Holiday Email Marketing Guide (practical tips, ideas and examples)
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Picture cozy sweaters, flavored lattes, and the excitement of gift-giving. The holidays are here! For business owners, this season is a big opportunity to connect with customers in a way that’s both joyful and profitable. In this guide, we’ll explore how to harness the holiday spirit to create effective holiday email campaigns that resonate with your audience and boost your sales.
How holiday email marketing can help your business
Boost your holiday sales with email marketing
Holiday email marketing is highly effective because it aligns with what consumers expect and how they behave during the festive season. It taps into the seasonal mood and capitalizes on the increase in online activity.
During holiday times like Christmas, people are usually in the mood to buy things. This is because holidays are often about giving gifts, and many are on the lookout for the perfect present for their friends and family. So, they’re more open to buying things than they might be at other times of the year and even wait for special offers, discounts, and promotions during the holiday season.
Now, how do people find out about these deals? One of the best ways is through emails.
A well-crafted email can be the nudge they need to choose your business for their festive shopping. Remember, they are already on your email list, they’ve shown interest in your brand, but you need to remind them about yourself, so they don’t buy from someone else who did. Since people are already on the lookout for holiday shopping deals, they are paying attention to holiday emails. If they see an email with a good offer, they’re most likely to open it and check it out.
All these elements combined – the seasonal shopping mindset, the anticipation of holiday deals, and the power of email marketing – work together to significantly boost sales and increase brand visibility during the holiday season.
Build customer relationships with holiday emails
Sending out emails that are solely focused on wishing your customers happy holidays, without including any sales pitch or promotional content, is a powerful strategy to build customer relationships with your buyers and subscribers. It tells your audience that your company values and recognizes the spirit of the holiday season, which is about goodwill and cheer, not just sales. People remember brands that treat them as individuals and are more likely to return to these brands in the future. Plus, in a sea of promotional emails during the holidays, a genuine holiday greeting can stand out.
What you need to send holiday email campaigns
With the right tools and a bit of creativity, you can create effective campaigns that resonate with your customers, whether it’s driving sales or simply spreading holiday cheer. Still sound complicated? It’s quite manageable once you break it down into steps, and here is what you’ll need:
1. Email marketing service
When selecting an email marketing platform, it’s important to choose one that aligns with your specific needs and experience level. For beginners, the focus should be on finding a service that is user-friendly, enabling you to craft engaging email campaigns with ease. Additionally, the ideal platform should support you in efficiently gathering subscribers and managing your contact list. It’s also vital to choose a service that offers insights into the performance of your emails, such as tracking open rates and link clicks. Above all, the key feature to look for is a platform’s ability to ensure your emails reliably land in recipients’ inboxes, avoiding spam folders.
SiteGround Email Marketing
The SiteGround Email Marketing tool is a new, powerful addition to SiteGround’s suite of services, designed to help businesses connect and engage with their audience more effectively. It is integrated into the SiteGround Client Area, allowing our clients to manage their website and email campaigns in one place. Our tool includes an intuitive, no-code email builder with responsive designs, ensuring emails look great on all devices. Plus, our builder comes with an awesome AI Email Writer that can write the emails for you. Users can easily create and manage email campaigns, target specific audiences, and personalize content. Additionally, users can track the effectiveness of their campaigns with built-in analytics, gaining insights into open rates, click rates, bounce rates, and interactions to improve conversions.
2. Email List
This is a list of email addresses of customers or potential customers who have agreed to receive emails from you. You can gather these emails through sign-up forms on your website, during checkout at your store, or during events. Even if you have just a few contacts in an excel sheet, you can still go for a holiday email campaign and see results.
Need more insights on how to build your email list? Read this blog post.
SiteGround’s Lead Generation for WordPress
We’ve created a Lead Generation Plugin for WordPress tailored for our Email Marketing tool, designed to help users engage with website visitors and effortlessly turn them into subscribers. It’s user-friendly, especially for those new to email marketing. The plugin allows you to create and add sign-up forms anywhere on their website in minutes. And anyone who signs up is automatically added to your contacts as a “Subscriber.” The plugin also offers the functionality to assign groups to each form, allowing for precise audience segmentation and customized messaging. Additionally, you can capture high-quality leads through various touchpoints, including WooCommerce checkout and standard WordPress forms.
3. Holiday design for your email
A holiday-themed design can help capture the festive spirit of the season, making your email more engaging and enjoyable for the recipient. Most email marketing services offer a variety of pre-designed templates. For a holiday-themed email, you would choose a template that already has a festive look. This might include designs with holiday colors (like red, green, blue), images of holiday symbols (like Christmas trees, snowflakes, etc.), or other seasonal graphics.
