A while back someone raised a question on the Email Marketer's Club: 'Can we re-activate bounced addresses?' and I thought it would be a good thing to share the the numerous reasons why not to do this.
- It can negatively affect your brand. If the recipients haven't received any communications from you in a couple of years, then they can question why you are sending emails to them and report it as spam - this can affect not only your IP's reputation (which your ESP won't be happy about) but also it can get your domain listed.
- This in turn will reduce your deliverability so that you no longer are able to be delivered into the inboxes of your active database (thereby actually damaging your existing active database).
- Also, the fact that most of these addresses will be likely be inactive (and some may possibly be spam traps), will also raise the red flag to the ISP's, which in turn will reduce your reputation and possibly cause you to be blocked.
- Legally, resending to bounced addresses is not an issue (assuming you originally had permission to send to them) - it's more the age of the addresses and the problems this can cause.
- Adam Covati from Bronto also recommended that if you must restore addresses, don't restore anything that hasn't been sent to in the last 6 months. For those you do restore, you should send them a re-subscription notice so they understand why they have experienced a gap in sending.
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