After migrating to ActiveCampaign from another platform, you may experience a drop in your deliverability rate. Don’t panic! This is normal.
Your deliverability rate will be impacted whenever you switch to a new platform. This is generally a temporary result of migration rather than a technical limitation, and you’ll see your deliverability return to normal soon.
However, there is a smarter way to migrate that many users may not be aware of when they begin the process.
In this guide, we’ll explain why deliverability rate sometimes dips when you switch to a new platform, and provide a strategic plan you can employ to minimize a drop in deliverability while leveraging the migration process to maximize contact engagement.
Why Platform Migration Affects Deliverability
To understand the strategies we’re going to recommend, you first need to understand how deliverability works in relation to your email marketing or marketing automation platform.
There are a few different factors that affect deliverability, but the one that is most affected when you migrate to a different platform is your reputation as a sender.
When you send email communications to your contacts, you use your initial email marketing or marketing automation platform to establish that contact-sender relationship.
Let’s say you’re starting from scratch on Platform A to build an email list and begin your email marketing efforts. Your relationship with your contacts begins when they enter your platform by submitting a form, or otherwise. (We recommend bringing as many of your contacts into your platform via form as possible, because that ensures the relationship gets off on the right foot.)
Now, since you’ve been using Platform A to build your list and communicate with your contacts, Platform A has the relationship with all of your contacts. Your contact’s inboxes “trust” the server you send your communications from. And that’s what a lot of our users misunderstand when they migrate to ActiveCampaign—the contact-sender relationship, and reputation, is specific to the platform on which it was established.
This means that, once you migrate to Platform B, your relationship with contacts in your database and overall reputation starts from scratch. Even if your contacts and your sender name are all the same, the relationship does not carry over because it was established on Platform A.
But that doesn’t mean your deliverability is doomed if you switch platforms! You just need to give the new platform some time to warm up, and get to know you and your contacts. So what can you do to make the best impression?
Maximize Engagement During the Migration Process
We recommend a 3-6 month strategic plan to help you establish a good relationship with your new platform right off the bat. You will need access to both your initial platform and the new platform you are migrating to, so be prepared to maintain your account with the initial platform for at least 30 days after you begin the migration process.
Note: Ideally, you will have some kind of free offer you previously created, such as a demo, whitepaper, or ebook, available to leverage in this plan.
Let’s say you’re migrating from Platform A to ActiveCampaign. Here’s what you can do to maximize engagement and streamline the relationship-building process with ActiveCampaign:
1. Before you begin the migration process, choose one of your free offers to update. Maybe you add a new tool or resource to a digital workbook. Maybe you simply add a new paragraph or tidy up the text in a whitepaper. The point is to have a free resource that will be enticing to both new and existing contacts; the update makes the content valuable to both groups.
2. Import your contacts into ActiveCampaign. Then, tag those contacts with a source tag: “ SOURCE – Platform A.”
3. Use ActiveCampaign to create a form. The purpose of this form will be to have contacts opt-in to receive your free offer. This form should be as easy to fill out as possible; an email address is the only information you need to capture at this time.
4. Back in Platform A, send a sequence of campaigns (2-3 emails over 1-3 weeks) to all of your contacts, containing a link to the ActiveCampaign form to fill out to receive the free offer. In this step, you’re using your reputation with Platform A to improve your deliverability rate with ActiveCampaign. This does a couple of things for you:
1) It directs traffic to a form that can capture contact information in ActiveCampaign.
2) It allows you to see who your most engaged contacts are—the contacts who open/click/opt-in to your free offer. (If your previous platform doesn’t provide engagement tracking, this is also a great way to learn who your most engaged contacts are!)
5. In ActiveCampaign, apply a “Top Engager” tag to the contacts who open, click and opt-in to the free offer. Now you know exactly who your most engaged contacts are.
Note: It’s stronger to have your contacts fill out a form than to simply import them. While ActiveCampaign asks for imported contact origination information, a contact that opts in through a form signals an even stronger level of engagement. So, ActiveCampaign learns that they’re engaged contacts—they want to receive your content.
6. Upon completion of the initial free offer campaign sequence, switch to ActiveCampaign to begin another ongoing sequence sent only to the contacts with a “Top Engager” tag. By sending consistently (whether weekly, monthly, or every time you have new/updated content to share) to your most engaged contacts in the first few months or so after your migration, you demonstrate to your new platform that your contacts really want to receive your content. Later, you can start a campaign sequence targeting the imported contacts who are less engaged, to see if you can nudge them into “Top Engager” status.
If you can’t follow the exact strategy outlined above, don’t worry—you can still set yourself up for strong deliverability in a new platform by keeping the following in mind:
- Try to coordinate your migration to a new platform with the launch of a new product or a free offer. If you can offer something enticing that will help ensure your contacts open your campaign, you can establish a good relationship with your contacts in the new platform, right away.
- Try to get as many contacts as possible into your platform via form submission. If a new contact submits a form, receives a “Welcome!” email and opens it right away, your deliverability rate will be in great shape.
- Take care to send communications that your audience wants to receive, and that you’re messaging them consistently. If you’re not targeting the right audience with the right content, your emails could land in the dreaded Spam folder.
For more deliverability best practices read our guide and listen to our podcast episode.
If you use the strategic plan outlined above, we’d love to know how it worked for you! Let us know in the comments below.