Round-up: CoronaVirus and Email Marketing


We thought it might be helpful to provide a round-up of webinars, complimentary subscriptions, swipe file samples, articles and other resources on marketing during the CoronaVirus pandemic.

If your company is planning to send out an email referencing the pandemic, or even just if you're continuing to communicate business-as-usual information to your email audience, scan the resources here for guidance. 

Many thanks to Janet Roberts, who manages content for our OI newsletter; she pulled together a short list on short notice to get us started. 

Please send any other webinars, offers, swipe files, articles or other resources that you feel are valuable to me at with 'CV Roundup' in the subject line and I'll add them to the post. Thanks! 

Webinars: Upcoming

Webinar: Email Marketing for Sensitive Times

by Worldata, April 2, 2020, 3:00 PM ET 

This webinar will focus on the best email marketing techniques to utilize during this period of unease. Whether you are reaching B2B or B2C audiences, this webinar will share key stats, techniques and methods to ensure performance and appropriateness during these diffucult times. Featuring Jay Schwedelson, Worldata. 

Webinars: On-Demand

Webinar: Email Marketing during Trying Times: You have Questions, We have Answers
by the Email Experience Council, March 27, 2020, 2:00 PM ET

Join us to get not just answers but also real-life examples of how organizations are successfully addressing the CoronaVirus in their email marketing efforts. Panelists:

  • Betsy Grondy, Lenovo
  • Jeanne Jennings, Email Optimization Shop and Only Influencers
  • Dwight Sholes, Sholes LLC
  • Karen Talavera, Synchronicity Marketing

Feel free to send the questions you'd like answered to me at with "eec webinar" in the subject line by Wednesday, March 25 at 5:00 PM and I'll do my best to get them into the deck (we'll also accept questions during the webinar).  

Webinar: Customer Communications in the Age of Coronavirus: The Next Phase
by Movable Ink, March 27, 2020, 2:00 PM ET

Join the Movable Ink Client Strategy Team alongside Tom Buchok, CEO of MailCharts, as they share the latest data and trends on messaging tactics across all US B2C email marketers, as well as strategies that best-in-class marketers are using to respond compassionately and creatively in the face of significant business challenges. 

Webinar: Email Marketing during a Crisis: Lessons and Advice
by Brightwave

BrightWave’s CEO Simms Jenkins and Sr. Strategist Jessica Ginburg cover the dos and don’ts of communicating during a crisis, and ways to keep your business up and running with email marketing in a smart and savvy way. Update: the webinar already happened, but if you use the link you can view it on-demand. 

Webinar: Best Practices for Email Marketing During a Crisis
by Litmus, March 18, 2020, Noon ET

This free webinar features Jason Rodriguez from Litmus, Kristin Bond from the Girl Scouts of America, and Matthew Smith from Really Good Emails. Update: the webinar already happened, but if you use the link to register you can view it on-demand. 

Hangout: Results of CoronaVirus Poll and Discussion
by MailCharts, March 19, 2020, 2:00 PM ET

MailCharts will share the findings from their poll (take it here) and talk about what they're seeing. Attendees can share what they see in their email programs and how the email industry at large is responding. The poll and hangfest are obligation-free - no sales pitch during the call, and nobody will contact you later. Update: not seeing an option to view it on-demand, but will keep watching and post if it becomes available. 

Webinar: Customer Communication in the COVID Era: Step by step guidance for marketers
by Acoustic, March 20, 2020, 11:00 AM ET

A live presentation of the content in the article listed below; Join Norman Guadagno and Loren McDonald, both from Acoustic. Update: the webinar already happened, but if you use the link to register you can view it on-demand. 

Complimentary Subscriptions

A time of giving: email vendors offer free support during COVID-19 crisis
by Ray Schultz for MediaPost's Email Marketing Daily, March 26, 2020

Ray covers the growing movement by email vendors to offer help to businesses struggling during the COVID-19 shutdown. Offers include free testing services and real-time message updates, along with free paid-level account for public service organizations. 

It's Our Time to Give Back (Complimentary Email on Acid Subscriptions) 
by John Thies for Email on Acid, March 25, 2020

Earlier this week I wrote a blog post about the next phase of CoronaVirus Emails – from companies that redirect their efforts past words and into action. Email on Acid has done just that, with a generous offer to provide complimentary Email on Acid subscriptions to individuals and organizations which are severely impacted by this crisis. Eligible industries include:

  • hospitality
  • travel
  • entertainment
  • education
  • dining
  • non-profits
  • independent email consultants and freelancers.

