Jewelry Email Marketing: Diving Into the Welcome SeriesLaryssa
Episode #256 – “Jewelry Email Marketing: Diving Into the Welcome Series”
This is Episode #256, and we’ll delve into one of my cherished subjects: email marketing, with a focus on the Welcome Series. We’ll emphasize the importance of constantly exploring fresh marketing strategies and being open to innovative ideas tailored for your business. Just as science and medicine rely on experiments for progress, your business too needs to test out theories to unearth new possibilities.
We’ll take a closer look at the Welcome Series by spotlighting Hilary Finck Jewelry, the proud recipient of the Joy Joya Jewelry Marketing Grant. Together, we’ll brainstorm ideas for her revamped Welcome Series, highlighting the potential benefits. Additionally, as a special treat, we’ll touch on Pinterest, a topic outside of email marketing.
For those joining our podcast series for the first time this season, I’d suggest starting with Episode #252. Doing so will introduce you to Hilary and allow you to follow this narrative from its inception.
Before jumping into our chat with Hilary, I’ll share some insights to help you build out your own email marketing Welcome Series. Let’s dive into the world of making your customers feel seen, heard, and welcomed into your brand.
Check out the transcript below.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 0:00
Ready to break free from algorithms, vanity PR, and money-sucking ads? My name is Laryssa Wirstiuk, and I’ve learned in seven years of jewelry marketing that content is the crown jewel. My agency, Joy Joya, takes a holistic approach, leading with laser-focused storytelling, impactful content creation, and strategic content distribution. This method has worked for the solopreneur as well as the multimillion-dollar company, and now I’m sharing these systems and tactics with you. Here’s to standing out in the Sea of Sparkle!
In Episode 256 today, we’re diving into one of my favorite subjects, email marketing, with a focus on the Welcome Series. We’ll be emphasizing the importance of constantly exploring fresh marketing strategies and being open to innovative ideas tailored for your business. Just as science and medicine rely on experiments for progress, your business too needs to test out theories if you’re hoping to unearth new possibilities.
So we’ll be taking a closer look at the Welcome Series by spotlighting Hilary Finck Jewelry, the recipient of the Joy Joya Jewelry Marketing Grant. Together, we’ll brainstorm ideas for her revamped Welcome Series, highlighting the potential benefits. Additionally, as a special treat, we’ll touch on Pinterest with Hilary. That’s, of course, a topic outside of email marketing, but it is something that Hilary and Joy Joya are working on together.
For those joining our podcast series for the first time this season, I’d recommend starting with Episode 252. Doing so will introduce you to Hilary and allow you to follow this narrative from the beginning.
Before jumping into my chat and interview with Hilary, I’ll share some insights to help you build out your own email marketing Welcome Series. So let’s dive into the world of making your customers feel seen, heard, and welcomed into your brand. But before we get to the solid gold, I’d like to take a moment to remind you that this podcast has both audio and video, so you can either listen on your favorite podcast platform or watch on YouTube by searching ‘Joy Joya’. You can support the podcast for free by taking the time not only to subscribe but also to leave a rating and review on Apple Podcasts.
Okay, let’s get into today’s episode, my Sparklers. So this one is all about the email marketing Welcome Series. I know I’ve mentioned this on the podcast at some point before. I’d love to redefine the Welcome Series for you just to make sure that we’re all on the same page here. So what exactly is a Welcome Series? For a jewelry brand—or really, any business that engages in email marketing—a Welcome Series is a curated set of emails aimed at introducing new subscribers to the brand’s ethos, craftsmanship, and unique offerings.
So basically, immediately after someone signs up for email, they’re greeted with an initial email message that warmly thanks them for their interest. Sometimes it offers an introductory discount code or other promo, and it just kind of sets the expectation for the email marketing to come. Then subsequent emails would do things like share a brief history of the brand [and] a personal note from the founder, the designer, setting the tone for the relationship. They can also spotlight bestselling pieces, share the story behind signature designs, or even provide a sneak peek into the craftsmanship process.
