Schmarder: Trim Your Email Subscriber List
It’s that time of year again, according to Woodall's Campground Management columnist Evanne Schmarder, principal at Roadabode Productions.
Park owners and operators across the land have begun spring cleaning. Sweeping away cobwebs, organizing supplies, and giving a good once over to recreation equipment are all obvious and important steps in the run up to the summer camping season. Less obvious? Spring cleaning your email subscriber list: Pruning the inactive, planning to provide more value to loyal readers.
What’s that? You’ve worked hard attracting subscribers and you intend to keep every single one of them? I hate to tell you this, but if a subscriber never opens your email, you are not only spinning your wheels and wasting your marketing dollars but also skewing your statistics and possibly hurting your relationship with your email service provider. After all, if your email is never received – either delivered or opened – then your message is not being heard. You might as well stand on a tree stump and shout your news into a dark and empty forest. What is that going to get you? Exactly.
List hygiene how-tos
The ultimate goal of cleaning your email subscriber list – otherwise known as list hygiene – is to identify those subscribers who are interested in receiving and interacting with your emails, demonstrated by taking some type of action such as opens and click-throughs, with the ultimate goal of conversion. Fortunately for those of you using an email service provider (ESP) such as Constant Contact, Emma, or Mail Chimp, hard bounces, emails undeliverable because an address is not valid, are automatically removed.
That leaves us to consider the value of emailing subscribers who no longer find benefit in our communications for whatever reason — they’ve sold their camper, they’ve moved, they’ve been ill, or they simply are not interested in your product or service anymore. No action is being taken. The truth is, they are no longer your customer or prospect. Instead these addresses are inactive, adding unnecessary cost to your program as well serving up inaccurate data on return on investment and campaign efficacy.
For the full column including a list of eight specific tips, plus Evanne Schmarder's advice on the best practices for email marketing, pick up March's issue of Woodall's Campground Management.