Physical products have many first impressions: Ads, shelf presentation, unboxing, and now since so many products are connected, the app and websites that support them. For many people, a wearable or app connected devices is a completely new experience.
Consumers want brands to take their hand and walk them through a quick, easy-to-understand initial experience so they can get right to enjoying their new purchase. Let’s take a look at the way a few of the major players in wearables tech and smart house devices make their first impressions through email marketing.
Wearables Tech – Jawbone – Drip Welcome Email Series
The popular UP by Jawbone series is a line of fitness trackers with products aimed at all levels of fitness enthusiasts. Jawbone sets the tone with the first welcome email. High quality photography coupled with positive messaging to inspire users to live an active lifestyle. “You rock and so should your health.”
New UP users receive a welcome email series that gives very simple instructions on setting up, use, and care of their UP device. These emails includes click-through links to support pages with video and step-by-step instructions on how to charge, wear, and use various UP models.
Note the simple, playful language alongside each image. This continues throughout the campaign with a constant flow of positive reinforcement through email and in-app messages. This praise engages the user in a positive feedback loop and helps associate the Jawbone UP with the healthy image jawbone is selling.
Emails sent by Jawbone tend towards the long side. Although the viewer will do quite a bit of scrolling, the use of whitespace, and image + simple message makes for a very quick read.
What I really like here is that the folks over at Jawbone use this first touch as a handshake and a quick overview. Instead of overwhelming a new UP user, they’ve opted to educate over a four day course of emails with each focusing on a different aspect of what an UP does. These lessons are mirrored and reinforced within the UP app itself, helping to keep UP users engaged with goal setting.
Wearables Tech – Chipolo – Long Welcome Email + User Generated Content CTA
Chipolo sells bluetooth-enabled rings that can attach to easy-to-lose possessions like your keys and wallet. Lost items can be tracked down using the free app or by triggering the vibrate/ringer in the connected Chipolo.
What’s really interesting with this device is that a lost Chipolo can be detected by other members the Chipolo community and have its whereabouts privately passed back to it’s owner without alerting anyone else to its location.
The Chipolo introduction email takes full advantage of scrolling design. This long form email is designed towards mobile users and offers quick bites of information with every flick of the finger. This focus on mobile is reinforced by the repeated use of an iPhone throughout the message.
Each of the tips included touches on a major feature of the Chipolo product, the Chipolo app, and the advantage of being a part of their community. With a moment’s read I know that I can detect my Chipolo within 200 meters, that I can prompt other users to pick up my lost item, and that I should take a selfie with it.
Speaking of selfies (hashtag #ChipoloSelfie), this email repeatedly references social media to bring the idea of community into this product. They want their users excited about finding things and sharing them.
Getting back to the language used, the core idea behind the product, lost and found, surfaces in each tip. We start lost with lines like “Can’t find your phone” and discover how this product can find a solution as we read on. Smart!
There’s certainly more to learn about this product, but their team has given enough information to get the user started and excited for other available features.
Wearables Tech – Nike FuelBand – Welcome Email + Web Sign-In CTA
The incredibly popular Nike+ FuelBand is a leader in the fitness tracking market. In their welcome email FuelBand’s main goal is to get their users online. Packed instructions and online help direct the user to do three things:
- Download the Nike+ Connect app and associate the new FuelBand with it
- Create a Nike+ online account
- Start setting up fitness goals
The Nike campaign focuses on quick and simple messages that direct the user into the FuelBand experience as fast as possible. Language throughout this experience reflects this urgency, sacrificing storytelling for brevity. The Nike brand however is represented throughout this process with short ad-like .gifs and on-point slogans.
It’s not until we get past the initial setup process that Nike starts highlighting all of the available features and apps that a new Nike user now has access to. From here the Nike Plus experience offers a depth of features and apps catering to the different types of Fuelband customers.
Wearables Tech – Sensoria Fitness – Welcome Email + How-to Video
The Sensoria Smart Socks and accompanying bluetooth anklet are geared towards hardcore running enthusiasts. This device not only tracks distance, speed, and altitude, but it also monitors running cadence and foot landing.
A new Sensoria owner is asked to do three simple things: Download an app, watch a video, and sign up on a website. By prompting users to explore both the app and run tracking page, Sensoria opens up their product’s features, lifestyle community, and accompanying product store.
Sensoria keeps their introduction short and sweet. This being a specialty product, Sensoria assumes that the user already knows what these socks are for. Instead of educating about the product, their team takes the opportunity to focus on the accompanying app and their online fitness dashboard.
These are possibly the most complicated socks in the world, so it’s great that they included a handy how-to video on setup and use.
Smart House – Kwikset Kevo Smartlock – Welcome Email + Mobile App Download CTA
The Kwikset Kevo Smartlock and Bluetooth deadbolt is a one-touch lock that can be opened using a key fob or smartphone app.
Unlike the email introductions done by fitness trackers and other wearables, Kevo emails take a more traditional newsletter format. Because this product is already installed in the user’s home, this brand assumes the user already knows what a Kevo can do. Future emails focus on product updates, new additions to the brand, and availability.
Their welcome email focuses on four topics:
- Thanks for signing up
- Tell friends and family your locks are Kevo through social media
- Your phone is now your key
- A list of compatible devices
Presumably later emails educate more on key features that are available on their website above highlighting their Nest integration and the new Kevo Plus app, but I feel like there are some missed chances to highlight product benefits here.
Smart House – August Smart Lock – Drip Welcome Email Series
August provides a line of app connected smartlocks, keypads, camera doorbells, and other home security devices.
Their line of welcome email series (seven total over the course of a month) starts with a discount offer and continues with a series of product promotions. Each email focuses on a different aspect of core August products (remote entry, usage tracking, etc…) or spotlights potential alternate markets such as AirBNB rentals.
The language throughout these email newsletters focuses on providing solutions with August products. It’s nearly always directed at the reader using “you” and “your” to give a sense of ownership.
While these emails work perfectly fine on their own, each has it’s own style which can be jarring when the series is looked at as a whole.
- Keep the message simple. New users can easily be overwhelmed by the depth of a connected product. Plain, fun language makes teaching moments easier for the product owner and can help build the personality of your brand
- Be visual. Video and step-by-step picture tutorials are the easiest way to get new users started. If your product is mobile-focused, show it in the images you use.
- Humor works. If your brand has a voice, use it! The days of technical documents as product instructions are over.
- Start a relationship. There will be more opportunities to educate about features as you go along. Use email and in-app messages to keep the conversation going.
- Get connected. Introduce your new user to the connected app, online experience, and community as quickly as possible.
- Offer to help. Support links, FAQs, and customer service options should be readily available for any new user.