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Julian Shapiro
+ Your AuthorsArchive @Julian Tweets on writing and clear thinking. I deconstruct how things work and share my learnings along the way. Writing: Work: Jan. 18, 2021 2 min read

Important realizations I had about email marketing:

Growing a newsletter or optimizing email performance at your startup?

This thread is for you.

The unsubscribed aren't dead

• You can still reach out to folks who've unsubscribed.

• Upload their emails to a custom ad audience on Facebook and run ads to them with new offers/products.

• Now you have a shot at reactivating them—instead of forever ignoring them.

The right metric

Open rate doesn't capture email success.

Open rate is more a measure of PAST performance:* If past emails were good, readers will want to open this one.

Click-to-open rate is what measures the % of people who CLICK after opening 👍

*Also subject + time of day

Delay welcome emails

People reflexively ignore welcomes after signup

• Try DELAYING by ~45min to bypass this reflex

• Email from an employee—not the business. Julian Shapiro > . It's more real.

• Unique subjects:

Grammerly = Bye Typos 👍

Make it easy to refer

• Remind readers at the end of each issue that they can refer others. Include a link.

• Have a web version of each issue so they can be easily shared OUTSIDE of email.

• Consider rewards: They get a monthly bonus edition for referring 5 friends.

SEO can be a vanity metric if it doesn't convert traffic to leads.

1. Prompt readers with quizzes to help them identify the best product. Require an email to see results.

2. Create Buyer's Guides: Make PDF’s with good visuals to help readers learn key skills. Require an email.

Failed payments cause preventable churn.

Some say non-payment causes up to 50% of their churn.

• When cards fail, retry. 20% of payments are resolved on attempt #2

• No work? Email a mobile-friendly link w/ no password needed to just update the card

• No response? Send SMS

When pitching a newsletter on your site:

• Show a sample issue on the page—prove upfront how high value your content is.

• Give subscribers CONTROL over how often they're emailed. Some want weekly, but others REALLY want monthly. High volume can burn you and readers out.


• Make referring easy.
• Don't abandon subscribers.
• Show value upfront. Provide control.
• Be personal. Avoid people's spam reflexes.

Follow me for more marketing threads whenever I stumble into tactics I like.

For example:

You can follow @Julian.


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