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See How To Improve Your Email Deliverability With Adrian Savage

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  • Get 30-40-50% open rates with your email
  • Are you sending the right emails to the right people?
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Adrian Savage GMT20210315-173630_Wes-Schaef.m4a: Audio automatically transcribed by Sonix

Adrian Savage GMT20210315-173630_Wes-Schaef.m4a: this m4a audio file was automatically transcribed by Sonix with the best speech-to-text algorithms. This transcript may contain errors.

Wes Schaeffer:
Adrian Savage, founder of EmailHealthCheck.net, all the way from the U.K., welcome to The CRM Sushi podcast, man. How the heck are you?

Adrian Savage:
Hey, Wes. Thank you. It is great to see you. It seems like ages since we were actually meeting in person. So it's good to actually connect and actually chat on Zoom, which is the next best thing.

Wes Schaeffer:
Look, man, I know. I mean, any time apart from me just seems like an eternity. I get it, okay? And so, look, flattery will get you everywhere, man. So what the heck, dude? Are you going to help us get in the inbox? Is that what you're doing? It's that --

Adrian Savage:
That is pretty much it.

Wes Schaeffer:
You've been kind of like geeking out in a good way for many years behind the scenes. I mean, that's been your jam, huh?

Adrian Savage:
Yeah, that's been the niche for, I guess -- the last two to three years that is literally all I've done. I was dabbling back in 2014, 2015 was when I started playing around in the email deliverability space. But the last few years it's really -- doubled down on it and developed the software that we can talk about today and just works on how to get the most out of your email. So no matter what platform you use, no matter what software you're using, then -- everyone should be getting a 30, 40, 50 percent open rate.

And what we're going to talk about today, the software will help people get that. But it's not just the software; it's also the way that you use it. But if you've got the right tools, then you can work out. What the Health Check does is it will tell you -- to quote Evan Samurin, whether or not you've taken a big dive down in Lake Stupid or not. That's the big thing. Are you doing the best you can?

Wes Schaeffer:
Lake Stupid. So for our listeners that may not be as experienced -- and I still, kind of scratching my head sometimes -- like, man, I'm paying big bucks to Infusionsoft or HubSpot or Constant Contact, MailChimp, ActiveCampaign -- I mean, all these different platforms, I'm like, it's their job to help me deliver email; why do I have to spend extra? You know, I'm already using this professional ESP, right? Why do I have to spend more money to get it done right? Are they screwing me? I mean, like, why is this not native to these platforms?

Adrian Savage:
Got it. And to be fair, all those platforms do a great job. But the way the world has changed in recent years, it's not good enough to send your emails from one of the best servers, one of the best IP addresses. What matters now is how the emails that you're sending from your domain, it matters how many people are opening them and it matters that you're sending them to the right people, not just spamming your list to them to the 100,000 people that signed up sometime in the last 10 years.

So it really matters now how you are controlling and managing the engagement on your list and how you need to stop sending emails to the people that haven't opened your stuff for a while. So absolutely, all of those tools, firstly, they've got -- every single ESP out there, they've got a team of dedicated people that keep their reputation in tip-top condition. I know most of them personally, they do a great job, and occasionally a bad actor gets through and they get a slight problem with a block list or something like that. But on the whole, all the platforms do a great job.

What they can't do is they can't take responsibility for your actions. So what the platform do is in most cases, they will give you the tools. That's a better or worse level depending on the platform, but they will help you to work out which of your contacts have opened something, which of them haven't, and then it's on you to decide who you're sending stuff to.

So the way the Health Check started and the way that evolved into what is now Deliverability Dashboard is I started creating reports to help people understand what their email engagement looked like because the open rates are great; they will tell you a certain story. But what that doesn't tell you is, okay, what proportion of your audience has opened something recently? Because those are the numbers that start to matter. Once you want to start really digging into this and manage your emails properly, you need to know who's open something the last seven days and the last 30 days and the last 90 days.

And then it's up to you to choose how frequently you're going to send emails to those people. And the ISPs have got some great reporting tools that will tell you this is how well this particular email broadcast performed; this is how well this automation is working. But there's still a little bit behind the curve giving these reports that show what the health of your email list is overall. And that's why the Health Check is completely free. I just want to get this out to as many people as possible. So it's just an easy way of showing how healthy your list is right now and how much scope you've got to make improvements if it's not in a healthy place.

Wes Schaeffer:
Got you. Yeah, I was going to ask, it's like -- I mean, most of these platforms -- well, all of them really, to some degree, tell you at least the fundamentals; who's opened, who's clicked, who's bounced. So what's the benefit of using another platform on top of that if I'm already getting that info?

