5 Key Holiday Email Marketing Tips for 2017

Email marketers must start preparing for one of the most important and busiest quarters of the year - the Holiday season.

Regular strategies used for email campaigns throughout the rest of the year may not be enough to cut through the inbox clutter during the holiday season. This calls for email marketers to define their holiday-specific marketing goals, and create email campaigns that stand out.

We’ve collated five proven holiday email marketing tips to help boost your campaigns.

Tip #1: Plan Smart & Plan Early “Rushed projects never return great results.” - Sam Hurley, Founder of OPTIM-EYEZ.

Most email marketers begin planning their marketing strategies months before the holidays begin, so now is a good time for you to start (if you were still wondering about the right time).

It may seem obvious, but it’s often overlooked - one of the best places to begin is from the performance report of the previous year’s holiday emails.

Analyze your best performing emails and try to hone in on the key reasons they succeeded or failed, and use that to inform your decisions.

Tip #2: Don’t just read, interact with emails Increased interactivity in email is directly linked with improved customer engagement. The more time subscribers spend interacting with your email, the more they learn about your brand, helping build trust.

By using certain interactive elements and keyframe animation, brands have already been using gamification in emails to guide subscribers to their landing page, increasing their conversion possibilities.

As Jaymin Bhuptani, Director of EmailMonks notes: “Considering subscribers’ cluttered inbox during holidays, you need to keep your subscribers engaged with effective use of animation and interactive elements like GIF, Cinemagraph, Sliders, Rollover effect, etc. However, make sure appropriate fallback is there”.

Tip #3: Segment and Target your Subscribers Data is everywhere, and the success of all your marketing campaigns will revolve around how well you can leverage it to understand your customers better.

Kara Trivunovic, VP/GM-Client Services, Epsilon says that: “…delivering the right message, using just the right image and offer, is a very basic practice, and it becomes more manageable for the brand and meaningful for the customer”.

There are various ways you can use your customer data for relevant e-mail targeting - segment your audiences based on where they are in your purchase cycle and create customozed offers which appeal to their specific needs. The more personalized you can get, the better.

Tip #4: Create Real-time Content In conjunction to segmenting and targeting, most experts believe that emails have progressed to the point that we’ll soon feature email copy that changes in real-time. This could be a significant improvement from the personalization point-of-view, particularly in terms of providing updated information via your email newsletter.

As Ryan Phelan, VP, Marketing Insights from Adestra says: “Real-time content can let your emails reflect changes in inventory, among other benefits, which is a major concern for holiday shopping.”

Similar to using data for segmentation, real-time, relevant updates can greatly increase the value - and thus responsiveness - of your e-mail efforts.

Tip #5: Go Responsive or Go Home The most basic, yet important tip which all marketers need to take note of is that your emails need to be responsive and perform well on various devices.

During the holiday season, people will be shopping more on their mobiles, especially last-moment shoppers. If you format your emails with mobile responsiveness in mind, you’re maximizing your potential to reach more users, wherever and whenever they encounter your messaging.

As Dennis Dayman, Chief Privacy Officer at Return Path notes: “Don’t forget to start with mobile in mind, many of our users are shopping in real-time and with more than 50 % of your subscribers accessing emails on their mobile devices, it makes more sense than ever to make sure that your emails render accurately across all devices”.

Wrapping Up The Holiday season is coming up fast, and for email marketers, there’s no better time to start planning out and implementing your strategy. As per a report by Campaign Monitor, for every dollar spent on email marketing, an average of $44 return on investment is delivered. Few, if any, brands can afford to ignore potential of that level.

Now is the time to start formulating your holiday email outreach.

By Kevin George first published on September 27, 2017