You need to have tough skin when it comes to email marketing. No matter how well you craft your email campaigns or strategically place dynamic fields, many in your audience will unsubscribe or become inactive. It’s just the nature of the email beast.

However, inactive users don’t have to be forsaken forever. Re-engagement campaigns can be a a great way to reconnect with prospects and start moving them back through your funnel.

Re-engagement campaigns are not just a simple one-and-done email blast to your inactive users. You need to invest time into planning a drip program that will recapture their attention. The beauty of this drip campaign, as with all drip campaigns, is that it will run autonomously after the initial setup.

Here are just a few ways you can set up programs to coax your readers back into engaging with your brand:

Offer Incentive
Alright, let’s be honest. I’m suggesting you offer a “bribe.” Although this is certainly not the most elegant solution, it’s often the most likely to get you results. It’s hard to say no to a special promotion or new pricing deal. Remember, incentives don’t always have to take a monetary form either. If you’ve segmented your email lists, you should have a good idea of how to appeal to your readers’ interests. Offer a piece of relevant content or suggest a webinar that falls in line with their interests.

Play to Emotions
This is another hard one for readers to ignore. If you cut through the impersonal nature of email to say to a reader, “Hey, we miss you,” you have a good chance of eliciting a response. In addition to getting your audience to take notice, it might also help them to see beyond your brand to the real people that are trying to reach out to them.

Give Them a Voice
If the two ideas above seem too indirect for your style, why not simply ask your inactive prospects if you can change your email campaign to better suit their needs? Obviously, you can’t tailor a campaign to each prospect, but you can certainly send them a link to their email settings to adjust the type and frequency of emails being sent, or to give them the option to unsubscribe. Your audience always appreciates being given more control.

Next time you are feeling down about the lack of activity in your prospects, don’t despair. Instead, use a re-engagement campaign to give them a gentle nudge back in the right direction. You’ll be surprised to see how many prospects that you thought were goners were actually just waiting for you to come back around and engage them.