, I know some point in there you were mentioning, like discount codes, so, I’d imagine you have to go create those codes in, like, yourself in the site and then Rare just pulls those codes out or how, give me the 101 on how that works?

Franco: Yeah, absolutely. So, I mean, the e-commerce platform Ecwid is the source of truth. So, that’s where, you know, you’re going to maintain your product catalog, your description, the photos, the prices, the coupons, all that stuff. Rare we’ll then just pull all that information from there into the email marketing software to help you quickly access that kind of stuff, so that if you are building a custom campaign for Halloween or, you know, Black Friday is coming up, you’ll have those coupons that you have created, or the product collection, or any of that stuff already available to you right there. And it’s easy, we’ve just got like a very intuitive drag-and-drop email builder if you’re looking to change up some of the templates, that you want to build it from scratch, you’re just dragging these big blocks of information over, so text, images, products, recommendations, all that kind of stuff, and just kind of tweaking it as you’d like to have your design fit in there or whatever you prefer your style. But it’s all super easy to build or, you know, customize based on your needs, but all that information will come from the Ecwid store.

Richard: Got it. So, say, you had a code in there, that said: 10 there, let’s going to make some up here. There’s a 5 percent code, there’s a 10 percent off code, and there’s a 15 percent off code, you could set it up to where, if somebody keeps coming back to the site and they always buy something, then I’m literally making this nearly up right now, say, maybe, you do, like, a this one is going to be a 15 percent off, we’re going to give a bigger discount, but it’s going, but in the verbiage it’s going to say: ‘Because you’re a loyal customer, we really want to say thank you and can’t really give away margin’s all the time,’ whatever. I mean, that’s not the greatest email, obviously, but we want to say thank you, right, some sort of loyalty and then, maybe, someone else, like, they’ve come multiple times and you want to give them a 5 percent, you know, they’ve come here three times they haven’t. And then they still don’t take advantage of that, and then two more weeks go by and then maybe now they get a 10 percent discount. And, you know, I’d imagine there’s times that this works great, but I imagine there’s some times where it’s almost, like: ‘Damn, now they’re always waiting for a discount code.’ So having that AI is actually pretty cool. Can get that granular there?

Franco: Yes, what you’re talking about there is segmented, what’s called email marketing segmenting or email segmenting. And that’s where, you know, depending on which one you’re using it’s already baked right in a Rare, some other platforms you can do some external segmentation or whatever, but we’ve got what you’re talking about baked right into the platform, where we have these segments, that just keep popping up or that you can create, if you’re looking for something super specific, you can get as granular, saying: ‘Hey all the people that I acquired, you know, from the Facebook ads campaign,’ because I’m not saying: don’t do ads, I’m just saying: make sure you get their email. If you’re doing an ad and you’re you have a special offer and you want to, you know, and somebody purchase it through a coupon code or some you could say: ‘Hey, Rare, show me all the customers who came in through that offer by using that coupon code, and then you know show me what other products they’ve purchased in the past, or show me how much money they’ve since spent, or what cities that they came from, or all kinds of information like that.’ So, that’s really where, you know, our customer success team can come in to help you navigate those waters, because there are so many different signals to look for, I mean, we do a good job of showcasing, like I said those basic things that we’ve identified in your business that everybody should be doing if you want to be successful at selling online. And then, if you really take it to the next step, you know, we’ve got a team of experts here, who can help you kind of figure out: How to do this segmentation? How do I automatically send, you know, a five percent discount code if they’ve been here every day and they’re not converting? How to increase it from there? If somebody is buying a lot, how do I keep them engaged, but don’t give them too much. That’s something we can help regrow for sure and it’s all, you know, the capacity is baked into the system.

Jesse: That’s great. So, this isn’t really, this isn’t a DIY project, like, this is a, you know, hit up support, give them your questions and they can help guide you as well.