SiteGround’s Holiday email templates
We’ve created a collection of pre-designed email templates specifically for the holiday season. The idea is to save you a lot of time and effort from thinking and designing your email. Instead of starting from scratch, you can select a template, make a few customizations, and be ready to send your email. Plus, in combination with our email AI Writing Assistant, you can get your holiday email campaign up and running very quickly. This is especially beneficial if you’re short on time or if you’re launching a last-minute campaign. Use this holiday season as an opportunity to try SiteGround Email Marketing tool, free for 30 days!
4. Idea for your holiday email campaign
To send holiday email campaigns, you need an idea or theme for your campaign. This idea should resonate with the holiday spirit and appeal to your audience. It could be centered around special holiday offers, festive greetings, gift ideas, or sharing holiday-themed content like recipes or stories.
Below, you can find ideas and examples of holiday email campaigns built with the SiteGround Email Marketing tool and our new holiday-themed templates.
Holiday email campaign examples and ideas
If you haven’t launched your holiday email campaign, now is the time to jump in because it’s never too late to embrace the holiday spirit with email marketing. There are plenty of ways to kick off your festive campaign starting right now. Here’s what you can do:
1. Run a Holiday Sale Email Campaign
Providing your customers with holiday sales on products or services they’ve already shown an interest in (since they’re on your emails list) is an easy way to encourage them to buy from you.
Why holiday sales work
Imagine you own a store. During the holidays, like Christmas, people are often looking to buy gifts. If you send them an email saying, “Hey, we’ve got a special sale on some of the things you liked in our store,” they’re more likely than ever to be interested. This works because:
- It’s the right time: People are already thinking of buying things for the holidays and they need businesses like yours to help them.
- They like it: You’re telling them about sales on items they already showed interest in. So, they are more likely to want to buy.
- There’s a special deal: Everyone loves a good deal, especially during the holiday season when they’re spending a lot on gifts.
Before you create your holiday sale email campaign
- Decide what items you’re going to sell: Think about what products your customers have bought or looked at before. This could be from remembering your regular customers or checking any records of past sales you have.
- Decide on your promotion type: Choose what kind of sale or discount you want to offer. For example, “20% off on all children’s books” or “buy one get one free on coffee mugs.”
2. Share a gift guide email campaign
A gift guide email campaign is effective because it makes holiday shopping easier for your customers. By presenting them with a curated list of gift ideas, you’re helping them find the perfect presents and encouraging them to buy from your store.
Why gift guides works
Think about when you’re trying to find gifts for your friends or family. It can be tough to decide what to get, right? When a store sends out a gift guide, it’s like they’re saying, “Don’t worry, we’ve got some ideas for you!” This is helpful because:
- Makes shopping easier: It saves people time and effort. Instead of searching through tons of products, they have a curated list for you.
- Ideas for different people: By creating categories like “Gifts for Dad” or “Best Gifts Under $50,” you help customers quickly find relevant ideas.
- Encourages buying: When customers see a well-organized list of gift ideas, especially ones that fit their budget or the type of person they’re buying for, they’re more likely to make a purchase.
Before you create your gift guide email campaign
- Pick your products: Look at your store’s sales history, identify the most popular items and choose items that would make good gifts. Think about different types of customers – like gifts for parents, friends, kids, or gifts that fit different budgets.
- Create categories: Organize these products into categories. For example, you might have categories like “Tech Gadgets for Teens” or “Cozy Gifts for Home.”
3. Send a Holiday Newsletter
By sharing stories, holiday greetings, or personal reflections from the year, you’re opening a more human and relatable side of your business.
Why holiday newsletters work
Think about how special holiday movies or songs make you feel during the festive season. They get you into the holiday spirit, right? A holiday newsletter works in a similar way and people love holiday-themed content to put them in the spirit of the season.
- Feels festive and fun: Just like holiday movies, a newsletter with a holiday theme feels special and seasonal. It adds to the excitement of the holidays.
- More than just sales: Instead of just trying to sell something, a holiday newsletter can share fun content, holiday wishes, or interesting information. This makes your customers feel valued and not just like someone to sell to.
- Builds a connection: By sending out a friendly and warm holiday message, you build a stronger relationship with your customers. It shows you care about sharing the holiday joy with them.
