After any appearances at an event or competition you ran for marketing purposes, you should be left with a mound of customer data. These data gathering scenarios are a perfect opportunity to grow your mailing lists.

But after collection and your initial campaign, how can you put this data to use?

Marketers lose 25% of their email lists every year (simply to attrition).
Marketing Sherpa

With a customer re-engagement strategy, you can lower that natural 25% degradation of your database by reaching the right customers at the right time.

Re engage

Why your customer needs re-engagement?

Some fraction of your subscriber list will lose interest in your email messaging, that’s a given. A prospect’s needs and interests change with the seasons, but also from customer to customer and your messaging should mimic this.

45% of recipients who received win-back emails read subsequent messages.
Return Path

Sending impersonal messaging will not only fail to engage customers but can actively drive them away from your brand. Ignoring the signs and carrying on with your current strategy runs you the risk of damaging your brand's reputation. Tarnishing any relationship you’ve previously established and become another ‘straight to junk’ sender.


Consider that if your engagement levels drop dramatically, internet service providers (ISP’s) are going to consider you a ‘low-quality’ sender, which could even lead to being blacklisted.

How it works

Re-engagement works by targeting those who have already engaged with your brand. Starting with those who already exist on your mailing lists, whether it’s because they already have purchased from you or shown significant interest in your business at some point in time.

These are the prospects that are most likely going to do business with you and that’s a good sign if you look at Invesp research, which found that it’s up to five times more expensive to acquire a new lead than it is to retain one.

Research shows that a 2% increase in customer retention has the same effect as decreasing costs by 10%.
Leading on the Edge of Chaos

A re-engagement email campaign allows you to focus on retention, keeping costs down whilst improving sales.

Typically set up through a CRM and some form of marketing automation like Pardot or Marketo.

Setting up an effective email strategy requires customer data such as:

  • Demographic
    • Customer information like age, sex and home address can be used as a basis to start segmentation.
  • Engagement
    • What emails have customers previously opened, clicked, replied to or bought from.
    • What pages have they visited on your website? What products have they purchased?
  • Psychographic
    • Psychographic traits are things like values, interests and personality. This is the type of information that you would use in a customer persona. Although it will be harder to identify these traits, if you get it right, this can be one of the most effective types of personalisation.

When done well a re-engagement campaign can reduce list churn whilst boosting engaged interactions.

Customer re-engagement strategies

There are a number of tactics you can implement into your marketing plans to try and increase customer re-engagement.


One of the most popular ways to re-engage a customer is to offer them some form of incentive. A discount offer or unique code can be more than enough to encourage a customer back to your site to purchase.


There are a number of incentive types you can include and which one you decide should be determined through testing formats and tonal relevance.

Sale announcement

Promoting an incentive through a sale can more than often be enough to bring a customer back to you. A simple email or social media post can help reach a wide audience with established interest.

It’s also worth noting that a number of customers will only make purchases when a sale is on. Customers have an internal reference for how much they think a product should be worth based on; past experiences, competitor prices and self-evaluation.

50 percent

This internal referencing becomes particularly important when a higher ‘regular’ price is contrasted with a significant drop in its ‘sale’ counterpart. Consumers perceive that this is a good deal and should make the most of this time-restricted opportunity.

Personalised discount

Offering a discount that has implied exclusivity is another great opportunity for businesses. By personalising your emails, you can create a sense of urgency (or FOMO) in recipients. The feeling of missing out is a real phenomenon, especially with the millennial and younger demographics.

Crocs provided a great example of this with their re-engagement campaign. Very conversational in tone and doing exactly what it says. A brief greetings message implying the importance of the customers business and a $10 off their next order over $50.

The trick with this solution is that you need to monitor purchasing cycles and send out discounts when they fall out of these cycles. For example, if your average customer shops with you once a month, you’ll want to launch your discount campaign after three/ four-month of inactivity.


The simplest way to get an understanding of how your marketing efforts are being perceived is to just ask. Through this you’ll get an idea of whether or not you’re being too aggressive or maybe contacting customers too infrequently.

By asking your customers for their opinion you’ll probably find you receive more complaints than compliments, but this is just part of human nature. All comments can be used to better the customer experience and once they’ve replied you’ve re-engaged them.

It’s often the case we learn more from failure than success, so don’t be afraid of creating an open dialogue with customers.

Social proof

A customer might have come into contact with your brand, read reviews or tried your product or service and made the decision it’s not for them. However, the fact that there was an initial interest leaves room for you to exploit this. Knowing your audience, you can prove them wrong through legitimate statistics and real-world examples.


Reassurance through real-world examples can sway a customer from completely dismissing your product as a solution to a sale. Using statistics that offer up social proof can provide more impetus to take action and make a purchase decision.

Webflow showed how through their software they’ve managed to help over 10,000 users.


For B2B clients including relevant case studies and testimonials from renowned brands will also help reinforce the relevancy of your product to specific industries. Whilst user-generated content (UGC) will give B2C customers a persuasive argument to trust your brand and product.

Abandoned cart

An automated cart recovery email campaign can help you pick up potential sales that would’ve otherwise gotten lost with time.

69.89% of website visitors abandon their shopping carts.

Salesforce found a huge 60% of shoppers returned to their abandoned carts within 24 hours of receiving some form of personalised email. Re-engaging these customers allows you to recoup a large percentage of sales with minimal effort.


A re-engagement campaign allows you to reach a large group of prospects who have a high chance of converting to a sale, for less money and less effort.

The business case for nurturing the leads who have taken the effort to previously engage with you is incredibly strong and should be prioritised. Persuading a customer to come back to purchase is far easier the second time around.

If you’d like to read more on how to nurture your leads then read our blog on how to encourage repeat purchasing with after-sales data capture.

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