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A quick way to increase email response rates

Have you cleaned your email list?

If you’re not regularly cleaning bad email addresses out of your email list, you’re really hurting your email effectiveness:

  • Large numbers of bouncing emails trigger spam filters at ISPs. Much less of your good email gets through.
  • Your data is way off. Your open and click rates are skewed by all the people who never get or open your email. You have no idea what works.

Once a quarter (at least), you should purge your email list of all bouncing addresses. You should also delete all subscribers who haven’t opened a message in a year. Accept the fact that they aren’t going to suddenly start responding. They’re probably auto-filtering you right into the junk folder.

Here’s a good story about how ASPCA is cleaning their lists.

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Comments

  1. James Lamb March 1, 2011 at 11:54 pm #

    Bounces should be dropped immediately.

    For best results with Yahoo!, you’re better off dropped unresponsives after six-months. (And that includes SBCGlobal, AT&T, YMail and a few others I can’t recall offhand.)

    If you’re sending a large number of emails to people who aren’t opening or clicking, the ISPs are starting to look at that, too.

  2. Bob March 4, 2011 at 12:28 pm #

    Here’s a fantastic article by Return Path on how your subscribers engagement levels effect deliverability: http://www.returnpath.net/blog/intheknow/2009/10/how-engagement-metrics-influence-deliverability/.

    Also, for mailchimp customers who want to clean out their list, this article provides a step-by-step way to do so: http://blog.mailchimp.com/how-to-reactivate-inactive-subscribers/

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