Why audience (list) maintenance is important?

Why Audience (List) Maintenance Is Important

Ensuring the right recipients are on your audience is essential to achieving the best possible results for your campaigns. The idea of deleting contacts from your audience might seem like a big deal, sure, it is. But keeping your audiences clean will benefit your campaigns and digital reputation in the long run.

Mailchimp makes audience maintenance a less stressful task and also something that should be automated, where possible

Why you should put an audience maintenance process in place?

  • Protect your digital sender reputation
  • Remove the deadwood from your campaigns
  • Reduce your monthly Mailchimp spend


Your audience should be at the heart of your marketing, keeping them engaged is vital – from active customers and subscribers to lapsed customers and fresh new audiences. Without this, there can be no marketing, digital or otherwise, even if you have the best designs and strategy. No audience = no engagement, worse still no engagement with an audience, resulting in poorly performing campaigns and a poor reputation.

Re-engagement campaigns

You’ve worked hard to grow your audience, which when somebody like me comes along and suggests cleaning the audience of the deadwood, your reaction of “no” is quite understandable. But by pruning away the deadwood from your audience, one you save money and two it allows you to run a re-engagement campaign (hint! You can automate this!). A re-engagement campaign is one of the most efficient and business-friendly ways to try to keep your audience clean.

Protects your sender reputation

Always sending to your entire audience? IF this is you, then stop. You include all your disengaged audience members. Every time you hit their inbox, they ignore or delete your emails without even opening them. Eroding your reputation, little by little. The result of this is that your emails will start getting flagged as spam by the email clients. Email platforms keep score of the emails and senders sending to their users. When the count reaches a defined point, (When they see that a recipient is no longer interested in your emails and brand and you are still sending them.) it doesn’t take them long to mark your emails as spam. Add to this, manual reports of spam the less likely your emails will be delivered. What does this mean? It means that even your engaged audience will not see your messages.

Makes targeting easier

When setting your targeting strategy, why would you want to include people that are disengaged? You wouldn’t, so keeping your audience maintained makes this job more manageable. First of all, it helps you to quickly identify the most engaged with your brand and reward these segments. Mailchimp now does a lot of this work for you with the AI-driven “smart” segments.

Reduce your monthly Mailchimp costs

Mailchimps’ latest changes have increased a lot of users monthly expenses, some as much as 50%. When you have a smaller audience, this seems like a big jump. Magnify that 20x for some of the larger audiences that I have worked on and the change in billing amounts can be upwards of £500 a month. 

Remove the inactive contacts from your audience, not only makes audience management easier but also saves you money. This saving can then be used for other marketing activities. Scared of losing them, archive the contact instead of deleting them, archived contacts don’t count towards your billable amount.

In Summary

Your audience should be thought of like your friends. It’s better to have a few good, close friends that blow the trumpet for you (and you, them), than 1000’s of people who say “oh yeah, I’m friends with them” then do nothing.

I’d recommend running audience maintenance activities monthly, depending on how often you send marketing communications. Email Service Providers (ESPs) like Mailchimp can help you achieve this. Plus, they are continuously improving their feature set to maximise the user experience, if this is something that you would like help with, we can with our outsourced email marketing services.

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