Jonas from MailerLite

Jonas10 min readNew features and updatesSeptember 11, 2019

How to auto resend unopened emails and reach more people

How to auto resend unopened emails and reach more people

Did you know that you have an email turbo booster in MailerLite that can increase your average open rates by 30% or even more?

The special feature is called auto resend, and it enables you to give your subscribers a second chance to open your newsletters. By resending emails automatically to everyone who failed to open the first one, you’ll reach more people.

Of course, you shouldn’t use this superpower every time you send an email. But every once in awhile, say when you have an uber-important message, auto resend works wonders to get your email opened by more people. 

If you’ve never used auto resend, it’s time to give it a try. We’ll show you how to set it up in MailerLite and share some best practices, so you can get the most out of resending your emails. 

Let’s say you send a campaign to 10,000 subscribers and 2,000 people open your email.  Not bad! You got a 20% open rate which is respectable, but what about the other 80%?

Our data has shown that resending an email can increase the open rate of your campaign by an extra 30%. Your 2,000 opens gets a nice boost to 2,600 opens. Just like that!

auto resend graph

When more people open your emails, lots of good things happen like more conversions, more sales and more growth.

Not to mention, the auto resend feature sends the second email automatically — saving you tons of time. You don’t have to manually pull open reports, save all unopened emails to a new group and resend again to this new subscriber group.

A 30% boost is nice, but there is a caveat. If you use auto resend too much, it loses its power. 

In a perfect world, your subscribers would open every email. But we all know that isn’t possible. There could be many reasons why a subscriber doesn’t open your newsletter.

Maybe they received a kabillion emails that day and missed yours. Perhaps they’re sick that day. Or your subject line simply didn’t grab them. Whatever the case, the reality is people sometimes miss or ignore your email, but that doesn’t mean you need to resend every time.

Make sure you reserve auto resend for the emails that are uber-important.

Constantly resending emails will annoy your subscribers, which will lead to an increase in unsubscribes instead of opens! Every email you send has value, but you need to figure out which emails are worth giving your subscribers an extra nudge. 

Auto resend examples

Use auto resend if you’re launching a product, a promotion, new pricing or a special feature. Auto resend emails also make sense for monthly recap newsletters that contain everything your subscribers need to stay tuned in to your business.

While there is no rule of thumb for how many resend campaigns you should send, we recommend 1 or 2 per month maximum. Auto resend is only effective when used in moderation. Proceed with caution. 

Auto resend campaigns are just as easy to set up as a regular campaign. You can get started by clicking Create new campaign and selecting the Auto resend link.

auto resend set up

In the first step, you can choose what you want to change in the resend email from 3 options:

  • Email subject: Only the email subject changes and the content stays the same — this one is the easiest option.
  • Email subject and personal message: In addition to the subject change, you add a simple text message above a copy of the first email as if you forwarded the original email.
  • Email subject and email content: In addition to the subject, you can also change aspects of the content. 

Which option is best? Our favorite is to use a personal message. When we add a nice note explaining why we are resending the email, our results are more positive.

Our email-loving product expert, Marcin, created this step-by-step tutorial video to help you get started.

Which campaign type is most effective for you all depends on what you need. Let’s take a closer look at each option.

Start with a new email subject

You’ll notice that all 3 auto resend options include a subject line revision. At the very least, you should change the subject line!

subject line auto resend

You want your readers to notice a difference from the first subject line, especially if they didn’t open the first email because the subject line didn’t pique their interest. 

There are a few ways to create a more attention-grabbing subject line

For starters, you can try new subject lines that:

  • Use personalization like a recipient’s name 
  • Ask a question to initiate curiosity
  • Create a sense of urgency

Changing the subject line is an essential first step, but for optimal results, you can take it a step further with a personal message.

How to add a personal message that converts

Adding a personal message in MailerLite is very simple. The trickier part is deciding what to write in your message. This is how we found success with this auto resend option.

personal message auto resend

After you select Email subject and personal message, input your new subject line and review your “From” fields, you’ll be ready to input your personal message. 

personal message screenshot

When thinking about what to write, your goal should be to make each person feel like you are speaking directly to them. Explain the reason why the email is important and why you are taking the extra step to make sure they receive the message. 

If you can, up the level of personalization by using a {$name} tag to address your subscribers and include your signature and details at the bottom. You’ll look more professional and trustworthy.

persoanl message auto resend example

In the example above, we used the recipients' names so every customer received a personal note from Ignas, our CEO. This level of personalization works wonders for the second email.

Changing the content of your resend campaign

In certain circumstances, you’ll want to change aspects of your content from the original email.

auto resend change content

After selecting Email subject and email content, you’ll be able to go into the original newsletter and edit it using your drag & drop editor.

Changing the content makes sense if you are resending the email because you want more clicks. Instead of only resending to the people who did not open the email, you can set up auto resend to also send to everyone who did not click through.

In this case, you’ll want to make the CTA more compelling and raise the sense of urgency to encourage more people to click through.

How to choose recipients and schedule the campaign

After you finish creating your content, it’s time to select which subscribers will receive the auto resend campaign. You can choose those that did not open the first email or those that did not click on a single link.

auto resend rules

Then you need to schedule a time to send the second email. We recommend sending the second email at least 24 hours after sending the first email as it usually takes 24-48 hrs for recipients to read an email.

auto resend scheduling screenshot

That’s it! You are ready to launch your resending campaign.

You can measure success using the same metrics you use for your regular campaigns. Usually, the goal of a resending campaign is to increase your open rates or click-throughs compared to your averages. 

Start by averaging the opens and/or click rates of similar campaigns to establish a baseline. If you’re curious if your baseline metrics are right for your industry, you can check out our benchmarks.

A realistic goal for an auto resend campaign is to beat your benchmark by 10-15%.

Another metric that is super important to monitor is your unsubscribes. Remember, resending emails must be done in moderation. If you see a spike in unsubscribes from your resent emails, it’s an indication that you need to pull back. 

It’s normal that some people will unsubscribe, but if the numbers spike higher than your average rate, you probably want to rethink your resending strategy.

Our auto resend campaign example

At MailerLite, we often run auto resend campaigns for our webinars. Our average open rate for a webinar is 15%, which is lower than our normal newsletters because the topics are more specific.

The newsletter for our recent topic, How to generate new content ideas, performed slightly lower than average at 14.16%. Luckily, we created a resend email with a personal message that boosted the total open rates to 23.5%. 

auto resend webinar email

An incredible 68% increase!

webinar campaign graph

If we told you that there was a feature within MailerLite that guaranteed you an extra bump in opens or clicks, would you try it?

Auto resend is that feature!

But just like a genie in a bottle that offers a limited amount of wishes, you need to limit your resends to tap into its magical powers.

Take a look at your content calendar and select a newsletter that you really want your subscribers to open. Set up auto resend and let us know how it works for you!

Share your resend campaign results in the comments below.

Jonas Fischer

I'm Jonas, Content Manager at MailerLite. I’m not the 4th Jonas Brother, but I do write content (which is similar to being a teen heartthrob). After writing for a bunch of companies over the years, I discovered my professional passion—helping add some humanity to B2B marketing. Email is the perfect place to start!