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Top 10 Tips For Designing Your Holiday Email Campaign

Oct 25, 2007
If you haven't started planning your holiday email campaign yet, what are you waiting for? Your competitors have had their plans in the works for weeks now. Here are a few ideas to help get you started:

1. Plan to start sending your campaign at the beginning of November if you want to capture early holiday sales.

2. Send your email consistently and often but keep an eye out for list fatigue. There is a lot of extra competition at this time of year, and a lot more clutter in the in-box, so you may have to make multiple efforts just to get noticed.

3. As your holiday sales start picking up, you're going to be too busy to craft enticing email messages. Use an autoresponder system that will allow you to upload all of your messages now and set them for later delivery dates.

4. Encourage in-person shopping. Some shoppers are leery of purchasing online during the holiday rush for fear that their gifts won't arrive on time. If you own a brick and mortar retail location, be sure to invite your email readers into the store for last minute purchases. What about offering on-line purchasing with in-store pick up? Be sure to let your readers know about any extended holiday hours your retail shop will be offering.

5. Remind your readers to purchase gift cards if you offer them. Gift cards remain one of the hottest holiday gift purchases to date.

6. Make every email meaningful. There is so much competition for the in basket at this time of year, don't waste your customers time with promotions that are irrelevant to their shopping habits.

7. Segment your merchandise for easier online shopping. For instance, create categories such as Gifts For Men, Gifts For Children, Gifts Under $50, etc.

8. Segment your mailing list based on what your customers purchased last year so you can personalize holiday gift suggestions. Did your customer buy a gift for a 5-year-old boy last year? Chances are, she'll need a gift for a 6-year-old boy this year.

9. Offer free shipping whenever possible. That's a promotion that most on-line shoppers have just come to expect.

10. Include a "count down" in each and ever email so shoppers know the shipping deadline for their holiday purchases. There's no better way to anger your customers than to have their holiday packages arrive on December 26.

Be sure to take excellent notes of all the activities and outcomes of your holiday campaign to make it that much easier next year. Take notes as you go along, while it's all still fresh in your mind.

Time to implement: Overall, creating a holiday email campaign requires some planning - so get started now! Expect to spend at least several hours designing your plan and another several hours crafting and testing each individual message. In my experience, it takes approximately 4 hours to design, write and test an individual email message.
About the Author
Karen Scharf offers several free reports and checklists, including her FREE Can-Spam checklist and FREE email pre-flight checklist to ensure your emails get delivered, get opened and get read. Download your copies at http://www.ModernImage.com.
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