At some point in the life of your business, there will likely be a time when you will have to deliver and explain some bad news to your clients. Your email list is a great place to start when it comes to these kinds of communications, but it is not enough to simply pump out some content and hope that it is well-received. Bad news emails must be as carefully crafted as any other kind of marketing email, and perhaps even more so, because the message can come off negatively.
Instead of blurting out the bad news, soften it by redirecting attention to something positive. Instead of starting, for example, with “The sales director has been fired,” start with something like, “New sales director improves customer service.” This will convey the same message (the old employee is gone and a new one has been chosen) without slapping the consumer in the face with bad news.
This concept applies to the delivery of kind of bad news, including customer service failures, the inability to fulfill an order, etc.
Consider the headline carefully. You want to draw people in, get them to read the email, but drama is not the best way to do this. Remember to stay upbeat and positive, and, if necessary, always apologize appropriately.
If the situation warrants as much, offer some sort of discount that can help to brighten a bad situation. For example, after Target’s data breach in December, they not only sincerely apologized but they offered all shoppers additional discount holiday shopping opportunities.