I've got a super exciting topic for today…are you ready????!!! Email deliverability.
I can picture you jumping up and down and shouting “YEEESSSS – I've been wanting to know more about this!!!!”
Ok, maybe not.
And yet…it IS something you should care about.
Let's start with defining what the heck it is. Email deliverability means how many of your emails actually get into your recipient's IN box (versus their spam filter, or worse not delivered at all). There are LOTS of factors that affect deliverability – so many in fact I'm working on a free live training to help you understand what steps you can take to improve your deliverability (if you’re on my email list, watch for an invitation).
Today I want to focus on just one key factor – those quiet folks on your list. You know, the ones who haven't opened an email from you in 6 months. Or perhaps a year. Or more. Some folks leave the quiet ones on their list in the hopes that SOMEDAY they will actually open an email and take action. Yet many of them never do. Others keep the quiet ones so they can say their list has XXXX subscribers. And for a long time I thought “who cares?!”
But then I learned what those quiet ones do to your deliverability.
I'm not gonna get technical here – the easiest way to explain this is to think about it in terms of reputation (yes, it's like we've gone back to high school!) Webmail providers are constantly looking at your engagement levels and at recipient behavior to determine your reputation. Those emails with a good reputation make it to the inbox. Those with a not-so-good reputation get kicked to the spam folder.
So if you're sending a ton of messages yet very few people are opening them, your reputation is not good and you're messages are more likely to go to spam. Same if your recipients are unsubscribing or marking your messages as spam.
That means those quiet folks are actually hurting your reputation, which is affecting how many people see your messages.
What to do?
The best thing to do is to identify the folks who haven't opened one of your messages in 6 months or more. Move them to a separate list and send a series of emails (aka a “re-engagement series”) and see if you can get them to become active again. If they do nothing after that series, then stop emailing them and focus solely on the folks who are active and engaged.
Now…this might mean drastically reducing your list size. And that can be painful. I get it – I went through this process earlier this year and said goodbye to 1,000+ subscribers. But you know what?? The peeps who stayed are more engaged and interactive. And that's really what it's all about. A small, engaged list is WAY more powerful than a large, unengaged list (in fact, I have a fantastic story about this from my recent Client Attraction Forum – more on that in a future post).
So…are you willing to drop the quiet ones?! I promise you won't miss them at all!
P.S. This is another reason the “H” (for How) in eMail With H.E.A.R.T. is so important – if you are adding people to your list who don't want to be on it, they will either not open or unsubscribe or report you as spam – and ALL of those scenarios will drag your reputation down.
P.P.S. For more insights on how to leverage your email marketing, join my email list – CLICK HERE to join.