This article in the Wall Street Journal reviews mistakes that retailers are making in reaching out to customers via email during the holidays. The article mentions that emails often fail to offer products relevant to their customers’ interests or are outdated upon arrival.
What the article doesn’t mention is that retailers often fail to make their case for immediate purchase upfront. At this time of year with the gifting holiday imminent, retailers should put their purchasing sales proposition in the Subject Line and reinforce them at the opening of the body of the emails. Inappropriate subject lines I’ve seen include:
“Cyber Monday Deals from Project Fi” (Google)
“We're Extending Cyber Monday to TUESDAY!” (Resorts World Bimini)
“SAVINGS. GALORE. All day!” (Hampton Inn)
Better subject lines would be:
“Free $100 Fi Credit with phone purchase – until midnight tonight”
“2-night stay + Island Transfer = only $199. Must book by 4 pm”
“10% off 2-night stay if you book tonight”
These may not be the best subject lines under normal circumstances, but on Cyber Monday they are. Customers are at best scanning retailers' emails to find the best deals for them. Retailers need to get past the clutter of other opt-in email communications and get their message across right away. When you can, include a deadline upfront.
On Cyber Monday and during peak shopping seasons, use an immediate call to action.