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by Mike Vestil 

Holiday Email Marketing: Tips For High Converting Campaigns

Many businesses believe that email marketing is no longer an effective strategy in this day and age. However, this couldn't be further from the truth. Email marketing can help you build a strong relationship with your customers and increase brand awareness. 

It's also one of the most cost-effective ways to reach out to consumers during holidays when they're on the go and need information quickly about the latest deals available for their favorite products.

In this article, we’ll be speaking about the Christmas holiday when it comes to getting the most out of email marketing. However, the same principles can be applied to pretty much any holiday you can think of throughout the year.

Ready to take advantage of holiday email marketing? Keep reading to find out more.

Why You Should Be Using Email Marketing During The Holidays

With email giving an average ROI of $44 for every dollar spent, sending emails out during the holiday period is something you should be doing. Here are some of the top reasons to use email marketing during this specific time of the year.

Emails Are Great When Everyone Is On The Go

There's no question that the holiday season is one of the busiest times of the year. That's why it's so important to take advantage of holiday email marketing while the time is right.  Between parties, family get-togethers, and traveling to visit loved ones, there are lots of reasons why people aren’t using their desktop but still using their mobile phone and checking emails at various points throughout the day.

While people are on the go, a quick reminder about all of the incredible deals you have available might work wonders. They might also want to take advantage of a sale that won't last long and a quick email will allow them to do just that. Holiday email marketing allows you to reach your customer when they're on their mobile phone and looking for ways to save time and money.

Emails Allow Customization That Makes Every Message You Send Personal

To add a sense of customization during the holiday season, why not use some of the tools that email marketing gives you? Personalize emails, send videos to your subscribers with some holiday cheer, or even a voice message letting them know what’s happening in your business. 

Personalization allows you to create a sense of connection with your customer. You can send out emails offering holiday coupons for similar products to those they've purchased in the past or wish they could buy if the price was just right. 

The holidays are a great time to go above and beyond with the people that make your business a success and quickly become their favorite online retailer.

Easy To Add Some Holiday Cheer To Emails

By using images that are bright, cheerful, and contain fun graphics, you'll be sure to reach out to your customers in the spirit of the holidays while also providing them with important information about purchasing any items they need before the big day arrives. 

Try adding animated GIFs or even traditional static images - but make sure all graphics are clear and defined enough so that people can easily see the emotions that you want to share with them.

Holiday Email Marketing Best Practices

Let's now speak about setting up your holiday email marketing campaigns correctly to give holiday shoppers the best experience possible.

Never Underestimate How Vital Email Segmentation Is

To send out holiday email marketing campaigns that get results, you need to know precisely who your customer is and how they think. The easiest way to do this is by creating a personalized message that varies from one email group to another using detailed email segmentation.

So what does this mean? It means that you enhance the content within your campaign based on which of these segments your customer falls under. You can group customers based on their past purchases with you, the types of emails they typically open, how often they open them, etc. By doing so, you provide the most relevant information possible without becoming overbearing or running into spam complaints.

During the holiday period, it's essential to focus on how your customers want to hear from you and what they're looking for in their inbox. Look at the types of emails that subscribers have been opening recently. This helps you determine the best way to connect with them during this busy time of year.

Understanding what makes your audience tick is crucial if you want to see increased sales and positive brand interaction, all of which can be done by using personalized holiday email marketing campaigns.

Use Marketing Automation For Your Holiday Email Marketing Strategy

If there's one thing that marketers should take away from the holidays, it's that you need to be prepared. During these upcoming weeks, you're probably going to receive an increase in orders because people are looking for last-minute gifts or trying to avoid crowded shopping malls.

What can you do? Well, for starters, consider using marketing automation workflows to create a personalized experience for every customer based on what they're doing within your website.

So when does this happen? Suppose somebody lands on your homepage and then finally decides to add an item into their cart. By using marketing automation, you could begin sending them relevant email campaigns that include discounts and coupons attached to specific products - without ever having to lift a finger.


