I did this exercise recently and was blown away.
Firstly - don't worry if you haven't got thousands of leads to export or any backups you've run before.
You can still follow the advice here in a sec about list-cleaning (no matter what your list size).
I'd been forced to take some time away from my business, for health reasons, so came back to a pretty much dead email list.
So I, personally, have asked the question;
How do I revive an old email list?
It was fortunately a good friend of mine, Marlon Sanders, who told me to start digging around my business for exports of my mailing lists.
Sure - I still had some active email addresses on my autoresponder, but in my absence they had seriously dwindled.
So I did some searching around and found no fewer than 200,000 email addresses!
However, some of these emails were from 20 years ago, when I first started my internet business.
Pretty much the definition of "an old email list".
This is why you need to make sure you properly clean your email lists when you revive them.
You might think that you've already done that inside your autoresponder.
Or you might think that your autoresponder does this for you.
I've personally heard stories of entrepreneurs having thousands of leads deleted from their autoresponders, because the companies who operate them claim these are inactive leads.
But this isn't always the case (as I'll show you in a moment).
The best way to clean your list is to export it as a csv file and run it through Klean13 or NeverBounce.
I actually took the belt and braces approach and ran my 200,000 list through BOTH cleaning services.
It does cost some pennies to do this.
I think I paid around $2000 all-in (for 200,000 email addresses to be cleaned down to 160,000).
But it is money well-spent, because;
These list cleaning services get rid of inactive emails, bounce-emails, dead emails and even emails which are connected to individuals who have a history of complaining about receiving emails.
What you end up with is a super-clean list.
Now, don't get me wrong - you will still get some bounces, unopens and the other unwanted email results you normally see from a broadcast.
But this way reduces them as low as possible before you hit 'Send'.
Okay great - you now have a super-clean list, but it's not time to send a broadcast yet because you need to do this next step;