What’s Better? An Auto-Responder Sequence Or Broadcasts?


In this article, I’m going to talk about the age-old debate of whether an auto-responder sequence or a broadcast system is better for your email marketing campaign. Honestly, it’s kind of like the chicken or the egg argument. I’ll end the suspense now and say that the answer is… it depends. I know you don’t like that answer because it doesn’t answer the question in the title of this article, but let’s just take this a step further and discuss both sides to this question.

An auto-responder sequence is a set number of emails that go out automatically at specific times after the last email was sent out. For instance, when you sign up to a new list, you’ll most likely get the first email right away followed by the second email the next day. You’ll probably get an email everyday for the first 7 to 10 days, then the emails might be every 2 days after that. Or they might be every 3 days, or every 4 days. The beauty of an auto-responder sequence is that it can be set up in any way possible, and it runs on complete autopilot.

So lets look at the benefits of an auto-responder sequence. First, it’s a ‘set it and forget it’ approach. You set up the sequence one time and you don’t need to set it up again. That doesn’t mean you’re not going to change it or tweak it in the future, but you don’t need to re-create it or anything like that. The beauty of this model is that everyone gets the same experience no matter if they start the sequence today or a year from now.

The other nice thing about auto-responder sequences is you can add to them as much as you want. Let’s say you wanted to send out content daily for 1 full year. You don’t have to create the full year at one time. You could literally just create 1 email a day for 1 full year, and you’d still be ahead of your readers. The downside of auto-responder sequences is that if the information in the emails is no longer relevant, you’re harming your list more than you’re helping your list. You’ll have to find those emails and either edit them or remove them completely.

On the flip side, broadcast emails have a lot of power too. A broadcast email is a ‘one-time’ mailing to your readers at a specific time and date. The nice thing about broadcast emails is that they are very relevant to what’s going on right now in your business. There’s a ton of applications for broadcast emails.

For instance, if you have a brand new product and you want to launch it right away, you would use broadcast emails for the next week or so promoting your new product. If you put those emails in your auto-responder sequence, who knows when someone would see those emails. That doesn’t mean you can’t add those emails to your sequence later on, but you want to make sales now for your new product.

Plus, let’s say you have a teleconference call you want your readers to be a part of. Broadcast emails are the only way to go to get them on that call. In fact, you can even do a countdown type of thing where you send an email out 1 hour before the call reminding everyone there’s only 1 hour to go until the special call happens.

Let’s say you’re reading a great book and you had an epiphany while reading the book. Let’s say you wanted to get the message out about what you just learned. A broadcast email is perfect for that. Also, let’s say you ask your readers a question and you get a bunch of responses back, but they are all saying the same thing. You can answer all of your readers the same time with a broadcast email giving them the answer they are looking for.

Bottom line is that most likely you’re going to use a combination of broadcast emails and an auto-responder sequence. The reality is there’s no right or wrong way to set up your campaign. The real difference is that with broadcast emails, you have to constantly send them out. If you don’t, your readers hear from you whereas auto-responder sequences always are working even if you’re not.

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