Do you have an email marketing list you haven’t used for a while? Were you sending out regular communications to that list and then, for one reason or another, stopped using the list?
If this sounds like you, and you’re ready to step your marketing back up and plan to start sending to this tired old list again, then read on because this article is for you.
Why refresh your email marketing list?
On average your email database loses 25% of it’s subscribers each year as readers change jobs, change email providers or simply unsubscribe.
So, if you haven’t used that list for a while, you’re going to have a lot of emails bounce because they’re not used anymore and you will most likely get a lot of unsubscribes from the rest. Some people won’t even bother to open your emails before deleting them.
Refresh your list before you move email marketing service provider
Email marketing service providers keep a close eye on new accounts and new lists. If they see a high bounce rate, unsubscribe rate, or mark as spam rate on early sends they’ll suspend your account.
They need to ensure that their servers don’t end up on email black lists, which is why they keep a close eye on new accounts and their bounce rates.
Refresh your list with a re-engagement campaign
A re-engagement campaign is a systematic method for awakening your list, while identifying which email addresses in your database should go. The goal of a re-engagement campaign is to identify which portion of your list you should retain and which portion to delete.
The re-engagement campaign
Step 1: Cull the dead wood from your email marketing list
Go through your list and remove people you know have moved on.
You could also take the opportunity to segment your list while you are about it. Segmentation will allow you to target your re-engagement emails to each segment and more easily identify the subscribers to delete later on.
You could segment by when they joined the list, whether they opened the last email you sent, whether they have ever clicked a link in one of your emails or better still by their product or service preference.
Some email marketing systems make this segmentation easy by allowing you to segment automatically using smart lists based on the subscribers history. Check out what your system can do before attempting to do this manually.
Step 2: Create an engaging email campaign to get ‘em back
Churning out a stock standard monthly email newsletter is unlikely to get your subscribers re-engaged, you’re going to have to pull something out of the bag.
Offer something your unengaged subscribers will consider highly valuable. Ensure you tailor these offers to suit each of your segments. What one segment might think is highly valuable could be worthless to another. Treat this like your last chance to get them to re-engage.
Create at least 2 emails for each segment so that your subscribers have more than one opportunity to re-engage.
Make sure you consider spam filters when you craft your emails. It’s going to be hard to get people to re-engage when they don’t see your email because it’s in their spam folder. Try to avoid using spammy language like “free offer” in your emails.
Send your emails, checkout the stats and delete those who don’t re-engage
Subscribers who bounce, well they’re out straight away. Unsubscribes are out also.
Those that click on a link in your email, well they’re in straight away.
The rest of the stats are a bit more subjective. Opens are sometimes hard to confirm. They might open your email and not download the images so the open won’t be detected. Anyway, opens are in.
That only leaves those that are unopened. Try sending this group a very very special offer to see if you get any activity. If you still don’t get an open or a click, best to dump these subscribers rather than keeping them on as excess baggage.
That’s it, you’ll now have a clean fresh list and you’re ready to begin your normal communications again.
Refresh your list before you begin your normal communications again on a list that has some age on it. Do this before moving to a new email marketing service provider.