In recent weeks, the coronavirus pandemic has had a huge impact on the events industry. The need for social distancing and self-isolation has meant that bringing large groups of people together isn’t viable right now. As our community navigates these difficult waters, we’re keen to share our expertise to help you overcome the challenges ahead.

If you’ve made the decision to postpone your event, it’s important to communicate this to your attendees in a way that’s clear and reassuring. This will help you to manage expectations and lay the groundwork for rearranging your event. Email is one of the most effective and efficient ways to do so, as you can reach large numbers of people quickly and easily.

To help you get started, here are our top tips for creating email templates to postpone events.

Craft a clear subject line

Your email contains vital information for your guests, so it’s important to make sure your subject line immediately grabs their attention. Rather than using clever wordplay or puns, keep things concise. It’s a good idea to include the words ‘COVID-19’ or ‘coronavirus’ to flag your email in inboxes. Here are some subject line examples to inspire you:

  • COVID-19: We’re Postponing Our Event
  • Important Coronavirus Update
  • How We’re Handling COVID-19

Keep it short and sweet

When writing the content of your email, remain factual and to the point. Begin with the most important piece of information: that your event is going to be postponed. It’s likely attendees will be aware of the situation and will have received a number of similar emails, so there’s no need to go into too much detail about coronavirus itself. However, it is a good idea to include a few key links to important websites where guests can find out the latest updates and more information if they’re concerned. Here are a few:

Create an FAQs page

Your attendees are likely to have lots of questions – but rather than packing too much information into one email, think about including a link to a frequently asked questions page. Consider the kind of queries and concerns your guests might have, for example:

  • Are they eligible for a refund?
  • What should they do if they can’t attend the new date?
  • What should they do if they can’t join the online event?

Sample email templates

Not sure where to start? We’ve put together a few templates you can use when emailing attendees about a postponed event – feel free to adapt them to your needs.

Example 1: Postponing events for an indefinite period

Hi [insert name],

As we’re sure you’re already aware, the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has led to a need for social distancing to help prevent the spread. For this reason, we’ve made the difficult decision to postpone [insert event name] until further notice. While we know this is disappointing, we hope you understand this is a necessary step to help keep each other safe in these unprecedented times.

We’ll update you with the new date and location as soon as they’re confirmed. If you have any questions or concerns, please get in touch here: [insert contact details], or you can take a look at our FAQs page: [FAQs page link].

You can find out more about COVID-19 on the WHO, NHS and Gov.uk websites.

Stay safe, and we’ll be in touch with more information soon.

Example 2: Postponing events until a pre-determined date

Hi [insert name],

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, we’re getting in touch to let you know that [insert event name] is going to be postponed until [insert date].

As you may well be aware, the government has called on the public to stop gathering to help prevent the spread of COVID-19, and so it wouldn’t be responsible for us to go ahead with the event at this time. We hope you can join us at [insert event name] on the rearranged date of [insert date].

We’ll keep you posted if anything changes, and please feel free to get in touch if you have any questions or concerns: [insert contact details], or you can take a look at our FAQs page: [FAQs page link].

You can find out more about COVID-19 on the on the WHO, NHS and Gov.uk websites.

Stay safe, and we’ll be in touch with more information soon.

Example 3: Moving your event online

Hi [insert name],

Due to the global outbreak of COVID-19, we’re getting in touch to let you know that [insert event name] won’t be going ahead as planned. The need for self-isolation and social distancing means that it’s no longer responsible to hold a live event or gather in large groups.

But we have some good news: [insert event name] is going online. Here’s how you can join in: [insert joining details].

If you have any questions or concerns, then please get in touch here: [insert contact details], or you can take a look at our FAQs page: [FAQs page link].

You can find out more about COVID-19 on the WHO, NHS and Gov.uk websites.

Stay safe, and we’ll be in touch with more information soon.

Why postponing events can be a positive thing

There can be plenty of positives to postponing your event – even if it feels disappointing in the first instance. The most important thing to remember is you’ll be keeping yourself and your attendees safe. Guests are likely to understand the situation and when things start to return to normal, you can reward them by offering discounts, gift bags, and other perks to overcome the inconveniences caused. In short, postponing can help you bounce back and make your event even better than before.

In order to help creators reduce friction and attendee questions when they change the status of their event, we have launched new  in-product email templates that  can be used when notifying attendees of postponing your event. These emails contain guidelines with information such as refunds or next steps, and are fully customisable. You will be automatically presented with the option to email all attendees using these templates, as you go through the process of postponing your event within the Eventbrite platform.

You can also head to our Coronavirus Resource Centre for Event Organisers to find more information, articles and suggestions on how to manage your event.

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