You are being removed from my list (Eh?)

42 replies
Can you believe the arrogance and ignorance of some list
owners?

Here's an e-mail I received recently with the subject line:

You are being removed from my list (Owner's Name)

You haven't opened one of my emails or clicked a link in the last 6 months.

Which means this email address is dead, or you don't want to be on my list
anymore.

So I'm getting ready to remove you from my mailing list unless I see
"Signs of life" from your email address.

Please click this link just to let me know you're still out there.

**I've edited out the link**

If you click the link then I know your email address is good and
will NOT remove you from the list.

Pleas disregard if this dose not apply to you.

Thanks,
Owner's Name
Don't get me wrong...

I'm all for pruning lists and finding out who the
most active prospects and customers are so
you can focus more of your attention on them.

However, talk about lousy execution.

This numbnuts opens the first line of the e-mail
with a false assertion:

"You haven't opened one of my emails or clicked a link in the last 6 months."

It's impossible to be able to accurately track
everybody who opens your e-mails.

For example, I primarily use Outlook and it doesn't
automatically download the image file that does
the tracking - and I don't activate it.

So, even though I've read the guys messages, his
tracking shows I haven't.

Forcefully telling a subscriber they haven't opened
your e-mail when they have, is a quick way to get
them to consider unsubscribing.

If you're going to use an e-mail like this to prune
your list then make sure you make accurate
assertions and get your wording right.

Otherwise you may end up cheesing off some of
your actual readers so that they unsubscribe too.

Dedicated to your success,

Shaun
#list #removed
  • Shaun, yes I agree completely. And, for that reason, when I'm mailing I always consider the tracking stats to be a lower-end estimate.

    Personally, if I received an email like that, I'd click the unsubscribe button myself! It's obviously from a marketer who doesn't deserve my business.

    Thom
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    • Profile picture of the author Shaun OReilly
      Originally Posted by impact-productions View Post

      And, for that reason, when I'm mailing I always consider the tracking stats to be a lower-end estimate.

      Thom
      I use open rates only as a relative guide on the success
      of particular subject lines. I don't take them as being
      absolute figures either and - yes - the real open rate will
      ALWAYS be higher.

      Dedicated to your success,

      Shaun
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      .

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  • Profile picture of the author good2go4
    I had one similar to that just a few weeks ago - but the content wasn't phrased as nicely. I did respond to him along the lines of "I find your email offensive and not a bit funny" but he never replied. Today I was stunned to see words like "you suck" in the subject line of an email from another list I belonged to - maybe the young idiot who owns the list forgot that some of us "older" people actually object to being sworn at. No loss to me I just unsubscribe but I do think some marketers have got the wrong idea on concepts like integrity, honesty and acting in a professional manner.

    Just my 2cents
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  • Profile picture of the author Kevin Birch
    I had one of these Sean, probably from the same guy - he's a member on here - and the WR where I downloaded his report from!

    I responded telling him that if he wants his mails to be opened he would have to give me a reason for doing so, for instance, making the subject line more enticing.

    Also told him that his next email may be the one I buy from.

    A month later I am still getting emails from him LOL - but he still ain't sorted his subject lines out though . . .
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  • Profile picture of the author Sten M. Andersen
    I'd cut him some slack. He's obviously trying to do the right thing (not bother you if you're not reading his emails anyway), and at the same time getting higher open rates (if he follows through on actually deleting "dead" users).

    Ignorant, yes.
    Poorly executed, yes.

    Forgiveable,yes.
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  • Profile picture of the author Lynette Crase
    I got this same email a few weeks ago. I made it easy
    for him, I immediately unsubscribed.
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  • Profile picture of the author ileneg
    Hey Shaun,

    Did his first line get you to open his email? Or, do you think his first line got other people to open his email?

    Do you think this may just be the new twist on the "oops there was an error in my last email" or "quick, limited quantities available - will sell fast" (for a digital product), etc.

    Don't get me wrong, I am not disagreeing with your comments, just trying to see why someone would really do that.

    And so, did you unsubscribe OR are you going to stay subscribed? Just curious.

    ileneg
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    • Profile picture of the author Shaun OReilly
      Originally Posted by ileneg View Post

      Hey Shaun,

      Did his first line get you to open his email? Or, do you think his first line got other people to open his email?

      Do you think this may just be the new twist on the "oops there was an error in my last email" or "quick, limited quantities available - will sell fast" (for a digital product), etc.

      Don't get me wrong, I am not disagreeing with your comments, just trying to see why someone would really do that.

      And so, did you unsubscribe OR are you going to stay subscribed? Just curious.

      ileneg
      I was already opening his e-mails without the shock
      type subject lines.

