Trigger marketing just as the name implies refers to initiating or instigating certain events that would propel people to buy a product or service. It is tied to timely messages or offers that appeal to customers in a somewhat kairos moment. 

The concept of trigger marketing revolves around the idea that certain events or actions are triggers that can evoke customer engagement and conversion. These triggers can be actions like website visits, abandoned carts, completed purchases, email clicks, birthdays, or specific milestones in the customer journey.

If you understand the concept of trigger marketing as a business owner, you would be able to connect your business to your customers by responding to the actions and behaviors of your customers. The key step to getting a grasp of trigger marketing is to recognize these triggers, that way you can automate the marketing efforts of your business and deliver a customized experience to your customers.

Trigger marketing is vital to connecting with your customers on a personalized basis, rather than utilizing a generic marketing approach. Trigger marketing helps you reach customers in a way that would evoke a response and facilitate customer engagement, which would ultimately lead to conversion and sales. 

Trigger marketing facilitates marketing automation, making it a scalable and efficient strategy. So by setting up automated actions triggered by specific events, businesses can streamline their marketing processes, and save time, and resources. By understanding the importance and implementation of trigger marketing, businesses can create effective marketing campaigns that resonate with their target audience.

In this post, we would explore the concept of trigger marketing, and take you through the steps of kickstarting your trigger marketing strategy and lots more.


What is Trigger Marketing?

Trigger marketing involves the use of marketing automation software or platform to respond to specific actions and leads of customers. For instance, once a potential customer clicks open an email link, interacts with a chatbot or views a page, etc, all of these actions serve as triggers to automatically send a message based on the interests of the customer gleaned from the previous action they made.

 In other words, trigger marketing is a form of advertising that sends user-specific target messages to customers. These messages are prompted or triggered by the actions the customer took, hence the term trigger marketing. 

This way, marketers can ensure the message received by the customer is relevant and timely and can propel client engagement and ultimately a buy-in.

Importance of Trigger Marketing

Trigger marketing is an important tool in the marketing space as it helps businesses reach customers with relevant messages promptly. It empowers brands to respond to the actions of their customers with the right fit or solution. 

This way, your business brand can be more customer-oriented. Sending personalized relevant messages will improve customer engagement and communication with your brands and this would in turn inspire customer loyalty.

Unlike mass advertising, trigger marketing targets clients’ needs and changes materials and tasks to meet those needs.

Overall, trigger marketing is a dynamic approach that allows businesses to interact with customers at key decision-making moments in their customer journey. It allows businesses to deliver personalized and targeted messages to their target audience, this in turn fosters a strong relationship.

Here are some reasons why trigger marketing is important.

  1. Trigger marketing is essential in any business that wants to thrive in this era where a lot of activities are competing for customer attention. It helps businesses push out timely and relevant communication to customers at the time when they are most likely to be interested in engaging with a brand or product. This is so because by leveraging certain triggers businesses can push out communication in real-time, which addresses the questions, and concerns and improves the overall customer experience.
  2. It fosters customer engagement, by delivering personalized messages to customers, based on their browsing history. This level of interaction influences communication between the consumers and the brand and always leads to higher conversion rates.

Related – Consumer Experience: Examples, Strategy & Improvement Tips

 Lastly, trigger marketing, relies heavily on data and analytics. This allows for the tracking of customer behavior and valuable insights into customer preferences, patterns, and trends. These insights can be the basis for future marketing strategies.

Guide to Trigger Marketing

Trigger marketing can completely transform your marketing strategy. It can boost revenue and can depend on customer interaction and relationship with your brand. However, this can only occur when you know how to use trigger marketing to get the most value. Here is a guide to handhold you on your trigger marketing journey in a way that would give your business the best results.

1. Know your Buyer Persona

First things first, there is no way you can craft the best message or business communication for your audience if you have no idea who you are trying to reach. Therefore understanding your audience is the ingredient for successful business communication that can impact and pique the interest of your customers. 

So you have to know who your buyer persona(proposed target audience)is. What are their interests, their preferences, where they can be found, their demographic information, their challenges, and the problems that they are trying to solve? 

Once you know what kind of buyers you’re trying to reach, you can think about the life cycles of those buyers. Then you craft your trigger marketing plan with the insight you have gathered. 

To accurately know your buyer persona, here are some steps that would help.

  • Collect relevant data about your existing customers via surveys, website analytics, social media insights, etc
  • Analyze demographic information like age, gender, buying pattern, and preferences.
  • Understand psychographics, in terms of the characteristics of your target audience, like their interest, values, beliefs, motivations, etc. Delving into their emotions would help create trigger messages that would resonate with your audience.
  • Identify pain points and align your trigger messages to address the pain point.
  • Study buying behavior, about their preferred buying outlets or channels, their sources of information, influencers that they listen to, and factors that influence their choices. Then you use the information to determine the most effective triggers they will respond to.
  • Customer segmentation: Breaking customers into small groups based on their attributes and behaviors. This allows you to create trigger marketing campaigns for each segment.
  • Create persona profiles for the different types of customers, this allows you to understand each persona group deeply
  • Lastly, continuously refine and validate your persona to gather new data and insight based on any changes that might have occurred.’

