Create a Sending Schedule Based on Email Engagement

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Overview

Creating a sending schedule based on customer engagement is key to achieving strong open rates and maintaining a positive relationship with your subscribers. Sending too often to unengaged profiles will hurt your sender reputation, whereas sending too infrequently to engaged customers is leaving money on the table. It's best to achieve a happy medium through the use of segments and sending schedules. In this article, you'll learn how to segment subscribers into engagement tracks that will inform your sending habits.

Engagement Tracks

Segmenting your subscribers into engagement tracks is a great way to avoid oversending and prevent your emails from hitting the spam folder. We categorize these tracks into daily, weekly, and monthly senders to help you identify which course of action is best for your brand.

Do not email track E (the most unengaged) in any category. Be cautious about sending to track D; only send to them once you've established solid (over 20%) open rates for the majority of your sends. Tracks A-C are more engaged and you should continue sending emails to these profiles based on the suggested sending schedule outlined below.

Once you establish your tracks, begin sending campaigns that are targeted and well suited for the segments' specific email habits. You can choose to send email campaigns at the same time to all of the segments with smart sending toggled on, or you can send separate campaigns to each segment. If you choose to do the latter, this will enable you to visualize how much money you made from each campaign, and thus each engagement track.

If you have multiple main lists, or your main list is not named Newsletter, make sure those details are included in your engagement track segments with OR in the first block of conditions.

Daily Senders

For customers who receive emails daily, make your messages more concise and to the point. Include as much targeted information as possible, as you want to engage them, while also not inundating them with any unnecessary or unapplicable material. Be cognisant that they are consistent recipients, so don't overload them with unnecessary information.

Track A:

This group includes your most engaged email recipients. They will be a part of your main newsletter list, have opened/clicked in the last two weeks or were added to the newsletter list in that same amount of time. This ensures that all new subscribers have the chance to engage with your email before falling out of the segment if they don't open or click.

Sending schedule: maintain a daily sending cadence with these individuals.

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Track B:

This group of individuals is a part of your main newsletter list and was added over more two weeks ago. They have opened/clicked/been added to the newsletter list in the last month. They will also have opened and clicked an email zero times in the last two weeks.

Sending schedule: email these individuals twice per week.

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Track C:

This segment includes subscribers in your main newsletter list who were added over 30 days ago. They have also opened/clicked/been added to your newsletter list in the last 90 days, and have opened and clicked an email zero times in the last month.

Sending schedule: email this segment once a month.

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Track D:

This segment includes individuals in your main newsletter list and who were added more than 90 days ago. They have opened/clicked at least one email over all time, but haven't opened or clicked in the last 90 days.

Sending schedule: start a Winback Series, then suppress those who fail to engage.

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Track E:

This group of individuals is a part of your main newsletter list and was added more than 90 days ago. They have opened and clicked zero times over all time.

Sending schedule: don't continue sending to these profiles; it is best practice to suppress them.

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Weekly Senders

This group of recipients will receive your emails weekly, so messages to them can include slightly more information than those to daily senders but less than your monthly senders. They likely want similar content to those who receive daily correspondence, but they prefer more of it at once rather than spread throughout the week. Include plenty of targeted information to maintain their brand loyalty and potentially move them into your daily senders' segment.

Track A:

This group of individuals is subscribed to your newsletter list and has either opened/clicked in the last month or was added to this list in the last month. This ensures that new subscribers have the opportunity to open or click one of your emails before falling out of this segment.

Sending schedule: maintain a weekly sending cadence with this segment.

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Track B:

This group is a part of your main newsletter list, was added more than a month ago, and have opened/clicked/been added to your newsletter list in the last 60 days. In addition, they have opened and clicked into an email zero times in the last 30 days.

Sending schedule: email these profiles every other week.

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Track C:

This segment includes profiles subscribed to your main newsletter list who were added more than 60 days ago. They will also have opened/clicked/been added to your newsletter list in the last 120 days. They haven't opened or clicked in the last 60 days.

Sending schedule: email this segment monthly.

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Track D:

These profiles are on your main newsletter list, were added more than 120 days ago, and have opened/clicked at least once over all time, however, they haven't opened or clicked in the last 120 days.

Sending schedule: send this segment a Winback Series; then, suppress them if they don't engage.

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Track E:

This segment includes those on your main newsletter list who were added more than 120 days ago and haven't ever opened or clicked an email.

Sending schedule: don't send to these unengaged profiles; suppress them.

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Monthly Senders

Since monthly senders do not have the same close cadence that weekly and daily senders have with your brand, it is likely that you will need to include more information in emails sent to these segments. Consider sending out a longer monthly digest with new products, deals, and promotions. Make this information as relevant as possible and include information that will jump out to subscribers to engage them even more so that they can move into a group of weekly or daily senders segment instead.

Track A:

These individuals are subscribed to your main newsletter list, and have either opened/clicked in the last 60 days or were added to your newsletter list in the last 60 days.

Sending schedule: maintain a monthly sending cadence with this segment.

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Track B:

This segment includes those subscribed to your main newsletter list who were added more than 60 days ago. They have opened/clicked/been added to your newsletter list in the last 120 days, but haven't opened or clicked in the last 60 days.

Sending schedule: maintain a monthly sending cadence with this segment.

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Track C:

This segment includes those in your main newsletter list who were added more than 120 days ago. They have opened/clicked/been added to your newsletter in the last 180 days. They have also opened and clicked into an email zero times in the last 120 days.

Sending schedule: maintain a monthly sending cadence with this segment.

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Track D:

This segment is a part of your main newsletter list and includes those that were added over 180 days ago. They have opened/clicked an email at least once over all time, but haven't opened or clicked in the last 180 days.

Sending schedule: send a Winback Series, then suppress them if they don't engage.

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Track E:

This segment includes individuals in your main newsletter list who were added more than 180 days ago. They have never opened or clicked an email.

Sending schedule: do not send to these individuals; suppress them.

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Visual Example

The graphic below shows an example of how to vary your sending cadence and volume over the course of a year. Send to track A, which includes your most engaged segments, most often. When you do, aim for open rates that are consistently above 15%.

Around most holidays or company-wide sales, extend your messaging to include track B as well. For your biggest sales, such as spring, 4th of July, or Black Friday/Cyber Monday, expand your sending cadence to include all tracks.

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For more information around creating a marketing strategy for holidays, check out our Holiday Marketing Guides.

Monitor Your Performance

Once you collect data from your engagement tracks, it's vital to analyze how your emails perform. With this information, you can adjust content accordingly and take note of what marketing techniques work with each segment of your customer base. If you don't keep track of your sending schedule outcomes, you risk upsetting customers and diminishing their levels of engagement, which is why it's important to continuously monitor how campaigns perform over time.

As a general rule of thumb, your daily open rates across all sends should not fall below 10%. If they do, tighten your engagement criteria or alter the content of your emails. You can find more information on performance thresholds in our documentation on monitoring deliverability. You can also monitor open rates over time by engagement track with our campaign trends report.

You can monitor your daily performance using the analytics dashboard. Here, you can create cards with information and metrics that directly pertain to your business and what metrics you're interested in tracking. Otherwise, use our custom report builder to tailor a campaign performance report to your needs.

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