» Hi %%FirstName%%…? Oops!

This post was written by Matt Byrd, WeddingWire’s Email Marketing Specialist. WeddingWire was recently recognized by the Email Institute as one of the best brands for email marketing, alongside companies such as Amazon, J.Crew and Starbucks. Matt also spoke at MarketingSherpa’s Email Summit 2013 in Las Vegas.


It happens to the best of us. You spend hours creating a beautiful email, segmenting your list, testing repeatedly to make sure everything looks solid…and then, as soon as you press Send, you realize there’s a mistake.

Don’t panic!

Mistakes happen. After you’ve been staring at the same email for hours, it’s easy to miss something, no matter how obvious it might be in retrospect. Upon realizing a mistake has been made, focus on remaining calm, considering any potential damage and, if needed, taking quick action.

Begin by assessing the severity of the error. Is it something small, like a misspelled word, or is it more serious, like an incorrect event date or information about a promotion? Small mistakes can be embarrassing, but are typically not worth sending a corrected version of the email. Your customers will understand that you’re human and forget about it.

Larger mistakes often require sending a correction, otherwise known as an Oops! email. Don’t be afraid to send an Oops! email, but only send one if it’s necessary. Clients will appreciate the fact that you are correcting your mistake, and providing them with the proper information.

If you do send an Oops! email, look for ways to turn your mistake into an opportunity to further your relationship with your clients.

Here are a few ideas:

  • Extend your discount an extra day to give people more time to take advantage of an offer;
  • Offer them a special promo code to use at a later time;
  • If appropriate, provide an email address or phone number they can use if they are confused or have questions.

Most importantly, make sure your Oops! email is sincere and authentic. Don’t over-hype or over-complicate your message. Explain that a mistake happened, apologize for it, and offer the correct information.

Many marketers have even found that a well-done Oops! email has outperformed standard promotions! Customers appreciate honesty and being treated like real people. As a result, owning up to your mistake will have better long-term benefits for your brand and business.