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  • July 27, 2011

AM Inbox: Are 'Christmas in July' emails really holiday emails?

>>Retail Email Guide to the Holiday Season 2011: Download the 51-page report for free now.

The Retail Email Blog monitors the email marketing campaigns of more than 100 top online retailers. Here are highlights from my inbox this morning:

Sierra Trading Post, 7/26 — EXTRA 20% OFF & FREE SHIPPING + EXTRA 20-25% OFF Christmas in July!
Yesterday one of my readers commented, questioning whether “Christmas in July” emails were truly a part of a brand’s holiday campaign. It’s a valid question. It’s one that I struggled with years back and it’s one that I had to argue with one of my colleagues at Responsys while finalizing this year’s Retail Email Guide to the Holiday Season.

What I decided long ago was that I would count every holiday reference and not judge them on quality. I figure if I’m consistent in my measurements then you can draw the line where you want. Otherwise there are just too many possible judgment calls. For instance, should I ignore all July holiday references? Or just ones—like this Sierra Trading Post email—that don’t promote any seasonal products? What if they don’t mention seasonal merchandise in the email but have some on the landing page? What about holiday references in August? September?

To help you decide for yourself, we publish the Holiday Season; I tweet the percentage of retailers who have made at least one reference to the holidays; and I blog the percentage of emails that referenced the holidays during the past week in every Week-End Trend post and compiled those references for the Christmas 2010 Season Finale. I hope that helps you make your own determination and informs your own decision as to when to start your own holiday campaigns.

Click to view this July 26, 2011 Sierra Trading Post email full-sized

Dick’s Sporting Goods, 7/26 — Take $20 Off - Today Only!
This is the third email in recent weeks to promote a live Facebook chat. Bed Bath & Beyond promoted one last week (see July 22 AM Inbox) and Coldwater Creek promoted one in a June 26 email.

Click to view this July 26, 2011 Dick’s Sporting Goods email full-sized

SUBJECTIVITY SCANNER: Select noteworthy subject lines
Dell, 7/26 — Back to School Sale - Free XBOX with select laptop purchases
Oriental Trading, 7/26 — Add up your back to school savings! Shipping is free
Backcountry.com, 7/26 — Chill Apparel & Accessories | Back to School Finds
OfficeMax, 7/26 — 100% Back in MaxPerks Bonus Rewards on Backpacks
Linens ’n Things, 7/26 — 60% Off Twin XL Dorm Bedding & More
eBags, 7/26 — Ends Tomorrow! Laptop Totes, Backpacks and more from $19.99
Lane Bryant, 7/26 — What A Sale! Buy One Get One 50% Off Jeans Starts Online Today
Ann Taylor, 7/26 — Our Fall Weddings & Events Collection Has Arrived!
BROWSE... Archive / Post Categories / Selling Seasons / Topics Covered / Retailers Tracked

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