According to Mailchimp, the average email newsletter open rate is just 21%. That’s dangerously low.
This is because most newsletters don’t land in the Primary Tab. They get marked as spam or die in the “Promotions” or “Social” tabs. If nobody sees them, nobody will open up or engage with them.
But Harry from Marketing Examples found a workaround for this problem. He runs a free weekly newsletter service for marketing professionals, in which he shares copywriting advice & practical case studies.
He decided to use the Double Opt-in technique for getting email subscribers into his content funnel, and I thought it was worth noting here for our email champions.
A double opt-in is when you send a confirmation email to your new email subscribers after they’ve hit the “Yes, count me in for this newsletter” button. They will have to manually find your email and click the button saying they confirm that they want to receive further updates.
Only after they double-confirm their choice will they get added to your sales/content flow, and receive further updates. If they don’t, they won’t enter the funnel.
Many a time, the initial email containing the request may go to spam, so you’ll have to remind them to look for it in the SPAM or Promotions tabs. But once your new subs locate it, it can be transferred to their Primary tab.
While it might seem like an additional step, it’s worth the hassle because it serves 2 main benefits. First, it helps your brand account avoid spam. Bots won’t be able to sign up since they won’t be able to confirm their subscription.
Secondly, once your new subs have found & interacted with your confirmation email, the system will mark it as “Not Spam.” In fact, once they’ve confirmed their subscription, you can ask them to “Add your Email to their whitelist” by having them save your contact in their Addresses Book on Google.
This will mark you as a legitimate sender in the recipient’s contact list, and drastically minimize your chances of getting sent to the SPAM or Promotions folders.
Here’s how Harry did it.
In this blog post, he gives the example of another brand that applied this technique.
The first picture is the message subscribers get after hitting the sub button on the website. The second picture is an extract from the email they get afterward, asking them to confirm their choice, and reminding them to add the sender to their Contacts list.
But does this work?
Harry conducted what we call an “A/B Split Test” to find it out. In this test, all other factors were consistently identical, but what was different was that one group of subs received the double opt-in, while the other did not i.e. they were directly added to the newsletter group.
The results speak for themselves. Harry saw a vastly superior engagement rate from subs who had double opted-in. Here’s a direct quote from the author.
I found that 73% of those who received my welcome email opened my latest email newsletter, compared to just 48% of those who never got my initial email.
So that proves the value of having double opt-in baked into your email marketing strategy.
Did you learn something new? Are you going to apply this technique? Have you already been doing this in your newsletter campaigns? What were the results?
Share your experiences & thoughts in the comments below.
Very nice post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wanted to say that I’ve really enjoyed browsing your blog posts. In any case I’ll be subscribing to your feed and I hope you write again soon!