Franco: Yeah, I mean, the beautiful thing about Rare is it’s a pretty big open toolbox, so if you got the expertise of, you know, enterprise level, you know, email marketing or e-commerce email marketing you can go in and pull over levers that you need. If you’re just starting out, you’re not sure, you know, what’s the best way to get started, we try to make it as easy as possible for that to happen. So, we try to, you know, meet everybody’s needs as much as possible as well.

Jesse: That’s awesome. So, we talked a little bit about some, you know, some in-depth concepts here, you know, is there some, like, example that we could give that people could check out on their own or any, you know, do you have any sample that we could check out?

Franco: Yeah, absolutely. So, I mean, we’ve got a bunch of Ecwid stories on the Rare platform, but I would totally recommend going to check out that coffeeroasters.com.hk there actually, the company is called Coffee Roasters Asia, but they’ve done a really amazing job, you know, they’ve only been on the platform, they’ve been using Rare for four months, and we’ve been able to help them earn, like, over 10,000 dollars through email marketing. So, that’s, you know, directly attributed to the emails that they send out. Now they do a lot of campaigns, so they are setting up specific sales or specific events, but they do have some automation set up as well and that’s quickly growing and ready to the automation stuff is, again where you’re making the money in your sleep where you don’t necessarily need to be ready and on standby to send every single person who takes different action on your store a different email, Rare will handle that for you, so you can get some sleep, but still make some money, or you can take a weekend off and know that, you know, we’re still making you money and you also have us to feel when you’re back or whatever, but at least we’re getting you those orders.

For sure. Yeah, actually, I just checked out the site. It’s coffeeroasters.com.hk for everybody and this I think is a good example for people to help visualize it, you know, that, so they sell specialty coffee and specifically in Hong Kong. They actually have a Chinese and an English version. So, that’s pretty cool, actually. But, my guess is that people that buy one specific coffee here, like, specialty gold apple fresh bread pomerleau, like, they might be ready to reorder in say 14 days or 30 days or something, so, I mean, it makes an obvious, like, that email makes perfect sense, like: ‘Ok, they bought this kind of coffee, they probably want that again in a certain amount of days, so, I mean, is that what you guys did for them, that type of automation?

Franco: Yeah, exactly, that kind of stuff, again welcome email, so, you know, people want to try something, so especially, you know, that guys ship internationally. So, especially if you want to try something new, that comes from, you know, different places where you’re not really sure you notice something different than going to the grocery store and just picking up whatever folders or something like that. You know, you want to sort of entice people to try something new and so these kind of products, where, you know, you’re able to kind of consume them and have people come back and either discover new things or, you know, tend, you know, create new flavor profiles and they want to reorder, that the kind of automation that we can take care of for you, so that automatically, you know, if you know that your products tend to last for a month, maybe on day 25 you send somebody: ‘Hey, you’re about to run out of coffee, that would suck if you wake up you know Monday morning and don’t have coffee, how about you place an order now and it will be at your place for, you know, before you run out,’ something like that. Or you could be, like: ‘Hey, you know, we’ve noticed you tend to try a lot of these types of coffee beans, maybe, you want to try something a little bit darker, maybe something a little bit lighter,’ or: ‘Hey, we’re introducing a new roast!’ That’s just one example, you know, of a consumable kind of product. Same thing for cosmetics versus, you know, apparel, you know, unless you’re bringing it out, unless the season is changing where you live and you need some heavier or lighter clothes, or there’s a new collection coming out, you know, you have to kind of create those opportunities to kind of sell and hit people look. Whereas if it’s consumable, like, through the coffee, or cosmetics where people are using shampoo, they’re using their makeup, they’re using their body wash, they’re drinking their coffee, you know, there you can set up a lot more of that kind of automation, where you’re doing the product refills. But there’s opportunities for automation in every business type, in every business model, no matter what you’re doing, and once you have that set up, then it’s work that you don’t have to recreate, it just repeats itself for you. And so now you’re saving a bunch of time and you’re able to focus on other aspects of your business.

