How to Create a Win Back Email Campaign (with Examples)

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When it comes to measuring the success of our email campaigns, nothing is more important than engagement. Those opens, clicks, and yes, email-driven purchases are what keep your company going strong.

But what happens when your top subscribers stop opening their emails? Or they stop visiting your website? What do you do when subscribers who were once so regularly active... stop taking action?

Rather than just shrugging it off and continually blasting your email list with the same content that is CLEARLY no longer working, you should take this as a sure sign that you need to start developing a customer re engagement campaign.

But how are you going to revive your email list? In our previous blog, we covered the steps to maintaining a clean list to boost your engagement. This week we're providing some great ideas to help you really win back your subscribers who are already disengaged.

Keep It Simple

Contrary to what you might think, you don’t always need to make an elaborate pitch to try to win back the hearts of your wayward email subscribers. Sometimes, it’s best to keep it simple, like in this example from Zillow:

Win Back Your Unengaged Email Subscribers - Zillow Win Back Emails

We’re presented with a short message that matches the brand voice and gives the customer two options: to either keep receiving emails or to unsubscribe. As in this example, these messages are most effective when they’re short, sweet, and to the point. This way readers aren't feeling like they’re wasting their time when they engage. Check out this example from Urban Outfitters:

Win Back Your Unengaged Email Subscribers - Urban Outfitters Win Back Email

This email still manages to keep their message concise while also incorporating a playful sense of humor. You just can't help but want to read through this clever 'text message type' email.

Most importantly, these emails read like the message is coming from an actual human being, not a faceless company. Whether you use humor or even some tear-jerking sentimentality to get the message across, these emails can provide just the right kick in the pants to your unengaged subscribers.

While we know it's painful to see people unsubscribe from your email list, clearing out the clutter with these simple options can ultimately improve your open and click rates so you can generate a better ROI from your email marketing.

Make an Offer They Can’t Refuse

Sometimes the best way to drum up new business for your company is to make a special offer — like an exclusive discount, sale or gift. And guess what? This can prove just as effective when you’re trying to win back the interest of your less active email subscribers.

Take this email from Hulu as an example:

Win Back Your Unengaged Email Subscribers - Hulu Win Back Email

This was an email that went out to people who did a free trial with the video streaming company but canceled before becoming a paid subscriber. Yeah, some of us are cheap like that.

The way to lure them back? A $20 gift card that essentially covers the cost of those first two months of a paid subscription, which ideally would turn into an even longer-term relationship. Better yet, there’s also a deadline for taking advantage of the deal, which adds urgency to the message.

Birch Box takes a very simplistic approach to their win back email, but guess what.. we love it:

Win Back Your Unengaged Email Subscribers - Birchbox Win Back Email

Whether you offer a free trial, store credit, or an exclusive discount, incentivizing the opportunity to reengage with your brand can serve as the ideal motivator to get back in a subscriber’s good graces.

Share Something Exciting

A lot of the time, customers stop visiting your website or opening your email content because it’s grown stale or boring. Maybe they’ve become disinterested in your service, or even dissatisfied with what you have to offer.

The thing is, your company is (hopefully) always working to make improvements. So when you take these big steps forward, sharing that information with your less engaged email subscribers is an absolute must!

Buzzsprout reached out to their subscribers to let them know about new improvements that have been made to their mobile app:

Win Back Your Unengaged Email Subscribers - Buzzsprout Win Back Email

StruckAxiom specifically targeted their disengaged subscribers with an email update regarding their brand new website:

Win Back Your Unengaged Email Subscribers - StruckAxiom Win Back Email

By highlighting the updates you’ve made to your product or service, you can rekindle interest in what you have to offer. This works especially well when you focus on the benefits these updates can bring to your subscribers, or highlight some social proof. An interesting and beneficial update can help your unengaged customers decide that it’s worth giving your company a second chance after all.

Final Takeaways

As these examples show, you don’t need to start tearing your hair out if you’ve noticed a drop in your customer engagement. By targeting your unengaged subscribers with the right messaging, you can pique their interest and restore the effectiveness of your email marketing campaign.

Ready win back your unengaged email subscribers with a clever campaign? We thought so. Start your free trial with Sendlane today!

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