Resending Email: Is It a Good Marketing Tactic?

May 04, 2015
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Resending Email: Is It a Good Marketing Tactic?

We were intrigued by an article on that discusses the value of resending emails to recipients who didn’t open your email the first time. It led to a good discussion in our office, so we turned to our friends at ITPro Today to help put some of our thoughts to paper (so to speak!).

Forbes’ findings on resending emails

According to the Forbes article, during one resending test, the second email helped reach 53.2% more people, while the campaign saw a 32.6% open rate between both emails. Those are impressive statistics, but it’s important that we don’t get ahead of ourselves. 

While these numbers are alluring, imagine what your inbox would look like if all marketers partook in this strategy. In a world where inboxes already burst at the seams and spam traps are more efficient than ever before, resending emails could hurt your program more than it helps. 

Here are a few reasons why your marketing team should think twice before sending again.

1. Resending emails is not a sustainable approach

Although Forbes’ first resending test maintained a normal .34% unsubscribe rate, that still doubles the net loss of contacts in the database. And like any questionable marketing tactic, just because it works the first couple of times doesn’t mean it’ll help your inbox placement in the long run.

Resending virtually the same email twice runs the risk of causing email fatigue and recipients flagging you as spam. Plus, even if you only resend to those who didn’t open the first email, there’s no way to know if your recipients deleted your original message on purpose. If they did, they won’t be happy to see the same email again. 

2. Engaging recipients matters

In the Forbes test, the senders noted that they made minor changes to the subject line and the placement and colors of the call-to-action buttons. So if the recipient intentionally deleted the email the first time, they could be even more annoyed that you tried to dupe them into reading it again. Don’t make them delete it again, or worse, unsubscribe.

Other interesting statistics from the article were around open and click-through rates on the second email. It said:

The follow up email never performs as strong as the first. Analyzing a few sample email campaigns, we’ve seen a 44% drop in open rate, and 46% drop in click-through rate on the second email. This is likely because the follow up group represents more of your inactive readers.

These large drops in open and click rates can have a long-term (negative) effect on your deliverability. If inbox service providers (ISPs) see that you're continuing to send email to unengaged users, your reputation can suffer. Are you willing to take that risk?

These large drops in open and click rates can have a long-term negative effect on your deliverability. And if ISPs see that you continue to send email to unengaged users, your reputation can suffer. Are you willing to take that risk?

Alternatives to resending an email

Rather than improving your inbox placement with the frequency of sending, we suggest you increase your odds of getting the recipient to open your emails by optimizing the time when you send them. How do you do that? Try these tests to find the best time for your recipients. 

After all, timing is everything, and sending emails when you know recipients are likely to open them is more efficient than resending. Plus, well-timed emails don’t run the risk of algorithms picking up that you’re sending duplicate email messages.

For recipients who don’t engage with your emails, a better strategy is to reduce the frequency of your emails and only send them relevant, wanted content. You can also try a reengagement campaign to gauge their interest in your communications. 

Although the engagement numbers in Forbes’ resending test are tempting, other methods like optimizing delivery times, offering a preference center, and setting proper expectations for the content and frequency of your emails during opt-in are more ethical, efficient, and much less risky.

And as always, A/B testing your sending times, subject lines, and every piece of your email campaigns can work wonders to optimize your sends.

Read more tips for how to recover from a failed email campaign (and how to avoid one in the first place). 

Land in the inbox with Twilio SendGrid

Rethinking your resending strategy just might be the thing that saves you from the spam folder or unsubscribes. Need help creating a better strategy that includes sending well-timed emails that land in the inbox? Twilio SendGrid’s Marketing Campaigns has everything you need to get started, including intuitive automation and proven deliverability. Give it a try for free today. 

This is a guest post from our friends at ITPro Today.

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