Adrian Savage:
Got it. So what we're looking at here, I guess, with the Health Check is it's the helicopter view. It's what does it look like from above looking down, not just across the most recent campaign you've sent out, but over a time period; and what was the last seven days, the last 30 days, the last 90 days look like. Because it's only once you start to look at the data, that kind of big picture level, that you can get an idea of how engaged is your audience, really.

Because if you imagine that you're sending -- I don't know. Let's say you send out one main email to your audience every single week and let's say you get maybe a 25 percent open rate. Now, the thing is, it's not going to be the same 25 percent that open those emails every single week. There's going to be some kind of overlap, but you're going to find that you're reaching more than just that 25 percent. So what reports that the Health Checks show you are exactly that, looking at the big picture across, you know, a month or three months or whatever, how many people have opened at least one email from you. Because once you know that, then you can decide how many people you are going to keep sending to; you can decide how many people have maybe kind of gone to sleep on, maybe need a bit of a wake up call; and you can decide how many people you might actually unsubscribe from your list because maybe they're not worth anything anymore.

Wes Schaeffer:
So you had another technology; maybe you still have it, right? WeDeliver.

Adrian Savage:
Yep, that's still there. That's still going strong. It's got a very different use case to how I created it five or six years ago, but it's still there. Again, it's a very specialized, very niche solution just for people using Infusionsoft. But it's still there for occasionally if you might have a particularly tough audience to get to, maybe corporate email servers that block things, any kind of marketing platform or if you warm up a special email list, then there's still a use case for that. But it is kind of in the background there, and the main focus now is more on helping people analyze what their email list looks like.

Wes Schaeffer:
Yeah, got you. So you want to show us this bad boy? You mentioned something about -- you're going to open the kimono, your own kimono, huh.

Adrian Savage:
Yeah --

Wes Schaeffer:
This is a look under the hood -- behind the curtain, under the sheets; is that what we're doing,

Adrian Savage:
One of those words; I don't know how many more metaphors you can mix in one go, but yeah, let's run with it.

This is slightly scary a bit because firstly, it's not quite a live demo because I've kind of opened all the tabs just in case things go wrong, but we might actually do a bit of clicking around and see what happens. But yeah, where we're at here is this is showing all of the stats, the figures behind my own Infusionsoft account, which is the one that I run my businesses from. So bearing in mind that I'm no different from any other small business owner; I'm a plumber with a constantly leaking tap.

So this is not probably the best performing email account you're ever going to see, but it's real data and I have not to ask anyone for permission to show it. And you're going to see it, warts and all. So this is pretty much what the Health Check looks like. The only thing that I haven't shown is the step before it where you can fill in a Web form, you register, you receive an email that says, hey, username, password and you log in. First thing you do then, there's a one-off as you just connect up your ESP, whether it's Keap, ActiveCampaign, MailChimp, HubSpot, whatever it is; it might be an API key. It might be you have to click on authorize, but that takes a minute or two. It's not a big job.

And then you get greeted with this screen and all you have to do is literally click the blue button and it will run the Health Check. Now, because I'm using Infusionsoft -- now known as Keap Max Classic -- this is fairly quick. Infusionsoft has a very good API, so I can download the data quite quickly and then you see straightaway the Health Check. So when we first started the bit, you can see the top of the screen wasn't there; there were just all these numbers and confusion and stuff like that. So I got some great feedback from a few people saying, hey, this is too complicated; you need to make it simple.

So the first thing that everyone will see is some kind of score where zero is kind of pretty bad. And if you got 100, you can go out and have a little party. And just just to be clear, there are a few people out there that do have an email score consistently of 100 out of 100, so it is possible. I've designed all the calculations and the algorithms so that you've got a decent chance of actually getting there. And if you don't have a score of 100, that's cool, because it means that you can get there. And if you got a score right down in the red, don't panic, because it just means there's plenty of things you can do to quite quickly make improvements.

So there's not really any such thing as a good or bad score result. It's just that the lower your score is, then the more potential you have to make a difference. Makes sense so far?

Wes Schaeffer:
Sure.

Adrian Savage:
Cool. Now, the thing with most of the reports we've got here, like we said, we're looking at engagement's. There are other factors that can determine whether you're going to go into the spam folder or the inbox or promotions or whatever, but probably somewhere between 60, 70, 80 percent of the different factors that influence that will be based on engagements; how well are you managing your engagement, how recently is the audience engaged with you, and so on.

So what the Health Check is looking at is it's looking at four specific areas within engagement. First thing we look at is how many of your new contacts -- these are the ones that have opted in for something in the last 30 days -- what percentage of those have opened at least one email from you in the first 30 days. And this is a really cool barometer because this shows how good your reputation is with the likes of Google and Microsoft and Yahoo; because when a new contact signs up, then there's no previous behavior for them to go on. They just got to go and watch Google or whoever thinks of your overall reputation. And I'll come back and describe that in a bit more detail, because we've got another report that explains it better.

