lit match reignite inactive subscribers

Re-Ignite the Inactive With Incentives

Just about every business is challenged by inactive subscribers. You know, the people who signed up for your email at some point but seemed to have lost interest since. They don’t actually unsubscribe. They don’t do anything…at all.

Because the un-engaged subscriber is un-lucky for you—as the ISPs look at your levels of engagement with recipients to determine the validity of your email—it’s necessary to either get these folks to re-engage or get them off your in-house email list altogether. It doesn’t matter if you have the best email service in the world if your list includes names it shouldn’t!

Methods for re-activating the inactive vary. While some companies come right out and ask a subscriber if they want to stay on the list, you as the email marketer might take a softer approach, a two-step one that first offers the inactive subscriber an incentive.

Be sure you have an incentive that really works, and stay away from “incentives” that are simply regurgitated versions of the specials you offer already via email. They’ve seen those, remember? They just aren’t responding to them!

This incentive needs to be something unusual, to get them back into your fold. Possible incentives include an exclusive discount, a bonus, or a special offer. Promote free samples or product trials. You can also run a contest with a chance to win a valuable prize, which gives you the opportunity to award a much bigger incentive since there’s only one winner.

If they respond to your incentive, bingo! Your email service just got better because the responsiveness of your list grew.

And if they don’t respond to the incentive email? Then maybe it’s off the list they go, where they can’t mess with your open rates, lower your click-through rates, or report you as spam.

Also use this as an opportunity to take a critical look at your message, subject line, offer, and other elements of your email. If people aren’t responding, maybe there’s something turning them off.

Finally, if they don’t respond to the incentive, in a way they did. Their lack of action was their final vote, and now you can take action to clean up your list.

Need help re-engaged the inactive subscribers or looking for the best email marketing vendor? Call on ClickMail for help.

Published On: September 26th, 2012Categories: Miscellaneous email marketing topics

About the Author: Sharon

Sharon Ernst from is on a mission to improve the business and marketing writing skills of today’s workforce with her blog, newsletter and online classes. Her newest class on intermediate email copywriting covers 19 tips and techniques non-copywriters can put to use right away for better results. The class has real-life examples and before/after comparisons to make the lessons stick. Find her class at When she’s not busy helping employees, managers and marketers master their writing skills, she and her husband are busy raising pigs, cows, chickens and vegetables on their 20-acre farm.

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