MAKE IT POP!: Christmas in August, The Sequel

Last week we talked about giving ourselves enough time to get creatively inspired for the holidays. Post-percolation, let’s get real. Let’s funnel our freshly-focused creative energies into constructing successful holiday email creative. The recipe for success: think like a shopper.

The holidays rouse as much stress as excitement, so accommodate busy bees by matching your approach to their frenzy. How do people shop during the holidays? How can you make their ever-expanding to-do list less cumbersome? Tweak your usual creative tactics to meet consumers where they are.

Each part of your email can serve a special role during the holiday season:

1. Navigation: Place everything your subscribers need at their fingertips by packing your nav with relevant messaging and links. Alert customers to shipping deadlines. Call out popular holiday items or shopping categories. Add just a touch of holiday with a graphic or a color change. Remind them what you’re there for.

2. Main Message: Know your customers and know how they shop. Sort items by categories. Gifts for girls, boys, men or women. Gifts for husbands, mothers, best friends or colleagues. Gifts by price range. Under $20, under $50, under $100. (I love that little bird on the branch, by the way.) Help customers out by breaking down their shopping lists, and they’ll feel it. Send a series of recipient-themed messages—like these bloke and baby mails from Barneys—or try a gridded approach to keep it all nice and neatly-packed…like a beautifully wrapped present.

3. Gift Services Footer: The Gift Services Footer (or, as I adoringly call it, the GSF keeps your holiday templates under control when you’re trying to squeeze in a couple extra submessages…or four! Layering gift card promotions, order-by dates, gift-wrapping offers, local retail store adjusted hours, and on and on, can get to be too much for one little email to handle. Cut down on overwhelming creative layer cakes by fitting an average of four messages into the space of one with the GSF.

My personal advice for getting into the shopper state of mind? Go shopping! It’s a sunny Friday afternoon, and Barney’s is calling my name…

In the name of research, as ever,
Lisa Harmon of Smith-Harmon

–>Read other Make it Pop! posts.