But that's the first thing we look at. And then the other three measurements that we're taking are the same measurement, but over different periods of time. So what we're looking at here is let's look at all of the people that you sent some -- at least one email or more than one email in the last 30 days. And out of those people, what percentage of those have opened at least one of those emails. So in my case, then, it's just under 70 percent in the last 30 days. And then the score in this case scores me 23 out of 25 for this particular measurement. My new contacts, I'm actually quite healthy on there; that's 20 out of 20. And then we look again at the last 90 days; how many people did at least one email to and what percentage of those open something. And again it's like 70 percent. You'll see that scores a little bit lower and you'll also see that there's different weighting, Like this one you can get 20 points. This one you can get 25. This one you can get 30 because in 90 days is the slightly more important time period that we're looking at. And a really good engagement in 90 days is 80 percent, so I'm below that ideal score. And then the same over the last 12 months and again, I'm kind of doing okay.

So if I was analyzing this new client, I'd say, hey, this certainly isn't a train wreck. There's a few things you can do to get better, but on the whole, you're looking good. So that is all the Health Check is. And then obviously there's little tips around here on how you can improve this and it's going to put specific things. There's a little analysis up here that says this is what this score means. And the one thing that I'm working on all the time at the moment is how to actually explain this better, because I do appreciate that the first time you look at this, it might be, whoa, this is quite a bit of information here; what do I need to do first?

So that's something that we're constantly working on. We're looking to get feedback from people so that we can actually help them make the improvements. Does that make sense so far, Wes? Any questions on that or should I move on?

Wes Schaeffer:
Yeah. Looks good.

Adrian Savage:
Okay, cool. So quickly through the other reports that come with it. So this is still part of the three parts of the dashboard at the moment. So we've got the Health Check and then this one here is just a little kind of sanity check. This is showing what my audience looks like. So I've got about 6500 contacts in my database. As you can see, I've had a few unsubscribes over the years or a few bounces; heaven forbid, I've had 15 whole spam complaints in that time. But I've still got 4,800 people marketable on my list at the moment and they're broken down like this with these different mailbox providers.

So we've got G Suite, which is the most popular; then we've got Gmail; we've got Microsoft 365. That is actually a bunch of test contacts that I put through my list, so that kind of doesn't really figure in it. Then we've got Hotmail, GoDaddy; it's mainly most of the kind of usual suspects in there. If it was more of a business to consumer list, then you might find that Gmail and Hotmail were more prevalent. So this always gives me a good way of just checking to see is this a typical kind of email list with Google, Microsoft and Yahoo are the kind of main players, or is it maybe some more kind of niche corporate audience or something like that.

So this is just a little just a way of breaking down who's there, because obviously you can tell some of these just by looking inside your email account. You know that if they entered Gmail.com or Hotmail or something like this, you know what they belong to. But then when you get to a lot of businesspeople, then you can't tell whether they're using G Suite or Microsoft 365 or whatever just by looking at the email address. I've got things like DeliverabilityDashboard.com as one of my domains and that's actually a Google G Suite domain. You can't tell unless you do a bit of looking up.

So one of the things we're doing here is actually doing that. So we can understand more that more than a quarter of my audience are Google workplace users. So that's just helps us there. And then if we move on to the next report, this is the detail behind the actual Health Check data that we're sharing. So this is looking at how many people have been sent something and then what's the percentage of people that open something in that time.

And what I typically do here is I look at this magic 90-day figure, because if we want to get the very most out of our email audience, we want to maximize our chances of reaching the inbox, then we should only be inviting people to open something in the last 90 days. In my case, this is, what, 2370. And by a very happy coincidence at the moment -- and I didn't plan this in advance; this could have been a little bit over -- but in the last 30 days, I haven't mailed more than that. So this is showing that right now I'm actually being a good player and I've only met the people that have engaged recently. But you can see here from going a bit further back 60, 90 days ago, I was mailing more people, and the reason for that is I actually did run a re-engagement campaign for some of my older contacts.

So that's why you can't always get too kind of hung up on these results, because every now and then you might have a good reason to reach out to the client, to the contacts that haven't engaged for a while. But on the whole, here, it shows that things are quite good. And also it shows you again, you can see that I was sending to quite a few people. And then in the last 30 days, I have tightened things up.

So there's lots of things that you can understand from this. But as a rule of thumb, if the green line on this left-hand report is fairly flat, apart from right at the end, then you're managing your engagement quite well. If it's on a downward curve all the way down like that, then you're probably not doing anything to manage your engagement and there's more room for improvement. But it's just a good way of understanding where things are at.

And as I said, the main thing to focus on is just look at that 90 day figure and that magic number there, the ones that opened something last 90 days. Those are the people that you should be sending emails to. And depending on whether you're using HubSpot Infusionsoft active campaign, whatever, there will be a report somewhere that helps you find who those people are. Those are the ones that you can then go ahead mail. With me so far?