This is a perfect opportunity to educate the subscriber about brand values, be it sustainable sourcing, handcraftsmanship, or unique materials. Additionally, this Welcome Series can really remind customers about that welcome discount. You can sprinkle in other special offers or exclusive previews, and that Welcome Series should really entice the new subscriber to make their first purchase on an accelerated timeline.
But at the same time, it’s not just about sales. It’s about trying to create a bond with this person who has given you their email address, which is no small exchange. And then, by the end of the series, the subscribers should really feel a deep connection to the brand, understanding not just what the brand sells but also why they do what they do. This journey that’s crafted through the welcome series not only sets the stage for a lasting relationship, but in a perfect world, it turns your subscribers into your loyal brand advocates.
So now that you know what a Welcome Series is, why is it so important for you to have one? Why am I just going to be harping on this? Well, first, let’s look at the numbers. According to Klaviyo benchmarks, the average open rate for welcome email flows is 55.61%. It’s pretty close to the average open rate for regular campaigns, but here is the amazing part: The click-through rate on average for welcome emails is much, much higher than it is for regular campaigns, so we’re talking 6.52% for welcome emails versus 1.5% for campaigns. The conversion rate is also way higher for welcome emails, so we’re talking 2.38% for welcome emails and 0.10% for campaigns.
Now, of course, that’s Klaviyo reporting on their data, but I have definitely seen this myself looking at data for my clients’ campaigns. Welcome emails always, across the board, perform better. And why is that? Well, you can even think about your own behavior with email marketing. When you sign up for a brand’s email newsletter, you’re usually trained to expect that initial email from the brand, whether you’re looking for a discount or just looking for some guidance. You’re excited to see what’s inside, rather than with a normal email campaign that just randomly lands in your inbox. You are not primed to look for it, so you’re not expecting it. So just from a data point of view, that’s why it’s so important to have the welcome series. You’re really missing out on opportunities if you don’t have those emails in place.
Also, as we know in business and in life, first impressions really matter. That welcome series is often the first structured interaction that a subscriber will have with your brand. So if you have that well-crafted series, you can really leave a positive, lasting impression and then set the tone for future communications. It also encourages immediate engagement.
I kind of just touched upon this, but I want to emphasize it. If you’re offering an exclusive discount promotion, some kind of freebie, or some kind of value ad in that first email, it can potentially encourage your subscribers to make their first purchase sooner. Or if it’s not a purchase, they’re engaging with your brand more quickly than they would otherwise. Also, it can really give subscribers a chance to personalize their experience. Based on their interactions with your welcome series, brands can tailor their future communications to match subscriber preferences. Then, moving forward, that can also lead to higher engagement rates.
So, as you’ll hear in the interview with Hilary in just a few minutes, we are currently in the process of helping Hilary with her email marketing Welcome Series. When we audited her email marketing originally, we found that the Hilary Finck brand only had one email in their Welcome Series. It’s not really a series, then, but there was one email. And as you’ll hear in the interview coming up, she admits that she had designed it a year ago, didn’t give it much thought, and just knew that she had to kind of put something up there. That’s very common. No judgment. But now we can look at that and improve on it. So we started a new plan for her series on how we can take all the different parts of her brand story that haven’t really been brought to the forefront yet.
There really is a lot of work involved in strategizing a Welcome Series, not just because it’s a series of emails. An email can take work, but if you are going to establish this as the first impression that you’re making with your subscribers, you really want to get it as close to where you want it because it’s not really something you want to be changing every other week or just updating. You want to feel really good about it so that when you implement it, you can give it time to work and see the results. So it’s important to put thought into it. It’s important to get it to a place that you feel proud of and that you think really represents your brand story.
So the welcome flow that we’re finishing up for Hilary Finck includes… In the first one, it’s just a welcome that warmly introduces subscribers to the brand. It presents her collections, and she does have a welcome discount in that first email. The second one in the series is a letter from Hilary. She even has her signature there, so it feels a little bit more personal. She also shares her favorites from all her products, which is really nice to see. The third one is more information about how to engage with Hilary if you’re interested in designing a custom piece of jewelry. And then the last one invites subscribers who enter the flow to add their birthday for a special treat on their birthday. That kind of just shows, again, what they’re going to expect. It makes them feel valued. It kind of shows the brand’s ethos, and it encourages them to connect more intimately with the brand.
