As the holiday season draws ever closer, now is the time for you to ramp up your email marketing. Here’s what you should do to make your holiday email marketing a success.
1 – Plan it out
Your first step is to make sure you have a game plan. Every email marketer knows that, armed with the right strategy, there’s no way you’ll lose sight of the bigger picture. Decide how, when and what you want to market this holiday season, and put together a solid, well thought out plan.
You don’t need to have an email for every holiday and occasion that’s coming up, but it’s good to be aware of what’s happening, and which ones you want to market for. Once you know that, it will be easy to coordinate the kinds of offers and imagery you’re going to use.
2 – Make a date
Holidays like Christmas and New Year’s Eve will always fall on the same date each year, but remember the days of the week shift. So when you’re planning out your holiday strategy, be sure to keep that in mind.
Here’s a list of your must-know dates for the 2016 holiday season:
Thanksgiving – Thursday, November 23
Black Friday – Friday, November 24
Cyber Monday – Monday, November 27
Day of Reconciliation – Saturday, December 16
Summer Solstice – Thursday, December 21
Hanukkah – Begins Tuesday, December 12
Christmas Eve – Sunday, December 24
Christmas Day – Monday, December 25
Day of Goodwill / Boxing Day – Tuesday, December 26
Kwanzaa – Begins Tuesday, December 26
New Year’s Eve – Sunday, December 31
New Year’s Day – Monday, January 1
3 – Make it mobile friendly
As the working year winds to a close and schools start to let out, more and more of your customers and clients will be going on leave. Chances are, they won’t be checking your emails on their work computer anymore. Best you make sure your emails are mobile friendly, so your subscribers can read them from anywhere.
It’s vitally important that, not only are your emails legible and functional on mobile, they need to look fantastic as well. Here are our tips to ensuring that you can hit all three of those goals.
4 – Let automation do the heavy lifting
The holidays are a busy time for all retailers and marketers. Instead of taking precious time away from your sales and other responsibilities, you can use automated emails to do all the work for you. Set up in advance, these automated emails will automatically send out the right email at the right time to the right subscriber.
You can create a series of emails that ramp up to certain holiday dates, with specials mails that get sent on the specific date. You can also split your automations and trigger different emails to different subscribers, based on how they interact with your mails. Once that’s all set up, you can sit back and relax.
5 – Grab attention with hero images
Using big, bold hero images is one of the easiest ways to make your campaign eye-catching, at the same time as showcasing your products and keeping you top of mind, all in one go. Theme your hero images around the holiday you’re marketing for to get the most impact.
If you’re not sure where to start, we have a list of great stock photography websites that are all free or reasonably priced, which you can check out here.
6 – Get personal with your offers
If you’re not using dynamic content, you run the risk of boring your subscribers with your generic, one-size-fits-all campaigns. Start making your holiday marketing more relevant by customising your subject line, copy, or even entire content sections, based on your different segments.
This way, you’ll be delivering targeted, specialised offers and content directly to the people that find it most relevant, and you’ll see the boost straight away.
7 – Make it urgent
One way to guarantee your subscribers jump at whatever offer you throw at them is to make it urgent. Nobody wants to be the only person to miss out on something. The best place to do this is in your subject line.
Things like “One day only sale”, “specials for Christmas only”, “don’t miss out” and “last call” will all drive home the urgency and importance of your marketing.
Remember, it’s not over yet
Just because the holiday season ends around Christmas, doesn’t mean that your sales should end as well. Post-season sales and some retail pick-me-ups will encourage your subscribers to keep spending with you.
And while you’re at it, you should also get started on your plans for next year, it’s never too early to start! Know how you’re going to kick off your new marketing year and be prepared to start January with a bang!