The Path to Holiday Email Optimization Part II: Optimizing Performance
• Unsubscribe Rate: This rate indicates a strong dissatisfaction with your entire program. Your unsubscribe rate is the number of unsubscribes out of your delivered emails. Like complaints, unsubscribes can be analyzed to identify types of content, sources of subscribers, or segments with engagement issues — enabling you to modify your program before more people terminate their email marketing relationship with you.
Steps to Take
Here are three steps to take to optimize performance for the holidays:
1. Re-engagement/Win-Back Campaign: While you should remove unknown addresses and spam traps immediately from your program, don't be too quick to cull your inactive addresses. Before you call it quits, make one more attempt to win them back. In a Return Path study, we found that marketers where removing inactive subscribers too quickly after sending a win-back campaign. Your inactive subscribers were once actively interested in your content, so don't miss out on potentially valuable customers by cutting them off or continuing the same ineffective campaigns.
2. Update and Expand Your Preference Center: Offer your customers a say in your relationship by giving them a chance to control what they receive from you. There are a couple different preference options you can offer to your subscribers. Asking for a preferred frequency will help you manage customer expectations and decrease the amount of complaints due to over or under mailing. You can even offer seasonal options, letting them temporarily see daily specials while they're searching for gifts, and then returning to a slower cadence after the holidays.
If your program has a variety of subscriptions, allow customers to choose which ones they want to receive. This will help protect you from complaints and unsubscribes from customers who are only interested in one aspect of all your content. Another great preference option is interests. By collecting which topics or products that interest your customers, you can tailor your content to be relevant and engaging. Have options in place to to catch subscribers who may be unhappy with your current program, but would be open to an altered relationship.