A Marketers in Demand company

Anatomy of the Perfect Win-Back Email

Jacob Brain


Winning back customers to your product is a challenge, even for those marketers who thrive on rejection, gain confidence from continual defeat, and have the will to push on no matter the circumstances! When it’s done correctly it’s worth the challenge. A win-back email has a purposeful role in marketing and if you do it right, it can reap rewards outside of repurchase.

So, if we review back to our post on why people buy what they buy, we can understand that the reason that people leave your product or service may have a lot to do with factors outside of your actual product or service. But that does not mean that you did not have the opportunity to use those needs in your retention process, and now you are in the unfortunate position of spending money to win-back a customer you could have kept if you had been more proactive.

So, here is how to construct the perfect win-back email.

First, acknowledge the fit, or lack thereof. If you know what the problem was that caused your customer to leave, you should address that concern right away. Failing to address it is like ignoring the elephant in the room. Admit failure, and discuss the steps you’ve taken to change your process or product to ensure it will not happen again. If you can’t, you need to move to the next option.

Second, work down the chain of needs until you hit bottom. As we reviewed in our needs hierarchy, your product or service fills various needs in the user’s life. You need to address each one, starting at the top. Don’t start with a discount. Discounts are the very basic, bottom need which is commodity needs. You need to start at the top in your messaging with the social and purposeful needs the product fills. What are the emotional benefits they are missing now? If the emotional or social benefits of your product do not resonate with your customer, then you move down to the lower needs until you get down to basic bargaining for their business.

A win-back email is a campaign. It should not just be one email, but a series of emails designed to see how low you need to go to get the business back. Repeat messages a few times to make sure they are opened. This is a great campaign for a marketing automation email campaign.

Lastly, if you’ve lost, don’t walk away empty handed. If a client is unrelenting in their repurchase, you should try to gain some information about what it is that prevents them from repurchasing. This could be a survey, but it should not be your typical survey, those will not get responses. You need to try some other way to gain insight into why the customer does not come back to your product or service and then use that data to inform the company.

Win-back campaigns are hard work and have low results in most cases. But they are a great way to learn and test your marketing tool box to see how well you really know your customer. We recommend that every business should have one, simply because it shows that you care enough about the business to not let it go. Done right, a win-back campaign can be a victory in a no-win situation.


You might also like...

Is it worth it to have an in-house marketing department – or should you fire your marketing team and outsource?…
There’s a lot of variation when it comes to business protocols. One thing everyone can agree on, though, is having a good email address….
Scroll to Top