The Checklist Every Email Marketer Needs This Holiday Season

Check this list and check it twice to send merry and bright emails this season.

There’s a simple way to launch a flawless email campaign this holiday season: Check your list and check it twice. Your holiday email marketing campaign checklist, that is!

We researched what the best holiday email campaigns have in common. Then, we created a checklist you can follow to ensure you have a merry and successful holiday season.

1. Create a holiday email calendar.

Keeping track of all the holidays (like Thanksgiving, Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Christmas, Hanukkah, the New Year) can quickly become overwhelming. Creating an email editorial calendar can really help organize the mayhem.

A calendar can also help you accommodate for the rest of your team’s time, which comes in handy if they’re helping with tasks like design, writing, or scheduling the message.

(If you need a little help with planning your editorial calendar, check out this blog post!)

If you already have a calendar, make sure it’s up to date with your holiday campaigns. You’ll be sending a lot of emails this time of year, so planning everything out in advance will help you meet your deadlines and create content your subscribers will love.

2. Offer exclusive holiday promotions.

To keep up with the competition, you’ll want to make sure you’re sending holiday emails with content your subscribers want this time of year, like great deals on your products.

Don’t have a physical product to offer? This is the perfect time to provide discounts on digital gifts like online courses, ebooks, checklists, templates, and more.

Related: Your Holiday GIF Guide: Festive GIFs to Spice Up Your Holiday Emails

3. Write descriptive subject lines.

According to a report pulled by our team of data analysts, emails get higher open rates when their subjects lines align with the content inside the email.

You can apply this to your holiday email campaigns by directly mentioning special offers and details about those offers in your subject lines. If you plan on featuring a 50% discount on an online course, make sure you mention the course and the discount in your subject line.

Check out this holiday-themed subject line and email from home goods store West Elm: “😀 UP TO 70% OFF—there’s still time! Plus, our staff’s must-haves” They reference that there’s still time left and the discount (percentage off).

Related: Your Guide to Writing the World’s Best Email Subject Lines

4. Create a sense of urgency by referencing dates and times.

The more you can emphasize the urgency or importance of buying now, the more you can influence subscribers to take action.

So how can you get your audience to feel this way?

By referencing dates, times, or seasons.

In the report mentioned above, our data analysts also found that subject lines with the highest open rates mentioned time (e.g., Week 1, December newsletter). By emphasizing that the holidays are quickly approaching or a specific sale is ending, you can motivate your subscribers to take action.

Clothing company Banana Republic sent out an email promoting a Christmas sale, which included the following subject line:

“Today! 50% off EVERYTHING (we mean EVERYTHING)”

5. Get festive with your email design

To pump up the holiday energy in your message, consider using a holiday email template or including design elements that convey a festive vibe.

Check out this merry message from the clothing company Talbots:

By bringing in holiday-themed colors and images (Can’t get enough of those rainbow string lights!), Talbots is able to add a festive flair that accompanies the content.

The best part of all? They do so in a way that doesn’t feel like a complete departure from their brand – both the header and footer in the email maintain the standard Talbots look and feel.

To replicate this for your own emails, consider using color schemes (e.g., red, green, white, gray), templates, and images (e.g., snow, holiday lights and decor) that convey a seasonal spirit.

Related: 5 Holiday Email Templates Your Readers Will Love to Open

Start spreading holiday cheer

While you may already have a holiday email campaign in motion, it’s never too late to make tweaks along the way. The more you can make your emails stand out from the rest this time of year, the merrier the season will be for you and your business.

Ready to send your own holiday emails? Get a 30-day free trial of AWeber and use one of our festive email templates today.

Additional reporting done by Monica Montesa