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The holiday season is near and if you’re just planning your holiday email marketing campaign, this means you’re already behind.

It may not sound good. But the truth is the earlier you start planning any of your holiday email marketing campaigns, the better it would be for your business. Most marketers do it almost a month earlier. So when it comes to a New Year’s campaign, the planning usually starts early in November.

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Perfect Your Holiday Email Marketing Campaigns:

It doesn’t matter whether you are still planning or are looking for ways to improve your already designed campaign. You can benefit from this article, either way, learning how to make your holiday marketing emails even better.

1. Personalize

Which of these would you choose? An email that looks mass sent. Or one that addresses you by name and is written in a more personal and friendly manner?

Holiday email marketing - personalize

For your audience the answer is quite obvious: according to CampaignMonitor’s research, emails with personalized subject lines are 26% more likely to be opened. This doesn’t necessarily mean that you need to address people by their names in the subject line (though this will definitely work). Sometimes, even using words like “Thank you” or “Is something wrong?” can attract the attention of your audience.

Moreover, being grateful is always a good thing. So even if you’re not going to use «thank you» in the subject line, still try expressing your gratitude to your customers for staying with you all this time. It’s what your audience needs to hear from time to time, especially during the holidays.

Another thing that is especially important to remember during the holiday season is that your audience consists of people of different beliefs. Therefore, it’s crucial to invest time into segmenting your email lists – otherwise, you might accidentally offend your Jewish subscribers by congratulating them with Christmas, for example. Religious sentiments can become quite the touchy topic

2. Make them time-relevant

One of the most important things about writing holiday email marketing campaigns is that you have to keep them season-oriented as well as holiday-oriented. For example, if you mention «New Year’s Gift Ideas» in the subject line, people will more likely open your email, knowing that you don’t simply offer the discount or sale – you also offer some ideas they can use.

So try to think how you can make all (or at least most of your emails) holiday-tailored. This is always possible.

3. Be careful with the subject lines

According to the research conducted by YesLifecycleMarketing, people like shorter subject lines better than the long ones. However, this doesn’t mean you should stick to short subject lines only if you feel like a longer one would be more appropriate.

(Editor’s note: Here’s how you can increase your email click-through rate)

It’s okay to use long subject lines as well, but you should focus on making them as specific as possible. For example, a subject line that says “How Can You Save $1000 On Online Shopping At Amazon” would look much better and appealing than using the same one, but without a number. When people see specific numbers, dates or terms they become more interested in the subject and are more willing to open your email.

4. Don’t overdo the design

Of course, email template design matters – but only when it’s done properly. When designing a template for a holiday season, try not to overdo with the overall look as well as with visual effects. Keep in mind that most of your audience still open your emails on mobile devices, so there’s a chance they won’t even notice your complex template design – or get frustrated because it takes too long to load.

The template below is really simple and uses holiday colors without going overboard.



But whether the email would be opened on a laptop or PC, it’s still not a reason to excessively decorate your template. Remember that a design should be minimalistic and shouldn’t distract the readers from your content. So one of the best ways to develop a holiday email marketing template is to use traditional holiday-oriented colors but make it simple at the same time.

5. Keep your past successes and mistakes in mind

If you’ve been doing this for a while, make sure to check the previous year’s data while designing a campaign for this year. This data will allow you to detect emails that performed the best as well as emails that didn’t perform well. Study them carefully and think how you can use this information for your current campaign. Maybe there are some things that worked well previous year and can be added to your emails this year as well? Or maybe it’s time to cut something out because it wasn’t successful before?

6. Remember the basic marketing principles

Holidays are an extremely profitable season and there are some special tips you should keep in mind. But, this doesn’t mean that you need to treat a holiday email marketing campaign differently than any other normal marketing one. Sure, it’s often more massive than an ordinary one, therefore preparing in advance can indeed benefit you. But your basic knowledge and your experience still matter. So while it’s important to add some holiday-oriented features, you shouldn’t forget about the basic principles of email writing.

(Editor’s note: You can also check out this popular article on Email marketing best practices learned after sending over 2 million emails).

Another important thing you should keep in mind is that you can adjust campaign if it isn’t as successful as you had hoped it to be. Moreover, changing it is sometimes the only thing that can help you to get profit from it. So do invest time in developing a holiday email marketing campaign – but at the same time don’t hesitate to change it if something goes wrong.

Happy holidays and happy marketing!

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