How to Clean Your Email List

How to Clean Your Email List Twitter

The world of digital marketing is constantly changing. Email is no exception. Yesterday’s strategies may seem outdated today. But a healthy email list is vital to the success of any business.

Keeping your list in top condition means keeping it ‘clean.’ Removing spam email addresses when they show up on your list helps your deliverability rate. If you’re not replacing inactive email addresses with new, active ones, then your list becomes stagnant. Here are some tips to clean your email list and work at top efficiency.

1. Remove or win back inactive clients

Proactively removing inactive subscribers from an email list is a best practice. You want to make sure you’re getting a return on time and money you put into your email campaigns. The logic is simple enough: Why send a message that you know won’t be opened?

But it’s also a good practice to try and engage inactive subscribers before permanently removing them from your list. One way to do this is by sending an email that includes a special offer or discount code that give an inactive subscriber an incentive to open the email.

2. Send a ‘last-call’ email

If offering an incentive doesn’t engage an inactive subscriber, then send another email asking if they want to remain on your list.

An engaging way to do this is to send a Dear John letter. I’ve used a couple of catchy subject lines to get people to open … It’s not you, it’s me and Where did the love go? The email text is fun and light and gives people an easy way to unsubscribe from the list.

Or, send them a notification their subscription is about to expire and ask if they’d like to opt back in. If they remain inactive, then you can remove them from the list.

3. Use the right tools

The good news when it comes to keeping your email list clean and healthy is that there are plenty of tools available to make the job easier. The one I use most frequently is It practically “bounces” (an email the returns to you because it can’t be delivered for some reason) by verifying email addresses. Each email list sent to DataValidation gets an overall grade based on quality. (Don’t ask me how they do this … It’s some kind of email voodoo. All I know is that it works. and keeps my clients off the Mailchimp bad account list.)

4. Monitor your open rates

If the vast majority of subscribers on your list aren’t opening your emails, it may be due to your subject lines and the timing of your emails (both the day of the week and time of the day).

A tip to get more opens … Resend your email to the people who didn’t open it the first time. This can raise your open rate by about 5% overall.

5. Segment your list

There are many ways to segment your list; based on purchases, demographics or links clicked. For example, if you’re selling pet supplies, you can categorize based on what type of animal the subscriber buys or that interests them.

Segment your email list in a way reflects the overall engagement of each subscriber. Mailchimp gives each of your subscribers anywhere from 2 to 5 stars according to their interaction with your emails. It’s important to continuously organize and analyze your list.

Try segmenting your list by opens. Subscribers who open most of your emails are the top priority. While subscribers who open fewer emails should be given just enough to spark their interest. Subscribers that haven’t opened for a while should get sent a reengagement campaign.

Keeping your email list clean and updated will help improve your organization’s bottom line. With the right strategies and tools, your list will remain in top-notch condition.

How to Clean Your Email List

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