      It's mainly who the e-mail comes from, what the subject
      line is, and the quality of the content I expect to see inside
      that determines if I open an e-mail at all.

      I opened some of his previous e-mails without him needing
      to resort to shock subject line tactics. And yes - this may
      be a new trend based on a tip in some book written by a
      yahoo that gets poorly executed by others.

      And for the record - in this case I did unsubscribe.

      If I'd received the e-mail from another list owner that I value
      more, I may have e-mailed them my feedback instead.

      I guess there's an Emotional Bank Account where each e-mail
      can do things that cause deposits and/or withdrawals.

      His EBA with me was low so I unsubscribed.

      It's a good lesson in how not to treat subscribers though.

      Dedicated to your success,

      Shaun
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  • Profile picture of the author Alexa Smith
    Banned
    Originally Posted by Shaun OReilly View Post

    I'm all for pruning lists and finding out who the most active prospects and customers are so you can focus more of your attention on them.
    For sure: the underlying concept is commendable.

    Originally Posted by Shaun OReilly View Post

    However, talk about lousy execution.
    Absolutely dreadful. I'm amazed someone could send that out, worded like that. He needs to not send broadcasts when he's in a foul temper, or something!
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  • Profile picture of the author Luke McCormack
    I got the same email and yes I clicked the unsubscribe button straight away!
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  • Profile picture of the author ileneg
    shock type subject lines don't work for me either...but they must still work for many cause they're still being used. i currently subscribe to very few lists at this point (still always read and appreciate your emails BTW - )

    Best,
    ileneg
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  • Profile picture of the author Caleb Spilchen
    I got the same e-mail from him ... I clicked the link though....

    It's an interesting tactic, but since I open almost every e-mail, it makes me wonder whether it's correct or not.

    Caleb
    Signature

    Canadian Expat Living in Medellin, Colombia

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  • Profile picture of the author davemiz
    not the best execution. so whats your solution to this??

    If you havent clicked on any of the persons emails... or purchased anything from the person and have been on the list for say 1 year +

    lets be honest..... most of your list and mine don't even open the emails. on average 10-20% MAX open your emails.

    when youve got a really big list, the cost to send emails really does add up.... fast.
    Signature

    “Judge your success by what you had to give up in order to get it.”
    ― Dalai Lama XIV

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    • Profile picture of the author Shaun OReilly
      Originally Posted by davemiz View Post

      not the best execution. so whats your solution to this??

      If you havent clicked on any of the persons emails... or purchased anything from the person and have been on the list for say 1 year +

      lets be honest..... most of your list and mine don't even open the emails. on average 10-20% MAX open your emails.

      when youve got a really big list, the cost to send emails really does add up.... fast.
      The solution is to have better execution.

      The guy is using AWeber which allows you to track
      who clicks (or doesn't click) on specific links.

      Rather than giving people a threatening ultimatum in
      just one e-mail, I'd have considered creating a series
      of e-mails over the period of say a month - to find
      out who is reading and responding to the e-mails and
      who is not.

      I wouldn't threaten to unsubscribe them though.

      I'd open up the discussion with my list members to
      find out who was engaged and who wasn't.

      To write more effective e-mails to them I'd ask myself:

      What would I say to the subscriber if they were sat
      right in front of me now?


      (If the guy who sent the e-mail above had done that,
      I doubt that he'd have written the same message).

      I'd use the trackable links to segment out the most
      interested and responsive list members and then
      communicate with them differently and more often.

      I would consider inviting people who were no longer
      interested in hearing from me anymore to simply go
      and click on the unsubscribe link. That way, they
      remain in full control of their subscription.

      By the old 80/20 rule, the vast majority of the list
      are not always engaged and only a minority of them
      are active or hyperactive.

      The key is to segment out the hyperactives and then
      communicate with them differently and more frequently.

      With Infusionsoft for example, they charge by the
      number of e-mails sent out, rather than the number
      of people in the database. So, in that case effective
      list segmentation pays off in many ways.

      Dedicated to your success,

      Shaun
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      • Profile picture of the author Frank Donovan
        Hi Shaun,

        I'm slightly confused by this.

        The first line reads: "You haven't opened one of my emails or clicked a link in the last 6 months." But you'd have to have already opened the email to read it. So, does that mean your name stays on his list? :confused:

        And why does he end with the line: "Please disregard if this does not apply to you" - If what doesn't apply? That would only make sense if the email was being sent to the whole list - but then, what's with the first line?

        Strange.


        Frank
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        • Profile picture of the author Will Edwards
          Originally Posted by Frank Donovan View Post

          Hi Shaun,

          I'm slightly confused by this.

