If you’ve been collecting customer email addresses for a while in preparation for your jump into email marketing, you will find that a fair number of the email addresses in your list – if they’ve been sitting in storage for months or even a couple of years – ARE going to be dead by now, so don’t be surprised if your list shrinks noticeably after this first mailing. (WebbMail will automatically move any permanently unreachable addresses to your list’s error bin.)
This is a healthy part of the email-marketing process, to weed out people who aren’t there – or aren’t at all interested in hearing from you – and let you focus your efforts on those who are.
Here are a couple of additional tips for reaching out to customers who might not have heard from you in a long time:
Start by cleaning up your list.
Before you import your list of names and addresses into your WebbMail account, spend a little time cleaning it up. Be on the lookout for generics (firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, etc.), which are not worth trying and can often result in spam complaints, as well as any addresses you know shouldn’t be there (customers who canceled their accounts, etc.).
When you send, clearly identify yourself.
People are quick to delete or opt out of emails from senders they don’t immediately recognize. So use an obvious from name and address, both of which should ideally include your company name. The prominent branding in your custom-design WebbMail stationery will also help identify you.
Remind your customers that they’re your customers.
People have short-term memories. Some of your customers may not remember they bought a lamp from you 18 months ago or signed up for your service last spring. So connect the dots for them, either in the greeting (“Dear Bob, As a past customer of Acme Company…”) or at the bottom of the campaign (“You’re receiving this newsletter because you’re a recent customer of Acme Company…”) or both.
Let ’em know it’s voluntary.
Make it clear to the members of your email list that they’re free to leave it at any time. If people trust that the door really is open should they ever decide to exit, they’re often more comfortable sticking around.
Above all, be human.
Remember that you have a relationship with these people, so take full advantage when crafting your campaigns. Instead of throwing an indiscriminate pitch at them, give things a more personal, conversational touch. These are your people, and if you treat them as such we think you’ll be pleasantly surprised with your results for this campaign and the many that follow.