For years, email marketers have relied on a metric that was thought to be a rock-solid indicator of two things: That the number of clicks or opens could be translated as a measure of engagement, and that by pruning dead subscribers from a list, and thereby increasing your engagement, your reputation with ISPs would be increased. However, Dela Quist—the CEO of London-based email marketing agency AlchemyWorx—shook up the email marketing world, as reported by Ken Magill this week, by challenging the long-held doctrine of not emailing to inactive subscribers.
During the recent Email Experience Council conference, a panel of experts from the "Big 4" ISPs sat and answered questions. The panel was composed of Paul Rock (AOL), Matthew Moleski (Comcast), Sri Somanchi (Gmail) and John Scarrow (Microsoft). Quist reports that Microsoft's Scarrow says that there is no benefit to removing inactive subscribers, even two or more years after their lapse in activity.
Instead of focusing on what email marketers can do to game the ISPs favor, Quist suggests that they should instead "focus on engaging your subscribers because you want to promote your company." While he's expanding on themes that were brought up by other panelists, Quist's viewpoint is certainly against the prevailing thought, so he took to Twitter to defend his point:
Mail your inactives less is dumb advice wld love to see proof that not sending an email will reengage the person who didn't get it.
— Dela Quist (@DelaQuist) February 13, 2015
And he's not wrong. As long as emailing inactive subscribers isn't actively hurting your rep with ISPs, then what could possibly be the problem? Will this change your outlook on email marketing, or the way you handle your list cleaning? Let us know in the comments, below.