Image Credit: http://campaignmonitor.com

The idea here is to focus on the two most important things:

  • Come up with more personalized holiday email marketing campaigns
  • Tie the emails that you send with the relevant step in which a customer is found - whether that is the order page, checkout page, opt-in page, etc

The more you focus on these two items, the higher your chance of converting additional sales is.

Base Your Holiday Email Marketing Ideas Around A Calendar

Holiday email campaigns based around a calendar are an easy way to show customers that you're thinking of them when coming up with relevant ideas for the upcoming season. 

Of course, this doesn't mean you have to send out something new every single day - but it does mean you should write campaigns around special events, including historical dates and notable moments. Doing so ensures your holiday email marketing stays on point while avoiding any spam complaints or unsubscribes in the process.

By basing your holiday email marketing ideas around a calendar, you can create something that anyone would find appealing. The right email marketing software can help you create content in advance during this time of year so you won’t have to get everything done just before it goes live.

Here are a few special occasions and types of items that you can offer around Christmas time. These should definitely have a place in your content calendar.

Black Friday Sale

Black Friday Sales are great for customers looking for deep discounts. It is also the start of the ‘holidays spending mode’ where people are becoming OK with spending more money.

When it comes to Black Friday (and all of the other days we’ll be speaking about), try creating personalized email campaigns instead of generic ones in order to provide something your audience will find interesting. 

For Black Friday, an idea could be to create an infographic with tips on shopping smart during the upcoming holidays along with specific products that match the information you’re sending.

Cyber Monday

Cyber Monday is another great way to increase your holiday sales. When you're sending out a Cyber Monday email, make sure you include discounts and coupons that can be attached to specific items within your store.

Again, the idea here is simple: the more personalized your holiday email marketing campaigns are, the higher your chance of converting additional sales.

Last-Minute Offers

If there's one thing that people hate about shopping during the holidays, it has to be waiting in line for hours at a time before being packed into a crowded mall filled with other customers. 

In this instance, last-minute deals might very well be enough to help motivate somebody into making an online purchase instead. As such, try creating campaigns around products that are almost out of stock and use the fear of missing out when sending out these types of emails

Limited Edition Items

Creating holiday email campaigns around items considered 'limited edition' is another excellent way to generate sales. You might have a special offer on the website for everybody who purchases one of your limited edition products during November or December. When that time passes, the item will be retired and won’t be available for sale anymore.


Image Credit: http://getresponse.com

These sorts of holiday email marketing ideas are perfect for small businesses since they allow them to capture new customers and target returning ones interested in the same types of products.

Craft Subject Lines That Result In Increased Open Rates

Holiday shopping is a big deal for people, so your email marketing campaign must be different when compared to what everyone else is sending out.


Image Credit: http://sleeknote.com

To craft subject lines that result in increased open rates, you have to go above and beyond to immediately capture the attention of your customer base. 

Above, you can see an example that definitely stands out when it comes to an email subject line that will get opened.

Send Relevant Content To Increase Holiday Sales

If there's one thing that can help you increase sales during the holidays, it has to be relevant content being sent out directly to your customers.


Image Credit: http://mailerlite.com

You could also go down the route of looking back at past information and seeing how far you’ve come as a company together with your subscribers. This is a great way to increase the feel-good factor and also mention a few products that your subscribers should check out.

No matter how you look at it, the point here is simple: try using content within holiday email marketing campaigns that will immediately capture someone's attention instead of bombarding people with irrelevant offers and deals.

Anticipate Your Audience's Questions

Use your content creation skills and knowledge of your brand and audience to anticipate any questions and concerns they might have during this busy season. Perhaps someone needs help picking out a specific item or desires faster shipping options just before Christmas day.

You should do all you can within reason to handle these requests quickly and efficiently because it will provide customers with an exceptional experience just before and after the holidays.

Preempting questions by bringing them up and then answering them before your customers even have a chance to ask them takes time and the right experience. It's also the reason why you should work with your marketing team to come up with holiday email marketing strategies that are effective.

