Email subscriber lists ebb and flow over time; this is a natural part of marketing. However, watching your subscriber numbers fall steadily is perplexing and frustrating. While acquiring new customers should be at the top of your marketing to-do list, it is equally important to retain existing customers. Below you will find some hands-on tips for re-engaging email subscribers who have become inactive.
First things first, before you can launch a re-engagement campaign, you must master the art of email segmentation. This involves identifying your inactive email subscribers and separating them from the rest of your list. Segmentation achieves two goals. First, it allows you to stop sending inactive members the same messages you send active subscribers; this will prevent your open rates from dropping. Second, you’ll be able to target your inactive subscribers with campaigns designed specifically to re-engage.
Designate a period of time and if a customer does not open an email within the time frame, move them to your inactive list. Now you are ready to analyze your inactive subscribers and begin developing a re-engagement strategy.
Once you have tackled email segmentation, moving forward with your re-engagement strategy is relatively simple. Let’s explore some campaigns that will bring your inactive subscribers back into the fold again.
Acknowledge the Customer’s Lack of Engagement
This task is simple, transparent, and effective. It demonstrates to the subscriber that you have noticed their lack of activity and shows that you appreciate them. Simply sending a message stating that you miss their engagement will do the trick.
Be More Targeted in Your Communications Approach
The reasons that customers subscribe to your list are increasingly varied as your email list expands. Subscribers will get bored with irrelevant emails if you’re sending the same messages to everyone regardless of their preferences. Assign user preferences and divide your list into segments based upon those preferences. This strategy gives you the opportunity to be specific with your content and reach people with emails that help them meet their unique goals.
Spammy mass emails are a huge turn-off and will likely go ignored. As you’re developing topic-specific content geared toward each of your email list segments, go a step further by tailoring the messages to each individual. This tactic can be as simple as using the customer’s name in the greeting—even this small gesture can make the message feel like it was written just for them. Gather as much information as you can about subscribers’ goals and preferences so that you can mold emails that will reach them on a personal level and motivate them to take action.
Personalization is crucial for your email marketing strategy as a whole, not just your re-engagement campaigns. Studies reveal that the open rate for personalized emails is 17.6 percent, compared to 11.4 percent for emails without personalized content.
You can engage inactive customers with personalized offers, too. Analyze each subscriber’s web behavior, purchase history, and product usage to uncover which offers would motivate them to purchase again. Yes, this tactic takes time, but it is effective in earning back customers’ attention and, ultimately, their business.
Reward Them for Their Engagement
It’s a fact that people are highly motivated by free stuff! Send long-lost subscribers an email that lets them know they are missed and offers them an incentive to become a customer again. Offering a limited-time goodie such as an exclusive discount or an extra freebie achieves several goals. It thanks the subscriber for being a part of your email list and urges them to think about why they wanted to connect with you in the first place. And it encourages them to recapture those ideas by taking advantage of your offer.
Another way to show inactive customers what’s in it for them is to promote online contests or giveaways. The goal of your re-engagement email strategy is to inspire subscribers to take action. They might not be ready to buy a product or request a demo just yet, but a contest or giveaway may interest them.
Reach out to inactive users and promote a prize within your email and subject line. When a subscriber enters your contest, follow up with more content that reintroduces them to your brand. That way, even those who don’t win will have an opportunity to engage with your emails long enough to find out the contest results. This creates a window of opportunity for you to pique their interest in your products and services again.
Get Feedback and Offer Options
The simplest way to discover what your inactive subscribers want is by asking them. Is a segment of subscribers interested in your brand but prefers another method of communication? Do they only want to receive a specific type of email? Perhaps they are just looking for an easy way to opt out. Asking questions like these may provide helpful information.
Another way to determine what your customers want is by creating an email preference center within your re-engagement message. A preference tool allows subscribers to tailor their email preferences to their specific wants and needs. Options for this preference center include updating their contact information, adjusting email frequency, selecting the type of emails they get, and more.
Hopefully, your inactive subscribers will provide you with a more effective way to communicate with them, and they will appreciate your willingness to understand their wants.
Let Them Know What They’re Missing Out On!
Subscribers disengage for a variety of reasons. Perhaps you didn’t offer a product or service that fit their exact needs. Or maybe your marketing strategy didn’t resonate with them. Think about the updates your company now has to offer. Send inactive subscribers information about product, design, or company updates to reinvigorate their interest in what you offer.
Consider this: your inactive customers probably haven’t been paying attention to your company for a while. As a result, they have likely been missing out on changes and updates such as new product launches or design updates. Target inactive subscribers with a fresh marketing campaign announcing a new line of products, an updated website, or exciting content that differs from what you’ve previously offered. Show them the changes that they may have been looking for when they first discovered your company or product.
The harsh reality is that it’s impossible to win back every single inactive subscriber on your email list. Some subscribers just won’t be swayed by even the most exciting and targeted campaigns. If you’ve failed a few times, learn how to recognize when it’s time to move forward, then remove the customer from your email list.
Although you may lose some subscribers in the long run, you could potentially re-engage many long-lost customers. We hope these tips inspired you and will help you get moving in the right direction.