Email marketing during the holidays is a competitive space. It’s time to get creative to stand out from the crowd.
Seasonal marketing is no joke. Your audience is about to be bombarded with holiday marketing, so what are you going to do to make your email marketing stand out?
Christmas is undoubtedly the best time of year for businesses. As the year draws to an end, there’s no better way to win new customers than with email marketing. Whether you operate in the ecommerce space or not, the holidays are an opportunity to connect with audiences in new and exciting ways. But to do that, you need to test and experiment to discover what works.
Getting creative with your holiday marketing
The best Christmas campaigns aren’t all about making the sale. The most successful emails are the ones that put a smile on the reader’s face.
With varied audiences and personas, what works for you might not be the same as what works most. That’s why testing before the holidays begin is essential.
So, here’s the big question: what can you test now to get your Christmas creative ready?
Well, there’s no need to worry. We’ve got some top inspiration for you. Check out what you can begin testing today to optimize your holiday marketing for top results.
1. GIFs and animated imagery
GIFs and animated images are a great way to capture the reader’s eye.
Don’t believe us? Test it.
Email recipients decide within three seconds whether to keep or delete an email in their inbox. That means you have three seconds to grab their attention. During the holiday season, this becomes even harder.
With more competition to contend with from October through to January, you need to figure out whether creating custom GIFs and animated images is going to be worth your design time.
If you find engagement rates spiking, it’s a sign to include them in your Christmas campaign.
2. CTAs and action buttons
Every email you send has a purpose, and that’s no different for your holiday campaign. Regardless of whether you’re an ecommerce brand or not, you want readers to take action. That’s why you must be constantly testing your CTAs.
What works best for your audience? Do they engage better with a big bold button or in-text links? Does your audience respond to upfront and direct calls to action like ‘Shop Now’? Try testing whether personalization, relevant copy, or including discount codes in your buttons improve your conversion rates.
Getting this tested in the months before the holiday season begins will ensure you’re ready to smash your marketing goals as the nights draw in.
Gamifying your emails creates a fun and engaging, interactive experience for your audience. But it requires a lot of investment on your side.
Running competitions or creating branded online games is a fantastic way to stand out in the inbox and create a buzz around your brand. Offering prizes or accruing loyalty points for every game or level completed can drive sales – if your audience is engaged.
The trick to gamified content is to know your audience. With the investment required for this tactic, you need to be sure that your audience will engage.
4. Countdown clocks
Countdown clocks create a sense of urgency. Tapping into the reader’s fear of missing out can help drive sales and conversions during busy shopping periods.
Real-time content is a great way to boost relevancy and add personalization to your campaigns. By testing this tactic in the months leading up to the holidays, you can discover how long your readers need to redeem your limited-time offers. That means testing is crucial in the lead-up to the holidays.
5. Welcome programs
We don’t need to wax lyrical about welcome programs – you know how important they are to every marketing strategy, no matter your business, no matter the industry. But have you ever thought about giving your automation program a refresh as part of your seasonal marketing strategy?
As you’re acquiring new customers during the holidays you need to think about conversion and retention. Maybe during the holidays, you can offer customers a sign-up discount? Or drive them to download your app to give you another channel to engage them on post-Christmas.
By testing these early you can see which drives the results you need and can refine them as you approach the holidays.
6. Cart Abandonment
Cart abandonment programs are massive revenue generators, even outside of busy sales periods.
Give your sales an extra boost during the holidays by refining your abandoned cart program. Test whether adding product recommendation blocks or dynamic personalization boost your conversion rates.
7. Order confirmation
Order confirmation emails are a vital part of the customer journey. Yet, they’re still often neglected by marketers. This holiday season, it’s time to think about how you can improve this vital touchpoint for your customer.
Never forget that order confirmations are another way to express your brand’s personality. Adding some sparkle to these transactional emails will help build stronger bonds with your audience. You should think about these bonds and how you can strengthen them.
Testing whether your audience is interested in receiving SMS notifications at this stage is a good way to expand customers’ cross-channel experiences.
8. Loyalty programs
Remember, during the holidays you’ll be acquiring a lot of new customers. You need to start thinking now about how you’re going to retain them and turn them into regular shoppers in the new year.
If you don’t already have one in place, now is the time to begin testing how your audience will respond to a loyalty program.
Is your audience going to engage more with a point earning system or a refer-a-friend program? Test this now so you’re ready to onboard new customers when the holidays roll around.