With each one of these emails, the thing that we’re also doing to make it a little bit more sophisticated and to take advantage of the tools in Klaviyo is that after that first welcome email, which shares the welcome discount, the flow branches out based on customer behavior. So everyone goes through these four steps of the flow, but if someone doesn’t make a purchase at any one of these steps and they don’t yet use the welcome discount, they actually get a second version of the email that has a banner at the top that’s a reminder of the welcome discount. But people who have used the welcome discount won’t get that redundant messaging.
So this is just something we added to help personalize the experience even further. It also gives us great data about how likely someone is to use that welcome discount. So right now, our goals for Hilary and the new Welcome Series are really to build trust with customers, to accelerate those subscribers into first-time buyers, to educate those subscribers, to make them excited and feel special that they’re part of the email list, and to get insights into what’s resonating with subscribers based on what they’re clicking on or not clicking on. And we’ll just keep monitoring that over time.
So now let’s get to what you want to know. What are my tips that you can use for your jewelry brand? These are some insider tips you won’t want to skip. Number one: Start with a bang. That first email sets the tone for your relationship. It makes that first impression. You want to make it memorable and truly representative of your brand. A heartfelt thank you is great, but you can consider sweetening the deal with an exclusive offer or discount. So get them excited about being part of your brand’s inner circle from the get-go.
Number two: Tell a story. You know jewelry is a personal buy, and people really want to feel connected to the brand they’re investing in. So use that Welcome Series to tell your brand’s story. Who’s the genius behind the designs? What’s the history? Do you have a unique sourcing process? I want you to share all those things and make your subscribers fall in love with your brand.
Number three: Show, don’t just tell. Make sure that your emails aren’t too text-heavy because the goal is not to have someone sit there and read your email like it’s a book. The goal is to have someone be inspired and delighted by the content that you’re sharing. And since jewelry is so visual, we want to have pictures in there, and we want to inspire someone to click through to your website. So make sure that you are visually communicating a story to get someone to click.
Number four: Be a resource and not just a sales pitch. Yes, of course, you want to drive sales. But what about also adding value by sharing things like jewelry care tips, style guides, or the meaning behind some of your iconic pieces? This shows you’re not just in it for the money—even if you are—and it fosters a deeper connection with your customers.
And number five: You’re going to want to track, analyze, and tweak. So after that Welcome Series is live, please do not just set and forget it. You want to monitor how your audience is interacting with it. Which emails have the best open rates? What are people clicking on? Use this information to your advantage, and then refine your series to make it even more impactful in the future. I hope those tips were helpful. Without further delay, let’s get into my interview with Hilary.
Hi, Hilary. Thanks for coming on the podcast today!
Hilary Finck 15:44
Laryssa Wirstiuk 15:45
So the first thing I want to chat about is the Welcome Series that we’re putting back together for you. You had one welcome email that was like a welcome discount, and now we’re building it out to have more storytelling and adding more layers to that. So I’m curious: What has this process been like for you working through and rethinking the Welcome Series?
Hilary Finck 16:13
Well, it’s been a relief, as are most of the things that you guys are doing for me. It’s just been really great because I know that I’ve needed a better Welcome Series. I mean, I designed that one email, like, a year ago, and I kind of forgot about it. So I know that I just needed a better introduction to my brand. That’s what these emails are about, so I’m really excited about them. We’re going to be showcasing the different collections, things about me personally, and things about custom, which is so important to my brand. So yes, I’m just really excited about it. It’s going to look great.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 16:58
Yes. And the one thing that I liked about working through that was that it brings up other questions about things that should probably be revisited anyway. For the custom, for example, we’ve been talking about: “Well, how can we now improve that custom jewelry page on the website? If we’re going to build out this email, we want to make sure there’s a place to take them to that actually makes sense.”