          The first line reads: "You haven't opened one of my emails or clicked a link in the last 6 months." But you'd have to have already opened the email to read it. So, does that mean your name stays on his list? :confused:

          And why does he end with the line: "Please disregard if this does not apply to you" - If what doesn't apply? That would only make sense if the email was being sent to the whole list - but then, what's with the first line?

          Strange.


          Frank
          Reading & opening are not the same thing. I read almost all my mails in the preview pane. That means I don't usually open them, but I do read them

          Will
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    • Profile picture of the author drmani
      Originally Posted by davemiz View Post

      not the best execution. so whats your solution to this??
      This?

      Hey [NAME]

      I'm using this fancy stats package from Aweber, my autoresponder
      service (affiliate link here!!!)

      They tell me some cool things - like how many folks regularly open
      my emails, explore the links I share in them, and even buy stuff
      I recommend.

      To my dismay, I noticed that your name wasn't on that list - and
      wonder why?

      Many of my readers have said they found great value from the things
      I share with them. Here's what came in just yesterday...

      [TESTIMONIAL]

      Anyway, if you'd spare a moment to let me know why you haven't
      been checking out my emails lately, I'd be deeply appreciative -
      plus it'll help me know what more you and my other subscribers
      want, so that I can make this more useful to you going forward.

      Thanks - and if you have anything else to share with me about being
      on this email list, please hit REPLY and let me know. I read all
      feedback, even if I'm not always prompt about replying to email


      All success
      Dr.Mani
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  • Profile picture of the author richgrad
    I always tell people that you have to do it not only for the money...

    I have over 6K subscribers... most of them are just on my free personal development email newsletter to get inspired/motivated. Some can't afford to buy anything at all. If I were in it just for the money, I would have done the same thing this guy was trying to do and "remove" inactive subscribers or subscribers who never bought anything.

    But my mission is bigger than earning money. My mission is to touch as many lives as I can so I can bring more love, hope and joy to the world... So, it really depends on your objective.
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    • Profile picture of the author Sten M. Andersen
      Originally Posted by richgrad View Post

      I always tell people that you have to do it not only for the money...

      But my mission is bigger than earning money. My mission is to touch as many lives as I can so I can bring more love, hope and joy to the world... So, it really depends on your objective.
      Amen to that. I have around 17k subscribers, and a lot of them are not ably to purchase anything. Still they stay on my list for years, exactly because I love to help them all, not just the buyers.
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  • Profile picture of the author barbling
    That's funny to me.

    I just pruned off my gtalk contacts because an acquaintance whom I was helping bigtime....lacked the courtesy to respond/say thank you/etc.

    I'm big on politeness both in real life and in the marketing world as well.

    It only takes a second to make one bad impression....but it could then takes years to fix it up.
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  • Profile picture of the author globalpro
    Shaun,

    I got the same email (same person) yesterday. I clicked on the link to unsubscribe, added the reason (clicked on link to unsubscribe) in the Aweber box, then clicked the link to show the email address is active.

    Hopefully they will get the message.

    Thanks,

    John
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  • Profile picture of the author lifeonfire
    One guy since this out to his prospect list once and he NEVER followed through with unsubscribing those that didn't respond. What does that say about the email? It was a ploy.. plain and simple.
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  • Profile picture of the author zenji
    This sounds weird and I would be surprised if I received such an email. Do these things really happen?

    Dennis
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  • Profile picture of the author davemiz
    dr mani lives!!!

    how are you? Thanks for stopping by and posting this. Good stuff.

    much better execution. Shaun this is what i was kinda looking for/getting at with my reply... and yes, you have to list segment.

    what i'd do is keep segmenting, if they don't click say 3-4 emails they get moved to another list.... sometimes just an offer only list for my affiliate promos.... since they're not for whatever reason diggin' my stuff.
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  • Profile picture of the author MichaelHiles
    I remember hearing an interview from maybe Jeff Walker I think it was, talking about someone that was on his list for more than two years before they bought something from him.
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  • Profile picture of the author sbucciarel
    Banned
    If I got that I would make his statement come true by unsubscribing. I'm not going to be bullied into opening or clicking anything that I don't want to open or click. Simple as that.
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    • Profile picture of the author Bill Farnham
      I got that same email and since the sender was not using a real name but one of those "GodsGifttoInternetMarketing" monikers my intitial reaction was "Here's a person with zip credibilty chastising me for being on their list, are they insane?"

      Not a good tactic to use with me unless I value the relationship which obviously I must not to be scolded like that.

      Bottom line...epic fail. I'll remember to never pay attention to any offers from them again. Period.

