You might not feel it in the air, but there’s no denying that love is officially in the inbox.
After a post-holiday marketing hangover, the impending arrival of Valentine’s Day is bringing out a ton of festive email campaigns from our favorite brands. It's such a nice respite from the drab days of February that I can't help but get extra excited about the ones that have really nailed it this time around.
We decided to add our latest favorites to this post, showcasing the newest in V-day faves, as well as the brightest campaigns from years past. Let me know if we hit the mark with these in the comments below!
Subject line: Make Valentine's Day one to Remember
The most tactful part of this email is that it was sent on January 24—a full three weeks before the big day of romance would land. And the reason for that? February 14th is the second biggest day of the year for restaurants, and over 45% of people make a reservation more than a week in advance (at least on platforms like OpenTable).
All this adds up to humongous results for restaurants. And Gordon Ramsay Restaurants capitalize on this influx by reminding their subscribers of it often and early.
Subject line: New FREE Valentine’s Printables!
So...who doesn’t love free Valentine’s gift ideas? The reason behind such an effective email: free branded content. Not only is this an easy way to get subscribers to interact with their content and website, but it’s another opportunity to place purchase options in front of the subscriber.
And purchases aside, this is actually a pretty brilliant tactic to uncover subscriber habits. If they’re tracking it correctly, they can see which subscribers are downloading which prints, and then serve up promotions for products that have similar designs. Personalization FTW.
Subject line: 50 years of marriage, one meaningful book
Yet another email that was sent with plenty of time before any gifting takes place, all pointed at converting through storytelling. And a surprise to us: Valentine’s Day isn’t even mentioned until the end of the email.
The primary focus is on gifting, but those sly marketers at Artifact Uprising hide their cards until the bottom of the email, where they nonchalantly let you know that Valentine’s Day is approaching.
Even more impressive: they don’t stop at just one or two emails. After this Valentine kickoff, Artifact Uprising sent five more emails in two week’s time. Since they know this is a monumental day of the year for them, their team is real focused on driving conversions. And they do this by telling stories, providing promo codes, giving quick gift ideas, and even tips to making the most out of your Valentine’s Gift.
They cover just about every angle of email marketing they can—all in the span of 2 weeks.
Subject line:Our Valentine's Day gift to you.
Why we love it: promotional value prop is front and center, there are clear CTAs for each offer, and who doesn’t love a good pun? Durango also does a great job of highlighting their year-round offers, without overshadowing their Valentine’s promotion.
Subject line:What Girls REALLY Want for Valentine’s Day, According to the Stars
I don't see this tactic very often, but when I do, it completely captures my attention.
Here, Polyvore refrains from using virtually any copy in the body of their email. Instead, they set up the premise of the message in the subject line, and the recipient's path of action is abundantly clear: Click on your Zodiac sign to get your style horoscope.
When you have such an obvious point to your email and make good use of ALT text, it's a smart way to stand out in the inbox.
Subject line: Valentine’s Day: Single, Taken, or Over it?
This email from Rent the Runway appeals to all possible demographics (and sentiments) on Valentine’s Day. Whether you’re celebrating with a special someone or doing your own thing, why not treat yo’self? And they get bonus points for a killer CTA: “NEVER SETTLE.”
Subject line: Celebrate Valentine’s Day With 25% Off Site-Wide
This Valentine’s Day email from Rowley Eyewear forces you to sit for a moment and actually pay attention if you want to get the full message. The anticipation of waiting for the sale to be revealed captures my interest and keeps me more invested than if it were all laid on the table immediately.
Subject line: Spread Some Love – The XOXO Event
This email from Misfit isn’t screaming hearts and roses, but I immediately know that it’s a Valentine’s Day promotion. The single-column design looks amazing on mobile, and the email contains just enough content to capture my interest without ever becoming too cluttered or overwhelming.
Subject line: 3 Steps to the Best Valentine’s Day Ever
In case you haven't heard, lists perform super well online (and in inboxes) because they're extremely easy to quickly scan and digest.
This one from OrderUp provides the perfect content for their Valentine’s Day send. It’s much more engaging than a typical "special offer" promotion, and the purposeful hierarchy allows you to hone in on the most important bits so you can quickly get to the point.
10. Nordstrom Rack
Subject line: Gifts $25 and under at our Valentine’s Day Shop!
Nordstrom Rack’s emails have a tendency to get a little busy, but they absolutely nailed it with this one. The arrow GIF points directly to the CTA button and tells your gaze exactly where to go – a super smart way to capitalize on eye tracking and encourage action.
Subject line: Create something wonderful this Valentine’s Day 💞
I have to give the email team at Canva props for this Valentine's Day send. Not only does it look great on mobile, it makes use of clean design, an eye-catching CTA, and a clear value proposition.
Seen any stellar Valentine’s Day emails I missed? Share away in the comments!