Hilary Finck 17:21
Definitely, yes. You’re so right. It just opens up a little can of worms with all the different places that need improvement and revisiting.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 17:28
Absolutely. Do you have thoughts or ideas about how you think it will impact the email strategy overall?
Hilary Finck 17:35
I think it will help get more people to go to my site, because there are going to be four emails, right? So I’m really hoping that drives traffic to my website, which is the whole point. And then I just like the idea of them getting something that’s more branded. These emails are going to have the same voice. My monthly emails will have the same type of voice and the same type of look. So I just think overall it’s going to build brand trust and more brand identity and recognition. I like that it’s kind of the key. It’s the first look; it’s the first introduction.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 18:18
Yes, definitely. The first impression. Setting an expectation, also—what are people going to get when they interact with you and become subscribers? So definitely. Oh, and I forgot to mention too that with that welcome discount, in Klaviyo we can set up conditions so that as people move through the series—if they still haven’t used the discount, they’ll continue to move through the series—they’ll get a reminder of the discount as well until they hopefully use the discount and make a purchase. So that’s something too that continues to remind people that that’s available for them.
Hilary Finck 19:00
Four emails seem like a lot for me, but I trust you guys that it’s the right thing to do. I’m not a marketing expert, so I’m like: “Oh, I don’t want to bother anyone.” You know what I mean? I know that I need more touchpoints with customers.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 19:22
That’s something I hear so much; designers say they don’t want to bother people. I get that attitude; it makes sense. I don’t want to bother people either. But the reality is that only a small portion of people are actually seeing everything that you’re putting out, so it’s less of a bother and more like hoping to catch someone at the right time. It’s not very likely that everyone is going to see all the things. So, you need to just be front and center with those subscribers.
Hilary Finck 19:57
And sometimes it’s like a reminder for someone, like: “Oh, right,” so and so’s “birthday is coming up soon. Right. She loves Hilary’s jewelry.” Especially for men—I do have a good amount of men as subscribers—I find that that’s really helpful. I’ve even heard from friends of mine who are on my list. They’re like, “Thank goodness you put that email in because I totally forgot” so and so’s “birthday” or “anniversary was coming up.” So it’s really helpful.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 20:24
Yes. Even with me, with shopping—and not even with jewelry, but daily household things that I need to buy—I’m sometimes happy that I get an email. Like: “Oh yes, I meant to buy that, and I didn’t. So thank you.”
Hilary Finck 20:39
Laryssa Wirstiuk 20:40
So in addition to bringing up those questions about what to do with custom, a big part of this series has brought up questions about how we should position you as the face of the brand and how much of you to reveal and get personal. And I’m curious: How does that make you feel? And what does it bring up for you?
Hilary Finck 21:01
I don’t mind telling a personal story about how I’ve gotten to where I am, how I got started, and where I am now. I don’t mind telling the story like that. I don’t mind showing pictures of my favorite jewelry or things like that. But I do get a little shy when it comes to images of myself. Like, how would I wear it? Well, I don’t necessarily want everyone to see my face with earrings, a necklace, and stuff like that. It’s just being self-conscious, I guess. So that, I probably won’t do too much of. I don’t mind having personal tidbits in it at all. Especially since I’m much more of a maker than some big, huge brand, I think people really like that personal touch.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 21:53
Yes, definitely. We had suggested some things too that maybe the listeners want to borrow. Like, if you’re shy about showing the jewelry on you, maybe you could even do a mood board, like pick clothing brands or handbag or shoe brands that you think your customers would like. It doesn’t even have to necessarily be your favorites, but you know your customers would resonate [with them]. And show, like: “Okay, how would I put an outfit together with this dress and these shoes? And what necklace and earrings would go with it?” So that could also be a way to do that as well.
