Holiday campaign ideas


Wondering what kind of email campaigns you should be sending during the holidays and when to send them? This seasonal email guide will help.

What to Send Your List during the Holidays

Holiday email promotion example
Image source: Istockphotos

As a business owner, you know that holiday email marketing campaigns can help busy shoppers remember and buy from your business. To get the most benefits out of the season, your holiday email marketing campaigns need to go out when shoppers are ready to buy.  

But what should you send in email? And how often should you email your customers during the holidays?  If you’re coming up short on holiday email marketing ideas or are just short of time to search for some, you’ll find the suggestions below helpful.

Focus on promotions to existing customers

These are those that have, purchased previously and are a definite warm market.  A customer loyalty discount works very well with these buyers.  Either give a coupon or a BOGO, free shipping, or something special to them in your mailing.  Putting a time limit on can also assist in an immediate sale. Don’t rely on a single mailing to tell people about your offer. Send a reminder before the promotion is over.

Create holiday gift-giving guides

These always appeal to everyone and a focus on the harder to purchase for individuals or gift-giving list may propel readers to action. Highlight what is new and popular in your product line or services. These holiday campaigns should start going out by Halloween. Individuals can shop very early or even buy something for themselves well prior to the holidays.

Do a before Black Friday mailing

These are crucial this year. Inventory shortages and shipping slowdowns are being reported on all major news media, so your customers are likely to be shopping earlier than usual.  Besides, there are many people who normally start shopping months before the holidays, so it is a good idea to get the jump on other businesses by starting as soon as you can with your seasonal specials. 

Send a Black Friday mailing

This one, of course, is almost a must.  Shoppers enjoy shopping on this day.  Highlight your products, offer specials and, if possible, free shipping on all orders or orders over a certain dollar amount. A great many retailers send Black Friday promotions, so keep in mind the competition and how you can match or beat their offers, or provide some additional value they don’t.

Send a welcome back or welcome home for the holidays campaign

This is one many businesses miss.  It is for the customers who have not purchased in a while.  Free shipping over a certain amount compels them to purchase several items in one sitting, and of course, coupons also sweeten the buying pie.  Coupons can be varied with higher purchases earning higher discounts. 

Related: Holiday email marketing best practices

Create a Happy Thanksgiving promotion

Thank your customers for their loyalty by offering them some special value if they make a purchase by Thanksgiving Day. There is a spirit of joy in sending these and customers are now planning not just Thanksgiving but also of course their Black Friday and other shopping days.  With more people purchasing online you can give a special Thank You Thanksgiving promotion. 

Promote gift cards for your personal care service

Send these early. It will encourage your loyal customers to schedule their own holiday appointments as well as to consider giving gift certificates to your spa or salon to their friends and relatives. Using a downloadable code or coupon number onto a mobile will entice a purchaser.  Or a nail salon can JV with a hair salon and increase both their businesses.

Send holiday promotions to your handyman service customers

These services generally overlook the gift-giving season but can be used to increase sales by those that deal in contracting or handiwork around the home.  Pre-holiday many homeowners look to improve or fix their properties. Include a coupon to be used after the holidays are over, too, to fill up you schedule during your winter slow period.

Try a buy-a-gift, get-a-gift promotion

Gift Cards are welcomed by everyone.  Offer free, low-dollar gift cards to everyone who makes a purchase over a set amount. Or do a special loyalty promotion that only goes out to your best customers. The gift card could be to your own establishment or could be all-purpose $5 or $10 Visa or MasterCard gift cards to be used anywhere. These low-dollar cards can be promoted as stocking stuffers and can increase sales  and good will.

Stocking stuffer promotions

Small sales will pave the way for large sales so suggest small items you sell as stocking stuffers. These small items can be anything from jewelry to small tools, candy, small books, or anything that will fit in a stocking. Encourage people in your store or online to add additional, related products to their purchase.

Send abandoned cart emails

You need to have some way to immediately follow up on carts that have items but were not put through to purchase.  The email should remind your customer about the items in their cart as the holidays are full of interruptions and a simple remind can make them go back and quickly finish the sale.

‘Tis the Season promotions

Service businesses that sell items such as flowers or even live or artificial trees boom at this time of year.  Look into perhaps gifting your customers with a small holiday plant, ceramic remembrance such as a tree ball, or other holiday trinket. Set the promotion to be valid for a set time of single day, the first 20 customers who place an order, or some other criteria.

Local business email certificate promotions

Team up with other small businesses in your community to do joint holiday promotions and giveaways. Each business can send a promo to their list for the other, or each can offer coupons for the other with a purchase

All year-long promotions

These are not used often but offering a small discount especially to new customers for an entire year or even six months, will entice sales.  Of course, you must follow up with short reminders.

Cyber Monday sales promotions

These are the Monday after the holidays where special offers should be emailed. Start sending emails before Cyber Monday to tease the promotion and let customers know exciting deals will be available on that day.

Other lesser known holidays promotions

Not all individuals celebrate Christmas or New Years.  Do research and find out what other holidays and the time they are celebrated.  Then queue your emails for those dates and resend any of your promotions especially the successful ones. For example, Hannukah sometimes starts a couple of weeks before Christmas and Orthodox Christians celebrate Christmas in January.

A thank you for purchasing promotion

That will seal the deal on another purchase in the future. Set the promo to bring back customers after the holidays.  Not to be missed if you can find the time!

Get extra mileage from your holiday email campaigns

Get more shoppers to your online store or bricks and mortar shop by enouraging subscribers to forward the promos to their friends and by posting the promos to social media. In a nutshell, although readers will receive hundreds of holiday emails, you can still grab their attention and sales by staying in contact and offering discounts, free shipping, and other types of incentives that appeal to your subscribers.  This year especially, the early bird catches the worm, so get those emails and promotions going ASAP and keep them interesting and unique

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