3 Simple Rules for How to Email Users About a Bug or Outage

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Results for the Surprise Personal Email

by Colin Nederkoorn

Did you start sending a surprise personal email like the ones I mentioned a few weeks ago?

I did!

I’m excited to share my results with you. I ended up tweaking both the first email someone gets and the surprise personal email they’ll get later.

First, send a welcome email

When people sign up for Customer.io, they get a “Thanks for signing up” email. We use a simple stylized template that works great on mobile or desktop email:

Our welcome email

You guys know I generally send “plain text” looking emails, but this one is stylized for two reasons:

  1. shows people our product can do designed emails
  2. it contrasts the surprise personal email they’re about to get…

Then 32 minutes later, a surprise personal email

You might be shocked by the simplicity:

Subject: Help getting started?

Hey {% raw %}{{ customer.first_name }}{% endraw %},

I’m Colin, CEO of Customer.io. I wanted to reach out to see if you need any help getting started.

Cheers,
Colin

That’s it. No magic bullet. Just a simple offer of help.

This email receives a 17% reply rate. I.e. 17% of recipients clicked reply and wrote a response.

Setting this up is the best 5 minutes you can spend today.

Here are a few quotes from email responses we received:

Customer service like this shows me that you really care about the users.
– Tom L.

I’m all good bud. recommended you to my client.
– Mark S.

… I have been searching for some tutorial or something that shows us what we need to do to integrate properly…
– Nate R.

The first two are feel-good, positive interactions that someone had with us. The third response is a golden opportunity to help.

Someone came to our product looking to solve a need and can’t find what they’re looking for.

They might struggle through it, but more likely they’ll abandon the app. UNLESS they get this email.

A surprise personal email gives people the opportunity to express intent to buy.

Someone responding to your surprise personal email is often expressing a desire to pay you money if you can solve their problem.

Keep in mind, not all people who signs up can become your customer. Your product may be wrong for them. You may not meet the original need they were trying to solve. They may not be able to afford your prices. There are a 101 reasons why someone who signs up won’t ever be your customer.

However, people who hit reply to your email will either become your customer or refer others to you. It’s practically guaranteed.

Set this up today if you don’t have it.

Go set this up. It should take you the same time it took to read this. Your email should be sent about 30 minutes after someone signs up ( Mine is 32). If it takes you more than 5 minutes to do this with your current email setup, let me know and I’d be happy to help you.

Have something like this already?

Share your results in the comments!

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