Hilary Finck 22:27
Yes, that actually sounds like fun.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 22:28
So another thing that’s been on the meeting agendas is Pinterest and how to really get it started. No shame. Like, not criticizing Hilary, but it’s just something she hasn’t put focus on because she’s so focused on Instagram and doing a great job there. So we’ve talked about: “Well, how can we kick this off in a way that doesn’t feel overwhelming and can at least maybe start to fill out her Pinterest profile a little bit so we know where to go next?” And I’m curious [about] how you’ve been feeling about that. And what are your thoughts about what we’ve been discussing with Pinterest?
Hilary Finck 23:10
I just need to do it. I mean, I did add a bunch of images the other night as we were discussing. I actually need to put them on boards now. There’s just so much that I don’t understand about Pinterest. But now that we’ve talked about that, I’m like: “Oh, okay. This is actually way simpler than I thought it was.” So I know I can do it. It’s also just a matter of finding the time to do it. That’s something that I’m just not sure about but [that] we’re going to use later. So I’ll be able to plan out pins for Pinterest or posts for Facebook or things for Instagram. I think that will help a lot. Yes, I know that I need a better profile on there and that it’ll help expand my reach.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 24:01
Yes. I think it does take some extra work upfront. It’s like a lesson in visual merchandising, basically, like thinking through: “Well, how can I group my products even in the most basic way?” Like, necklaces and earrings—grouping by color, by seasonal colors, or by trends. Keeping that pretty simple, and then fitting the products into those groupings or boards. So that setup—yes, that’ll take a few hours. But once you have the basic foundation down, like Hilary said, using a tool… Later, for example, we’re just going to start literally by repurposing her Instagram content and getting a flow of pins going to Pinterest to start to see: “Well, does this impact traffic? What seems to be doing well? What are people responding to?” And once we get a baseline of that, we can be a little more strategic about it. But it’s more about getting the content out there without giving her too much extra homework. So it’ll be an extra step to put it on later.
I had also told Hilary that she’s going to want to adjust her captions a little bit and make them less first-person and more descriptive of the image, thinking about: “How would people search for this and then find it?” So there’ll be a slight adjustment there. And thinking through: “What board should this go on? And how do I want to merchandise it?” But once that initial setup is done, it’s maybe, like, 10 or 15 extra minutes to keep up with that.
Hilary Finck 25:46
That sounds great. And then you also shared that Shopify has a Pinterest app embed, I suppose it’s called, so that I can easily transfer individual products over to Pinterest with the caption there and all of that. So that’s kind of linked, so that’s great.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 26:03
Yes. That’s an easy way to at least ensure, at the bare minimum, that your new products are getting up on Pinterest. I would say to people listening, that’s not the only Pinterest strategy you should have, but it’s a bare minimum thing you can be doing if you have Shopify. After we spoke, I’m wondering: Do you have any thoughts about merchandising for Pinterest or how you want to approach it?
Hilary Finck 26:33
I might do it similarly to how my website is set up. So I could do it by collection, by type, or by metal. What I don’t have on my website is by stone or by color. I probably need to add a ‘By Gemstone’ category on my website. I think something like that. And then I might just start doing some grouped images of layered necklaces and things like that, just to add a little bit more interest in what might look good together layered and things like that.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 27:12
Yes, absolutely. As I had discussed with Hilary, so many people come to Pinterest for styling advice, ideas on what to buy themselves, ideas for gifts, and how to wear things for the seasons—more inspirational content related to visual things in your life, like what you wear. So, yes, having single products is good, but then having another level showing how to wear things and how this actually looks in a lifestyle—those are things that I think will really resonate with people as well.
Hilary Finck 27:50
Yes, I will do my best.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 27:52
I’ll make sure Hilary does it. I’ll keep her on track. She has a whole to-do list now of things to work on. [laughter]
Hilary Finck 28:04
It’s good. It’s very good.
Laryssa Wirstiuk 28:06
Well, thanks for meeting today, Hilary. I appreciate it!
Hilary Finck 28:09
You’re welcome. My pleasure. It’s good to see you again!