Already an Email on Acid client? You’re still eligible for the offer!

Learn more about the offer
Request a complimentary subscription

Swipe Files

Emergency Email Samples: CoronaVirus
by Really Good Emails, March 17, 2020

A good showcase of what companies are sending. Highly recommend you look here for ideas and inspiration. 


Experts talk about email marketing in times of Corona
by Haim Pekel for Ongage, March 27, 2020

Ongage asked a group of email experts to share advice and use cases about working from home and marketing in a pandemic. The results are enlightening, and the furry-coworker pictures several people shared are worth a click. 

You ask, I answer: What to market during a long crisis?
by Christopher Penn for Awaken Your Superhero, March 18, 2020

"Focus exclusively on being helpful." is the key according to Christopher. 

Don't panic and send toilet paper emails
by Tanja Plaza for dotDigital, March 23, 2020

Big picture advice: unless you’re communicating a decision that changes the ability of a recipient to interact with you in their usual way, don’t send it.

Deliverability tips: best email practices during a crisis
by Grace Miller for CampaignMonitor, March 27, 2020

Your subscribers' inboxes are overwhelmed right now. Keep your messages personal, helpful, concise, and only for critical purposes. 

Forrester: brands must build trust as coronavirus saps consumer sentiment
by Robert Williams for Marketing Dive, March 27, 2020

Good advice from Forrester, including examples. 

6 emails you shouldn't send to customer during a pandemic -- and 2 that you should
by Geoffrey James for Inc, March 25, 2020

The "don'ts" include trying to look on the bright side and asking for payments. One "do" email: Asking "How can I help?"

What we owe each other: Marketing during the unthinkable
by Kristin Bond for Email Snarketing, March 13, 2020

4 things to consider before you send and 4 types of email that would be welcomed right now. 

To Send or Not to Send: Messaging in the Age of COVID-19
by Brittany Luebke for Cheetah Digital, March 16, 2020

4 questions to consider before you send that COVID-19-themed email marketing campaign. 

Coronavirus Resources & Readings
by Sonal Chokshi and a16z Editorial for Andreessen Horowitz

Not specific to email or marketing, but this is a list of selected resources on the novel coronavirus that causes COVID-19 disease. The list spans everything from official sources, trackers, and data sites to medical journal information hubs, background readings, and Twitter accounts. 

React, Respond, Redirect: Waves of Coronavirus Emails
by Jeanne Jennings for Email Optimization Shop, March 24, 2020

We all got bombarded with cookie-cutter emails of little value in the first wave, the second wave was a little more helpful, but this third wave is where efforts are becoming redirected, from words to action. Read all about it and help your organization surf this third wave and deepen relationships with prospects and customers.

Includes examples of email messages from each of the three waves.

Stats roundup: coronavirus impact on marketing, ecommerce & advertising
by Lizzy Hillier for Econsultancy, March 20, 2020

Netflix's YOY subscription growth is expected to be double original estimates, a 15% expected decline in YOY travel ad revenue, delayed investments in digital transformation and more. 

Email Newsletter Opens Spike During Crisis: Report
by Ray Schultz for MediaPost, March 17, 2020

MediaPost quotes a LiveIntent report that email opens are up 5%, mainly in arts and entertainment and style/fashion.

Being sensitive: Human responses to COVID-19
by Gabrielle Wright for Smart Insights, March 23, 2020

Smart Insights rounds up what it calls the best industry responses to COVID-19.

Examples include Adobe offering free access to its Creative Cloud apps to students working at home, a streaming concert fundraiser for the Global Foodbanking Network and Marks & Spencer assertion that "M&S has served customers without cease through two world wars [and] terrorist bombings and we are determined to support customers now."

Opinion: What 9/11 can teach us about marketing in the time of coronavirus
by Bradley Johnson for AdAge, March 17, 2020

Some people draw parallels between today's pandemic and the financial panic of 2008, but a number of email veterans say it's closer to what happened after 9/11.

This opinion column reviews some notable campaigns from 2001 and calls on marketers for bold initiatives. The direct quote: "bunkered up and hunkered down" describes some brands' early approaches. 

