All industry dogmas tell us that we should not use the email addresses of those that are not active
because these bring about unjustifiable costs and challenge our sends. But, there is a particular time of year when people respond better to the messages you send.That time of year is Christmas time, when we all enjoy receiving a greeting.
Never forget your subscribers!
Many of us don’t even consider one of the basic rules of email marketing, that is, not sending to those who are not interested. Thus, many send to the entire database, regardless of whether there are subscribers that have not opened a newsletter in years. So, their reputation suffers, the big ISPs notice there is no interest and deprioritize the emails, and those who are active will not have the chance to read the newsletter because it was sent to the Spam folder.
Hence, we need to send regularly, to those who are interested. We need to keep the other subscribers in the database, but not send to them, except when we are sure that a large part of them will open the newsletter.
The right timing to send to those who are less interested is hard to establish. To stir up a major interest the subject, design and implementation have to be well crafted, and the segmentation needs to be done as efficiently as possible in order to send subjects that are of personal interest.
Christmas is the perfect time to reactivate subscribers, especially in Romania, when, during this period everyone has a common interest. Sending during Christmas time is particularly good because we don’t need to segment our database, but do remember that good responses could be available during any religious holiday if we segment properly. This way, we can send a greeting to all Andreis or Andreeas on Sf. Andrei’s day, and so we can have a large increase in open rates from the Andreis.
Many who follow the rule to not send to those who are inactive forget that, if they manage to reactivate the thousands of inactive subscribers, they will find a goldmine.
Reactivating your database
Following the “Are You Talking to Me!” principle, we need to understand that people are not interested in what we have to tell them. From there to making them interested is a long way. The main points that those researching the issue of inactive users are interested in are:
1) Not all subscribers become inactive for the same reason
2) Inactive subscribers are a big, big problem
3) Reactivating subscribers works only in specific cases
4) Reactivating is not permanentNot all subscribers are inactive for the same reason
Taking into account that subscribers come from many different sources and their interests are different, so unsubscribing is not done for the same reason. But a main reason for this is the subscribers’ lack of trust in the brand that sent them the newsletter. Furthermore, the buying cycle of a product is another factor that leads subscribers to become inactive. After you buy a bicycle, several years will pass until you buy another one, so the interest is different for an existing client compared to a potential one. Demographics and previous purchases are another factor in determining the decision to become inactive. If you are interested in buying things for the newly born, after a year that interest no longer exists.Inactive subscribers are a big, big problem
For a very good database the number of inactive users is approximately 40%. It does not matter that subscribers have not unsubscribed, or updated their preferences or interests, what matters is that sends towards inactive addresses severely affect your deliverability rates.Reactivating subscribers only works in specific cases
From what we saw in our statistics, most attempts at reactivating do not produce results for more than 1% of the total of inactive subscribers. Some may have greater success, but still, results have not been spectacular except in concrete cases. That is why you must always ask a specialist in reactivation before you try a campaign. There are certain points of interest, like Christmas, that can give excellent reactivation results.Reactivation is not permanent
In all our studies, reactivation is never permanent, and even more than that, if an inactive subscriber becomes active, they are much more susceptible to lose their interest over time, than someone that has an interest at the time of the send. That is why we must always use innovative ways to keep our subscribers in our database.
In my case, the only time an idea made me become active was in an email It was the case of newsletters send by GROUPON.COM New York. They have, during the unsubscribe process, a little movie that we should all see as an example of smart reactivation. The movie is called “Punish Derrick” and it shows the punishment that the person responsible for Groupon newsletters gets. The movie can be seen here: https://youtu.be/nAve7L7An4Y
I have him hooked, what do I do now?
After you got him hooked using a well thought out campaign that piqued his interest, what do you do with this subscriber? Initially, we know that he is volatile and could leave at any moment, but now is the best time to ask him why he has not been active. By collaborating with those that are inactive, we will understand their grievances. Moreover, if the client feels like he is paid attention to he is less likely to be disinterested. Questions need to be asked in a professional manner, in a survey, that also needs to have results, meaning, that puts into practice all that we learn from our respondents.
After that, we need to send only emails that interest that subscriber and more importantly, we should not bug him. We can start with a few sends to people that signed up again in the emailing circuit, but these sends need to be done over a longer period of time. After that, we can increase the frequency with which we send to these people.
Happy New Year and Merry Christmas!
I hope the holidays will be a good opportunity to get closer to your clients. Every year, we can reach even a few of the important people with a pleasant message that comes from the heart. What MailAgent encourages you to do is not forget to wish to those you care about and to your collaborators, what we are wishing you now, a warm: HAPPY NEW YEAR AND MERRY CHRISTMAS!