You can’t miss it. Everywhere you look, you see tragedies occurring around the nation. You turn on the news or go to social media, and it permeates everything.
As a business owner, what do you do during these times? Do you continue to send out email campaigns trying to create engagement that hopefully leads to a new customer? Or do you switch gears?
Do you stay the course, waving your productivity flag trying to conduct business as usual? Or do you show your human side?
Two Different Approaches
Over the past few weeks, I’ve seen two different ways brands try to connect. I’ve seen businesses who push forward and continue to fill the inbox of everyone on their email list. No matter what has been going on — these individuals have persevered in trying to make a sale.
I’ve also seen businesses that have paused to give people space to breathe, recover and embrace life and loved ones. They have taken time to reach out to others and offer a reassuring hand. They’ve given prospective customers time to deal with whatever tragedy is afoot.
Even though I no longer live in Texas, living through Hurricane Harvey was trying because I have so many friends living there that were potentially impacted by the storm. (Thankfully most were not impacted.)
Preparing for Hurricane Irma proved to be exhausting as it was projected to wipe out large portions of my home state of Florida. Family members and friends stood to lose their homes. Even our own home in Charleston was also in harm’s way.
Today life is somewhat back to normal in Charleston. We were impacted by Irma but not as greatly as others. As I sit at my desk getting back into the groove of things, I’m struck by the immense numbers of “sales” or “engagement” or “launch” emails that are cluttering my inbox.
It gives me pause and makes me want to reflect on the senders of the emails. It makes me wonder if they realize that they come across as disconnected and unfeeling. It makes me feel like they are fake and not genuine in their pursuit of my time and money.
A Few Extra Steps Can Help
I am certain they would have segmented their list to block their automated campaigns from storm-targeted zip codes or states had they possessed that information. But I realize that in today’s rapid email collection world, businesses typically only collect names and emails addresses. That said I really can’t blame the businesses for being insensitive when they send email blasts to their entire lists.
But what I can do is make a recommendation. We all possess the capability to collect data and use it wisely. That said going forward I recommend business owners of all sizes collect the state and/or zip code from people who opt-in.
Collecting additional demographic information gives you the ability to segment out populations that may be experiencing a tragedy. Doing so gives you the ability to genuinely engage with your audience. Instead of trying to sell something to those in tragic situations— you could consider sending a kind word. Your email campaigns, blog posts and outreach are ensured to catapult from fake to genuine.
Sure, gathering a bit more data creates a couple more steps in your collection and email sending process. But I guarantee you—being in tune with your audience in times of need ensures engagement that goes a lot further than selling something ever could go. If you do this, your brand or company is sure to be remembered for a long time in a positive way.
Want to create an engaging email campaign but don’t know how? Let’s connect and discuss your needs today.