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This week’s email was supposed to be a year in review for Freddie and Co. I was going to share numbers from the store, the total amount we donated, what I learned, what MailChimp learned, etc., and so on.
Usually when I create a new issue of What’s in Store, I use the most recent campaign as a template, remove all non-repeating content, and start brain dumping. I don’t think, I just write what comes to mind. In this case, I was writing my draft while watching Die Hard with a bunch of other Chimps. When I got back to my desk, I noticed a message from my coworker Neel.
I initially assumed Neel was logged into my account for some reason, looking at my unsent draft. But once he confirmed it was in his inbox, my heart sank. Surely, this couldn’t be!
Then I saw it in my inbox. My crap draft. Sent. Without the comforting “[Test]” prefix in the subject line.
I leapt out of my chair, unplugged my laptop, and speed-walked to my manager Palmer’s desk.
People in Palmer’s pod picked up on my frantic energy (I think the speed walking/talking clued them in) and started to gather around. Next thing I knew, my coworker Ally had my laptop in her hands and was clicking around inside MailChimp as I watched over her shoulder, hands clasped together, forehead sweaty. Once the delivery was halted, MailChimp created a segment of all the people who were sent my crap draft and we discovered that it only went out to about 20% of our list. So I sent those people this email explaining what had just happened.
Apology sent, but still clueless as to why my email mysteriously sent, I reached out to our delivery team to see if they could figure it out. They pored over the logs and eventually discovered that it was sent from a mobile device. So then the mobile team got involved! Finally, we determined that our QA team had been testing and accidentally sent my draft instead of their own. The good news is that a few bugs were squashed in testing, we’re looking into user activity tracking, and some of those kind, forgiving, lovely readers who got the crap draft actually LOVED it.
A few readers suggested I might be orchestrating these mistakes for content, and all I can say to that is, “LOL, I WISH.”
The major lesson for me was: It’s just an email. No one was hurt, nothing was lost (except my pride), and perspective is everything. Be human and bounce back. It’s all I could really do, and I think people enjoyed that.