Most effective criteria to clean disengaged non-customers?

Posted January 13, 2022 in
HubSpot HubSpot

Mark Reynolds

Digital Sales & Content Marketing Coach - helping you become your industry's most trusted source of honest and transparent buying information.

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Having watched the IMPACT course on cleaning up data, I'd love to hear what others are doing. Of course, what lists you create will depend on your business, but I'm generally interested in different approaches. 

In the aftermath of the iOS 15 Update in Sept 2021 and now not being able to accurately measure email opens, what are the most effective criteria (across all properties) to clean disengaged non-customers from HubSpot?  

Clicks and replies may be a better measure of engagement than opens, but when it comes to marketing emails, just because they don't click or reply, they could still be a good lead...especially if there's no reason to get them to click anywhere, just reading the email is fine. So I'm not sure the email properties are great now for deleting contacts.

I know it may be different for everyone, but just interested to hear people's take on this please. 😊
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Connor DeLaney
Happy to hear this is top of mind, especially coming into the new year Mark Reynolds . To start, it's a best practice to go ahead and clean out emails that may no longer be valid, there was a thread from Alyssa O'Mara a couple months back that talked about email validation software that could be valuable here to get started with cleaning out emails not worth engaging with. Here's the link to that thread. 

I'll also tap in a couple experts on this - Carina Duffy Jessica Palmeri , Joe Bachir , Adam Stahl , Stephanie Baiocchi y'all are the best resources for this one!  
Mark Reynolds
Thanks for sharing that Connor, yes I read that one yesterday, interesting. Thanks for tagging people in😊
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Alyssa O'Mara
With most of my clients, we are now validating emails, but we aren't cleaning them out unless they don't pass validation. We don't really know who is reading what anymore, so why remove a possible opportunity? They did give us their email. Basically, we're sitting tight until we learn a new way to measure effectiveness. It's a good question though and I'll be interested to hear what others say.
Mark Reynolds
Thanks Alyssa and Carina. Some kind of reengagement campaign over a few emails, like you mention in the course? Maybe over a few emails.
Carina Duffy
I was going to mention something similar  Alyssa O'Mara ! It's getting harder and harder to use engagement criteria for cleanup - not only because of open and click data not being reliable now with Apple Mail, but also because of less cookie tracking on the website. Interested to hear other perspectives as well!
Alyssa O'Mara
Carina Duffy  We're like this! :-). Glad to know that there's one vote for wait and see.
Mark Reynolds
Here's one list I created based on Carina's course.

  • Create date is more than 365 days ago 
    and
  • Last activity date is unknown
    and
  • Lifecycle stage is none of Other, Evangelist, or Customer 

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Stephanie Baiocchi
That's a great one! I also use a tool called Seventh Sense to create what they call "high fatigue" lists and I run a re-engagement campaign on those and suppress them from my normal email campaigns and all other nurturing, newsletters, etc. Another idea would be to look at who received at least X emails (maybe 20?) before the apple update and opened none of them. You know they received it so the email is probably valid and maybe re-engagement could help.
Stephanie Baiocchi
The absolute first thing I focus on is deliverability. If emails are consistently hard bouncing, especially with so many layoffs during the pandemic, it's likely that those people lost their jobs and those emails are no longer valid. I'd start with HubSpot's hard bounce data and dig into the hard bounce reason a bit. 

Then, maybe also consider a third party tool like Kickbox that's inexpensive, integrates with HubSpot, and can quickly run a deliverability report on your contacts. Then, any email addresses that are truly undeliverable can be removed. 

If you find you have quite a few contacts who are or used to be at companies that are clients of yours, you could consider going the route of using HubSpot's marketing contacts option and then turning those into non-marketing contacts to keep historic data/conversations but remove them from the list of people who would be sent emails. 
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