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How to Shift Your Email Marketing Strategy to Continue Resonating with Customers


As buyers and browsers in a world of products at our fingertips, we’ve all been receiving countless emails revolving around the Coronavirus. We’ve all heard ‘Please wash your hands. We care about your safety. We care about your employees’ safety.’

As a business, it’s important to make sure the messages being sent out to your email list are shaped to our current situation that we are all now living and watching play out together. However, not being thoughtful enough in your email content could leave you seeming tone-deaf and not worth your readers’ time if it’s repetitive to what they’ve been hearing again and again.

Here are some things to watch out for when you’re sending out emails to your lists.

Keep your focus OFF the things everyone has heard over and over.We’re not saying that you should completely overlook the fact that COVID-19 has rocked our entire world and economic structure. However, we are saying that you don’t need to take up a lot of space in your email discussing things that people already know.

People read and watch the news to get updates on the pandemic. The majority, if not all of your email list, know about the precautions taking place. Therefore, dedicating an entire paragraph in an email to the advantages of hand-washing and staying safe through social distancing likely isn’t going to be your most practical choice of words.

Instead…focus on how your business is taking its own measures for change.Rather than being repetitive with everyone else, give more focus to the things that people may not yet know about your business and how you’re pivoting for COVID-19 and for the safety of your customers. Things you might want to note:

  • How might COVID-19 affect your customers’ order wait times?
  • How is COVID-19 affecting your store guidelines and hours?
  • Why should customers have peace of mind when they step into your store?
  • Is your company adding social distancing signage to your brick and mortar location?
  • Are you moving any of your services online?
  • Are you extending loyalty memberships?
  • Are you and your employees donating or volunteering for any certain charities?

Let these types of topics be at the forefront of your email content so that your readers see the updates that are important to them. You don’t want your audience to overlook your email right off the bat because it looks like something they’ve already read ten times over.

Letting people know how your business is specifically taking measures for change is a much better use of space in your future emails than repeating what everyone already knows!

Make your subject relevant but enticing.We can assume you already know the importance of a well-thought subject line. Emails can be tricky when it comes to getting your audience to open them. Don’t blend in with the other email senders that overlook the importance of a good headline.

It’s so important! Put a lot of thought into your email headlines. Ask employees for feedback on what their thoughts would be if they saw this potential email subject in their inbox. A subject is one of the most important aspects of an email, so be sure that a good amount of thought and time is poured into it, especially in times like these when you have important changes to share.

Resonate with the situation.While we clearly can’t avoid this pandemic situation altogether, we can make the most of the ways that it pushes us to think outside the box. Use this time to deliver your services in a practical or entertaining way. This incorporation of unique content could be a great source to help your audience make it through this pandemic a little bit easier.

For example, coffee shops are offering discounts or even free coffee to nurses and doctors. As they are on the frontlines of this pandemic, working long hours, this use of empathy and thanks is a great way for these coffee shops to serve their community during this time.

Another example of making the most of this situation with smart marketing tactics is Petco. With pet adoption rates spiking, and with pet lovers spending extra time at home with their furry friends, Petco is offering a Q&A series. Pet owners are able to ask vets their questions on Instagram live and are definitely appreciating this small but useful benefit that Petco is offering during the pandemic.

One last example of finding ways to spread a little positivity and make peoples’ lives more enjoyable during this time is from Gymshark. The workout clothing line is teaming up with personal trainers all over the world to offer free, live home workouts. Since gyms have been closed, and people might be having a hard time getting up the motivation for an at-home workout, Gymshark is offering these workouts every week, starting every single hour. This way people can get involved whenever they’re ready!

As these companies mentioned above find ways to resonate with the situation we are all going through and bring some positivity to their customers, hopefully, this sparks some ideas for your business as well! Rather than sitting back and riding out this pandemic, look for unique ways to bring your services or products to your audience on a different level.

Bring value to your audience.As mentioned in the last tip, whatever way you’re resonating with your audience, make sure it brings some type of value. Think about your audience and the types of benefits that would be meaningful to them.

Is it finding and sharing ideas that are going to help your audience stay busy at home? Is it entertainment that you can provide them? Is it a daily glimpse of positive news that they won’t see in the media? Just be sure that whatever form of value you bring, that it matches up with your brand values and community.

Think about your audience demographic, what they’re going through, and how you can help.Think about your specific audience and how they’re dealing with this pandemic and the limitations it’s brought them. Think about the hardships it may have caused them to face. Is your target audience a younger generation, many of whom were unable to walk at graduation? Is your audience in their 20’s, unable to fulfill certain adulthood milestones like having their weddings, walking at their college graduations, or missing having family around for the birth of their first child?

Don’t be afraid to ask for feedback and for ideas on how you can help. This may vary greatly depending on your industry. However, you may see a pattern of responses that you didn’t expect to see and find new ways for your company to help your audience.

There are plenty of ways that we as businesses with a voice can shift our email marketing strategies for the good of our customers. Make sure that you’re shifting with the constant changes occurring in our world, and always showing your audience how much you care.


About the Author

In her experience at Skyline's corporate office in St. Paul, Minnesota, Briquelle Neyens immersed herself in trade show research and the ins and outs of exhibit sales firsthand. She also engaged with Skyline's wide-array of products and services from an insider's perspective. Her blogs portray her expertise on what it takes to be a successful trade show marketer. She enjoys generating information that will help all trade show marketers in their decisions to become successful on the trade show floor.

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