Before you create your holiday newsletter
- Choose your content: Think about what you want to include in your newsletter. This could be a holiday greeting, a recap of the year, highlights of special products for the holidays, or even a holiday cooking recipe or story.
- Don’t make it all about sales: It’s okay to mention any special holiday deals, but don’t make the entire newsletter about selling. If you’re including promotional content or special offers, balance it with holiday content. The focus should be on the holiday spirit rather than a hard sell.
4. Send a Season’s greetings email campaign
Sending a season’s greetings email is a simple but effective way to connect with your customers and spread a little holiday joy. It shows you care and helps create a positive image of your business.
Why season’s greetings emails work
- Builds personal connection: This kind of email shows your customers that you see them as more than just buyers. It’s a way to say, “We appreciate you,” and helps build a friendly relationship.
- Makes you stand out: During the holiday season, people get lots of sales ads and promotions. A season’s greetings email is different – it’s not trying to sell anything, just wishing them well, which can be a pleasant change.
- Builds brand loyalty: By sending warm wishes, you’re creating positive feelings about your brand. People remember businesses that treat them well, and they’re more likely to come back in the future.
Before you create your season’s greetings email
Well, there is no recipe here, just speak from your heart. Your message doesn’t have to be long. A few sentences wishing them well during the holiday season is enough. The most important thing is to remember to avoid turning this email into a sales pitch. The focus should be on sending good wishes, not selling products or services.
Strategies for a winning holiday email campaign
1. Add personalization
Personalizing a holiday email campaign by including the recipient’s name is a highly effective strategy. It creates a sense of personal connection, making the email feel tailored to the individual rather than a generic marketing message. Personalized emails can lead to better engagement, which in turn can increase the likelihood of the recipient taking the desired action, whether it’s making a purchase, signing up for a service, or participating in an event.
To implement this, use an email marketing tool that allows you to insert recipient names dynamically and ensure your sign-up forms collect names. With the SiteGround Email Marketing tool, you can easily add your recipient first or last name in your emails and our Lead Generation plugin allows you to collect your subscriber’s names with ease.
2. How to write Holiday subject lines
The subject line is the first point of contact with your audience in their inbox. A compelling subject line can make the difference between an opened email and one that’s ignored. It sounds like a big responsibility, so here are some suggestions you can use to write effective holiday subject lines:
- Length of the subject line: Keep it short and sweet, ideally between 30 and 50 characters. This length ensures that the subject line is fully visible on most devices, especially mobile phones.
- Ask a question: Questions in subject lines pique curiosity and engage the reader’s mind, prompting them to seek answers. “Ready for your best Christmas ever?” or “Looking for the perfect New Year’s gift?” These questions directly address the reader’s interests or needs.
- Create curiosity: Tease something interesting inside the email. You see a hint that something exciting is inside the email, and you want to find out what it is. It’s human nature to be curious about hidden things. “Unwrap your exclusive holiday offer inside” suggests there’s something valuable waiting for them, which can be very enticing.
- Use Emojis: Emojis add a visual element that can make your email stand out in a crowded inbox. A subject line with a Christmas tree 🌲 or gift emoji 🎁 is more likely to catch the eye.
3. Holiday preheader tips
The preheader in an email is the short summary text that follows the subject line when viewing an email in the inbox. It works together with the subject line to grab attention and give a glimpse of what the email contains. Here’s how to use preheaders effectively:
- Again, keep it short: Aim for around 40-50 characters so they don’t get cut off in the email preview. For example, “Your holiday cheer starts here.”
- Complement the Subject Line: Your preheader should work hand-in-hand with your subject line. If your subject line is the headline, think of the preheader as the subheadline. For example, if the subject line is “🎁 Unwrap Your Holiday Gift,” the preheader could be “Exclusive deals inside just for you!”
- Create urgency or excitement: Use language that creates a sense of urgency or excitement about the holiday season, like “Hurry, your exclusive holiday offer ends soon!”
4. Always test your email campaign
Before you send your email, make sure to test it out. This means sending a test email and looking at how it looks on different devices, browsers and email clients, fixing any spelling or grammar mistakes, and making sure all the links work properly. Doing this helps avoid problems and make sure that your recipients have a good experience, which is really important for the success of your email campaign.
Remember, the key to a successful email campaign is to connect with your audience in a way that’s relevant and respectful. Whether it’s promoting a holiday sale or sending warm wishes, your emails should add value to your recipients’ inboxes. If you’re new to this, it’s okay to start with a small list and simple emails. Learn from each campaign, look at what worked and what didn’t, and use these insights for your next campaign.