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Email marketing is the one digital marketing channel with the most underrated potential. 

While both paid and organic social has an important place in your marketing mix, Brands often fail to utilise email and take advantage of this owned channel that has stood the test of time over the last 2 decades.

When it comes to email marketing, most tend to focus on improving the obvious KPIs like deliverability, open rate and clickthrough rates. These are all great tactics if your subscribers are all the same person. But we know that no two customers are the same. A/B testing send times or subject lines can produce results but not the results you think. While those results can improve your KPIs, it does nothing to increase email revenue.

There’s a better approach to increasing email revenue. You need a strategy that keeps your options open and increases your future sales potential in the channel.

First, you need to group your email list into segments:

  1. New subscribers (users who signed up in the last 30 days)
  2. Low engagers (users who haven’t opened in the past 120 days)
  3. High-engagers (users who have opened over 50% of the email they received in the last 30 days, or clicked over 25%)
  4. Everyone else

These segments mirror the phases in a subscriber’s lifecycle. Each group has different preferences and needs. A subscriber who tuned you out won’t be interested in receiving three emails per day. But you’ll miss out on revenue if you reduce the number of emails you send your high-engagers.

Increasing email revenue from new subscribers

The goal for new subscribers is to set them up for success. You want to avoid sending too many emails that they begin to disengage. Every email should be as meaningful and impactful as possible. New subscribers should be kept out of your main email list for the first 30 days. Select one or two messages per week from your main email list, but only send content that you wouldn’t want to miss out on like a sale or new product launch.

What do you send instead? Firstly you need to build a relationship between the subscriber and your brand. This is where the approach will differ between prospects and customers. For customers, you can offer support and educate the user on what they just purchased or send other forms of content that reassure them that their purchase was a good decision. You want to make the brand desirable to new subscribers. The narrative behind your brand can really shine here. Think of the ways that you can educate, entertain or provide value to your subscribers.

By the end of the 30 days, you’ll know if they are a high-engager, low-engager or if they have drowned you out completely.

Increasing email revenue from highly engaged subscribers

Highly engaged subscribers love your brand and love email. This is the audience segment that will reliably generate the majority of your email revenue. While you don’t want to alienate them, you don’t want to depend on them entirely.

First, you’ll need to understand their preferences. Do they tend to buy on sale or at full price? Do they prefer a particular product or category? Is there a certain style of email content that they respond to more than others?

You can maximize revenue from this segment by giving them more of what they want. There is also a huge benefit to implementing personalized elements into your strategy. It’s also worth seeing what contact strategy is most effective when this segment demonstrates high purchase intent. 

What do you do with those who are not fully engaged?

Low-engaged users have either given up completely or are on the verge of doing so. You need to filter this segment out and remove them from your main email list. Like new subscribers, send them one or two messages a week with your most important content and avoid the “your Autumn wardrobe” emails. If subscribers are on the fence, the reduction in emails will make it more likely that they will pay attention to the messages you do send. 

Some low engagers are seasonal shoppers who will only purchase during certain events like Black Friday, Christmas or Easter. You have the option of moving the seasonal shoppers to a new email list and only email them during these events or you can leave them in the main list and email at a very low frequency. 

There will be a proportion of low engagers who have completely tuned you out but are still subscribed for one reason or another. If they remain unengaged after implementing your new engagement strategy, remove them from the list. It is also worth putting an automated rule in place to remove unengaged subscribers after a set period of time.

What do you do with everyone else?

There are always going to be some subscribers who engage with your emails, but not at the same rate as your high engagers. Work on making the message to this group as relevant as possible. If there are customers in this group, study their purchase preferences and contrast them with your high engagers. They may have different interests. Reducing email frequency and increasing relevance, in some cases, can turn an average engager into a highly engaged subscriber. This audience segment still plays an important role in generating revenue for your business.


To increase your email revenue, you need to treat your email subscribers as an ecosystem.


Are you not seeing email generate enough revenue? Why not book a call with a member of our team and see how we can help

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