Wes Schaeffer:
Awesome. I like it.

Wes Schaeffer:
Okay. So now we get back to the other report that I mentioned earlier. So this is the contacts that have been added to your e-mail platform in the last 30 days. I'm not doing that much lead gen at the moment, so you can see here only 154. Some of those I didn't even mail because they're these test addresses that I was talking about. So what we're seeing here is in the last 30 days, I've added 131 people to my list; and out of those, 82 percent of them have opened at least one email. Now, I've kind of got an unfair advantage here because the main reason people join my Infusionsoft list is because they are signing up for the dashboard. I am sending them a username and password. And of course, most people are going to want to find that email. Even if it's in spam, they're going to drag it out.

So the benchmark figure to aim for here is around 80 percent. There's very few people that manage more than 80 percent. But a lot of people are down more like the 30, 40 percent if you're not managing your engagement well, and here's why. If you don't have the best possible reputation, it's more likely that the first email you send won't be going to the inbox. And imagine for a second that you're paying a few thousand dollars a month on Facebook ads and only 40 percent of those people that opt into your list are opening something? If you can get that -- if you're going to increase that number from 40 percent to 80 percent, you're suddenly going to get double the ROI on your ads just by cleaning up your engagement and your emails. That's why this matters so much.

If you're not doing paid-for or lead gen, maybe it's slightly less important, but this gives you a really good barometer to work out, well, who are you in a good place with and who are you not. Because as you can see, we're breaking it down by mailbox provider. Look at this. You got to love Google. 98 percent of the people that signed up from Google receive the email and open something. So I'm pretty happy with that. That's good. Gmail is still pretty cool. Then we get into our friends at Microsoft. And at this stage then obviously the numbers are a bit smaller for me. But this is what I tend to see reflected across the board. It is much more difficult to get an email into the inbox for someone using Microsoft 365 or Hotmail than it is if they're using Gmail or G Suite.

So, you know, there's things that can be done here. And if I had more people that was being added to my list, then I'd be putting a bit of time into this to make sure that I was doing whatever it takes to get those Microsoft people to find those emails. Because the thing to remember is if you can't get someone to open an email in the first 14 days, they probably never will. So it really matters to get those people right from the get go. This report is really useful for that, because it's explaining exactly how the land lies and which providers you're getting through to and which ones you're not.

That is pretty much it for this report. And then the last one I'll share on the dashboard itself, is -- okay, go ahead, Wes.

Adrian Savage:
Let me ask you something on that. So if you can go back, what can we really do; all right? I mean, Office 365, I can't control what browser or what email client you use. So do you have tips on that?

Adrian Savage:
So, yes, there's a number of different things that make the difference. Firstly is how well are you managing the engagement of the existing contacts. Because if you're getting a 10 percent open rate with Microsoft at the moment, then they're going to see you're a lousy sender and they're going to say, hey, Adrian is sending garbage out. We're going to put all of his emails into the into the spam filter in the future.

But then at the same time, if you're getting a 40 or 50 percent open rate, they will see that you're a much better player and then more likely to put the emails into the inbox. So part of it is just by managing your own engagement, and that makes a massive difference. But then beyond that, what you can also do is make sure that the lead magnets that you're sending out when someone signs up, make sure they're relevant and they really are the content they want, because otherwise people might sign up and if they don't care about it, they're not going to go and search for the emails.

And then the most important thing as well is you can actually change human behavior a bit here, because a lot of times the emails would go into the spam folder. And if you can actually warn people, that's where they might go and train them on that thank-you page, saying, hey, just in case they go into the spam filter, go and search there and make sure you rescue the email from the spam folder. Marketers say put it in your inbox, add this to your safe senders list. Because if you can train people to do that right from the get-go, then it means that you've got a much better chance of getting through.

So you're absolutely right. A Lot of times then yet we can't control what Microsoft do, but we can actually kind of tackle the problem head on. And some people have got some really clever code on their thank-you pages saying, right, if this was a Microsoft address, we're going to put a great big video on here showing people exactly how to rescue that particular email. So it can be done, takes a bit of work, but again, if your audience demographic is such that you've got lots and lots of Microsoft people on there, that's when it's worth doing it. I haven't yet, but if that changed, I was suddenly getting a thousand new leads a month and a quarter of those are from Microsoft, then hell, yeah, I'd be doing that.

Wes Schaeffer:
So I know these platforms have filters. They know if it's a bulk email; they'll put different filters on it. But let's say I'm using HubSpot to send a one-off email. Because HubSpot will connect to my G Suite.

Adrian Savage:
Absolutely.

Wes Schaeffer:
So technically, even though I compose it and send from that CRM, it's going through my G Suite, right?

Adrian Savage:
Yep. Yep.

