Apr 21, 2016

New Automation Workflows, Increased Triggering Flexibility, and More in Our Latest Release


This week, we’re introducing several Automation updates that will make it even easier to give your customers, donors, fans, or students the information they need, when they need it. Let’s take a look.

New Automation categories and preset workflows

The first thing you’ll notice when you start building a new Automation workflow is that we’ve added a bunch of new categories and preset options. In addition to the E-Commerce, List Activity, Date Based, Custom (formerly Campaign Activity), and Integration categories you’re familiar with, you’ll now find brand new categories for Nonprofit, Education, Software, Music, and Transactional workflows. Now, it’ll be easier to select the workflow that properly aligns with your industry and needs.

  • Nonprofit includes workflows for welcoming new volunteers and acknowledging your most generous donors.
  • Education includes workflows for welcoming new students, sending lessons, and introducing new course offerings.
  • Software includes workflows for announcing new products, keeping your customers informed about product or feature updates, helping new users become familiar with your product, and offering whitepaper downloads after a customer performs a certain task on your website.
  • Music includes workflows for introducing new fans to your band or record label and thanking fans for purchasing your music.
  • Transactional is the new home of the Mandrill Activity workflow, which allows you to trigger workflow emails when subscribers are sent transactional emails.

For a full run-through of these new categories and what you can do with them, visit our Knowledge Base or our Working With Automation guide.

A streamlined experience for creating workflows

You’ll find the next important update on the Emails step of the Automation Builder. We’ve taken all of the scheduling, segmenting, and post-sending actions out of the Email Designer and put them into pop-up modals that overlay directly on top of the page. You’ll now be able to quickly edit the workflow timeline and adjust the scheduling and segmentation of all emails in your series in the same place, instead of having to revisit the editor to modify those settings for each individual email. This should help you build your Automation workflows faster, and make it easier to develop a cohesive workflow.


Add a unique trigger to any email

In the past, it’s been a requirement that every Automation workflow must only be dependent upon one singular initial event—or trigger. Each subsequent email in the series was built off of that one event, and while you could add post-sending actions, modify the segment, and change the delay for those individual emails, we received a lot of feedback from folks who thought the process was still a little too linear. So in this release, we’ve made it possible to add a unique trigger to every single email in any given Automation workflow. This will allow you to create a more precisely-targeted, granular series of automated emails than ever before.

Since a trigger doesn’t necessarily have to be based on the previous email in the series anymore, it opens the door to a whole new world of Automation possibilities. You could add a customer to an Automation workflow after they join your list, send the next message after they open the previous email, the next after they make a purchase, and so on. You’ll still have access to the full range of scheduling and segmentation options that you’re accustomed to, but now you’ll just be able to achieve a new level of precision as your customers proceed through a workflow.

Reorder paused Automation emails

Last but certainly not least, we’ve made it easier to reorder the emails in your Automation workflow. Now, you can change the order by simply dragging and dropping your paused workflows, as opposed to only changing their order while in draft status. When you reorder your emails, we’ll swap the content of the emails, but leave the existing trigger, queue, segment, and schedule in place.

Phew! That’s all for today, but we’ll have another update ready to share with you soon. In the meantime, we can’t wait to see the new, innovative ways you’ll find to use our new Automation features. As always, we’re listening closely to your feedback.