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  • November 23, 2011

AM Inbox: Looking for birthday gifts?

>>Email Engagement & Deliverability Study: Download this free report that examines how major retailers treat subscribers who have been inactive for 40+ months.

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

TheGift, 11/22 — Introducing TheGift.com from 1-800-Flowers.com
In this email, 1-800-Flowers.com introduces their subscribers to their new gift-giving site, TheGift.com, but the introduction could have been much stronger. First, they used the unfamiliar “TheGift” brand name for their sender name instead of using the “1-800-Flowers.com” name that their subscribers were used to seeing in their inboxes (see Cross-Promoting Sister Brands Safely). That will likely result in more than a few spam complaints due to poor brand recognition. On the upside, they included their 1-800-Flowers branding prominently in the body copy and used it in the subject line as well.

Second, the email seems to only acknowledge the Christmas holiday season only in passing, squandering the opportunity to be seasonally relevant. After all, why would someone go to TheGift.com or sign up for their emails right now? Nine times out of 10 it would be because of Christmas. So instead of saying, “Love giving gifts?” how about “Need holiday gift ideas?” and use more holiday imagery. 1-800-Flowers could then send a follow-up email of introduction in mid January pegged to Valentine’s Day.

And lastly, this email seems at least a week too late. This week consumers are ready to start pulling the trigger on purchases. Not that there isn’t more gift planning to do, but the first round of gift planning happened earlier this month.

Click to view this Nov. 22, 2011 TheGift email full-sized

Office Depot, 11/22 — Sneak Peek Black Friday Deals| Shop ONLINE Thursday 11/24 & IN-STORE Friday 11/25
This Office Depot email is representative of the approach that many multichannel retailers are taking to Black Friday this year. They’ll be releasing some “Black Friday” deals on Thursday online and then promoting their store hours for Black Friday along with a sneak peek at the deals that will only be available in stores on Friday.

Click to view this Nov. 22, 2011 Office Depot email full-sized

SUBJECTIVITY SCANNER: Select noteworthy subject lines
TigerDirect, 11/21 — Black Friday Week Starts Now: Toshiba 40" 1080p TV $399...4.3" TomTom $49...15.6" Laptop $249...too many to list
Office Depot, 11/21 — Online Only | Private Sale: Black Friday Pricing Starts Today at 9:00am EST --Limited Quantities
Musician’s Friend, 11/21 — Exclusive Black Friday Deals Start Now - Up To 80% Off
Dell, 11/22 — Black Friday Starts Today - Exclusively for you
Lane Bryant, 11/22 — 50% Off Everything – Get Black Friday Savings Today Online
Staples, 11/21 — Pre-Black Friday deals! Save up to 75%.
Sony, 11/21 — Pre-Black Friday Offers | Save Big On HDTV, Cameras and More
Buy.com, 11/22 — PRE-BLACK FRIDAY | Toshiba 320GB HD $62.99, Microsoft Mouse $12.99, Garmin 5" GPS $153.00 AR,...
Newegg, 11/22 — The Black Friday Countdown Begins with 18 Exclusive Deals!‏
Eddie Bauer, 11/22 — 2-Day Only Sale! Gifts from $9.99 – Beat the Black Friday Rush.‏
TigerDirect, 11/22 — Black Friday Pre-Release: $199 32" HDTV...17.3" DELL Core i3 Laptop $499...Samsung LCD $79...See them all
Walmart, 11/21 — Plan Your Black Friday Store Trip & Save on Pre-Black Friday Specials With Free Shipping
Barnes & Noble, 11/22 — 2 Days Until Black Friday: $79 NOOK, 50% off Toys & Games, and More!‏
Home Depot, 11/21 — Monday Only: Start the Holiday Savings Early
Abercrombie & Fitch, 11/22 — This Friday, the A&F Tradition is back... Starting at 12 AM!
Apple, 11/22 — Friday only: the special one-day Apple shopping event.
Crutchfield, 11/22 — Get a head start on the best deals of the season with Crutchfield
Cooking.com, 11/22 — Last Chance! Order Today for Thanksgiving Delivery + Save 15% on Essentials
Brookstone, 11/21 — Destination...toyland
Urban Outfitters, 11/21 — Free Shipping: No Minimum, No Code, No Joke.
BROWSE... Archive / Post Categories / Selling Seasons / Topics Covered / Retailers Tracked

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