Immediately Removing Win-Back Non-Responders is a Bad Idea: Return Path
By Ken Magill
Immediately removing the email addresses of people who fail to respond to win-back campaigns will likely result in culling addresses that still have revenue potential, according to a report released today by email intelligence firm Return Path.
[Full disclosure: I was involved in writing this report.]
Win-back, or reactivation email campaigns are those sent by marketers to try and re-engage inactive email addresses—say, those of people who haven’t clicked on anything in a year.
Experts say marketers who send email to large email lists with significant percentages of inactive addresses risk experiencing email deliverability troubles. As a result, most email experts recommend implementing win-back campaigns and removing addresses deemed inactive.
When to declare inactive email addresses to be truly dead and dangerous, however, is not black and white.
In a study of win-back campaigns employed by 33 retailers, Return Path found that 45 percent of email address holders who received win-back emails read subsequent messages. But of that 45 percent, just 24 percent had read win-back emails.
Conversely, of the 45 percent who read subsequent messages after receiving win-back emails, 76 percent had not read any win-back messages.
Moreover, the average length of time between when people received a win-back message and when they read a subsequent email was 57 days, according to Return Path.
“What is unknown is whether or not the win-back emails had any significant effect on recipients’ engagement with future emails,” the report said.
“Immediately removing people from an email list who do not respond to win-back emails is not a good idea,” the report said. “You may be removing people who are still engaged with your brand or who respond to the message by shopping at a bricks-and-mortar location, or who may re-engage in the future.”
Access the full report here.