In the wake of COVID-19, crisis communications are probably flooding your email inbox. And as a digital marketer yourself, you might be even sending your own pandemic-related emails.
However, just because we can reach out to our subscribers doesn’t mean should. Before drafting your own crisis communications, you need to consider if you actually have something to say — and if you can do so in a timely, effective, and authentic way.
Let’s unpack what that means.
Sending Effective Crisis Communication Emails
Your sending habits during a crisis shouldn’t vary too much from your normal marketing behaviors. By sticking to the following email deliverability best practices, you should be able to ensure proper inboxing with high engagement rates.
Check and Update Your Technical Records
Just as you shouldn’t plan a road trip without making sure your car is running smoothly, nor should you draft your crisis communications without first ensuring that your sending vehicle is ready to perform to its maximum capacity. This means double-, triple-, and even quadruple-checking your technical configurations! Make sure to review your:
- Envelope From Domain
- Custom Marketing Domain
- SPF Record
- DKIM Record
- MX Record
Clean Your Data
Whether you’re sending to engaged subscribers or a list of new contacts, you should always ensure your data is clean and ready to send. Your crisis communications could backfire if you’re sending to invalid contacts.
Avoid Common Spam Triggers
When you draft your crisis communication emails, be sure to avoid common elements that could send a red flag to spam filters. Deliberate and concise copywriting will help ensure that your crisis communication emails reach your subscribers without being rerouted as spam content.
Maintain a healthy image-to-text ratio in the content of your email, with an emphasis on providing useful information and actionable direction. Avoid emojis in the subject line, preview text, and body of your email. Rather than using generic terms like “Friend,” you should personalize your message with dynamic content insertion.
Use Discretion When Sending Crisis Communications
During times of crisis, it can be tempting to email your entire database. After all, shouldn’t your subscribers be aware of how you’re handling the challenge? In a word, no.
Sending to a huge number of contacts could raise red flags due to the spike in sending volume from your domain. You also run the risk of damaging your email sending reputation as a result of widespread non-engagement, opt-outs, and spam complaints.
Instead, you should only send crisis communications to invested contacts who you’re confident want (and need) to hear from you during these difficult times.
Be Genuine and Intentional
Using timely and effective techniques to reach the inbox is only half the battle. Your brand image and your subscribers’ loyalty depend on your authenticity. In fact, it’s equally important (if not more so) to deliver genuine and intentional crisis communications to ensure that your emails are read, understood, and appreciated.
Assess the Relationship Before Sending
Before you begin drafting your crisis communication emails, consider whether you should be writing them in the first place. Is this email better suited as a call-out on your homepage? Maybe a blog would be more effective?
For example, payment processors who interact with their subscribers through routine automatic payments probably don’t need to send crisis communications. Alternately, daycare service providers are likely drastically changing or updating their services, which could significantly impact their subscriber base.
Only send necessary and relevant information, especially during a crisis such as the one we’re currently enduring.
Only Deliver Truly Relevant Content and Messaging
During times of peace and calm or turbulent world events, your emails should always provide essential and relevant information. It might be tempting to inform your prospects and customers that everything is business as usual and that you have their best interests at heart, this is neither essential nor relevant information. After all, you should have your client base’s best interests in mind during the best and worst of times.
Instead, reserve crisis communications for when you have critical information to share with your subscribers. Changes to your hours of operations, event cancellations, product development, or distribution disruptions — these are all valid reasons to send authentic and timely crisis communication emails. Sending an email because that’s what your competitors are doing is not.
Leverage Act-On to Provide Helpful and Timely Crisis Communications
If your goal is to deliver timely, effective, and authentic email communications (in good times and in bad), our world-class email deliverability experts are here to help you reach the inbox with every single send. Please reach out today by completing this simple form for a free 20-minute demonstration of our powerful growth marketing platform.
Or, if you’re not quite ready to have that conversation, click the image below to download our eBook, “Email Deliverability: What Is It and Why Should You Care?” It’s full of great information to help you reach the inbox every time, improve email engagement, and drive serious ROI.