The Complete Overview to Crisis Email Marketing and the Coronavirus
by John Walsh and Jordi van Rijn for EmailMonday, March 23, 2020

Another round-up to help email marketers and business owners adapt and get the right communication out, take the right steps and not leave anything important out, and get ready for other crisis communication situations. 

7 things marketers need to be thinking of during Coronavirus
by Komal Helyer for Pure360, March 17, 2020

Good tips, including #7: Rewire your thinking. 

Special Coverage: CoronaVirus; Leading and working through a pandemic
by Harvard Business Review

Not specifically targeted to marketers, but lots of good advice here on working from home, making virtual meetings less boring and addressing anxiety.

How Should Your Email Marketing Change in Response to COVID-19?
by Scott Burdsall for Trendline Interactive, March 17, 2020

Advice here includes "learn to respond, not react" and "keeping the focus on the consumer experience should act as your guide."

How to Communicate with Customers During Times of Crisis
by Heidi Robbins for Salesforce, March 18, 2020

5 Tips to guide your marketing communications at difficult times. 

Benchmark Assessment: COVID-19 Email Activity and Engagement
by John Landsman for SparkPost, March 18, 2020

SparkPost's John Landsman tracks campaign volume and read rates that show higher than usual engagement in several sectors including transportation and food delivery/meal kits.

Back in Stock Automation: How Marketers Can Manage Supply and Demand Issues Amid the CoronaVirus Outbreak
by Alex McPeak for the Klaviyo Blog, March 9, 2020

Detailed info on why and how to develop 'back in stock' emails to address shortages during the outbreak. Also here, a 2-minute pole for marketers to share their experiences during this time. 

Customer communication in the COVID era: a 7-step guide for marketers
by Loren McDonald for the Acoustic Blog, March 17, 2020

A comprehensive overview of what every company should be doing, with regard to all their marketing initiatives, not just those in the email channel. 

Authenticity is now more important that ever during the coronavirus
by Ryan Phelan for Martech Today, March 17, 2020

"Think outside your own box" -- a good rule for email marketing any time you're doing it, but especially important in the time of a pandemic. Read on for Ryan's other tips. 

Covid-19: Should I Send this Email? 
by Megan Reed, Gallagher, March 13, 2020

Thanks to Megan Reed who created this one-page resource to answer this question and posted it to LinkedIn, Twitter and the Women of Email Facebook discussion board. 

Beware of Virtue Signaling or Outright Greed in Brand Communications About COVID-19
by Augie Ray for the Gartner Blog, March 15, 2020

Good post by Gartner's Augie Ray who has tips on messaging about company positions including "Avoid virtue signaling" and "don't signal your brand's desperation" along with 4 questions to ask to determine if you really need to email.

 Should COVID-19 Stop B2B Marketers From Marketing?
by Lee Odden for the Top Rank Marketing blog, March 16, 2020

Post by Lee Odden, who recommends reviewing campaigns and pausing anything that assumes everything is normal. Also recommends updating brand channels, focusing messaging on what customers need now, and reinforcing efforts to support company, employees and customers.

Email First: The New Normal for Keeping You Connected to Customers in Challenging Times
by Melissa Sargeant for the Litmus blog, March 13, 2020

Explains why an "email first" policy can help companies strengthen customer relations and keep WFH employees connected, plus examples from companies like Zendesk, Altos and Namecheap, plus ways to upgrade email production for more efficiency. Good piece.

Spirit Airlines Apologizes For Email Sent At Height Of Coronavirus Fears
by Ray Schultz for MediaPost, March 13, 2020 

Short piece on how companies need to readjust email timing to avoid inadvertent failures.

8-Step Guide to Email Marketing During a Crisis
by Liz Willits for the AWeber blog, March 13, 2020

Advice on communicating during the coronavirus crisis, including timing, messaging tone, avoiding any appearance of capitalizing on the crisis, plus examples.

Why no one is reading your coronavirus emails
by Todd Rogers for CNN, March 13, 2020

Great advice from a non-email person about writing better crisis emails, including "write in accessible language," "use a larger font," "use clear structure."

Why the New York Times shut off programmatic ads for its coronavirus newsletter
by George P. Slefo for AdAge, March 7, 2020

Another angle on both covid-19 response and the topic of adding ads to email newsletters. Interesting note: the Times has removed the paywall from all its coverage of the virus. 



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Sunday, 05 April 2020