      Am I cutting off my own nose out of spite? Nope, just weeding the garden.

      ~Bill
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  • Profile picture of the author NicoleBeckett
    "Pleas disregard if this dose not apply to you."

    Please tell me these typos are actually from the email! If so, that makes this story even better on a Monday morning.

    I don't understand why someone thinks that strong-arming you would actually work. Perhaps he's never heard that you catch more flies with honey than with vinegar? There is too much competition out there to act like a jerk. I'm sure many of the unsubscribers that have already posted can find better information from one of the guy's competitors anyways.
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    • Profile picture of the author Shaun OReilly
      Originally Posted by NicoleBeckett View Post

      "Pleas disregard if this dose not apply to you."

      Please tell me these typos are actually from the email! If so, that makes this story even better on a Monday morning.
      Yes - the typos were copy and pasted directly from
      the original e-mail.

      In fact, I was going to mention the carelessness of
      the typos as it was only a short e-mail - but didn't
      want to split too many hairs.

      Dedicated to your success,

      Shaun
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      • Profile picture of the author Kay King
        The guy is using AWeber which allows you to track
        who clicks (or doesn't click) on specific links.
        And which also charges him more and more as his number of subscribers grows. I think perhaps this type of email has been suggested by some big name in some product or another as a way to "prune" a list.

        Apparently it does work - though a few said "I would unsubscribe", others say they did click the link in such an email. The list owners goal is to either make you become active on his list or make you unsubscribe. Could have been worded better - but with that spelling, writing well doesn't seem to be a given.

        My guess is the same list owners sending our such communications to force an "open" are the same ones who have built a list quickly by forcing opt ins any way they could. The list grows fast and the cost goes up to manage that list - but many on it may have little interest in what this person has to say.

        kay
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        • Profile picture of the author Ldimilo
          Originally Posted by Kay King View Post

          And which also charges him more and more as his number of subscribers grows. I think perhaps this type of email has been suggested by some big name in some product or another as a way to "prune" a list.

          Apparently it does work - though a few said "I would unsubscribe", others say they did click the link in such an email. The list owners goal is to either make you become active on his list or make you unsubscribe. Could have been worded better - but with that spelling, writing well doesn't seem to be a given.

          My guess is the same list owners sending our such communications to force an "open" are the same ones who have built a list quickly by forcing opt ins any way they could. The list grows fast and the cost goes up to manage that list - but many on it may have little interest in what this person has to say.

          kay
          I prune my list every 3 months. List marketing is a 2-way street. Many here (who are marketers themselves) are looking at it like it should be considered a privilege to have them on your list. Personally, I think it should go both ways, if the content that you are sending is actually beneficial to them. If you are just blasting offers, then that is another story altogether.

          Marketers treat "unsubscribing" as a this will teach them kind of credo but really, in the grand scheme of things, if you are connecting with your audience then sending something like this would probably illicit a personal email than a click on the "unsubscribe" button. Once again, this really depends on how much they value you.....

          Personally, I wouldn't even bother sending out a mass email with this sort of verbiage. I would simply prune them off my list.

          There have been cases where I have sent a personal email for folks that haven't opened in a while giving the proverbial "what's been up with you" email but normally it is a simple deletion.


          In this particular case, I imagine this was a ploy altogether to get opens. A few unsubscribes on a high volume list to open eyes and potentially have more eyes in the future open up their emails may be worth the stretch.

          Just because it offends the mind of some folks (and you can't do anything that doesn't offend someone...I had a recent unsubscribe complain that I was sending too many emails to them...I send 2-3 a month for that particular list), doesn't necessarily mean that it is bad.

          Just because more astute marketers who are obviously on too many lists say that people shouldn't do it doesn't mean that it doesn't work.

          Just playing devil's advocate here though.
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  • Profile picture of the author mywebwork
    Not only are we all on the same lists, it seems to be a trend!

    I received a similar e-mail to the one you quoted a few weeks ago, as other have done I immediately unsubscribed - I'm on a mail box "cleaning spree" right now anyway so this one was a no-brainer.

    This morning I got another one from a different marketer that I am sure is the one you had quoted. Again I unsubscribed.

    If either of these individuals had the wisdom of Dr Mani they would likely have more active subscribers and wouldn't have to resort to such pathetic and unprofessional practices. The money they save on reducing their autoresponder service costs is likely trivial compared to the damage they have done to their reputation and the lost sales that will result.

    Maybe this could extend to television advertisers, now that would be a good thing! "Hi, we noticed that you've never watched American Idol. If we don't here from you we will remove this program from your TV schedule". Now THAT would be excellent!