Wes Schaeffer:
So is that more likely to make it through? Is it truly seen as a one-to-one or is it still seen as a third-party that might get filtered? Should I go straight to my G Suite, just copy paste the email and send it from there?

Adrian Savage:
So I'm not 100 percent sure how HubSpot connects with G Suite, but as far as I'm aware, it's actually using Google to send the email.

And the thing that makes the difference is where the email originated from and was it from a bulk server. So you kind of hit the nail on the head. If you sending a one-on-one email yourself from your G Suite, then it's more likely to get through. As soon as you're sending an email from a bulk platform and it's going via the kind of marketing email routing, then it's absolutely going to be seen in bulk and it's going to be treated with more suspicion. But when you can -- as you say, there's platforms out there that will -- HubSpot is one of the ones that does this -- they will connect directly to your Google, your Microsoft, whatever, and they will send individual emails via that route, then that is much closer to being seen as a one-to-one email.

Now, if they put certain links and certain content in there that makes it blatantly look like an automated email, it will still get caught out. But if on the whole, it is literally a one-on-one email that you've initiated manually, then that will be treated as such. So it's always a good tip that if you're having problems getting through to a particular person and they haven't received your email from whatever ESP you're using for your automation, then certainly send them a one-off email from your Gmail, G Suites, Office 365, whatever, and that might be enough to get them through, they can add them to the safe senders list, and that way then the future emails might go into the inbox.

Wes Schaeffer:
Mm-hmm. Yeah, because sometimes you may have to -- well, hopefully, if the email list isn't too huge -- in like Office 365, right, you've got 22 contacts. I mean, you could personally reach out to 22 people in an hour.

Adrian Savage:
Absolutely.

Wes Schaeffer:
It's not life and death. But if you've got a mega list -- I guess it cuts both ways. If you have the money to build a big list, then you probably have the money to put some custom code, identify the browser, identify the email client or adjust the thank-you pages, start to put some things in -- put things in place to improve your deliverability, right?

Adrian Savage:
Yeah, yeah. And this is kind of -- this is always -- the challenge with email is there's always something else sexier to be working on. You can be do better lead gen, you can do a new funnel or whatever; and sometimes that is the best thing that will give you the best results. Other times it might be worth saying, right, let's leave the lead gen on the phone; whereas let's actually double down on deliverability for a bit and see if we can move the needle there. But it is always -- it's a judgment, isn't it? You can never do everything you want to do. So it's getting the right thing, done the right time.

But, yeah, absolutely. When the time is right, there's always something you can do. Even with a health score of 100 out of 100, there's always some kind of improvement.

Wes Schaeffer:
Yeah. But very few people ever call me up and say, yeah, it's all my fault, my email. They always want to point the finger.

Adrian Savage:
Yeah, absolutely. And I think one of the things -- you know, I'll go down a very quick rabbit hole with that now. I've seen enough clients jump ship now from one email provider to another, going from, you know, Keap to ActiveCampaign, ActiveCampaign to HubSpot, whatever it is. And without exception, when they move, they see a dip in their performance.

Sure, it picks up again; but the mailbox providers, the Googles, Microsofts of this world, they are suspicious of change. Any time you change anything, you're going to take a hit. And let's face it: if you want to get really fit and you're working out in the gym, are you going to get any fitter if you go to a different gym and do the same exercises?

Wes Schaeffer:
Well, you know, they have racquetball and the other place didn't. So, yes.

Adrian Savage:
Good luck on that one. I think this is the thing. People still sometimes are still back in the kind of, you know, five years ago where actually the email provider made more of a difference. Yes, you can still have issues, but most of the time now it's down to how you behave; it's not the tool that you're using.

Now, as one quick report, I'll just wrap up on the on the dashboard side of things. So this is similar to the new context. But this is everyone who I've sent something to, in this case in the last 30 days. What we're saying here again is -- it's broken down. We're saying on average, 69 percent. And we're seeing here again, G Suite is above the average. Gmail is a bit below the average. And I know that's because I've been going to Promotion`s tab recently because I've been sending quite a lot more email. And then we got our friends, Office 365, a bit below par and so on.

So, again, this kind of report helps you work out where there's a potential problem and you can decide whether you're going to do anything about it. But that's pretty much the free part of Dashboard and the Health Check and all the reports that go with that. And then do you want me to just very quickly share a little bit about Defender and how that works.

Wes Schaeffer:
Sure:

Adrian Savage:
Okay. So to be clear, so Dashboard is the overall set of reports. The Health Check is part of that. We've seen these other reports here. What Deliverability Defender does is it helps you -- it's kind of like it helps you make sure you're doing everything you can to preserve your email reputation. It makes it easy to find the unengaged contacts. It makes it easy to find the right people to send emails to. And also then there's some extra reports in there as well. So I'll quickly share the report first.

