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  • January 20, 2009

AM Inbox: Obama's Book Club

>>Holiday Retail Email Volume Sets Record. Get this free reportlet.

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

AbeBooks, 1/19 — Join the Barack Obama Book Club‏
Major retailers have only sent a handful of emails that reference the inauguration of President Barack Obama (including the RitzCamera email in the Scanner below), but this is my favorite by far. Sent the day before his inauguration, this is a timely email that discusses what Obama likes to read—which is not only of general interest to many people, but it’s also of interest to book collectors since Obama’s literary interests are affecting book prices. AbeBooks compiled a list of books and authors that Obama has mentioned in press interviews into an article, and also tries to align what they’re unofficially calling “Obama’s Book Club” with the book club of another influential Chicagoan, Oprah. That’s some shrewd positioning.

Click to view this Jan. 19, 2009 AbeBooks email full-sized

PC Connection, 1/19 — Write a Review...Win a TV!
Product reviews are critical to driving sales, so PC Connection has dedicated this email to stimulating product reviews with a giveaway. It’s a smart strategy that many have used before. The interesting thing here is that this is an ideal time to use a TV has the carrot for reviews, as TVs are big sellers in January in the run-up to the Super Bowl. PC Connection’s incentive even expires the day before the big game. One thing that would have made this email stronger is if they had used an image of a football game rather than a racecar. That would have increased relevancy as well as urgency. They could have also ditched the second and third prizes in favor of a larger TV.

Click to view this Jan. 19, 2009 PC Connection email full-sized

Old Navy, 1/16 — Ends Today! Get 10% Off Plus Free Shipping, Only Online‏
In this email, Old Navy experiments with the addition of a second navigation bar at the bottom of the creative that’s nearly identical to the one at the top of the email. Nav bar treatments should definitely be on your list of things to test. In addition to position, try testing the order and number of the links in your nav bar. Your email subscribers are probably not the same as your run of the mill site visitor, so there is no reason that the nav bar on your site has to be the same as the one in your email—or that your email even has to have a nav bar.

Click to view this Jan. 16, 2009 Old Navy email full-sized

SUBJECTIVITY SCANNER: Select noteworthy subject lines
RitzCamera, 1/17 — How to Photograph Winter & Inauguration Week Sale‏
NFLshop, 1/18 — Steelers and Cardinals - Conference Champs Gear - Now Available‏
Wal-Mart, 1/19 — Gear Up for Super Sunday With Huge Savings‏
Sam’s Club, 1/18 — Big savings for the Big Game at Sam's Club‏
Tiffany, 1/16 — Cupid's Secret Weapon‏
Walgreens, 1/18 — Save 20% on Photo Valentine's Day Gifts‏
Kmart, 1/19 — Valentine's Day Gifts - Up to 70% Off‏
Walgreens, 1/16 — Save $5 for a Healthy New You‏
Home Depot, 1/19 — Top-Rated Products for the New Year‏
Buy.com, 1/16 — Buy.com videos from CES 2009‏
JCPenney, 1/16 — Top-Rated Home Items: Reviewed by Customers Like You‏
Sephora, 1/16 — Acne! Aging! Wrinkles! Solve 'em‏
Lillian Vernon, 1/19 — Impress Guests, Plus Less Mess - See Handtowels for All Seasons
J. Crew, 1/19 — All cardis are not created equal...
J. Jill, 1/18 — The return of studio denim. Plus, $10 off pants for 3 more days.
Spiegel, 1/18 — TODAY ONLY! Look-Defining Details at Wallet-Friendly Savings up to 60%!‏
The Company Store, 1/19 — Luxury Bed & Bath Sale - Treat Yourself!‏
Spiegel, 1/16 — NEW! Get a Sneak Peek at our 2009 Swim Preview!
Neiman Marcus, 1/16 — SPRING PREVIEW 2009: New York, Milan, Paris + Free online shipping‏‏

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