Audience Development Strategy

Email Confirmation Message Series Best Practices: Grow Your List Faster Starting Today

An important tool for growing your email subscriber list is the often-overlooked Email Confirmation Message Series. We’ve all seen instances when a user comes to your site, enters a valid email address, and that’s it. They don’t open your welcome email, they forget about claiming their free download, and they don’t become confirmed on your email list—it’s like they have “disappeared.”

Your Email Confirmation Message Series is critical for engaging these new users and persuading them to open the email and become a confirmed subscriber to your free content.

An Email Confirmation Message Series is a set of follow-up emails that entices the user to complete their registration to your email list. You’re likely more familiar with their siblings in e-commerce, where you leave a cart and get an email later that you “forgot” to check out. An email confirmation series is similar, except it’s simply asking the user to confirm that they want their free report, and to receive emails from you in the future. In our humble opinion — this is even more valuable than a single sale and worth the effort so you can build a relationship with them through email and sell more to them later on.

Download a FREE copy of Best Email Subject Lines for Selling Premium Subscriptions and Memberships and discover an extensive list of email subject line frameworks that are consistently proven to sell and boost revenue for publishers.

Email Confirmation Message Series Best Practices: Number of Efforts and Timing

We find that a 6-effort Confirmation Series works best, with email messages being sent on days 1, 2, 3, 7, 14 and 21 after initial new subscriber sign-up. If the user has not confirmed after the 6th effort, the series concludes and the user will not receive any further emails. Alternatively, opening any email in the series will stop all subsequent efforts, since the user becomes confirmed.

Once confirmation is achieved, you’re free to fully engage with newly confirmed email subscribers—with daily free content, sponsored content, Spotlight marketing efforts, circulation builders, and more. This important step of confirmation is the trigger for starting your relationship with new email subscribers.

Email Confirmation Message Series Best Practices: Email Subject Lines

Through testing among various Mequoda publishing partners, we’ve learned that the following email subject lines work well to encourage readers to open email messages in the Confirmation Series:

Day 1 – Don’t forget to download your free guide…

Day 2 – Did you miss your freebie?

Day 3 – Reminder! You can still download your free guide!

Day 7 – Checking in on your free guide

Day 14 – The [Insert Brand Name here] free guide you requested

Day 21 – Final chance to download your free guide!

Remember, these new users have already expressed an interest in your site and your content. They’ve taken the time to not only visit your site, but to also to hand over their email address. Now you need to engage them so that they become active participants (and hopefully buyers!) with your content.

Email Confirmation Message Series Best Practices: COO vs. COC Protocols

For most of Mequoda’s publishing partners, the Confirm-On-Open (COO) protocol is standard, but—in some instances—you may decide that the Confirm-On-Click (COC) protocol is best for you.

Confirm-On-Open (COO): Confirm-On-Open means that a user opening any email they receive from you triggers specific events in Haven and in your email system that set the user to “confirmed”. The user only has to open an email in order to be confirmed and start receiving your newsletters and all your other email efforts.

Confirm-On-Click (COC): Confirm-On-Click means that a user must click on a link in one of your email messages to trigger specific events in Haven and in your email system that set the user to “confirmed”. The user has to open an email AND click a specific confirm link in that email in order to be confirmed and start receiving your newsletters and all your other email efforts.

Email Confirmation Message Series Best Practices: Test, Test, Test

With the Mequoda Method, best practices are always meant to be tested against and improved upon. We encourage you to test and measure all aspects of your Email Confirmation Message Series—you can test email subject lines and timing…or even try adding additional efforts to help increase your confirmation rates and grow your file even more.

Your Confirmation Series is a very important aspect of growing your email list. If you have any questions on your Confirmation Series and whether or not it follows Mequoda best practices, leave a comment below.

By Kim Mateus

Chief Strategy Officer

Kim Mateus is Chief Strategy Officer for Mequoda Systems and the Mequoda Systems Content Network where she oversees strategic planning for the organization's 200 plus premium subscription products. Over the past decade, she has guided the development of more than 20 subscription marketing systems including I Like Crochet Network, New England Network and Your AAA Network. She and her team maintain an exhaustive best practices database of subscription marketing techniques and business processes that she uses to advise her clients and optimize the more than 60 websites that make up the Mequoda Systems Content Network. Kim is a frequent speaker at industry events and serves on the board of the Specialized information Publishers Association.

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