Here’s a surefire way for you to lose subscribers and alienate people who have been reading your emails: Change your brand and then introduce the new one really poorly.
Here’s an email that I received a few days ago introducing me to a new brand – a brand new brand if you may. As you look at it – ask a single question: Who or what was the old brand?
The answer: Who knows.
Here’s what went wrong
When you work on a new brand for your business, it’s an intense period of time. Picking logos, colours, brand descriptions, new brand values, names, and doing it all over again because some boss decides that they don’t like the shade of blue you used plus their daughter said they could have done a better job. It really can be a long journey.
But your subscribers haven’t been on that journey – so they have no idea. Clearly you need to introduce the new brand to them.
Which is what this email is trying to do. It’s trying to get existing subscribers on to the new brand that has been slaved over for quite some time. I’m sure it’s really exciting for the team who have done it to finally get something out.
But the subscriber has no idea who you are.
As far as this email goes, the subscriber has never heard of you. Your hard work sending all those emails in the last few years, the brand engagement, social, all of it – useless. If you never say who you were, nobody will know who you now are.
When this email came into my inbox, I first thought ‘oh look – someone has shared my email with another business. Must be spam!’
Your subscribers are going to say the same thing. They’re going to ask themselves, ‘When did I sign up to this? What’s the old brand anyway?’
How to do it well
Show your old brand
The primary way of explaining who you now are is to contrast with the anchor point of the old brand. Yes, this email says, “we are now a new brand” but it never said who they were before. It never anchors the new brand in something old – to show the real difference between the new and the old.
Use your subject line
Use your subject line to express an element of news, “Welcome to the new…”, “X Brand is now Y Brand”, “Come & see what’s new…” there’s so many ways you could write it.
Even if your subscribers don’t open the email – there is still the element of communicating the point with just the subject line.
Take your time and repeat, repeat, repeat
Sending a single email to your subscribers is not enough. Continue to reinforce that the brand has changed for a period of time. Even if it’s 30 days and you include it in a preheader, footer, or some element of the email that is clear but not overriding the main purpose of the message you’re sending.