These should be based on past concerns and common questions people often have when purchasing gifts for friends, family members, or clients.

Create A Specific Holiday Landing Page

Holiday marketing campaigns should always include a landing page, and this is no different for email marketing.

Regardless of whether you're sending out an email to one person or thousands, you'll want to create a specific landing page that's tied into your holiday message.


Image Credit: http://loclweb.com

This will help people learn more about what you're offering and provide them with more valuable information they can use as part of their gift-giving experience.

Create a website landing page where people can sign up for specific Christmas mailing lists that provide valuable information. This information could include gift suggestions and holiday choices when it comes to this special time of the year.

Although it might seem like common sense, some businesses still fail to create specific landing pages for their holiday email campaign. Instead, they send people to their homepage, expecting them to click through multiple pages to find the information they're looking for.

Focus On The Values Associated With Specific Holidays

Just because you are promoting products or services, it doesn't mean that you can’t also inform people about the various values that your company holds. 

Don't just stick to talking about sales - add some warmth to your content and write about how your company is giving back this holiday season. Rather than just pushing products onto people, you want them to be excited to do business with you.

If applicable, create a space within the emails you send out to include important information like the types of charities or businesses you are working with, how you’re giving back to your employees this year, and the types of values you hold the dearest in your company.

People love knowing that they're part of something bigger when engaging with your company and these types of emails will help solidify the business relationship they have with you.

Embrace The Correct Type Of Email Design

Many companies don't even think about design, but an unprofessional-looking email that lacks creativity might deter people from opening your holiday message. Whether you're sending out an email to one person or thousands, the last thing you want is for them to be turned away by shoddy design work.

Don't be afraid to show some personality within the mail you send. Give it a personal touch and help people understand that you took the time to write a personalized message rather than sending a generic message found on a random template. Showing people that you genuinely care about them (rather than throwing something together in five minutes) will go a long way.

Email marketing design should always be clean and well-organized, so also remember to not cram in too many images or videos. Keep it simple but elegant.

Also, think about creating a minimalist design that will allow you to provide people with all the information they need without overwhelming them. Colors play an essential role when designing this type of email, so make sure your colors are not too flashy or attention-grabbing.

Always Track Your Performance

The one thing that should remain constant in your holiday campaigns is your dedication to tracking the right email metrics.

Although this might seem like it's taking away from the holiday spirit, remember that you're still running a business and that means needing to know precisely what is (and isn't) working.

This way, you can make changes to future emails as needed. Such data can help you think about trends in sales. Holiday emails and tracking go hand in hand because this is your chance to see if you're reaching the correct type of people with your message.

Use the resources in your email service provider to test holiday marketing ideas and see which ones work best. Is your target audience resonating with your exclusive deals, and are such deals helping to boost sales?

Gift shopping should be both fun for people and a successful venture for you. By tracking your performance you’ll be able to give people more of what they want.

Focus On Emails That Open Up Correctly On Mobile Devices

Finally, consider that during the holiday shopping season, people will more than likely be on the go. Mobile devices will be in the hands of many of your customers, so you need to make sure that your message is mobile-friendly.


Image Credit: http://mailjet.com

People love being able to open their holiday email while they're on the bus or waiting in line for coffee. It's all about convenience and making people feel like you care about them by adjusting to their needs.

Do extensive testing on what emails will look like once they get into your subscribers’ inbox, and make sure your message looks great across different browsers and devices.

Make it easy for people to focus on what you need them to do, and they will appreciate the time and effort put into making your email as straightforward as possible.


As you can see, there's a lot involved when designing an effective holiday campaign that gets results. Is it exhausting? Yes. But is it worth it? Absolutely. 

By keeping the above holiday email marketing tips in mind, you'll be well on your way to creating a successful marketing campaign that gets the results that you’re after.

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About the author 

Mike Vestil

Mike Vestil is the author of the Lazy Man's Guide To Living The Good Life. He also has a YouTube channel with over 700,000 subscribers where he talks about personal development and personal finance.

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