While being excited about the holiday fuss of the Christmas season, people are prone to purchase more and are looking for big deals. Statistics show that 64% of customers are more likely to open emails from brands during the holidays. You don’t have to offer free shipping to get their attention.

We bring you 10 inspirational ideas for holiday emails along with tips on how to create a Christmas email series in Automation 360.

How to get ready for Christmas email campaigns

Statistics show that 65% of consumers prefer shopping online to avoid crowds. You need to create stand-out Christmas email templates and think about the deals you’re going to launch this holiday season. Coming to grips with early preparation is key: start with analyzing your recent Christmas campaigns, clean and segment your mailing list, remember to personalize your emails, and create a series of dedicated emails.

Analyze past campaigns

Take a close look at your previous Christmas email campaigns. Analyze which tactics did well and which came up short. Consider this data while creating your emails this holiday season.

Clean your mailing list

Cleaning your mailing list should be a regular procedure to keep your list healthy. eCommerce companies need to get rid of inactive, out-of-date, or non-existing email addresses every three months. This is a must before any period of high shopping activity. By keeping only active subscribers on your list, you’ll prevent your sender reputation from being damaged, that, in turn, leads to reduced deliverability. Bounce rates are no joke!

Segment your subscribers

Research from Optimove found that segmented email campaigns result in higher value per customer. Basically, the smaller and the more targeted segments are, the larger the uplift for each customer. You can start small: divide your subscribers into active and less active segments. Send a discount to those who open every email you send and a re-engagement campaign to those who are less engaged.

Personalize the subject line

If you know your subscribers’ names, don’t hesitate to use them in your Christmas email subject lines. Statistics suggest that personalized subject lines can boost email open rates by 50%.

Check and double-check

Make sure your email is properly displayed for all email inbox providers as well as mobile devices. Proofread your email copy to avoid any errors, and check the links. Carry out an A/B test for the best subject line and other elements of your Christmas email.

How to create a Christmas email series

Let’s look at a use case for SendPulse Automation 360. With its help, we’ll create an automated series of Christmas emails that will start when a mass campaign gets opened and will stop after a user makes a purchase from the email.

Define start and stop events

The start event works as follows: you launch a mass email campaign, and those of your subscribers who open it will receive an automated Christmas email flow. You can use a contact webhook option for this.

The contact webhook is used to:

  • start an automated series of emails;
  • set the event that will stop the series;
  • count the conversion rate of your email campaign.

As you can see in the image below, the flow will start once the contact webhook is triggered, in our case — when the mass email campaign gets opened. The series will stop as soon as the predefined event occurs. We’ll use the “Purchase” event for our example Christmas email campaign.

webhook for automated christmas email flow
Contact webhook settings

Create a series of three emails

A holiday campaign isn’t just a single email that you send to subscribers during the Christmas season. Rather, it should be a series of emails. Your Christmas email flow can consist of the following emails:

A mass email with a Christmas sale preview

Craft an email with a sneak peek on your upcoming Christmas sale and send it to all of your subscribers. Since 24% of users start their Christmas shopping in early December, send this email accordingly. Everyone who opens it will receive the next email of the Christmas series.

Email #1. Christmas sale

Schedule this message two days after the mass email. Tell your subscribers what is on sale and how they will benefit by ordering from you, be it a special offer or complimentary holiday wrapping.

Email #2. Gift guide

Provide your subscribers with some inspiration in case they have trouble choosing Christmas presents. Break your gift ideas into categories, such as under $10 gifts, gifts for moms, and so on.

Email #3. Discount

Schedule the email a few days prior to Christmas so that your subscribers have enough time to receive the items they ordered before the holidays.

Here’s how a Christmas email series might look in Automation 360:

automated christmas email flow
Example of an automated Christmas email series

Indicate the sending time, compose a Christmas email subject line, and choose a template for each email. After you add all necessary emails to the series, drag over the “Goal” element and connect it with the last email of the automated flow. Your contacts who don’t make a purchase will automatically be moved to another mailing list. You’ll be able to use it for another email series.

Christmas marketing ideas to inspire your emails

Now let’s have a look at a list of ideas you can rely on while creating your Christmas email campaigns.

Christmas marketing idea 1. Launch your email campaign early

According to a Statista poll, 53% of respondents start their rush for Christmas presents in October-November. So why not launch a pre-Christmas email campaign for those who don’t want to search high and low for perfect presents at the last minute?

