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Kevin George
Kevin George
Kevin George is Head of Marketing at Email Uplers, one of the fastest growing email design and coding companies, and specializes in crafting professional Mailchimp email templates and PSD to HTML email conversion in addition to providing email automation, campaign management, and data integration & migration services.

The COVID-19 pandemic has turned into a global crisis. With a total of 2,258,909 cases followed by a death toll of 154,388 people, this pandemic continues to spread like wildfire. Simply put, COVID-19 has changed the way the world used to function.

From restricted movements to drastic routine changes, businesses too are witnessing a major slow down too. In fact, the GDP loss on a global level is expected to be about 76.7 billion US dollars because of the Coronavirus outbreak. And if that’s not enough, the global GDP will lose a huge 346.98 billion U.S. dollars in a worst-case scenario.

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All in all, these changes will affect the revenues of businesses immensely. So, how are you going to deal with this global crisis as a marketer? By being humane, empathetic, and compassionate towards your customers. Sure, this pandemic has led to an economic slowdown along with significant monetary loss, but these are trying times, and striking the right chords with the customers is the need of the hour.

Wondering how you can do that? By establishing robust communication with your customers. This is where email marketing comes in handy. It is an easy way to engage with customers.

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However, make sure to send emails only if there’s a genuine reason for it. Remember, email marketing, if leveraged the right way can play a great role in building trust and developing a long-lasting relationship with your customer base, especially in these times.

So, make a difference with your email marketing strategy and send emails that provide some value and relief to your subscribers in these testing times. Take a look at a few handy tips to ensure empathetic email marketing during a pandemic. Let’s start.

1. It’s all about keeping the brand tone serious

A pandemic brings a lot of anxiety around – like in the case of COVID-19, many people are in complete lockdown to avoid contracting the virus. All they can do is stay within the four walls of the room and hope that the situation gets better with time.

Credit: Freepik

Therefore, it becomes critical to keep your email and brand tone serious. Remember, it is not the right time to show your sense of humor or tickle the funny bone of your subscribers. So, make sure to keep your communication straightforward and to the point without being insensitive.

You can send emails that inform the customers how you are taking care of your employee base while thriving to continue your business in the best possible way. Take a look at this email template example from Brooks Brothers. The tone and the content of their email are both empathetic and informative.

2. Instil a pinch of positivity

Pandemics take a toll on everyone. COVID-19 has done the same. While some have lost their close ones, others are still battling the disease. So, as an email marketer, the least you can do is provide them with positivity during these dark times. You need to tell them that it’s just a phase and everything is going to be okay in the end.

How will you do that? By communicating and spreading positivity through your email marketing strategy.  Here are a few ways that can help you do so.

  • Instill your customer base with optimism by writing a positive subject line that asks them to deal with the situation without panicking.
  • Solve all their pandemic-related doubts and queries through a FAQ page.
  • Since a majority of people are working from home, you can come up with some handy tips to keep productivity soaring through remote working. See how asana does it like a pro in the HTML email template below. You too can create such impactful emails. You can even use ready-to-use Mailchimp templates for a quicker turnaround.

3. Say no to irrelevant messaging

Image credit: Freepik

Relevancy is the key to success for any email marketing campaign. So, make sure you keep your content relevant that resonates with the current scenario. Give them an overview of the measures you are taking to help the community around without sounding too sales. It will go a long way in building a long-lasting relationship with your customer base. See how Burberry keeps its email campaign relevant and empathetic by letting its customer base know how they are helping to fight COVID-19.

4. Don’t make crisis messages transactional

Crisis emails don’t come under transactional messages. Therefore, including your whole database for sending pandemic related emails is of no use. For instance, if a customer who has unsubscribed from your brand updates years ago or hasn’t interacted with you in a long time, starts getting crisis-related emails from you out of nowhere, it might annoy them, thereby making you land in their spam folders. Segment the list so that you can send emails to the active subscribers only and maintain an optimum deliverability rate.

5. Don’t capitalize on fear and anxiety

Taking undue advantage of the crisis is unethical. So, capitalizing on the fear and anxiety of people can damage your brand reputation to the core. Even if you are in the essential commodity business and the demand for your products and services are on an all-time high, don’t make it a marketing opportunity.

In fact, instead of raising your prices, help your customer base by going the extra mile and showing compassion just the way MOVE did. Not only it is working selflessly to deliver crucial food products to everyone around but has also removed membership fee and profit margins, that too at the cost of bearing a good proportion of the loss. Now, that’s what compassion is all about.

6. Give people the option to unsubscribe

It might be a natural tendency to not want any kind of email for a while. So, respect your customer’s mood and ask them if they still want to hear from you. Simply put, give them the option to unsubscribe or manage preferences. Your subscriber base will really appreciate your idea of being respectful of their preferences.

Wrap up

Email marketing is all about sending the right content to the right people at the right time. So, make sure you leverage it to the core during these tough times while being compassionate towards your subscriber base. To promote your brand but, make it a point to resonate it with the current situation. Remember, your customers are the reason that your business is thriving. So, take good care of them by letting them know that you are in this together. This too shall pass!

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