We know that Sequences are intended to be used for evergreen content, but sometimes we need to come back and make changes, or add new emails. After all, regularly making improvements to your email marketing campaigns is highly encouraged!
But this begs the question: “Will the existing Subscribers to this Sequence receive these new emails?”
This article will cover how you can determine whether your Subscribers will receive new emails added to a Sequence or not (as well as what you can do about it).
Has the Subscriber reached the end of the Sequence yet?
The first question to ask in determining whether a Subscriber will receive a new Sequence email is whether or not the Subscriber has reached the end of the Sequence.
Why is this important?
If a Subscriber is still in the process of going through a Sequence, they will receive any new emails added after the point that they have reached in the Sequence.
For example, let’s say you have a Sequence with 5 emails, and you have a Subscriber who has just received email #3...
If you add a new email after position #3 in the Sequence, the Subscriber will receive it, because they haven’t passed that point in the Sequence yet.
If you add a new email before position #3 in the Sequence, the Subscriber will not receive it, because Subscribers only ever move one direction in a Sequence: forward. As a result, Subscribers will never receive emails added before the point that they have already reached in the Sequence.
(The exception to the above would be if you have added a filter intentionally excluding them from that particular Sequence email.)
What if the Subscriber has already reached the end?
If the Subscriber has already reached the end of the Sequence, you will need to check their status on that Sequence to determine if they will receive newly added emails to it.
This is because if a Subscriber has the Completed status for a Sequence, they will not receive any newly-added emails to that Sequence.
However, Subscribers will only receive the Completed status if they are added to a Sequence via a Visual Automation (and they will only receive the Completed status once they have reached the end of the Sequence — until then they will still be Active on the Sequence).
If a Subscriber is added via an Automation Rule, or manually, they will not receive the Completed status for that Sequence, even if they have reached the end. If added via those methods their status will remain as Active on the Sequence indefinitely, unless changed via other means.
To summarize, if a Subscriber is added via…
Visual Automation: they will receive the Completed status once they reach the end of the Sequence.
Automation Rule: they will not receive the Completed status once they reach the end of the Sequence.
Manually: they will not receive the Completed status once they reach the end of the Sequence.
NOTE: Subscribers only ever move forward in a Sequence. So, if a Subscriber has already reached the end, then the only new email(s) they receive from that Sequence in the future would be those added to the very end. They’ve already passed all other points in the Sequence.
How to Check if Subscribers Have the Completed Status
You can check how many, and which, Subscribers have the Completed status from the Sequence’s Reports page.
To access the Reports page, click into your Sequence from the Sequences page, then click ‘Reports’ at the top of the screen here:
The sidebar of the Reports page will show the number of Subscribers with the Completed status for that particular Sequence, and you can click the word ‘Completed’ on the sidebar to see the list of which Subscribers are included in that total.
For more information on Sequence reporting, please click here!
Why are some Subscribers marked as Completed, but others are not?
In some cases, you may have some Subscribers who are marked as Completed for a Sequence, and some who are not, even if all of them have received the last email in the Sequence already.
This can occur if you’ve added Subscribers to that Sequence via different methods (that is, if only some of them were added via Visual Automation, and therefore only some of them received that Completed status).
What if I don’t want my Subscribers to receive newly added emails?
If you have Subscribers on a Sequence who do not have the Completed status, but you don’t want them to receive new emails added to the end of the Sequence, the most straightforward course of action would be to duplicate the Sequence and add the new emails to the end of the duplicate instead.
In that case, just make sure that you replace the old Sequence with the new, duplicated version in any automations you have running.