The Very Best Black Friday and Cyber Monday Emails of 2018

There’s a new acronym in town: BFCM.

While before we talked about Black Friday and Cyber Monday separately, in 2018 the two officially merged into one giant shopping weekend. And this year’s stats are in.

BFCM yet again smashed sales records, according to Adobe. Black Friday 2018 saw sales grow 23.6% from 2017, totaling $6.2 billion. Cyber Monday was no different, with sales of $7.9 billion, which was a 19.3% increase from last year. And there was even more shopping done throughout the entire weekend of online sales.

There are a lot of vital marketing lessons to be learned from the overall success of this holiday shopping weekend. But one of the toughest things to improve overall is your email design and creative. It’s tough to measure, tougher to test, and always evolving.

However, it’s always inspiring to see what other brands are doing and understand how top ecommerce marketers think about BFCM messaging to their buyers. So if you’re looking to learn and improve your holiday email marketing campaigns for next year, here are some of the best Black Friday Cyber Monday emails of 2018.

Everlane: Giving back is the way forward

Everlane taps into the trend of giving back during the holiday season with this email. Charitable giving tends to rise sharply towards the end of the year. Instead of offering a discount, Everlane used its Black Friday email marketing campaign to donate profits from sales on the day to the Surfrider Foundation. This is an example of Everlane establishing its brand values as a company that cares about the environment, and making these values clear to customers through its marketing campaigns.

The email also includes an on-brand video that links to a landing page emphasizing the company’s commitment to the charity that make it seem more authentic.

Magpie Kids: A catchy subject line

Let’s face it, we are all at the mercy of a good email subject line. In fact, almost half of email recipients open an email based on its subject line. Magpie Kids makes good use of emojis in the subject line of its Black Friday marketing email. The stars are eye-catching, helping to draw attention to the 20 % discount, which makes good use of urgency to entice customers to buy. The use of stars also ties in with the general theme of the email as well as the company’s overall brand message, with the use of a larger star in the main picture.

ThirdLove: Expand the sales period

Not everyone can make it to a store on Black Friday and not everyone is available to shop online on Cyber Monday. After all, we can’t all be doing some sneaky online shopping at our desk while the boss isn’t looking. Brands are now expanding the discount shopping period to become one big shopping holiday, all as part of an increasingly omnichannel approach to marketing and selling.

ThirdLove recognized this trend and extended its sale through Cyber Tuesday. Its email makes good use of an animated gif to provide a 360-degree preview of its product, while it also employs cross-selling techniques by offering a 30% discount on its newly added styles.

Le Creuset: You don’t always have to discount

If you’re going to discount at any time of the year, you need to do it right. Make sure it’s part of a coherent discount strategy that doesn’t devalue your products and ensures your customers aren’t shopping with you solely on price. Le Creuset highlights free shipping as its main Black Friday discount, as well as offering a free gift, but only if you spend $200. This is a great way to keep a high-value brand perceived as high value, even during BFCM.

Plus the gif in the email is eye-catching and fits well with its colorful branding. They also finish the email with a reminder that you can also pick up its products in-store at its Le Creuset boutiques, which is a good omnichannel marketing technique.

Ball and Buck: Be different (if it fits with your brand)

While there are a lot of general ecommerce and email marketing best practices you can follow, only you know what is right and works for your business. Most email marketing guidelines will tell you to avoid using a lot of text in emails, but Ball and Buck goes its own way.

It brands its discount a “Thanksgiving Sale” to help it stand out in the midst of all the Black Friday promotions, and uses text that supports the theme of giving thanks. Plus it fits with the brand image of emphasizing community. Ball and Buck continues that community theme with the promise of free gifts for people attending its Small Business Saturday event.

Clinique: Tie it into your rewards scheme

Clinique took the idea of expanding its holiday discounting period even further with its “7 Days of Christmas Treat” email campaign starting on Cyber Monday and lasting for a entire week. Clinique offered different discounts and offers every day, with each discount only lasting 24 hours to increase the sense of urgency to buy. It also offered a further 10% discount to members of its rewards scheme to help drive loyalty, as well as providing free gift wrapping and delivery as further incentives.

Penguin Random House: Help customers find gifts

Not everyone will be buying products on Black Friday for themselves; many will be buying gifts for the forthcoming holiday season. Penguin Random House uses the two CTAs in its discount email to put the emphasis more on giving gifts. Its first CTA is to its holiday gift guide, and its second encourages customers to “Give the Best Fiction Books”. This type of custom content like a gift guide is a great way to encourage purchases during the holidays.

Jack Black: Show some personality

Every Black Friday and Cyber Monday, your customers will be inundated with discount and sales emails, so you need to make your email stand out above the rest. What better way than to make it fun, with plenty of personality. Jack Black’s email is bold and colorful, and fun to read. It also uses some clever marketing techniques such as creating urgency with its “limited quantities” wording, plus linking to its auto-replenishment and refer-a-friend services.

These are our picks of the top Black Friday Cyber Monday emails of 2018, along with some tips and inspiration about how you can make your marketing campaigns stand out from the noise next year. But remember, what works for one ecommerce brand may not be right for yours. Make sure you build a solid brand identity and marketing strategy and build your emails to fit your brand and your buyers alone.

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