Being prepared with a holiday email marketing program should be at the top of your to-do list. As with most businesses, email marketing plays a huge role in your promotional plans for the holiday season. Creating and scheduling a series of planned and timely email campaigns could greatly benefit your bottom line when it comes to your holiday sales. Connecting with your customers and potential new customers should be done in a way that your email creative will be displayed properly on any device, whether it’s a desktop, tablet or smartphone, making sure that people can receive and read your email marketing message should be of the utmost importance. After coming up with your messaging and offerings, starting with a well-crafted, responsive email creative should be your first step.
Making your emails, the message of your email marketing and your subject lines stand out should be extremely important as well, so your message doesn’t end up in the trash.
You should take a few minutes to read; Email Marketing Subject Lines you Never Want to Use.
To help get you started on your holiday email marketing initiative, we’ve compiled a list of our Top 10 Holiday Email Marketing Ideas and Tips.
Coupons – Start with a holiday shopping coupon for your loyal customers. You can focus on the coupon specifically or make a coupon part of your email marketing newsletter. Even though your customers might not be ready to buy at the exact moment they receive your coupon, it should help ensure they come back when they are ready to buy.
Thanksgiving Special – Offer your loyal customers a Thanksgiving Special, which can be a timely coupon, a holiday discount or simply to say, “Happy Thanksgiving” and thanking them for their continued patronage throughout the year.
Black Friday Offer – This year Black Friday is on November 28th. Create a special Black Friday offering and let your customers know about it through an email campaign. Send a series of 2 or 3 emails leading up to Cyber Monday letting your customers know about special discounts and awesome deals you’ll have online on Cyber Monday.
Cyber Monday – This year Cyber Monday is on December 1st. Make sure you take part in the online shopping event called Cyber Monday.
Gift Card Bonus – If you offer gift cards on your website, provide a special offer to give your customers a reason to buy a gift card for someone special. Add a 20% Bonus when they buy a new Gift Card any time before Friday, November 28th, Black Friday.
Holiday Gift Guide – Come up with some great ideas and specials for moms and dads, nieces and nephews, aunts and uncles – don’t leave anyone out (especially your wife).
Inexpensive Gift Ideas – Come up with a few inexpensive gift ideas for people who either don’t have a big budget or want to spend under $10 to buy a gift for a friend or someone at work.
Last Minute Reminders – Let your customers know about last minute gift ideas, specials or discounts you have on your website. Keep them engaged throughout the holiday buying season.
Free Shipping – Create a few days where you offer free shipping on all of your products. This could help save your customers quite a bit of money and allow them to buy more of your products. Incentivize them to buy from you, while not having the added expense of shipping.
Extended Hours – If you are a retail establishment, let your customers know that you have extended your store hours and on which days you’ll be open late.
While all of these ideas should help you get a head start on your holiday email marketing initiatives, make sure you are sending to valid email addresses. No matter how good your email offer or creative is, if you are sending it to dead email address, it won’t generate anything. Remember, 30% of all emails are abandoned or change each year. Think about email validation and making sure that the email addresses in the list or database you are sending to are still valid and deliverable.
Don’t put it off. Plan and schedule your holiday email marketing campaigns before it’s too late.
Whether you view it as the most romantic day of the year or a yearly Hallmark scam filled with tacky red décor, retail companies will only be seeing green. IBISWord, a market research group, predicts that Americans will spend $20.8 billion on February 14th, a 3.2 percent increase from 2012. When it comes to the people we love, we don’t pinch pennies. Even those without a significant other gather together to celebrate “Single Awareness Day” as a Valentine’s Day alternative and treat themselves to a day filled with flowers, chocolate, and a spa day.
But what if you’re not 1-800 Flowers? Can you still rake in Valentine’s Day sales?
Executing an effective email marketing campaign on Valentine’s Day takes proper planning, promotion, and an eye for creativity. Don’t falsely assume that Valentine’s Day gives you the license to overwhelm the public with frequent, annoying sales pitches. Treat your customers to a Valentine’s Day they will remember. When you add some social media to the mix, you’ve got yourself a winning marketing strategy.
Before you pull the trigger, there are a few housekeeping items to take care of to ensure your campaign runs as smooth and as efficient as possible.
Prep your email list beforehand. When a vast percentage of businesses are using email to connect with their customers on this special day, getting your message delivered to the inbox is harder than ever before. Here’s where a reputable email list cleaning and validation company comes in handy. With a proprietary software and algorithm used to validate email addresses, you can ensure, with a 95% accuracy guarantee, that all hard bounces, habitual complainers, bad email domains, spam seeds, and BOT email data are removed from your list. Having a clean, valid, and active mailing list will not only improve your sender reputation and maximize inbox delivery, but will also reduce your overall marketing costs associated with bouncing emails.
