My Weather Email to Brightpod Customers: Lessons in Life + 40% Open Rate

Last week, as I was sipping my morning coffee and going through the news I read about the freezing cold in North America due to the polar vortex. Some of the images shown in the news were just appalling. I was instantly taken back to the movie I had watched thinking I hope this does not come true - The Day After Tomorrow. Soon after, I kept my laptop aside, walked up to my daughters room and just watched the calm sea makes its way to the shore. I took a moment to be thankful for everything.

Walking back to the living room I thought about the people who were experiencing freezing temperatures. I decided to write to all the Brightpod customers in North America. I just wanted to know how they were doing. I had been in touch with some of them and some of them I didn’t know yet.

I logged onto our CRM system, Intercom, filtered all people in North America and composed a simple plain text email:

Subject: Brightpod - Heard about the weather…

Hi _,

I have been hearing about the freezing weather conditions in North America. I hope you and your family are safe.

All the best for 2014.

Regards,

Sahil

My goal was just to ask if everything was ok. This was not the time for marketing & sales. Although, two thoughts did cross my mind.

  • I did wonder if other web businesses would get in touch with their customers.

  • I would have liked an email from someone checking on me and my family.

It was late evening in Mumbai and morning in the U.S. Within a minute replies started pouring in…

“So kind of you to think about us. Yes, it has been so very, very cold. Yesterday morning was 1 degree Fahrenheit in Tennessee. It just seems so crazy. I hope you are well, happy new year to you. All the best in 2014 as well.”

“Very kind of you to email. We are making it through ok. I hope you have a great 2014 as well!”

“Thank you for your concern and best wishes! Luckily we were prepared and all is well! Hope the same is for you and your family.”

“Thanks for thinking of us. It has been quite cold, but we are safe and sound. Take care!”

“Thank you for taking the time to check in. We are well and staying warm. Our biggest challenge was ruptured water lines in our home, but pales in comparison to those without a warm place to take shelter.“

This email got an open rate of 40%, which is on the higher side according to Mailchimp’s benchmark.

This, from the heart move felt just so fresh compared to all the other activities I do on a daily basis. I learnt three important business & life lessons here that I am going to put to more use.

  1. Show concern for others.

  2. Reach out whenever you can.

  3. Be authentic and be yourself.

The reciprocation you will receive will be like analytics that you don’t need to measure cause you have already felt it.

Stay warm.