Laryssa Wirstiuk 28:11
What did you think about the interview? Are you excited to follow Hilary on this journey? I highly encourage you to check out Hilary’s website, HilaryFinck.com, and follow her on Instagram, @HilaryFinckJewelry. [There is a] link in the show notes as well. Also, let me know in a podcast review or YouTube comment what you think.
Let’s get into THE GOLD MINE. Welcome to another edition of THE GOLD MINE, a segment where I get personal and share insights on entrepreneurship, mindset, success, growth, and all things business. THE GOLD MINE allows me to share topics and insights close to my heart.
This week’s GOLD MINE is all about a trap that all of us fall into. I do it too. You do it. We all do it. Making assumptions. You’ve probably heard the old saying—I remember it from when I was a kid because I thought it was funny—”To assume makes an ‘ass’ out of ‘u’ and ‘me’.” Because, you know, those things all spell ‘assume’, in case you didn’t get it. It’s cheesy, I know, but it’s got a really good point. And honestly, it’s something I remember all the time. Assuming stuff about people, especially your customers, is risky business. It can mess up not only your personal relationships but [also] totally impact how you engage with customers of your jewelry business. I’ve seen so many jewelry brands slip up here, so I’m going to break down some very classic assumptions that can lead to mistakes and missed opportunities.
The first one is one-size-fits-all marketing. If you’re thinking—maybe not even consciously, but just assuming—that everyone wants the same kind of jewelry and the same experience out of interacting with your jewelry brand, that’s a bad move. This can potentially alienate a whole bunch of your audience members. Try to segment your marketing for different tastes and preferences. Also, the price game—you may think that everyone is just hunting for a bargain. In that sense, you may feel pressure to discount or offer promotions. Sure, there will always be people out there who are bargain hunting, but there are [also] other people who appreciate quality and craftsmanship and are not necessarily looking for a deal. So don’t miss out on those customers by focusing solely on the price-conscious customers.
Another assumption or mistake would be to think that maybe your customers don’t have their own ideas or wishes about your jewelry. I think some brands have their own creative vision. They’re really set in the products that they want to create, and it’s important to have that resolve in what you’re putting out there in the market. But if you can be open to hearing customer feedback, perhaps opening up custom or personalized options, then you will be in a better position to give customers what they want.
Another thing is: Don’t assume that loyalty is a given. Thinking that a customer will always stick around is just a recipe for disaster, so don’t take your existing customers for granted. Keep offering value and engaging with them to make sure that they do stay loyal because there’s so much competition in the marketplace and so many other places they could go.
There’s also the FAQ fallacy. Just because you’ve got an FAQ page doesn’t mean you’ve covered everything. Give customers ways to easily reach out to you. Make that customer service touchpoint so obvious that they can contact you for nitty-gritty stuff that isn’t on your website, because I promise you there are questions that you are not addressing.
Another assumption that jewelry brands make is that some brands just think their jewelry is for self-purchase, so they market that way. And they never touch upon the aspect that jewelry can make for great gifts. So definitely include options for gift wrapping, gift receipts, or even a prompt at checkout asking if the purchase is a gift.
Another thing is assuming everyone knows their jewelry size or that they know how to size themselves for jewelry. That’s really just setting yourself up for customer service headaches and a high rate of returns. Providing size guides or even virtual try-ons to make life easier for your customers is great.
And then finally, a common mistake is skipping the small fish, right? If you’re focusing solely on high spenders or frequent buyers, you could potentially be missing out on opportunities to charm those occasional shoppers, who can also be very valuable and eventually turn into loyal customers.
Are you making any of these mistakes? If so, it’s time for a rethink. Sometimes it’s better to act like your customer knows nothing and then go the extra mile in communicating. So what else might you be assuming about your customer base? Put yourself in the shoes of a clueless customer and think about their possible questions or confusions. Address those, and you’ll see how positively people will respond.
What did you think? Let me know in an Instagram DM, podcast review, or YouTube comment. Did you have any questions about today’s episode? You can always email me, Laryssa, at Laryssa@JoyJoya.com. If you love this podcast, please share it with a friend who’d appreciate it. And don’t forget to subscribe as well as leave a review on Apple Podcasts.