We slashed our email list…want to know why?

You must think I’m mad as a box of frogs right? Possibly! But I’m pretty sure I’m on the money with this one.mad_frog

Like most businesses, we at WeddingDates have been building our email list for years. Years and years. Lots of lovely juicy emails of engaged couples for us to send our fortnightly Love Letters with inspiration, ideas and information about all our lovely venues.

All good so far, right? Not quite…. Over the years, lots of those people have already had their weddings….. many of them have now bought a house and are probably on to baby number 2 or 3 by now!

A lengthy, old list only leads to one thing…..people not opening the emails. I can be honest and tell you that the average open rate on the emails we sent out previously was around 20% or lower. What if I told you that that statistic is common across the board and most other companies would probably quote you the same thing:

“Across all industries, the average open rate results according to the most recent statistics for UK SME email marketing campaigns were: 22.87%”
Source: Smart Insights

BUT – That means 80% of people on our email list don’t open those emails!!

So, instead of a big list of emails with a low open rate, we wanted a smaller more focused list of relevant email addresses (ie. couples still planning their wedding) who actually open, read and click through from our emails. We hope that with a fresh list, cleared of all the already married/baby people that we will have a more engaged audience with which to promote ​our client venues.

So – in the month of August we underwent a “list cleaning” exercise. We worked with external consulting company called Brightspark to assist us with this to do it properly and employ best practice to get this right. You can read their case study on what they did for us here.

Not only did we do a mass cull of non responders and bounced email addresses, for those that remained (and any new subscribers) we want to segment them too – by when are they getting married and where are they located. So now our venues can target 2017 brides getting married in Greater London / Munster / South East England / Scotland etc.

What we are left with is a much smaller but more targeted email list of people who actually want to hear from us. The old adage, Quality over Quantity.

I firmly believe this was a very worthwhile exercise for us and one which probably most companies should embark on. Happy list slashing!!

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