How Trainline upgraded their email marketing from standard to first class

We often feature a lot of advice about what our readers ‘should’ do – recommendations, best-practice tips and ideal-world scenarios on email marketing. Unfortunately due to limited time and resource, sometimes theory doesn’t translate into practice – brands still end up delivering campaigns that are ‘good enough’ but not perfect.

But it’s not the case when it comes to Trainline – in recent months they’ve truly upped their game by delivering personalised and dynamic email journeys driven by behavioural targeting technology. They may not be a high-end or luxury brand but it doesn’t stop them delivering a first class experience with email, showing us why you shouldn’t lose faith in what’s possible when the right solutions are put in place.

And admiration isn’t the only reason we’re showing you their work – if you like their approach, you’ll be able to achieve the same results using our PureTargeting technology. We take a look and what they’ve achieved through their email marketing to inspire others working within the travel sector.

Taking me on a journey

In the run-up to my journey I received four emails – the first capturing the details of my online research, the second confirming my purchase, the third suggesting additional purchases and the final email rounding-up all the information I needed for my trip. These emails created a well-crafted customer journey that made my life easier, reassured me, instilled confidence and built excitement for the trip ahead. The same customer journey is possible with PureTargeting by capturing your customers’ browsing behaviour to prompting engagement, action and additional purchases.  


Creating essential reading

In the email below over 60% of the content is personalised – from my first name, my journey, the weather at my destination and the guides to my departure and arrival stations. By integrated bespoke information into email, Trainline don’t just make the email nice – they make it essential reading for my journey. When I receive an email like this I’m going to keep it, refer to it and use it instead of scrabbling around trying to find the information myself.


Improving customer experience

Thanks to the personalised content of these emails there’s no nasty surprises at the station – I can see if there’s a lift, where to grab a coffee and where facilities such as the toilets are. They’ve even included a handy weather update for my destination making sure I pack my umbrella so I don’t get soaked on the way back from the station. Little touches such as these ensure I start my journey as pleasantly as possible by improving my experience which increases the likelihood of me booking through Trainline again.


Investing in a relationship

The emails I received didn’t just feature information that was relevant to this one-off trip – they also displayed content that encouraged me to interact with them further. Trainline asked me to provide feedback which they could respond to by rating their emails and promoting their their app which I downloaded to make my life easier. By asking customers to rate, review and download you’re striking-up a conversation, providing more opportunities for further engagement and triggering automated one-to-one communications that encourage an ongoing relationship.


So all that’s left for me now is to sit back and enjoy my journey – I feel prepared, reassured and relaxed that my travel plans are in hand and I have all the information I need. And they’ve already taken me on a great journey before I’ve even physically departed.

If you’re working within the travel sector then contact our team to find out how PureTargeting can help you deliver timely, personalised and automated email journeys to the inbox.


Download the Sector Series: Email Marketing for Retailers guide