So what this is, this gets updated on a weekly basis and this is showing what the open -- so this is all the emails month by month. And this is, again, looking at my own open rate, and it was going up nicely and it's going up and down. Now, the right-hand graph here shows the email volume. The blue line is how many emails were sent each month. And you can see January and then February I started really upping my game.

So it's common sense that, you know, in February, I sent an email every single day to my mailing list -- 28 days out of 28. And it's no surprise that people start becoming a little bit blind to your emails once you send them that often. So that's why my rate starts to go down. It's fairly typical to see the open rate will go down as you start to send more emails. So I'm kind of okay with that. And in March then the trend is kind of staying the same. But I have been adding a lot more people to the list, which is why I've been -- I've started mailing more people, which is why it's still a bit low there.

But as you can see, way, way back kind of October, November, December last year, then I was averaging above kind of 46, 49 percent opens and that was across the whole month. So sometimes I send something, we get 50 or 60 percent opens, other times it be 40. But the thing that I'll stress is that even if you're sending emails very frequently, if you're not getting open rates in the 30 percent or above, on average you are probably not managing your engagement properly. So what Defender does is it shows that and then we can start to break down the performance by the different mailbox providers as well.

So you can see here Google is above average with G Suite below average, whereas with Gmail, Hotmail, I've got no data really to speak of. Office 365 is the interesting one, though, Microsoft 365, because it tends to buck the trend. Sometimes you can see how it's kind of going all over the place. In February, the performance actually increased, whereas with everything else it was declining. So sometimes you start to see provider platform-related problems here that you can maybe jump into and start to investigate. And again, if I'm working with a client on a longer-term basis, then this is the kind of data we'll look at and we'll say, right, are we doing everything there is to get in front of all the people on Microsoft? Are we doing it for Google? And so on. So then moving on to the other side of what Defender does, then here's how we do it.

So at the moment, this works with Infusionsoft and with ActiveCampaign. And what we actually do is we take all of the contacts in the database and we do it once every 24 hours; the idea being that you can then when you send your emails out, you can make sure you're only going to focus on the people that have opened most recently. So here we go. I prepared this in advance so I don't have to click on the little "show number" dozens of times. So this is how engaged my email list is at the moment. And you can see there's a bunch over here; 1,000 people haven't opened anything for more than a year. There's -- there we go -- another 1,300 people that have never, ever opened anything. So those are the kind of numbers that you don't want. These are the ones that I ignore.

So if I just go back to my engage contact report for a second, you can see that within the last 30 days I mailed 2200 people, but 100 of those were the people that had never opened anything. I've not been sending emails to those 1,000-plus. So this is where Defender starts to become really useful because, yes, you can run these reports in Infusionsoft and every time you run them, you can update them, you can tag them, and so on. But Defender is mainly a timesaver at this point, because what I'm doing when I send an email now is for the majority of my emails, I'm only sending it to these people here, the guys that engage in the last zero to 30 days.

And if I'm sending an email every day, these are the guys that receive a daily email. I'm then going to say maybe once a week or once every two weeks, I'm going to send something to these guys here. So that way I'm still giving them the chance to see emails and open something. And then once they get to this point here, I'm mailing them very infrequently. But the other beauty of this is these times get updated every single day.

So as soon as they reach day 90 of not having open something, this time gets applied. And I then use that to trigger an automated re-engagement email. So if you get to 90 days not reading my emails, Wes, you will get this tag, and then an email goes out from me saying, hey, Wes, are you still there? And that obviously gives you a chance to re-engage. If someone ignores the next two or three wake-up emails that I send, at that point then I'm going to automatically unsubscribe them, because by that point, they're pretty much gone.

So on the one hand, it makes it easy just to send the right emails to the right people at the right time based on their engagement. But on the other hand, it also helps you to then automatically manage that to a point where they reach this kind of 90 days -- and sometimes it might be 60 days, depending on how tightly you want to manage your engagement, you can use this feature to identify which people don't want to chase. I actually send them a little wake-up call it 30 days of saying, hey, you still there? And I wait for 90 days where I'm chasing them again. And if they don't respond at that point, that's they're out of here.

But that's the main thing that Defender does because it's just automating the process. You can run the reports yourself. And if you're just managing this on a monthly basis, then you don't need this level of of automation. But it's there as an option. And for the people that are really sending a lot of emails and making sure they want to get them to the right people at the right time, then this is a really, really popular feature.

I guess that's pretty much it from how Defender works and what it does. If I missed anything that you can think of. Any other questions?

Wes Schaeffer:
Well, just some general things. Like -- and you answered it to a degree. I'd just like to drill down; like you talk about 90 days. Like, so are they just gone? You say, you know what, I'm opting these people out; do you export them and delete them? Do you put them on like a drip? Just let them get like a monthly hello, Happy New Year, Happy St. Patrick's Day sort of thing; or you're just done with them?

