A welcome series is a great way to introduce people to your group, remind them how they joined your list, and give them a reason to care about your organization before receiving your regular stream of emails. They can also go a long way in maintaining good deliverability. To learn more about deliverability, watch our 105 Deliverability Training.
Here we will present two options -- a simple welcome series and a more complex version -- to show you more concretely how ladders might be used.
A simple welcome series
A simple welcome series would contain a single rung with the trigger "Subscribed", meaning activists will enter the ladder when they subscribe to the group's list.
From there, activists would enter a wait step, waiting for 1 day. We recommend adding a wait step at the beginning of your ladder in case you ever need to pause your ladder. For example, if there was a natural disaster, you could pause the ladder and no one would proceed to the next step to receive the welcome email until your ladder is unpaused.
Then, activists would be sent an email welcoming them to the group's list, with whatever message you choose to write.
Finally, having run out of steps, activists would exit the ladder.
Here is a screenshot of this example, taken from the ladder's edit page. Click to open up the image directly for a larger view.
A more complex welcome series
We can expand on this example to add more features and complexity. A simple expansion would be to add a series of welcome emails instead of just one. After the first welcome email we could add another 1 day wait, then another welcome email, then another 1 day wait, then a third welcome email.
In addition, perhaps we'd like to exclude activists in the welcome series from other emails we happen to be sending to the list at that point. When people subscribe we'd like them to get the welcome series emails for the first few days and nothing else, after which they will be put into the main stream of email we're sending.
We can do this by adding an add a tag action step right after the trigger to add the tag "Welcome Series" to the activist when they enter, then adding a remove a tag action step at the end before they exit, removing the same tag.
When you send regular email, you'd exclude that tag, excluding anyone currently in the welcome series. When activists finish, that tag would be removed and they would start receiving your regular email.
Here is a screenshot of this more complex example, taken from the ladder's edit page. Click to open up the image directly for a larger view.