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Make Your Emails Stand Out This Christmas

Ah, Christmas – the time of year everyone who sells online has been impatiently waiting for. There’s no better time to dazzle your audience, than right now with some great email content. But bear in mind that it’s likely that your emails will be fighting against a lot of other emails so it really needs to stand out.  

So the big question is: How can you make your Christmas marketing emails stand out?

It’s not that difficult. The key to success in Christmas email marketing is simple — do not sell your products, instead put a smile on your customers’ faces, and spread the Christmas joy first before referring to your offering. It may sound cheesy, but trust us, your customer’s need your sense of compassion more than your sales pitch. 

Start by analysing email campaigns of Christmas past.

Before you create your Christmas email campaign, you first need to analyse past campaign data to gain insight. There is so much good that can come from testing out new ideas, but where most of us go wrong, is that we don’t learn from our mistakes.  Always use past learnings to guide our actions moving forward to gain better results.. 

Looking at data from your previous holiday campaigns should reveal:

  • Which promotions were the most successful? Spot the ones that worked,  and then consider rerunning something similar.But provide a new take on the campaign, so that your customers don’t think you are being lazy by repurposing old content. 
  • Which customer groups brought in the most sales? Use this to define your targeting criteria, align your campaign by keeping it focused. 
  • What were customers’ purchasing habits during Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales this year? This could give you a heads up on what to expect for the rest of the holiday shopping season while also highlighting the offers that performed best. 

It’s simple, by answering the questions above will better inform this year’s marketing decisions and increase your campaign’s chance of success.

But wait a minute, before your press “send”  remember, it’s been a year like no other.

Take note of how the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted people’s shopping habits over the past year. 

By March 25, almost all industries saw an increase in engagement compared to their previous year’s average


With online shopping stronger than ever, many of your competitors will be offering deals and discounts. So this Christmas time, you’ll need to get creative to stand out from the crowd. Your customers want to hear from you, they are craving communication and connectivity, but the content needs to be personal and deliberate. The reader needs to feel as though you are talking to them. 

Think about what’s essential to your brand, and use that messaging within your emails, but the secret here is to tell a story, not shout out a message. Use this time to connect with your audience and think about how to deepen your community’s loyalty. What can you offer them? How can you put a smile on their faces? What makes them tick? What types of images have they engaged well with over social media? What imagery will resonate with them in an email? 

Do you need moving images to move them? 

It’s time to get personal. 

And the first place to get personal is in the subject line. Get creative, so you can be remembered. Whether it’s adding some festive puns or emojis, wordplay can help stand out from all of the other emails that may come flooding through your customer’s mailbox. According to PCMag  personalised emails generate 26% higher open rates, improve click-thru by an average of 14%, and increase conversions by 10%. However, on the flip side, consumers have developed such high expectations for personalised content that 72% say they won’t engage with marketing content unless it’s customized to their interests. 

Get to know your customer and make sure you are communicating their wants and needs at the get-go. 

The Subject line. 

When it comes to the subject line, different things will work in different situations. But one thing is for sure. 33% of the receivers judge an email based on the subject line. So this is a great place to focus on when it comes to driving maximum results. Here’s a quick checlikest to get you up to speed:

  • Keep it to a maximum of 50 characters (emojis included)
  • Don’t repeat anything from the “sender” field
  • Absolutely NO typos or spelling errors
  • Don’t be too spammy or salesy – that can wait to the email itself
  • Use the receivers first name
  • Make the text eye-catching, exciting, and powerful, e.g. by asking a question, using mystique or an emoji
  • Use capital letters (but without exaggerating)

All in all, try to make your subject line stand out from all the others in your subscriber’s inbox.

No matter your industry, these tips will work for you

When it comes to the actual email, keep it true to your brand but here’s a rundown of some areas to keep in mind before hitting the send button:

  • Create a distinct call-to-action (or several). They need to tell the customers exactly what you want them to do.
  •  Make sure your readers can find everything you show in the email. It might require a bit of extra work and maybe even a new landing page, but it just works so much better. Promoting gift ideas or discounted shoes in your email but linking to “all products” or “all shoes” creates a bad shopping experience. 
  • Send out triggered emails. Examples are emails to people who looked at specific products or even put products in the basket but never ended up completing the order. 
  • Emphasise a deadline. This can be done in several ways and will, of course, depend on the offers and campaigns you’re running. An example can be that you choose to have an amazing deal every day of December – like an Advent calendar. Or you might send out a “last chance to get your order before Christmas-email”. No matter how you choose to do it, creating a sense of urgency is always a good idea – it encourages the reader to place the order straight away.
And It doesn’t just stop after Christmas. 

The Christmas season may be over after the 31st December, but the hard work that you have put into your email campaigns, doesn’t have to stop there. 

Moving forwards into 2021 here are some things to consider:

  • Work out a strategy – How often will you send our your emails? – What do you want to include? What value will your content provide?
  • Use the right tools – choose an email marketing service provider that will work for you (ie Mailchimp, constant contact) one that looks professional but also is user friendly and provides reporting is key for growing your contact list.
  • Speaking of which, growing your list – set an expectation – how often will you be in contact? Remember to be transparent with your subscribers, and let people know what’s in it for them, what they get out of signing up to your emails?
  • Email automation – take advantage of this tool. Remember to welcome new subscribers and show them what you can offer. 
  • Include sign up links wherever you can – on products, webpages. Flyers in packaging with QR code.  
  • And this goes without saying, but don’t add people to your list without their permission. 
  • Don’t deviate from the frequency and content you say you are going to provide – manage expectations. 
  • Don’t give up – email marketing is worth it, average return of £42 for every £1 put into it. 

If you made it all the way down to this part, not only did our headline work, but so did the content. We hope you are able to take some useful tips away from this article, and we look forward to opening up your Christmas email very soon! 

Thinking beyond Christmas and looking to plan out your 2021 content strategy? Contact us today to see how we can help.


In- house Content Strategist, Fashion and Food Enthusiast.