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If you’re a marketer, you probably love the holidays as much as we do. After all, the holidays are a great opportunity to promote sales, tap into recipients’ festive cheer, and infuse emails with fun and creativity.
At the same time, email sending volumes skyrocket during the holiday season. In fact, in 2021, Twilio SendGrid processed 6.8 billion emails on Black Friday and 7 billion emails on Cyber Monday.
With numbers like these, you can see why it’s so important to stand out in a crowded inbox during the holidays. And a captivating subject line is your first chance to do just that.
Need a little inspiration? Take a look at these holiday email subject line examples straight from our inboxes and the best practices these follow.
Short, pithy subject lines get the highest open rates. In fact, our Black Friday and Cyber Monday email data showed that subject lines with 4 or fewer words saw an open rate close to 14%, and the open rate dropped as the word count increased.
The following senders keep it short and sweet in these examples of catchy holiday email subject lines.
In addition to the short subject line, Boden gets creative with the preview text, “Consider them served,” to further entice recipients to open the email.
Brewbike delivers on the promise of this intriguing subject line with the announcement of its pumpkin spice brew coffee, reinforced with contrasting colors and a playful tone.
Time flies during the holidays, and we often feel like we won’t have time to enjoy all the festivities or take advantage of all the deals. You can tap into this feeling of FOMO (fear of missing out) with subject lines that promote time-sensitive deals and incentivize users to convert before it’s too late.
Additionally, shopping can get a little frantic this time of year, and as shipping difficulties become more commonplace, it’s important to communicate deadlines. You can do this in the subject line to ensure recipients know when to place an order so that it arrives in time for the holidays.
Let’s take a look at some examples.
This email from DFTBA announces the shipping deadlines for the holidays to ensure that customers receive their orders by December 24.
While subject lines do a lot of heavy lifting, keep them lighthearted during the holidays to match the festive cheer. One way to do this is with emojis.
Check out these subject lines that make the most of emojis to drive home the holiday spirit. And since many brands use the same emojis for each holiday, try some unexpected emojis instead to make your email stand out.
Sprouts continues the pumpkin theme in the body of this email with whimsical imagery and gourd puns throughout the copy.
A weightlifter is probably not the first emoji that comes to mind for a holiday email, but it’s eye-catching and works well with Gymshark’s fitness-themed gift guide.
A little intrigue can be fun, but a holiday email subject line shouldn’t be a guessing game. An effective tactic to boost open rates is to tell recipients exactly what they’ll find within, like a specific discount or early access to your holiday collection.
Another way to capture recipients’ attention is with a subject line that offers solutions to their holidays problems or frustrations. The following subject line examples entice readers with suggestions on what to buy for their loved ones, what to wear, and what to cook during the holidays.
In this email, the scented candle brand Homesick offers a creative pairing of its products and the seasonal theme of Halloween costumes.
Holiday sales are a big part of the season for many businesses, but don’t limit your emails to just promotions. Highlight other important aspects of the holidays, like culinary traditions and spending time with loved ones.
You can also engage recipients with holiday-related messages that don’t immediately make a sales pitch but nurture your relationship with customers. This is especially true for newsletters, like the following examples.
While this Bon Appétit newsletter ultimately leads readers to the call to action “Get the Recipe,” its main focus is sharing an interesting story about a Venezuelan holiday staple, engaging readers without being too pushy.
The subject line is just one of a few key elements to send successful holiday emails. But once you’ve crafted creative subject lines for your holiday campaigns, what’s next?
One of the most important ways to prepare for the holidays is to ensure that the technical side of your email program is ready for Black Friday and beyond. So first, check out our 13 tips to get ready for the season.
Then, dive deeper into holiday email preparation with our complete holiday email packing list, which includes tips on preparing your email list, automating campaigns, and more. You’ll be ready to send holiday emails with spectacular subject lines in no time!