Email Marketing: Those are Real People on Your List

Posted by Scott Cohen On December 11, 2011 in story time I 3 Comments

It seems like many times we forget that the people on our email marketing lists as just like you and I.  Their lives change constantly, just like ours do.  They might get a new job, or as in these times might lose their job.  They move, they get married, they get divorced, they have a baby, they buy a home, they lose their home, and they deal with all the same life issues every one of us deals with on a daily, weekly, monthly and annual basis.

Because of these changes, their buying habits change.  So while some changes are mild, some can be extreme.  Below you’ll find some interesting stats about people on your list and the types of things that can change your list make-up over just one year.


When you see anomalous changes in your base number of people opening, clicking and converting whether they are positive or negative, sometimes it’s simply life that’s causing the problem and not all the other issues like; content, subject lines, deliverability, etc.

We don’t get to control everything; we only get to massage the numbers a little either way.  While we may hit a home run every once in a while; most of the time we hit singles and doubles.  But small consistent victories are what we should thrive for over the long term.

Either way, remember that subscribers are people too, just like you an I. Life changes very quickly sometimes and rarely are we really in total control.

Cheers, Chris

Most information here was collected through government and census numbers published publicly.
Special thanks to Lisa Flanagan for collecting all the stats.

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  • Lynn Dalsing
    Lynn Dalsing

    Great post, Chris! We are big believers that email marketing and advertising should revolve around people, not lists. It’s good to get reminders like this post.

    We shared this in our roundup of email news from last week on our blog at

  • Elizabeth Ball
    Elizabeth Ball

    Great post Chris! I think this goes to show that as online retailers, we should sell products that apply to a number of life-changing circumstances, such as birth, engagement, home ownership, marriage, new babies, schooling and career changes.

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