Everyone has them… those email addresses in your database that seem to have gone quiet, showing little to no engagement with your emails. You aren’t alone! Every database needs cleaning-up or refreshing on an on-going basis to maintain a healthy and active database. One option for reactivating subscribers is to reach out and ask questions about the customer’s lack of engagement. This allows the customer to either confirm their interest or candidly initiate the unsubscribe, both of which are desirable actions in this case.
Many marketers hesitate to ask their database directly if they want to continue receiving communications or update their content preferences, often because they don’t want to admit to their customers that they don’t know. In most instances, the subscriber has never given the marketer any information to indicate what they do or do not want to hear about, so there really should be no shame in asking. Many customers want (and expect) their favorite brands to provide tailored content and will be happy to provide information to make that happen. If customers are not engaged in your content, they are already providing a strong signal that the content may need to be tailored more. Directly requesting that feedback or confirmation of continued subscription tells the customer that you’ve noticed their lack of response and that you value them.
It is critical, though, that you follow through in utilizing the data provided by your customers. Don’t ask your customers to answer questions if you cannot leverage their response. For example, if you ask whether or not the customer wants to continue receiving communications from you, make sure you can honor their response quickly if they desire to opt out. For a subtler approach, offer new content options to choose from rather than what they are currently receiving in your communications. Again, make sure you can also pivot your messaging strategy quickly based on their response.
Asking your database questions can be scary, but with smart creative and the right tone, you can acquire really valuable data to help you reactive these silent subscribers. Plus, reaching out to confirm preferences can also trigger action from previously unresponsive subscribers.
Here are a few tips to help guide these campaigns:
- Subject lines become even more critical than usual in this application. Stand out! Now is not the time to play it safe.
- Show subscribers what they have been missing out on. Inspire them with your best content and make good on the promise of more.
- Ensure a seamless experience and remove roadblocks to keep customers opted in. Make sure landing page experiences and the customer journey as a whole are smooth and intuitive.
Here’s a great example from Room and Board on how to put this type of campaign together:
This type of campaign may feel scary to start, but once you implement this process, keep it up! Implementing a regular cadence of this email best practice can be instrumental in keeping your database healthy and your program successful.