Topshop begins its Christmas campaign early. The company uses a typographic hierarchy to highlight that its prices are cut in half. There is a contrasting white call to action on a bright background. Animated stars and snowflakes supplement the design and closely echo the CTA button.

christmas email
An early Christmas email campaign from Topshop

Christmas marketing idea 2. Run a gift marathon

Cosmetics brand, Clinique, plunges its subscribers into a festive atmosphere with their email. The company initiates a 12-day email series with a pleasant bonus for each day of the Christmas calendar. The company’s marketing experts leveraged a sense of urgency, making every offer valid for just 24 hours. Emails like this excite subscribers and boosts their anticipation for the next promotion.

christmas email
An email with a holiday contest from Clinique

Christmas marketing idea 3. Be creative with email copywriting

True Citrus sent a minimalist Christmas email. There is nothing extra, just a catchy GIF. The company made a bet on the text with some wordplay. The email states, “Let it Sale! Let it Sale! Let it Sale!” instead of the original song lyrics, “Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!”

christmas email
A Christmas email with a wordplay from True Citrus

Christmas marketing idea 4. Unveil a new collection

If there is a new product ready to be launched, wait until the holidays. Make a big deal out of it and create a dedicated email campaign. Remember that consumers feel inspired to purchase this time of year. Maybe a sweater with a gingerbread man designed by Pull&Bear is number one on the subscriber’s wish list.

christmas email example
An email with a new Christmas collection from Pull&Bear

Christmas marketing idea 5. Share Christmas tips and ideas

Animoto, a platform for creating videos, shares ideas on what to fill your holiday videos with and how to use them. This email is truly Christmas themed. The email’s content is divided into blocks, each being accompanied by a jolly illustration. The main CTA is a visual accent. Additional CTAs are represented as text, the color of which resonates with the central picture.

christmas email example
An email with Christmas ideas from Animoto

Christmas marketing idea 6. Inspire a festive atmosphere

If you sell products that are useful during the holidays, promote them. Anthropologie provides subscribers with decorating ideas for their home and Christmas tree. This email is full of warm, cozy, and atmospheric photos that inspire and bring in the Christmas mood.

christmas email
Christmas email with decorating ideas from Anthropologie

Christmas marketing idea 7. Offer a Christmas party look

Whether your customers are ready for a noisy evening party or a family gathering, their outfit is one thing that helps to set the mood. Make the most of it and create different looks that will please your audience and be suitable for both an office party and a celebration among close friends, like in this example from Lipsy.

christmas email
A Christmas email with party looks from Lipsy

Christmas marketing idea 8. Provide your customers with gift ideas

The purpose of Christmas emails, as with any other type of email, is to sell or promote your brand and bring value. What could be more useful for a confused customer than a gift guide? Anthropologie reaches out with beautiful GIFs and an invitation to shop their gift guide that is divided into categories for the subscriber’s convenience.

christmas email
A Christmas email with gift ideas from Anthropologie

If you market food products, don’t despair. Food can also be a welcome and unexpected gift. For example, Di Bruno Bros. offers a list of edible gifts. Just looking at these photos makes your mouth start watering.

christmas email
A Christmas email with gift ideas from Di Bruno Bros.

Christmas marketing idea 9. Think outside the sales

Christmas Eve is the best time to thank and congratulate your subscribers. There is no need to sell or promote. It’s best to turn off your inner marketer and say just a few kind words.

In the example below, Ralph Lauren simply sends some warm holiday wishes to subscribers. The email is complemented by the vivid photography of the smiling fashion icon with his dog. So cozy and homey — the feelings associated with Christmas.

christmas email example
A Christmas email with warm wishes from Ralph Lauren

Christmas marketing idea 10. Don’t forget about a post-Christmas campaign

Don’t even think about closing your email campaign at the end of December. So what if the Christmas festivities are coming to a close? Statistics show that 54% of customers continue their shopping activities after the holidays to take advantage of discounts and shop for the current and ongoing festive season.

christmas email
A post-Christmas email campaign from Pajamagram

The bottom line

Get inspired by these ideas and boost the festive mood of your subscribers with your Christmas email campaigns. In our gallery, Santa’s little helpers, aka the SendPulse team, have prepared free Christmas email templates for you.

And for you to rock this Christmas season, here is an extra tip — leverage the power of multichannel marketing. Choose the communication channels that your audience uses the most, like email, messenger chatbots, or SMS.

Good luck and Merry Christmas 🙂

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