Adrian Savage:
So it depends very much on the audience. Myself, I'm quite aggressive because what we've done with a lot of clients now is we've done we've tested sending emails to these different segments of people. So let's suppose if I send an email out to these guys here, I'm going to get somewhere between 35 and 55 percent open rate, depending on, you know, lots of other things. Why don't you send it to these guys between 30 and 90 days ago? You're going to get maybe if you're lucky, you'll get a 10 percent open rate. Once you go beyond that into this territory, 90 to 180 days, you're going to get maybe a 2 percent open rate if you're lucky. And if you go beyond that, then it's going to be maybe 1 percent.

So the thing you got to bear in mind is every time you get such a low open rate from that part of your audience, you are hurting your reputation. And imagine that by sending to that big chunk of your audience that haven't opened anything and that reduces the number of people -- the number of engaged people that see your emails by maybe 10 percent, then you probably find that the extra few people you reach that haven't opened anything for months and months will outweigh the people that you're losing. You're saying, so I would say very rarely is it justified to keep sending beyond 90 days. You know, maybe I might just, if I'm working with a client where they've got more of an annual sales cycle or something like that, then we might change the rules a little bit.

But most of the time the statistics show that if you send emails, just the people open 90 days or longer, you're going to get a really low open rate and it's not going to help you. So it depends on your fear of loss as much as anything. But you can still download them. Like you said, you can use Facebook ads to re-target them or whatever it is. So they're not completely gone. There's other ways you can get them.

And do I delete them or not? I'm not a fan of deleting things because that data has still probably got some kind of value. Maybe if they opted in three years ago and never opened a single email, then maybe you might delete them because they were probably just completely lost and gone from day one. But on the whole, I don't mind deleting stuff because you never know when you're going to need it again. So I would rather either tag them so they don't get emailed or maybe unsubscribe them depending on the use case, because although obviously if you unsubscribe them, then that's kind of a one way process. So you've got to make sure that you really want to do that before you get rid of anyone. But does that answer it sufficiently?

Wes Schaeffer:
Yeah.

Adrian Savage:
Coo.

Wes Schaeffer:
It's always a trick; right? It's a balancing act. I always tell people, you know, multimedia multistep.

Adrian Savage:
Yeah, that's the one.

Wes Schaeffer:
Right away I try to get more info, even if -- I'll do just an email or first name and email, take them right to a thank-you page that they're not expecting, with some kind of bonus. Hey, let me get your last name and cell phone. I'll text you this bonus. So now I've got a cell phone, okay? They can opt out of texting, but I can call them. You know, I may take them to a third thing, you know, let me get your address. You know, for one dollar, I'll send you this or I'll mail you this for free if I really want to get their contact info, because now they can't opt out of a letter.

Adrian Savage:
Exactly. That's why I like talking to real sales and marketing people, because that is what you do. You don't you don't just rely on email. Email's great. You can you can really get good performance from it. But it isn't the only game in town. You've got to -- like you said, you got to multi-channel. If you can get the cell number, the postal address, whatever it is, you've got more bites at the cherry that way. So it's always worth it. Email will work so far, but why wouldn't you follow up other ways as well and try and get them to re-engage that way?

Wes Schaeffer:
Yeah. So something unrelated to this specifically. But just I'm interested in your strategy on leading with a free tool. Because your Health Check, it's a free tool, right?

Adrian Savage:
Yeah.

Wes Schaeffer:
People are like, well, what's the catch? You know, but you have other tools obviously they can subscribe to, you know? Well, I guess what Harry -- Harry and Markle-what's your face; I mean, are you in line to be the next prince? Because I mean, you might just be rich and just give all this stuff away. So I need to verify that first.

Adrian Savage:
Yeah, yeah. No, no. My kids and family are taking enough money all the time that I'm not doing this for charity.

Wes Schaeffer:
Okay. All right.

Adrian Savage:
So it is -- the the main thing is because a lot of what I'm doing is around training and consulting and so on. And having the tool as a free resource on the front end makes it much, much easier for me to get my message across, because that way then, even if people don't come to engage with me for any of the software or services or whatever, it doesn't matter. I'm still showing them how they can get better because I've got a big mission out here. I want to help a million people be heard more through email in the next few years. But I can't do that if I'm just -- if I'm charging the tools and stuff like that.

I want to get it out there. I want to work with end users, agencies, as many people as I can to get that message out there. And doing the Health Check for free is a great way of doing that. Yet some people come on and we'll go for it. They'll pay for Defender, they'll pay for consulting, training, or whatever. But it doesn't matter. I want to get that message out there. That's the main thing. And as long as everything else stays as it is, then that's cool. I've got enough business coming in. I don't need to charge for the Health Check; I'm not intending to, ever.

