It’s that time of year when many businesses start to ramp up their marketing efforts to make the most of the Christmas and New Year period. But what’s the best way to go about it? Do you send out more email as the holiday period approaches, or do you come up with a strategy to help you to reach the customers that really matter – those that will buy?
It’s always best to have some kind of plan in place, so if you’re one of those businesses that hasn’t thought about it yet, then it’s high time you did. With that in mind, here’s a few tips from us here at Xen to help you to get a head start.
#1: Email Frequency
The good thing about this time of year is that consumers expect to see more marketing email and so don’t immediately tend to hit the unsubscribe link. However, that’s not to say that everyone will be receptive to more mail so target the ones that you know are more likely to open and click through.
To do this, it’s just a case of studying the analytics that your email marketing software provider bundles in with the app. For example, with Mail Chimp and HubSpot, you can view who has opened all of the campaigns that you’ve sent and who has clicked through. Use this information to create segments in your list so that you can send more targeted and frequent mail to those users who click through.
Personalisation has come a long way in recent years. Whilst it was once just the case that a personalised email campaign contained nothing more than the recipient’s first name, now you can send personalised offers and content to targeted users. However, it’s worth pointing out that just having the recipient’s name appear boosts conversions by as much as 25% so don’t dismiss personalisation if you feel you lack anything you need to personalise content, as a name will do at a pinch.
Personalised content in email marketing relies on dynamic content tags which allow you to display different content to individual recipients depending on their demographical information and previous purchases. If you think about the kind of mail you get from Amazon, often after you’ve just abandoned a shopping cart or made a purchase, then this is what you want to be aiming for. Dynamic content that’s relevant to the customer can increase conversions by 10% and drive 18 times more revenue than email without any personalisation.
#3: Limited Time Offers
At such a busy time of year when consumers are being literally bombarded with marketing messages, it’s necessary to stand out and offer your customers something a little extra to help them make that buying decision. With this in mind, research your market and find out when your customers typically spend the most money in the run up to the festive period. Then, send out a campaign with a time limited offer so that you prompt action in the user.
This can be anything from a percentage off at checkout with a special voucher code, to a free gift. You can also supercharge the campaign by offering targeted specials and using personalisation so that what you’re offering is very relevant to the customer. This creates a scenario in which the customer is willing to buy as:
- They’re being offered an incentive (and we all like to save cash at this time of year).
- They can see that what’s being offered is relevant to their interests and past purchases.
When it comes to the latter, this is incredibly important to the user as research has shown that people who are shown ads that are irrelevant to them on a website get annoyed enough to leave. Imagine then that they receive it in an email and it’s easy to see why they might hit unsubscribe.
#4: Don’t Overdo the Festivities
Most of us like Xmas, but there are many people that are annoyed by it and the constant cheery messages that we’re subjected to daily. So when designing your holiday mail, do ensure that you keep the Xmas-related content relatively subtle. In other words, no Xmas music, no falling snow or reindeer jumping out of a cake, a little Xmas branding on your logo and as background images will suffice.
Besides, not everyone in the world celebrates Christmas so it pays to think of your audience as a cross-cultural one.
#5: Remember Mobile
The smartphone revolution means that it’s highly likely that your Xmas email campaign will be opened on a mobile device by a (good) proportion of your list. With that in mind, make sure that your email software delivers a campaign that’s responsive. The email should be able to be viewed easily on a mobile device, links should be highly clickable, with plenty of padding so that fingers don’t accidentally click on other, nearby links.
Images should be kept to a minimum so that the email opens and loads quickly and text should be clear, with good headlines and easy to read. Don’t fill your email with lots of text, lay it out in boxes with a good header that acts as a CTA and a short amount of text which relays the special offer or product.
It’s vital if you want to create a campaign that converts that it’s mobile ready, so if your software doesn’t cope well with mobile, change it.
Christmas is a time when all businesses want to ensure that they get their share of the huge amount of money that the period generates. Email remains one of the most effective ways of marketing there are, so make sure that you tailor your campaigns to suit your customer base and get them clicking through and spending money with your business this Xmas.