    Bill
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  • Profile picture of the author Caleb Spilchen
    You know, I'm going to opt out of the list anyway now... I clicked the link earlier though, it's basically a new product of his, trying to sell you it :d

    You haven't opened one of my emails or clicked a link in the last 6 months.

    Which means this email address is dead, or you don't want to be on my list
    anymore.

    So I'm getting ready to remove you from my mailing list unless I see
    "Signs of life" from your email address.

    Please click this link just to let me know you're still out there.

    Aweber Liink

    If you click the link then I know your email address is good and
    will NOT remove you from the list.

    Pleas disregard if this dose not apply to you.

    Thanks,
    [NAME]


    Caleb
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    Canadian Expat Living in Medellin, Colombia

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  • Profile picture of the author MilesT
    Sadly I'm getting used to being lied to, sworn at and deceived by some email marketers. However I stay on most lists because I want to be "up" on whats going on in that aspect of the industry.

    My latest favorite is, "You've Got Money!" (open email) ... if you buy this product!

    My least favorite was, "Avoid this a@@hole" - which he warned me to be careful of the marketing tactics some guy was using because he "tricked google" out of $275,000 dollars overnight. It was pathetic.

    There will always be a lack of tact in this industry because many enjoy and abuse their anonymity and many more who are just ignorant enough to buy into the lies.
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    • Profile picture of the author Jeremy Kelsall
      Remember about a year ago? This tactic was being used to the EXTREME LOL

      A couple of BIG list owners sent out emails that pretty much said:

      "you either buy stuff from me right now or unsubscribe"

      "you are wasting my time"

      After the "followers" saw them doing it, they started doing it...from what I understand, it didn't work out that well haha

      So, I'm surprised to see someone going this route again.
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  • Profile picture of the author Lance K
    You haven't opened one of my emails or clicked a link in the last 6 months.

    Which means this email address is dead, or you don't want to be on my list
    anymore.
    They should have added...

    "or that I'm failing in my efforts to communicate with you, but I'm too proud/stubborn/arrogant to admit it. So I'm going to try my version of "takeaway selling" as a last ditch effort.
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  • Profile picture of the author Hoopatang
    Excellent tips in this thread. Here's a few that struck me, listing out for future reference:

    - Make no assumptions. Aweber's stats aren't infallible. There are preview panes, folks who read email in plain text mode, etc.

    - Talk to your list as if the person were sitting right in front of you. Not only will it make you more congenial and force you to have more respect for your subscriber, it will make the email more personal *for* the subscriber.

    - Emotional Bank Account... is the email you're sending out going to cause a deposit or a withdrawal?

    - ASK your list for feedback, get them engaged; don't bitch at them.

    - Some people take a LONG time to build up trust and/or need for your product(s). Maybe it's something they are planning to do in a year and want to keep on top of the topic until then. Maybe they've been burned badly before and it'll just take more time to convert them.

    And I'd add two of my own:
    If it's gotten to the point where pruning your list in such a manner seems like a good idea to you, then perhaps you're acting out of desperation because the list is costing so much to maintain? Don't get offensive out of desperation. If $$ is low and you're looking at cutting costs, perhaps looking in the other direction -increasing profits- would be a better idea.
    Also, Aweber includes the "unsubscribed" folks in your overall list number. Dumping *those* emails will bring your costs down without affecting/offending anyone.
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  • Profile picture of the author Raydal
    Not email, but there are sites that I'm a member of and
    I'll get an email reminding me that I haven't logged in for
    X period of time and that I need to do so before I lose
    my membership privileges.

    The danger with emails (as mentioned before) is that the
    tracking is not a accurate as a membership site so you're
    bound to send the email to people who DO open your
    emails.

    -Ray Edwards
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  • Profile picture of the author Big Al
    I'm on a fair few lists where I don't read them simply because I don't have time or don't want to lose focus and go in another direction.

    Not because I don't like the sender or have no interest in what he has to say.

    ... and I stay on their list because I like what they say and, one day, I'll be opening them again to see what they are up to ... or because my business has evolved so that what they have to say is more relevant to what I'm doing right now.

    And on a side note - we were wondering why a really old auto-responder message got 4 times as many unsubscribes as the others.

    It was because we actually told them how to unsubscribe in the email. There's pro's and con's to that idea.

    .... but I guess what I'm saying is ... if you want to prune your list then send them an email that tells them/reminds them how to remove themselves in a courteous way and shows you're not interested in sending unwanted emails that irritate them.
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  • Profile picture of the author Sten M. Andersen
    Here's a relevant and interesting article from Marketing Sherpa: Marketingsherpa Blog : Take the Hint from Unresponsive Subscribers
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