Richard: Wow, that’s awesome. So, Franco, I know you have another product you’re working on and I don’t want to go deep into that now we’ll have you back on another time. But, I was just thinking about this as you were kind of going through a lot of that, and then you went into the segmentation piece. Is it pretty easy to segment the list and actually can you export that list to, say, I want to only advertise to people, who’ve bought these type of products or is that something we should cover at another time?

Franco: The capacity is all there and that’s where you’re getting into some of the stuff that I love to do, because, you know, I’m a growth marketer and an email guy. And, so, that’s where, yeah once you own that email address or once you own that customer you have that relationship, you were able to now use that, you know, you retargeting ads or to try and create a Lookalike audience on Facebook. So, that’s how you grow your business, I mean, so but it all starts off with that email list. It all starts off with that email list, that’s the hard work of building that relationship and, I mean, you know, and you don’t want to sound malicious or anything like that either in terms of, you know, didn’t look like audiences are retargeting or anything like that. Those are the tools that you need to leverage to try compete with other brands, but make sure that your loyal customers are staying engaged with your audience otherwise, somebody’s going to come in there and scoop that up. So, I mean, I don’t mind seeing brand’s ads for products that I love, especially if there’s something new coming out, or something I should try that I haven’t. It sort of acts as a reminder and, you know, when I’m ready to capitalize, I’ve seen that ad, there’s been enough touch points, I trust them, I’m ready to order. You know, so you got to think of it in that way, I mean, there’s always, for sure, less than positive or less than ideal ways and, you know, outcomes, but, you know, you try to focus on the good stuff of building a real company, building a real brand and being there to fulfill the needs and wants of your customers.

Jesse: And I think the important thing there is that it all starts with the email. So, you know, everybody should know by now if you listen to this whole podcast you got to get the email, but not only do you have to get the email the person who signed up your newsletter or whatever automation they’re in, and they need to be kind of indoctrinated into your company, you can’t just send one email and then later on think they’re going to continue to buy from you, so. So, definitely, get that first email, and I think we’re giving you all the tools to do it. We just need you to just need to help you along the way.

Franco: Yeah, exactly. I mean, like we’re saying, you know, going up the whole way, like, we can get really deep into this and geeky on the e-commerce side. That’s obviously not something I think we want to do right, this instant we were saying to get away or go away, I mean, a few times, sorry guys, we’re trying to get you there. But, I mean, the basic stuff, like, if you just want to get started today, it’s set up some automations, all the ones that recommends are five or six of them right there in the software: welcome campaigns, abandoned cart campaign’s, idle customers, so people who haven’t bought for a while, touring customers, people who’ve forgotten about you just disappeared. And if you just start emailing those guys with some, you know, thoughtful and meaningful and put yourself in their shoes when you’re writing these emails, you know, what would they want to hear, what would make them come back, you know, and try to create that meaningful relationship with them. And once you’ve created that email, I mean, like I said, that’s running for you 24/7, 365. And then you can start to layer on some special offers, either once a month, or once a season, or end of the quarter, or whatever with those manual campaigns, where you’re dragging and dropping those blocks of content, building your email, but Rare is taking that information and personalizing it to each individual customer to increase your chances of success.

Jesse: Oh, for sure. I mean, that’s the full playbook there everybody’s, so, Franko, that’s awesome content. I hope a lot of people are taking some notes, pulling over on their drive to, you know, I think about the plan out their email. But, I mean, so obviously, best place for Ecwid customers is to go to the Ecwid App Market and you’re looking for Rare.io, since I butchered it earlier, but, Franco, where else can people learn about you guys? I would assume you have an email series, that maybe people would be interested in?

