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Reconnecting with Disengaged Email Subscribers

email marketingIf you have a list that consists of large numbers (or even not-so-large numbers) you will have a certain portion of subscribers who won’t take any action, respond to offers or otherwise interact with you in any way. They may have been like that from the start, or perhaps they initially were actively engaged and have since just lost interest or gone silent for some reason. The longer you’ve had the list, the more likely this is to happen to some degree as people’s needs and interests change over time.

Yes, it may be expected and perhaps even inevitable, but that doesn’t mean you must simply resign yourself to accept it.

In fact, being too lackadaisical about this can actually hurt you. If you fail to take action to try and turn the situation around, these disinterested subscribers can have a negative impact on your email efforts.

That’s because internet providers and mail delivery services often monitor these things and take actions based on their findings. If your open rates and other engagement metrics are too low, you will go down to the bottom of their priority list—meaning, the delivery times for your emails may be delayed. Even worse, you may find yourself relegated to the spam category.

Those are things you obviously want to avoid, so you need to take action—and the sooner, the better. You have a few options. As a last resort, you’ll want to cleanse your list of subscribers who have been dormant for an extended period of time, to avoid the negative fallout they can have on your list.

However, before you take that step, you should make another effort to get these subscribers active again. Evaluate your tactics and think about ways you might be able to catch their eye. Perhaps a creative or attention-getting subject line would help.

You should also create a special campaign that specifically targets these “lost” contacts. Your messaging can reflect the fact that you want to reconnect—something like, “We’ve missed you!” and ideally should include a special offer or other incentive to sweeten the deal.

Of course, the ideal solution is to prevent people from becoming disinterested in the first place, which is why it is so important to plan your email marketing strategy so carefully. If you need help, KEO Marketing can assist with this and many other aspects of your marketing strategy.


With more than 25 years of hands on marketing strategy and operations experience, Sheila Kloefkorn is dedicated to developing marketing strategies and plans that help clients succeed. Some of the world's largest brands have depended on Sheila for marketing programs that delivered tangible and substantial results. Specialties: B2B marketing, lead generation, lead nurturing, sales strategy, marketing strategy, competitive marketing strategy, social media, search engine optimization (SEO), search engine marketing (SEM), mobile marketing, email marketing, website design, marketing plans.