Here Are All Of The Emails We Send At Drift


“I’m stealing this email.”

That’s the line we heard from a few people who were nice enough to give us a heads up that they were, well — going to steal our welcome email copy.

Which is totally fine.

After all, good artists borrow, great artists steal (the Internet seems to disagree on whether it was Picasso, Steve Jobs, or some combination of the two, but one of them said something like that and it fits nicely here…)

And this is also the reason why the best advertisers, copywriters, and creative directors always kept a swipe file handy.


So since a few people have asked, we thought we’d open things up and publish all of the emails we send at Drift. Here’s what you’ll find below:

Feel free to steal, copy, borrow, or just read for some inspiration –although it is worth mentioning that if you do copy an email, you should try to make it yours. It doesn’t usually work if you just straight up take every word and then plug these emails in for your business.

PS. You can try drift for free right here.

All Of The Emails We Send At Drift

Content Emails

The emails people receive when they subscribe to get our content.

1) Welcome Email

This is the first email that people get after they join our email list (we typically send one email per week with a new piece of content) and it is hands-down the most effective email that we send. It has a 75 percent open rate and a 25 percent response rate — and that’s not clicks, it’s actual replies:

Welcome_1.pngBy the way, here’s an article talking about some of the mistakes we were making with email and how we fixed them if you want to see where this email originated from and the reason behind this approach.

2) Welcome Email Part 2

We don’t have a long email nurturing sequence for our content after someone subscribes, but we do send one additional email five days after the initial welcome email, and this email has a 58 percent open rate and 15 percent click rate.

The goal of this email is to bring people up to speed on some of our most popular pieces of content that they might have missed, and to tell them about our podcast, and we typically switch up the links that are in this email.

Welcome_2.pngInstead of trying to nurture new subscribers with a long drip campaign, we just send these two emails and then we’re done.

The goal is to get people to subscribe and then keep them happy and engaged with the new content we’re creating each week, vs an automated email sequence that eventually starts to feel stale (and like overkill).

Onboarding Emails

The emails people receive after they create a Drift account.

1) Onboarding Welcome Email

This is the very first email that we send when people sign up for our product:

Screen_Shot_2016-09-19_at_4.10.49_PM.pngTime and time again, when you sign up for a new product, the first email you get has too many links in it — people want you to create your password, upload a photo, connect an integration, tell a friend, etc.

And when you tell people to do everything, guess what they typically do?


So we wanted to keep our product welcome email as simple as our content welcome email.

Just like that email, the goal here is simply to get people to respond so we can start a conversation and learn more about them.

2) Onboarding Email Part 2

Now when it comes to our product emails, we have more of a nurturing sequence than we do with our content.

Because these are product sign-ups, we have more educating to do here.

There are more immediate actions that come out of signing up, and of course, the intent is much higher — so, two days after that initial welcome email, people get this email:Screen_Shot_2016-09-19_at_4.34.25_PM.png

3) Onboarding Email Part 3

And then two days after the previous email, we send this email to wrap up the initial product emails:Screen_Shot_2016-09-19_at_4.35.02_PM.png

One thing worth noting: we have a few different versions of this email based on the role of the person that will be getting it (new customers fill out their role as part of onboarding inside of Drift) so we tailor the features and benefits based on the role.

For example, a CEO/Founder would get copy that’s a little different than the copy a Customer Success Manager would get.

Abandonment Emails

The emails people receive if they don’t finish setting up their Drift account.

1) Abandoned During Customization

These emails come from Cara, our Customer Success Manager, and the first email that people get is if they leave during the customization step of onboarding:


This email has a 50 percent open rate and a 7 percent click rate — and the secret to any of these abandonment emails is that they are super simple.

It’s really easy to try and jam a bunch of links and two different CTA’s into an email to win someone back (and try to figure out why they left in the first place) — but the number one goal of sending this email is getting someone to respond.

If Cara can get someone to respond, there’s a good chance she will be able to help get them through the rest of the onboarding process.

2) Abandoned During Installation

This is an email that goes out if someone leaves during the installation process after they’ve customized everything:


The subject line for this email is “so. close.” and I think that’s one of the reasons why the open rate is so high (65 percent).

But the real reason this email is so effective is (again) because it gets people to reply to Cara:


If we only relied on our product data, we’d have no clue why people abandoned here.


But because the goal of this email is to get people to reply directly to Cara, we were able to figure out that the number one reason why people abandon is because they are waiting for an engineer to help them get Drift installed.

3) Inactive New Signups

And the final email we send here is when someone has created a Drift account and put in all of the work to actually get Drift installed on their website — but hasn’t actually had any engagement yet:


NPS Emails

The emails people receive when we’re asking for customer feedback.

Net Promoter Score (NPS) is one of the best ways to get customer feedback. NPS asks “How likely are you to recommend Drift to a friend or colleague?” and we typically reach out to customers, trialers, and free users once a quarter.

Once we get the NPS responses back, there are two groups that we like to reach out to: Detractors (anyone with a score between 0 and 6) and Promoters (anyone with a score of 9 or 10).

1) Email To Promoters

Here’s the email we send to our promoters:


Sometimes, when it comes to getting case studies or quotes, all you have to do is ask — and there’s no better time to ask than after someone just gave you a glowing review:


2) Email To Detractors

As much fun as it can be to reach out to Promoters — the people that love you — you can learn more from the people that aren’t exactly the biggest fans.

Reaching out to Detractors provides a huge opportunity to improve, and you will often get very candid (and thorough) customer feedback.

And again, all you have to do is ask.

Here’s the email we send to try and get feedback:


And an example of a response:


A Final Thought

“Do not, however, address your readers as though they were gathered together in a stadium. When people read your copy, they are alone. Pretend you are writing each of them a letter on behalf of your client. One human being to another, second person singular.” – David Ogilvy

Regardless of the types of emails we send at Drift, they all have two things in common: they are plain text, and they sound like an email you’d get from a friend or someone you know.

We don’t send highly designed HTML emails because, well — those emails just feel like marketing. And when it comes to writing copy, our guiding principle is to write like we talk.

More to come on this topic in a future post.

With all of this talk about email, you know I have to ask…

Drift is a messaging app for sales and customer success. Try Drift for free right here.

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