About this time of year, email marketers start to feel the pangs of the coming onslaught of candy cane striped template borders, snowflake GIFs and pine bough accents. We may be entering the hottest time of the year, but Q4 is coming in even hotter. Now is the time to tackle any major program overhaul efforts and start planning your holiday strategy.
In my recent webinar for Target Marketing, 7 Email Mistakes That Can Ruin Your Holiday Marketing and How to Fix Them, I tackled common stumbling blocks that can drag down performance and leave marketers scrambling to recover end of year ROI. If you missed the webinar, you can watch the recording here.
In this post, I’ll dig deeper into content optimization strategies and highlight several examples of brands that got it right over the last two holiday seasons.
Sales and Discounts, All Day Every Day
One marketing mistake featured in the webinar looked into how marketers can unintentionally roll out a messaging strategy that is less than jolly. With Q4 comes increased pressure to boost revenue coupled with intense competition in the inbox. In an effort to turn up the heat on sales, marketers often start hitting the “sale” message too hard, and too frequently.
During the holidays, strong sales and promotions can help brands stay competitive. But sales offers in every subject line for weeks on end get as stale as last year’s fruitcake. Repetitive, offer oriented content can cause subscribers to tune out and may limit the number of “window shoppers” who browse your messages without an immediate intention to buy.
By diversifying the messaging stream and offering value beyond just promotions, brands can let their merchandising, editorial content and featured collections draw subscribers down the browsing and purchasing path. In the webinar, I cited several effective tactics that marketers can experiment with to capture attention and delight subscribers. Below are a few examples that can help marketers mix it up.
Uncommon Goods does a nice job of keeping their content fresh and engaging. In addition to featuring fun, quirky gifts, they have a knack for creating product groupings that entertain and spark the imagination.
Rather than simply spewing out a list of products, Uncommon Goods includes links to similarly themed gifts, inspiring subscribers to click through to the website and check out other products.
They typically have very long emails but the merchandising and design is on point so the browsing experience is pleasant.
As a Senior Email Strategist with Return Path, Casey specializes in driving increased engagement and boosting deliverability. Casey has a healthy fixation with helping marketers realize the potential of their email programs by addressing human needs, building better relationships, and ultimately driving improved results for the business. Her nine years of experience and obsession with evolving the email space helped land her a spot on ExpertSender’s list of “25 Email Geeks to Help You Get Your Geek On.”