New year – new goals! What are your resolutions? Maybe it’s to join that gym you’ve always said you would or maybe to have a January cleanse. With GDPR coming into effect in May 2018, it’s crucial to get your lists squeaky clean before it’s too late. So here are our tips to having a new year cleanse of your data.

Use a Double Opt-in Subscription Process

To prevent invalid email addresses filtering through to your email list, we strongly recommend using a double opt-in subscription process. By doing so, you’re asking the subscriber to confirm their subscription by logging in and validating the email address from their inbox.
This will give you that additional level of security as there will be a percentage of people who mistype their email address, and it will also help you to filter out spambots that enter your website and input data into random forms.

Use a Preference Centre

By allowing your subscribers to update their preferences you can ask them to keep you up to date with any changes, which will help you to keep your email list clean. For example, if they’ve input their name incorrectly or their email preferences change then they can amend this themselves.

Re-engage with Inactive Subscribers

Don’t waste time and money on sending emails to those who have not opened in a while. You can easily identify and segment these subscribers, add them to your master suppression list or run a separate campaign to try and reconnect.
A popular tactic is to tease them with an exclusive offer to see if they open your email. Try to re-engage them, and if that fails you can simply ask them if they wish to stay subscribed to your list. By doing so, you can identify those who no longer wish to receive emails from you and improve results if you concentrate on those who are engaged.
A word of warning, even though a customer is not opening your emails simply seeing your brand in the inbox has an impact. When running a controlled test, you may see a percentage of customers placing orders on your website that are not engaging with marketing emails.

Watch Out for Old Data Lists

Data that hasn’t been used for a while won’t have been continually cleaned upon every email send, so there’s a high chance this will contain old and invalid email addresses. Email addresses that have not existed for a period of time can get turned into spam traps, leading to you being blocked if you send emails to them. Unsubscribe and complaint rates can also be higher from old email lists, so it’s best to test in very small batches and measure the response.

Brush Up On Your GDPR Knowledge

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) will be coming into legal force in May 2018 so it should be of high priority on your list. It will affect the way you collect your email marketing data in quite a big way. It’s good to get to grips with all the changes, regulations and how to ensure you are up to date with your data collection now.
Find out more about GDPR here.

Take Data When Moving Email Service Provider

One mistake email marketers often make is forgetting to take their bounce data with them when moving from one emails service provider to the other. On the first send, problems can be encountered if trying to send emails to email addresses that have previously bounced, which can affect deliverability and even result in blocking.