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Smart Blasts Versus Promo Blasts

Email still holds the best ROI because it’s a channel consumers are most receptive to.  This means maximizing this consumer touchpoint is critical. However, reaching out to your consumers at the right time is difficult. Also, customers are sensitive to frequency; creating a fine line between sending too much or too little. 

In Cortex, we can strike the right balance using Smart Blast and Promo Blast. There are a variety of ways to set up email campaigns so you can automate emails to be sent at the right time to the right audience. However, we realize that you have time-sensitive emails that you want more control over. In this post, we explore how to utilize the capabilities of both for your marketing campaigns to drive more conversions and engagement.


What’s the difference between Smart Blast and Promo Blast?


In Cortex, a Promo Blast puts the marketer in control of the send. It should be used if you need to send an email out at the same day and time to all consumers. 

For example, if we want consumers to act immediately to a limited time Black Friday sale, Promo Blast is best used for this single-day case. Another example would be in niche cases such as a product recall where the email must reach everyone on the targeted list.

One day “Black Friday” sale


“Daily deal” email


“Time sensitive” offer


“Time sensitive” email to send on first day of Summer


This all represents a typical email blast that marketers are used to, which definitely has its place in the world of email marketing. Promo Blasts are best used for time-sensitive campaigns that must reach certain consumers like one-day sales, new product alerts, daily deals, and others. 


Smart Blast

A Smart Blast allows the marketer to leverage ReSci’s artificial intelligence to send emails more effectively based on analyzed consumer data. This is determined by the consumer’s email and website behavior collected and analyzed through our platform. It ensures that all consumers receive an email, but allows Cortex to prioritize messaging. 

Newsletter – not time-sensitive

For the example above, Cortex can send out a weekly newsletter any day of the week while in the Smart Blast stage. It will prioritize higher converting messages first (e.g., Cart Abandon email, etc.)


Here’s an example that explains how Smart Blast works, and how the Cortex AI would prioritize email sends:

  • A promotional email (not time-sensitive) is scheduled to deploy today at 1:00pm PST and run for two days.
  • Consumer abandons a product today at 9:00am PST
  • Since two emails are scheduled to deploy on the same day, Cortex will prioritize the sends and ensure that the email with the highest conversion rate would deploy today and the lower-performing campaign will deploy tomorrow. 
  • In this example, the Cart Abandon email will deploy today and the promotional email will be delivered tomorrow. 

A Smart Blast effectively sends messages based on what is more likely to convert. It also takes into account that each consumer is unique and makes a call on the most effective/receptive email for them to receive.

ReSci’s goal is always to help you better connect with your customers, so Smart Blast helps alleviate your customers from being bombarded with messages, and guides them through your messaging. It will help your emails become more relevant in today’s world of cluttered mailboxes, capitalizing on every email touchpoint.


There’s more: Create a rolling Smart Blast

If you have a campaign that should be deployed X-number of days after opting in, or X-number of days without any activity, you could set up a Smart Blast to run continuously to target new consumers that fit the segment criteria on a daily basis. 

Rolling Smart Blast example – Sent 5-days after the welcome series finishes to non-purchasers


To create an automated rolling Smart Blast, simply create it as you would any email, but instead of scheduling it to deploy at a specific day/time, you would just ‘Activate’ it as shown below. This means it continues to poll users that meet a specified segment condition. 


For example if you want to have a re-engagement campaign to re-engage inactive users. You can create a segment as follows:

You can assign this segment to your smart blast template and activate it. It will pick up users that meet this criteria (Not opened or clicked in the last 90 days) and send this email to them. 

Note: A given Smart Blast will only send once to any given user. 


This chart will help you understand the similarities and differences between the two types of blasts to see what works best for your goals.

Smart Blast

Promo Blast

Sent for non-time-sensitive messaging

Sent for time-sensitive messaging

Can be sent across multiple days

Sends in a single batch

Can be edited while sending

Cannot be changed after sends begin

Always uses ReSci’s timing optimization

Does not follow ReSci’s timing optimization 

Can run continuously

Sends once to all users at a given date & time

Will not send during a welcome stage

Will send during welcome stage


Smarter goals

What type of email blast to use depends on the goal of your campaign. Marketers always need to be conscious of maximizing the limited time they have in front of their audiences. This is highly impactful in the world of crowded email boxes and constant noise. Striking the right balance is the key to success for your email marketing campaigns.

Cortex treats each user as an individual, carefully guiding them through the customer journey. Smart Blast gives marketers the ability to leverage artificial intelligence to help make the right decisions on the best content to send at the best time, all without bombarding audiences. We always suggest using Smart Blast whenever possible, and save the time-sensitive content for Promo Blasts when marketers need to take back the control of the wheel.


Brought to you by Rosemary Ferrentino, Enterprise Client Success Manager at ReSci
Rosemary provides strategic marketing for our enterprise clients, which she brings from her experience in digital marketing from companies like Microsoft, Xerox, and more.


Feel confused or lost? Want more strategies? Contact the helpdesk, or reach out to your Client Success Manager and they’ll be happy to help!


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ReSci is a team of marketers and data scientists on a mission to democratize AI. We make powerful recommendations and predictions accessible to brands. Find out how we can help you connect with your customers.