For You – How to Construct User Personas, User Stories & Archetypes (Examples + Templates)

2. Think About the Causes and Effects

When it comes to triggering marketing, action begets reaction. Think of it this way, if your customers take a specific step, your automated trigger marketing software will respond a certain way. So the customer action is the cause, while the customer response is the effect. 

Hence, when setting or choosing triggers for your marketing strategy, you need to ponder carefully on what will happen next and why. This way you can set up appropriate triggers and predict the outcomes.

Here are some steps that would help;

  • Analyze the actions of your customers as they navigate the customer journey. For instance, actions like websites they visit, products they search for, abandoned carts, social media interactions completed transactions, etc. Doing this would help you pinpoint triggers suitable for them

Related: What is the Customer Lifecycle? Definition, Stages & Measurement

  • Determine the specific outcomes you want them to take and spell them out clearly as this would serve as a guide for your trigger choices. 
  • Lastly, test and validate your trigger marketing campaign through data analysis and A/B testing.

3. Describe the Trigger Events

For trigger marketing to be effective, you have to understand the triggers and know what prompts your triggers will send to the customers. In other words, you have to figure out the problems you are trying to solve. 

To do this, you can select a small number of factors that you can easily keep a tab of. For instance;

  • Website visits
  • Email Opened
  • Abandoned carts
  • Purchase history
  • External events
  • Time-based triggers like birthday anniversary

Based on this trigger events classification, you can then create an appropriate trigger message for each category. This way you would be able to keep track of the things that make you react. and provide appropriate responses on time.

4. Determine Automated Actions

Now that you have established the triggers you want to respond to, the next step is to decide on the next course of action. What response do you want to evoke from your customers with your triggers? 

Once that is done, the next step is to choose the communication channel, craft the trigger message and set up marketing automation based on the actions you want to respond to. Monitor the results, analyze customer responses, and make necessary adjustments to optimize the effectiveness of your automated actions. 

Continuously refine and improve your automated actions based on data and customer feedback.

5. Personalize Your Messages

Studies have shown that when people have a personalized experience, they are more likely to respond to a marketing campaign. This is where the customer data gathered from knowing your buyer persona comes into play.

 You can use the information gathered to create personalized messages that would appeal to their emotions.

Secondly, use the customer’s name to give a personal touch to the messages. This can be achieved with smart automation tools.

Lastly, match the content of your messaging to the customer’s interests and preferences. For example, if a customer has been browsing for dog food, your trigger message should not be offering a discount on chicken feed.

6. Start Marketing Automation

Marketing automation helps professionals streamline the whole marketing strategy process and automates repetitive work. This frees up time for your marketing team to focus on more strategic functions.

  • To use marketing automation, you have to identify tasks that you repeatedly do and automate them using marketing automation tools. To do this effectively;
  • Identify the marketing automation platform best suited to your business. It’s best to use a marketing automation platform that can integrate your data with your CRM system.
  • Set up your triggers and the subsequent automated actions.
  • Lastly before launching test and then monitor the effect of your trigger marketing efforts and make any adjustments where required.

7. Focus on Customer Relationships

  • Have a system that focuses solely on customers and helps you manage customer relationships. This could involve automated data tracking and contact classification tools. If you don’t have a good system for managing things, your data will probably be all over the place. So, you won’t be able to take full advantage of marketing automation.
  • Secondly, have a customer-first culture and put customer satisfaction at the center of your marketing strategy.
  • Listen to your customers by creating a customer feedback channel and engaging with them.
  • Deliver valuable and relevant content, personalize their messages, and buy or encourage customer loyalty with rewards and incentives.
  • Most importantly deliver exceptional customer service across every touch point in the customer journey.
  • Monitor key metrics like customer retention rates, satisfaction scores, and referral rates. Analyze the data to identify areas for improvement and optimize your trigger marketing campaigns accordingly.

For You: What is Customer Experience Optimization and How to Do It Properly

Examples of Trigger Marketing

Here are some examples of common events that are used in trigger-based marketing to help you get started:

  • Greeting messages

Greeting messages or welcome messages are excellent examples of trigger marketing.

When someone subscribes to your service, chooses to receive your newsletter, or registers an account with you, send them your welcome message.,where you acknowledge their action and thank them for it. After which you provide an offer to move them to the next phase or keep them engaged with you.

  • Trigger Event: Abandoned Cart

Trigger: A customer adds items to their online shopping cart but leaves the website without completing the purchase.

Automated Action: As a response to the abandoned cart trigger, an automated email is sent to the customer within a few hours or days, sharing details of the products they left behind and a nudge to complete the purchase. This could be done via email, highlighting the product value with a clear call to action and sometimes an incentive to encourage customers to complete the purchase.

The goal of this trigger marketing example is to recover potentially lost sales by reminding customers about their abandoned carts, addressing any concerns or objections they may have, and providing incentives to complete the purchase. 



Trigger marketing is a private strategy that helps businesses connect with their customer at specific key moments in the customer journey. To effectively implement a trigger marketing campaign strategy knowing your target audience or buyer persona is essential.

Automation is key in setting up trigger marketing and allows for efficient and scalable marketing efforts.

Ultimately, trigger marketing allows businesses to make the most of customer actions and external events, turning them into opportunities for targeted and timely marketing interactions. By implementing trigger marketing strategies effectively, businesses can enhance customer engagement, drive conversions, and build long-lasting customer loyalty.


  • Angela Kayode-Sanni
  • on 10 min read


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