The leaves are beginning to turn, the days are cool and crisp, and Halloween is right around the corner (a pretty big deal here in Salem, MA!). Autumn has arrived – and that means the holiday season is coming up fast.
We know all you experts are on top of your holiday email marketing strategy. But everyone could use a little help preparing for one of the busiest times of year, so we thought we’d post some tactical tweaks you can use to create campaigns that will really knock your customers’ socks off – and maybe win you some new ones, too.
Over the next two weeks, we’ll send you four different tips to help give your holiday email campaigns a little edge over the competition. (Don’t miss the list of key dates at the end of this post – they’ll help you stay on track!)
Ready? Let’s get started – those halls aren’t going to deck themselves!
Don’t Overlook The Usual Suspects
You know personalized, relevant content and compelling subject lines can make or break an email campaign. So if you’re not already using these tactics consistently, there’s no time like the present.
Consumers have more and more content coming at them every day, and there’s just no way our brains can take it all in, never mind actually respond to every demand for our attention, even when we really want to.
The easiest way to ensure your emails are read – and better yet, acted upon – is by making the subject line relevant and personal to your recipients. How? Get to know your subscribers beyond the baseline demographics (age, sex, location, etc). For example:
- What do they love?
- What do they hate?
- What keeps them up at night?
- What problem or challenge can you help them solve?
- How can you make their life easier/happier/less stressful?
Compile this data and use it to create your subject lines – and, of course, your content. Your recipients will feel like you’re speaking directly to them.
That said, subject lines should be relatively short and sweet. A little change that can make a big difference is to capitalize the first letter of each word. This will help your subject line stand out among all the other messages just that little bit more:
Get a sneak peek at our great holiday deals!
Get A Sneak Peek At Our Great Holiday Deals!
(See? It does make a difference!)
Finally, make sure the content of your email is directly relevant to your subject line. You have to deliver on the promise of those words – no exceptions. At best, it’s annoying for your readers to open your email and find content that doesn’t follow through. At worst, you risk them immediately deleting your email, unsubscribing, and/or reporting your message as SPAM. Don’t let all the time, energy and resources you’ve spent earning the trust of your subscribers go to waste.
Stay tuned for Tip #2, coming soon! In the meantime, here are some key dates to keep in mind as we go into the holiday season:
Monday, October 12: Columbus Day – start your preview/teaser sends this week
Monday, November 2: Let the (reindeer) games begin! Holiday campaign season has officially arrived.
Wednesday, November 11: Veteran’s Day – time for a pre-Black Friday sale?
Monday, November 23: Cyber Week begins
Thursday, November 26: Thanksgiving Day
Friday, November 27: BLACK FRIDAY
Saturday, November 28: Small Business Saturday
Tuesday, December 1: Giving Tuesday
Sunday, December 6: Hanukkah begins
Monday, December 7: Green Monday – busiest shopping day in December!
Monday, December 14: Hanukkah ends
Friday, December 18: Last chance for ground shipping
Wednesday, December 23: Last day for rush shipping
Friday, December 25: Christmas Day
Saturday, December 26: Boxing Day
Thursday, December 31: New Year’s Eve
Friday, January 1: New Year’s Day
Have questions, or tips of your own that you’d like to share? Feel free to post them in the comments below!