About Subscriber Engagement

Engaged subscribers are essential for successful email marketing. Depending on your goals, engagement may be measured by campaign opens and clicks, social media shares, website visits, or product purchases. Monitor your engagement metrics to see how well your email campaigns meet your goals, and make changes to get the best results.

In this article, you'll learn about subscriber engagement.

Positive engagement

A subscribed contact who is positively engaged is someone who opens and clicks your email campaigns, or interacts with your brand online. Engaged subscribers are likely to open your emails and continue to purchase, donate, or support your organization or brand.

Campaign opens and clicks don't tell the whole story, though, because they don't indicate what's going on outside of your subscribers' inboxes. To measure subscriber engagement, you should also consider subscribers' purchase activity, website visits, website visit duration, and social media shares.

That said, here are a few things you can do to increase positive engagement with your email marketing campaigns.

  • Test your content, subject line, and send times.
    Use A/B Testing to find out what leads to the best open and click rates, or the highest sales.

  • Send tailored campaigns.
    When you send to segments in your audience, subscribers receive the content they're most interested in. You can send email campaigns to subscribers based on their open and click behavior, subscriber profile preferences, and e-commerce purchases, among other variables. If you use tags to organize your audience, you can send directly to your tagged contacts or create segments based on tag data in your audience.

  • Give subscribers choices whenever you can.
    Add a simple poll to an email campaign to find out what your subscribers want to see more of, and use the poll results to build subscriber segments for more specific campaigns.
  • Re-engage your inactive subscribers.
    Send a compelling re-engagement campaign to subscribers who haven't opened your email campaigns in a while. Ask what content or products they prefer, to help win their interest back with specialized campaigns.
  • Find the right sending frequency.
    Every audience is different, so experiment and test to see what works best for your subscribers. Send more or fewer email campaigns than you usually do, and monitor campaign reports to see how sending frequency affects opens and clicks.

  • Reward your subscribers.
    Send your loyal subscribers coupons, promotions, or online giveaways as an incentive to keep reading.

Negative engagement

When a subscriber unsubscribes, marks your email campaign as spam, or makes a direct complaint, they are negatively engaged. Unfortunately, these people are no longer interested in your email marketing.

Negative engagement can have several causes: Subscribers don't find content compelling or relevant, they don't recognize the brand represented in your email campaigns, or they don't remember signing up for your emails.

Very high rates of negative engagement can cause internet service providers (ISPs) to block your campaigns from subscriber inboxes. To ensure the successful delivery of your future email marketing campaigns, be sure to keep an eye on these metrics.

Here are a few things you can do to prevent negative engagement.

  • Find out what your subscribers like.
    Send a simple poll to subscribers to see how many and what type of emails they prefer to receive, and target subscribers by their preferences.
  • Let your subscribers control how frequently they receive emails.
    Set up groups in your audience based on send frequency, like Monthly Subscribers, Weekly Subscribers, and Daily Subscribers, and ask your subscribers to update their profiles to change their preferences.
  • Make sure content is engaging and relevant.
    Use data in your audience to create segments of subscribers according to their interests or purchase history. Then, send tailored content that's relevant to each segment.
  • Refresh your permission reminder.
    Write a clear permission reminder to help your subscribers remember where and why they signed up to receive email marketing from you.
  • Polish your campaigns.
    Design and personalize your campaigns to feel less like generic email and more like a conversation.
  • Preview and test.
    Proofread and test your campaigns thoroughly to make sure everything looks professional and fits your brand and style.
  • Manage subscribers who don't engage with your email campaigns.
    Learn how to handle stale and inactive subscribers.

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