Wes Schaeffer:
I thought email was dead, though, you know, I just -- I just remembered that. I just read it. So should I delete this interview? Because, I mean, email's dead, right?

Adrian Savage:
Well, it's strange you say that. And as people go on about how social media matters more and how people are getting five percent open rates, but I could list that I would lose count of the number of clients and other people using the tools that are getting 30, 40, 50, even 60 percent open rates with their emails. There's one case. There's an affiliate marketer who's got a list of more than 200,000 now getting north of 30 percent open rates because all they're doing is they're just managing their engagement really well. So, yes, there are other games in town. Social is great.

But let's face it, there's a well-known personality who lost all of his platform on social media over the last few months and there was nothing he could do about it. Email, you might still end up in Google jail, but you can even get out of that if you know what you're doing. So the beauty of the email is there is more control than, say, Facebook or Twitter or whatever. So yep, it's never going to be the only game in town. But I could name so many people that are still making very healthy six, seven, eight figure revenues, mainly using email. So it's not dead yet. Other things come and go. Email is going to be there certainly for the foreseeable future.

Wes Schaeffer:
Gotcha. Very cool. Were you following much, like, all these changes, obviously you're in Europe, GDPR is something you've got to be aware of, but then Google or Facebook, they're changing with like -- are they changing custom audiences? I know they're changing Pixels. I know Google is changing. I know Apple already with iOS, I think it's 14, they're changing. It's something -- we've got like a year, year and a half and it's like clients retargeting Armageddon, right? I mean, it's really -- it's already beginning.

Adrian Savage:
Yeah, absolutely. Pixels are becoming more and more difficult to get them to work. Like, say, Apple's making it difficult. Lookalike audiences in particular are becoming really difficult now. The nice thing is, as it stands and you can still use an email address to a customer audience and Facebook and things like that. So we're kind of okay for the minute.

But again, it's almost like we've got to go back to old school, the generation where we didn't have all this kind of really clever targeting and things like that. We got to go back to putting the right offer in front of the right person right from the point of lead gen. And at that point is much easier collecting email addresses than it is using things like building Facebook audiences and things like that. So, you know, the world is always going to change. But at the moment, I'm still very optimistic about being able to use email to really reach people as much as possible.

Wes Schaeffer:
Yeah. People, they don't understand. It's like, you don't own your social media stuff. You own your list, you own your database; get their contact info. It's like, good grief, people still learning this.

All right. So you gave us your link EmailHealthCheck.net.

Adrian Savage:
Yep.

Wes Schaeffer:
People can get a free account there; all for other services as well. Agencies can work with you. You do other things as well, right? Email verification, consulting -- I mean, you have to do a lot of like under the hood kind of gritty work. How does somebody even know that they need the stuff that you do?

Adrian Savage:
Yeah, and that's the thing. I think sometimes people know they've got a problem. You know, if you're open rate goes through the floor or if you're getting lots of spam complaints or lots of people complaining the emails aren't getting through, then yes, people get in touch.

But a lot of the time people take the Health Check because they don't know whether they've got a problem or not. It's a bit like, you know, you can have all these underlying health conditions, can't you? And sometimes it's not until you go through the MRI that you realize that there's this problem or that problem or whatever. And the Health Check is a bit like that. It will help you identify some of the problems. And if people are really concerned that we've got more in-depth audit where we look at lots more besides just engagement; we can look at reputation; we can look at whether your authentication is set up. We can look at how well you're managing your content, look at your engagement.

So we can go a lot deeper. But the Health Check is a great starting point because normally, if you've got a problem, normally the Health Check will sniff out. There's normally something in there that will give you a little hint. But yeah, we can go as deep as people like. I work with Evan Samurin, who's based in Vegas; we've got myself in the UK; we've got Mark Penny in Australia; and between the three of us there is very little that we don't do. Evan's an absolute genius when it comes to really going down into the weeds.

You know, he recommended one tweak on my emails, it got me out of Promotions with Google and it increased my open rate by 10 percent. So sometimes you can go to that level of forensic detail about things and just tweak tiny bits. Mark is an absolute wizard with making sure that authentication is set up. So, yeah, there's lots that can be done, but a Health Check is a great place to start because then once we've got that score, we can always jump on a quick call with someone, help them interpret it and say, hey, maybe you might want to try this as the next step.

Wes Schaeffer:
Very cool. All right. Let's send them your way -- EmailHealthCheck.net; get yourself a Deliverability Dashboard, because, you know, I mean, Adrian, I mean, you are a prince, but you're not -- the royals don't recognize you, but I recognize you, so that's all that matters, so thanks for sharing your wisdom, mate.

Adrian Savage:
Appreciate it. Always happy to help.

Wes Schaeffer:
Have a great day.

Adrian Savage:
Thanks, Wes. Take care.

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