How To Revive A Dead Cold Email Subscriber List

No one ever wants to let their list grow cold, but sometimes it happens. And when it happens, you wonder if you should abandon the list or try to warm them up again. That decision is up to. But if you decide to warm them up again, then use this checklist to help you do it. Take a look…

You want to make sure that any emails you send match the original purpose of the list.  Don’t guess – go back and check the actual opt-in pages (where applicable) to see what you promised to subscribers.

If you segmented this list earlier, then you’ll want to send separate emails to each segment of the list. That way, you can craft emails that are as targeted as possible.

Now what you want to do is plan a high-value series of three to five emails.  Your goals are to reintroduce yourself, offer value in terms of high quality content and/or freemium, and get the used to opening your emails again.

Here’s an example series, and what to include in each email. For this series, let’s assume you have a freemium to deliver, such as a free video, report or other high-value product.

Email 1: Re-introduction and freemium delivery.

Start off by reintroducing yourself. Remember that some people may not recognize you at all, so you need to remind them of who you are. Here are points to cover in the email:

  • Reintroduce yourself with your full name and business name, although focus on the name that your prospects are most likely to recognize.
  • Remind subscribers of how they came to be on this list. Be specific. Remind them of what they purchased or which freemium they downloaded. You can even let them know the date they opted in.
  • Deliver a high-quality freemium. Be sure this is very targeted to your list. This freemium is going to be key to warming up the list, so you’ll want to deliver something highly targeted, high-quality, valuable and desirable. You’ll want to give your readers the benefits of the freemium, along with a call to action to download it right away.
  • Tell readers what to expect next. Let them know there is more good content coming their way soon.

TIP: For now, leave off any direct promos in your emails. Your freemium likely includes backend sales links, which is good. But when you’re warming up a cold or dead list, you don’t want to come off looking like you’re warming them up just to make a sale. Offer value first to rebuild the relationship.

Email 2: High-value content.

Here are the points to cover in this email:

  • Briefly remind readers once again who you are. This is important, because not everyone will have read your first email.
  • Drop a link to the freemium again, and reiterate the benefits of the freemium. This will encourage those who downloaded it to use it if they haven’t already done so, and it will encourage those who haven’t even downloaded it to take advantage of your offer.
  • Share high quality content. This should be additional information or even advanced information that’s related to the freemium, but wasn’t covered in the freemium. This information should be just as valuable as the info you provided in the freemium.
  • Close by letting your readers what is coming next. Build their anticipation.

Email 3: High-value content plus invitation.

Here are the points to cover in this email:

  • Remind readers of what they learned about last time.
  • Build on the last email by sharing even more high quality content. Again, share your best tips and tricks here. You want to impress your readers and get them excited about opening your future emails.
  • Close by letting your readers what is coming next. Build their anticipation for upcoming content newsletters, special discounts and more.
  • Invite readers to connect with you on another platform, such as Facebook.

Two tips as you craft these emails:

  1. Leave the “From” field as is, just the way it originally appeared when your subscribers received your original emails. Changing it now will only confuse them.
  2. Personalize the subject lines with the subscriber’s name (if possible). Be sure to create benefit-driven, enticing subject lines.

Most major email service providers track bounces, open rates and click-through rates. Be sure to keep tabs on all of these events and behaviors. You can use them to your advantage, such as sending follow-up emails to those on your list who never opened specific emails.


Do you have a cold or even dead list on your hands? Or even one that’s on the brink of going cold? Use this checklist to get them warmed up again – both you and your subscribers will be glad you did!


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