Franco: Yeah, absolutely. I mean, folks can visit our website as well, I mean, we link to it from the Ecwid App store, but people can check us out at Rare.io, and there we, you know, we’ve got a blog, we do have a newsletter series that goes out where we educate folks, our customer support team and success team are standing by all the time. They’re happy to help out if you’ve got questions about, you know: ‘Hey, you know, how do I get started, what should I be looking for?’ We’ve got all kinds of helpful information that we can either share or jump on a coaching call and help you.

Jesse: Awesome. And, Frank, what if they want to hear more from you personally, is there any place that they can find you online?

Franco: Yeah, absolutely. The best place to find me online is, you know, on Twitter: @francovarriano, and, of course, @rareio as well.

Jesse: Awesome. Rich, any last questions?

Richard: No, I was just laughing, because I had already just followed them Twitter, like three minutes before he said that.

Jesse: Awesome, we’re watching it on Twitter now, Franco, so, awesome, I appreciate it. Have a good one.

Franco: Thanks so much guys. Really loved being here today.

Richard: We’ll look forward to having you back.

Jesse: All right, Rich…

Richard: It’s good stuff. Yeah, I can’t wait to, you know, a little leak on what the others, they’re going to be working a little bit more with advertising and retargeting.

Jesse: Let’s not scare all our listeners, Rich. Come on now.

Richard: No, not scared, no, no.

Jesse: We want to we want everybody be excited about doing this email, because.

Richard: It’s inspirational, people aspire to be better, grow, like, they got the meat, they know where they can get started. All is good.

Jesse: You have your store. You got to think about email and then you think about advertising, or maybe advertising first email, second.

Richard: See what I mean? You see what I’m saying? I’m not going deep, just looking forward to it.

Jesse: I’m with you. But, yeah, I mean, couple of things that stood out to me from what Franko said, I think particularly for beginners, we went in depth on some stuff here, but I think the beauty is that the templates already exist in the software, so you don’t really need to, if you didn’t understand half what we said, that’s fine.

Richard: It doesn’t even matter.

Jesse: Yeah, you just, you know, I’m kind of pumped I think I got to sign up for this now and just go through this. And I think, what templates mean is, OK we said welcome series, or we said you know, abandoned cart series, well, it’s already written for you. You just need to change some of the words, you know.

Richard: Exactly, like, 80 percent of it is written. Now you just put your store name instead of that template store name and you put the way you would word your product or whatever. But it’s probably 80 percent written for you. You don’t have to configure things.

Jesse: Yeah. Yeah, I’m in the middle of a project right now where I’m undergoing some of this stuff and I’m writing all those things and figuring out when should I send this email like, I’m doing it the hard way. I want the easy way.

Richard: It’s part of what the beauty of Ecwid is, it seems, like, everything from Ecwid itself to the partners, it seems like you guys are really always keeping the customer in mind that, yes you want to grow, but we’re going to try to get it as easy for you to get started as possible, sales, 101.

Jesse: Yeah, I think this is like just another example of, basically, all this stuff is was enterprise stuff. Ten years ago, even five years ago, this would be, you have to go through a sales process you’re paying thousands of dollars for somebody to scope this out, you know, so now with with e-commerce, with email, with advertising, it’s all, you know, all these things are basically available as an app for, like, 20 bucks, 50 bucks, 100 bucks, you know, where, you know, it was thousands dollars for this kind of stuff a few years ago. So, it’s awesome times.

Richard: Good stuff. Yeah. All right. Let’s sign up.

Jesse: All right. Rare.io, Franco, you got two customers here, so that’s awesome. All right, everybody with Ecwid E-commerce Show. This is Jesse and Rich. Get out there. Make it happen.

Hosted by
Jesse is the Marketing Manager at Ecwid and has been in e-commerce and internet marketing since 2006. He has experience with PPC, SEO, conversion optimization and loves to work with entrepreneurs to make their dreams a reality.

Want to be a guest?

We want to share interesting stories with the community, fill out this form and tell us why you would be a great guest.