WinBack Series

Dormant users, inactive customers, lost revenue: it sucks to see these numbers when they happen. Using integrated marketing and personalized digital engagement, your business can re-engage its customers with a winback campaign.

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Why you should create a winback strategy

Regardless of how compelling your range of products is or how good the customer experience you provide is, both customers and subscribers will eventually stop engaging with your brand.

This doesn’t necessarily have to be a result of something being wrong with your marketing strategy – it’s simply a natural process of disengagement.

So, does this mean that you should just let your loyal customers or followers move on, perhaps to your competitors, without trying to fight for their attention? Of course not!

Customers who made a purchase and then went cold aren’t lost causes. You should re-engage with such customers with a winback series.

We’re guessing that you already know that it costs five times more to gain a new customer than to get a repeat purchase from an existing customer. A winback series is a great strategy to achieve your DTC brand’s goal of increasing the CLV.

Repeat customers are your DTC brand’s bread and butter (unless, of course, your brand is into bread and butter!). Not only do they have a higher lifetime value but it’s cheaper to turn one-time customers into repeat customers.

When should you send a winback message

Your winback series, more than all the other series/campaigns, should be completely based on time, your product’s lifecycle, and the customer’s usage patterns. For instance, last year’s holiday shoppers might be looking for more gifts for their loved ones at the same time during this year, or customers who haven’t shopped with you in a number of weeks or months.

You can provide such customers a sneak peek into what they’re missing out on. Your winback series can highlight new collections, product releases, or special offers that simply can’t pass up.

If your DTC brand is into cosmetics, stationeries, groceries, etc., you know that most customers tend to reorder every x number of days, so you can automate winback messages in that time period.

Should you have one winback communication or a series?

The evidence for considering two to three communications in a winback series as a general best practice is adding up. One message in a winback series isn’t enough, and piling on more than five messages is probably too much.

Use these winback messages to remind customers about why they had purchased from your brand before.

As each message should have one and only one simple CTA, you should send more than one winback message, but throttle their delivery based on time or behavior.

In each winback message, tell them about improvements in your product(s), new arrivals, new offers, exclusive access, special offers, etc.

What’s the optimal cadence/frequency?

The first step is to identify those customers primed for re-engagement. This is not a blast campaign. To work, it must be targeted and hyper-personalized.

So, who are we looking for? Lapsed and dormant customers. Easy.

What defines a “lapsed” customer? Ah, that’s not so simple. Your DTC brand’s definition may be different from another brand’s definition.

The criteria depends heavily on your industry and product. Are you selling a monthly SaaS subscription, beauty products, annual memberships, clothing, fruit baskets, organic pet food, or electronics?

Your product catalog will determine what qualifies as inactive. As a basic rule of thumb, it’s usually around 3-6 months between purchases for ecommerce. But if you sell monthly subscriptions or annual memberships, that’s not going to work for you.

If you sell a 4-week supply of dog food, you’d expect customers to purchase it monthly. Annual memberships to your online training seminars? You’d want to see them renew every year.

What content should you include in your winback series?

Marketing is all about customer relationships. And obviously, you’re creating a winback series to rekindle that spark in your relationship with them.

Remember, your customers purchased from you for a reason. The winback series is all about reminding them what brought them to your brand in the first place.

Your winback series should:

  • Remind the customer of what brought them to your brand in the first place, their preferred or previous purchase.
  • Have a compelling copy that’s simple and states the exclusive winback offer upfront.
  • Match your brand voice.
  • Be read in the “language” that your customers speak.
  • Test different incentives. For example, Marketing Land found that “save X dollars” performed twice as well as “X% off” discounts.
  • Use whatever existing data you have to hyper-personalize your messages.
  • Remind them of your value and past relationship.

Your winback series should include your DTC brand’s:

  • Colors and imagery
  • Story - why do you do what you do?
  • One and only one CTA
  • Exclusive winback offer, or an invitation to join your brand’s community, or first access to latest products and deals, etc.

Turn on power growth playbooks

Welcome Series
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Abandonment Series
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Post Purchase Series
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Winback Series
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