How to Adjust Your Email Marketing Strategy for the New Normal

By Kevin Payne - August 24, 2020
5 mins read time
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It’s an understatement to say that COVID-19 has affected our plans and campaigns for the year. Businesses of all sizes and in all industries are making the necessary adjustments and planning for the long-term effects of the pandemic.

These are different times, and consumers’ behaviors and priorities have changed. So agile marketers need to quickly adjust campaigns and strategize for the new normal. One tried and tested strategy is email marketing, but your old tactics may not be as impactful nowadays.

Email marketing during the current pandemic must help consumers feel a return to normalcy as they seek stable and trustworthy information. Brands can choose from and maximize features from the best email marketing services in the market to serve the varying needs of consumers as they face the new normal together.

Interested to learn how to realign your email marketing for the new normal? Check out these top strategies to get better conversions through email marketing despite COVID-19.

Tips to adjust your email marketing strategy

Re-evaluate your buyer persona

Email marketing can be a necessary source of information during the crisis, but you must be careful not to make light of a very serious worldwide situation. Consumers’ priorities have changed, and they are tired of receiving promotions that do not add value. Since it’s a difficult time in the economy, consumers are looking for products that’ll address their needs, ignoring distractions, and are more careful in their decisions.

It’s an opportunity for email marketing to provide information that’s both timely and informative. You can tell your customers how your business can best address their needs and you can generate more conversions by sending the following types of emails:

  • The educational email shares detailed information about your business. It can be the first step to buyer awareness.
  • The problem email shows current issues that your customer may be facing because of the pandemic.
  • The solution email offers what your business can do to address their changing needs.
  • The testimony email cites product reviews from your other customers.
  • The promotional email encourages customers to try your discounts and promotions.

Evaluate your current email marketing campaigns

Because people are largely stuck at home, studies find that email open rates increased by up to 20 percent since self-quarantine measures were implemented. That’s why it’s time for you to evaluate if your current marketing campaigns are effective or if they need tweaking.

Some of the important email performance metrics include open rates, click through rates, unsubscribe rates, complaint rates, bounce rates, share rates, and of course conversion rates. There are many available tools to track and monitor your marketing campaigns.

You can also listen in on what your customers are saying about your brand through social media. Several social media listening tools allow you to track brand mentions and identify trends, complaints, and needs. You can then craft your email campaigns accordingly to match these concerns. 

Ask permission (again)

An important part of effective email marketing is making sure your audience still wants to hear from you. Since COVID-19 severely impacted employment and businesses across the globe, customers had to make the necessary purchasing adjustments.

One way to remain relevant, and even improve engagement, is to ask your customers if they still want to hear from your brand. Using a compassionate tone, you can send emails asking customers to reconfirm their subscription to your mailing list. This way, you can clean up your list, optimize engagement rates and increase conversions by targeting the right consumers.

Don’t worry. You can always ask them if they want to subscribe again after some time once they are better settled into the new normal.

Be mindful of timing

The time you send your emails is as important as the content. Studies say that emails are best sent on Tuesdays between 8am-10am and 3pm-4pm. But, of course, benchmarks change over time and due to several factors. That’s why your campaigns should experiment and try different times to find out the optimal time for your consumers.

Marketers should also tune it to current events and developments in society. That way, you can avoid any promotional faux pas that may come off as insensitive. Before sending an email, ask yourself the following questions:

  • Should my company be communicating this message?
  • Is the content relevant right now?
  • Is it communicated using the right tone?
  • How should my audience respond to this email?

In addition, remember to email sparingly. Keep your customers updated and interested, but don’t flood their inbox. Remember that your brand can actually benefit from stepping aside and helping promote voices and causes that deserve more space in your customers’ lives, especially in tumultuous times like this one.

Align your emails with the times

You can also plan an email marketing strategy that documents how your business is affected and is responding to the current pandemic and its effects. Email marketing is becoming educational since consumers are looking for better, high-quality content.

If you’re running a restaurant, you can send emails explaining how you’re applying the necessary health and safety protocols to deliver your services. You need to reassure the customer that you’re properly adjusting to the times.

You can also share how your business is contributing to health efforts and charity work for frontline services. It’s best to include a link or CTA on your emails directing to your business webpage about your COVID-19 adjustment or aid efforts. Staying relevant and planning ahead can help you grow your reach and generate more conversions through strategic email campaigns.

Streamline your workflow processes

As much as you miss talking to your favorite coworker by the coffee machine in the office, it looks like working from home is here to stay. Aside from getting used to early morning video calls, you also need to manage your workflows remotely.

In order to optimize productivity for your business, you need to use project management tools to streamline your workflow processes. Communication is key in a remote work set up, and staff are relying on real-time updates to check the status of their tasks and projects.

Whether you adhere to the SCRUM or Kanban productivity framework, you can find the management tool best fit for your business.

Keep a close eye on your data

Lastly, remember to track and monitor your email marketing data. Collecting and analyzing data driven insights allow you to optimize your campaigns and know which issues to target.

Aside from sending highly-personalized experiences, marketing data lets you identify your most loyal customers and the leads that need more nurturing before they’re ready to convert. Insight from data can also drive decisions and about when to send an email, what content to avoid, and even anticipate what consumers will want.

If you know about your consumer’s current and future needs, you can ensure that your brand can always address their needs.

Key Takeaways

As everyone settles into the new normal, marketers can expand their brand and provide consumers with a steady hand to hold by letting them know they can rely on your brand. Email doesn’t have to be boring. As you’ve learned, email can be one of the most powerful and effective communication channels to remain relevant and valuable to customers in light of the ongoing crisis.

Kevin Payne

Kevin Payne is a content marketing consultant that helps software companies build marketing funnels and implement content marketing campaigns to increase their inbound leads.

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