Lets agree that It's all too easy to come off as tone-deaf if you email with the wrong intentions!
With so many people working from home, email has never been so important! However, judging from the emails I have been receiving, a lot of companies are blowing it with their selling emails, rather than customer care emails. I understand that you still need to sell, but in such times, people appreciate a different approach.
So… below I have listed few emails examples that you shouldn’t be sending, and few others that you should!
- Emails that you shouldn’t be sending:
- Email sent just to express solidarity: Yes, we're all in this together, but it comes off as opportunistic if you're obviously trying to to use the national crisis to to build rapport, in the hope that you'll be remembered fondly once the crisis is over. You'll be remembered fake friendly, not fondly.
- Bulk emails sent to inactive users: no one will care now if they want to be on your mailing list or not! And trust me, they don’t want to be reminded with the reason they signed up for your email newsletter!
- Emails with hint of sales: Sales emails are paradoxical in that the more you sound like you're selling something the less you're likely to sell it. During a pandemic, sales-specific words (e.g. free, guaranteed, highest-quality) sound absolutely fake!
- Any email asking for payment: Yes, you're worried about your own cash flow. Yes, your customer should have paid you two months ago. Yes, you want to be paid first and you'd prefer your customer stiff somebody else. Nevertheless, you just can't go there. Not for a while at least.
- Emails that you should be sending:
- How can we help?: Chances are your customers, especially if they're other businesses, are struggling to figure out how to function under these extraordinary circumstances. If you think you might be in a position to help them, it's entirely appropriate to offer them help!
- Here is What we can do right now, and what we can not do: If your customer depends upon your product or service and, because of the pandemic, you won't be able to fully provide that product or service, then you MUST let your customer know as soon as possible, even if that means they might find an alternate source.
I would like to finish this by sharing what Dr. Maria Van Kerkhove, (technical lead, World Health Organization, infectious disease epidemiologist) says: “Asking the question 'are we doing enough' regularly and repeatedly is critical.”
Stay home, and stay safe!