Recently, someone asked us why they shouldn't just use ActiveCampaign's built in re-engagement automations. That's a great question! When you go to create a new Automation in your ActiveCampaign account, you'll notice the two "Engagement Tagging" automations available as "recipes":
That seems like... exactly what you want, right? Sort of.
I will say that these are pretty clever. When working within the confines of an email service provider and the data you have available there, this is a good "done is better than perfect" solution. Here's how those automations work:
When a subscriber performs any of those trigger actions at the top (opens an email, clicks an email link, or visits a page on your site), they're started on the "Part 1" automation. Here's what that looks like:
- Adds the tags 'Engaged' and 'Recent activity', and removes the tags 'Disengaged' and 'Inactive'
- After 7 days, it removes the 'Recent activity' tag
- After 21 days it adds the tag 'Disengaged' and removes the tag 'Engaged'
- After 30 days it adds the tag 'Inactive' and removes the tag 'Disengaged'
Like I said, this is clever: the Part 2 automation removes and re-adds subscribers to the Part 1 automation, so any "engagement" activity restarts the clock, so to speak. And that's great!
However, there are two major shortcomings to this method:
- It doesn't consider engagement in your community discussion forums
- It's binary – there's no distinction between a member who visited one page on your site and a member who visited 10 pages, opened 2 emails, clicked links in both, and posted in your discussion forums 15 times.
Discussion forums are a crucial element of many membership sites – and many sites that don't have them, should... but that's a topic for another day.
Strictly measuring site visits and email opens/clicks isn't enough if you have discussion forums. Unlike ActiveCampaign, MemberScore connects to Discourse, IP.Board/Invision Community, and bbPress, and factors in community engagement when determining if someone is slipping away or not. Someone may only visit your main content site occasionally, but if they're posting in the forums 15 times a week, they're very engaged!
Engagement, or lack thereof, can be subtle. Using ActiveCampaign's engagement automations, if someone visits a single page of your site every three weeks, they'll never be marked as "disengaged" or "inactive". But compared to someone visiting 15 pages a week, opening several emails, clicking links in them, and being an active participant in your discussion forums, they're practically not there.
MemberScore factors in this distinction, not to mention it lets you decide what actions are most indicative of engagement for your site, and score them accordingly.
The ActiveCampaign engagement automations would be a good choice if you have no other option. For instance, if your membership site isn't built on WordPress and thus you can't use MemberScore, then give them a try!
But if you want to accurately measure engagement – all of it – and take appropriate action, then MemberScore is your best option.
Have questions about MemberScore? Send me an email, and I'll answer everything: firstname.lastname@example.org