Dig Deeper: Is your Email List OK to Send to?
Offer Them an Incentive They Can’t Refuse. There is no question that your customers are going to be flooded with emails that fight for attention in the inbox. If you want to reap the benefits of marketing during Hallmark’s annual holiday, you must make an impression using an attention-grabbing subject line, an eye-catching email creative, an irresistible offer, and a well-crafted, easily navigable landing page that calls the recipient to immediate action.
Set Up a Mailing Schedule. Don’t think you can send out a deployment once and call it a day. On the opposite side of the spectrum, don’t think you can mail three times and hour and expect a bull run of responses. It’s about finding a happy medium and setting up a mailing schedule that allows for advance notice as well as proper follow up. Of course, your email marketing schedule will differ based on your business and your unique promotion. Perhaps send an introductory email to make your customers aware of your Valentine’s Day special. Then, in the final days prior the big day, it’s important to send a reminder email of a promotion they cannot turn down. When all is said and done, don’t forget to send a follow up email in an effort to generate as much customer feedback and client testimonials as you can muster. Whether it be in the form of a “thank you” email, a survey, or a simple invitation to share their thoughts, your customers will appreciate the added personal touch.
It’s time to get creative. Don’t let your email marketing efforts fall short of perfection during the 2nd largest retailing event of the year.
As a savvy business owner, you know that the greatest asset your business has is its customers and business prospects. Most likely, you have been streamlining your SEO and social media outreach techniques to drive traffic to your website in an effort to generate potential new leads. However, what separates the strong from the weak is what you do with incoming traffic. Smart marketers will turn their traffic into an email list.
It’s universally acknowledged that the majority of Internet users own at least one email address. That being said, building an email list is perhaps the cheapest, most reliable, and cost-effective method to stay in touch with your prospects and existing customers.
If you rely on website traffic to generate sales, you have an all or nothing chance to entice them to convert, and no guarantees that they will revisit your site at a later date. However, with an active mailing list, you can reach out repeatedly to a loyal database of subscribers.
When “cost” becomes the primary concern in the process of building an email list, many businesses get caught in the trap of purchasing lists, thinking they can build a list overnight, start marketing to that list tomorrow, and expect a bull run of responses. If you really want to know the dangers involved in purchasing lists, refer to a recently published article, Email Marketing Rule #1: Beware of Co-Reg Data. By mailing to a list of spam traps, bad domains, habitual complainers, and hard bounces, you can kiss your IP reputation goodbye. Suddenly, you are devoting all of your time and resources to repairing your IP reputation when you could have been concentrating your efforts on building an email list the right way.
What’s the simplest way to build an email marketing list?
The best and most feasible manner of building an opt-in list is to integrate an opt-in form on your home page, your About Us page, your checkout page, and/or your blog page. Most likely, if these users have landed on one or more of these pages, they have already expressed an interest in your offerings. If they find that the content is relevant to their personal or business needs, they will be far more inclined to join your mailing list and engage in a value exchange.
Below are a few quick tips when building an opt-in form on your website:
Here is a more thorough list of Tips for Building a High Quality Email List and Newsletter Following.
If you have already collected a good size mailing list of opt-in users, don’t think you can start mailing quite yet. Over time, email addresses become obsolete and invalid. To preserve your sender reputation, and keep the flow of your email newsletter going to the recipients inbox, it’s always a good idea to clean your email list beforehand. Otherwise, you will send it out only to find that a large percentage of them are duplicates, invalid syntax emails, complainers, outdated emails, and hard bounces (dead emails). As a result, you are faced with the risk of being blocked. Not a great way to start your New Year fresh, huh?
Before you invest in an email list cleaning service online, ask detailed questions about their process. Pick up the phone and call them. Ask very detailed questions. Don’t be afraid to ask the specific questions on how their service actually works. Does the service actually send an email to each email address on your list to determine if it is valid? Does the service abide by its accuracy guarantee? Does the service even offer any type of guarantee? Is the company who provides the service a guy sitting in his underwear at his kitchen table or a real, legitimate business with a fully functional, well written and detailed website and does the company have an excellent reputation? Are they rated by the Better Business Bureau? Do they have ratings from previous customers and clients? In the simplest terms; do your homework.
Kris Kringle was a smart man. Not only does he make a list every year, but he checks it…twice.
We invite you to enhance the performance of your customer database through the most thorough, reliable and experienced email validation company and services available.