E-commerce Link : Are They Listening?
How to develop a successful email re-activation strategyApril 2012 By Reggie Brady
Up to 50 percent of your email file may not have opened or clicked on your emails in many months. This sad situation certainly is not helping to drive interest and business to your site. In addition, it costs money to regularly mail to your list. Let's examine the issue of inactives on your list and then look at strategies you can use to re-engage this potentially dead wood.
Reasons for Inactivity
There are many reasons why someone might not be engaging with your emails, and some of the reasons are not necessarily disinterest in hearing from you. Here are a few reasons for inactivity:
- Recipients changed their email addresses and you don't know. Many consumers find their inboxes are filled with spam. So, they create new email addresses to start fresh and may not tell you about the change, although a preference center with the ability to update an email address helps.
- They didn't give you their primary email addresses. Many individuals have an email address that is checked regularly, while there may be secondary email addresses that are only checked occasionally. Those less frequently used email addresses probably have many other messages in the inbox, and individuals don't take the time to carefully read all their emails.
- Your emails may be delivered to a bulk folder where they languish unread.
- You may have an image- blocking problem, so readers don't easily see your offers and content.
- Your emails may be sent too frequently and your list just doesn't want to pay attention.
The Cost of Inattention
Let's say that a marketer has a list of 1 million names, 50 percent are inactive and the cost to send emails is $4 per thousand. And, for this example, we'll use a frequency of eight emails sent per month. The total cost of sending emails per month to the entire list is $32,000, and the potentially wasted dollars allocated to mailing to inactives is $16,000. On an annual basis, the cost of mailing inactives is $192,000. That's a sizeable amount of money!
ISPs are now looking at how many open your message. If your open rate is substantially lower than their algorithms expect, your messages could be delivered to a bulk folder.
Identifying Your Inactives
There are different schools of thought on how to define inactives. If you are an e-tailer, you may want to use a one-year window, because some people on your list may only be motivated during key buying seasons, such as the major gift-giving occasions. The same rule applies to nonprofits who want to solicit year-end donations. B-to-B and other service marketers might apply standards that are more rigorous and use a six-month timeframe.