The Black Friday Beat: The Best Email Cadences, And Who’s Using Them

The Black Friday Beat: The Best Email Cadences, And Who’s Using Them

by , Columnist, November 5, 2021

The Black Friday Beat: The Best Email Cadences, And Who's Using Them

Brands gearing up for Black Friday should not skimp when it comes to email frequency, judging by Email is the new Black (Friday), a study from Pathwire in partnership with Ascend2. 

Of the email teams polled, 27% strongly agree that their Black Friday promotions produce a significant increase in return on investment. And 50% moderately agree. 

Another 14% disagree somewhat, and 9% strongly disagree. But the message is clear: email produces ROI during this festive season.  

But cadence is important. The typical frequency of Black Friday emails is:

  • Multiple sends daily — 17%
  • One send daily — 16%
  • 2-6 sends weekly — 27% 
  • One send weekly — 14%
  • More than one send weekly — 26%

Which cadence works better? The most successful are:

  • Multiple sends daily — 42%
  • One send daily — 21% 
  • 2-6 sends weekly — 21%

Only 5% say one send weekly is the most productive. Strangely, 11% say the same about less than one email per week. 

Among companies, 52% of enterprise firms send at least one Black Friday email per day, as do 40% of mid-market companies and 20% of small businesses. 

Here are the advanced email tactics now being used in Black Friday emails:

  • Personalized product recommendations — 39% 
  • Dynamic content based on product/price availability — 39% 
  • Interactive email design — 34%
  • Click to add to cart/purchase functionality — 33%
  • Embedded video/animation — 27% 
  • Dynamic content based on subscriber location — 24%
  • Split testing content and design — 22%
  • Cart abandonment automations — 18% 
  • None of the above — 20% 

The top tactics of the most successful marketers are slightly different:

Click to add to cart/purchase functionality — 45%

Personalized product recommendations — 45%

Interactive email design — 45% 

Dynamic content based on product/price availability — 45% 

Dynamic content based on subscribe location — 34% 

Split testing content and design — 32% 

Embedded video animation — 29%

Cart abandonment automations — 26%

None of the above—8%

Who’s sending at least one Black Friday email each day? Among verticals, they are: 

  • Entertainment — 44%
  • Retail — 38% 
  • Home & Transportation — 37% 
  • Health & Personal Care — 29% 
  • Professional Services — 26%
  • Hospitality — 25%

Here’s how they stack up in sending one email per week or fewer: 

Professional Services — 55%

Hospitality — 42%

Health & Personal Care — 41%

Entertainment—39% 

Transportation — 32%

Retail — 28%

ROI varies with the sector, with these groups reporting significant increases: 

Retail — 73%

Entertainment — 78%

Hospitality — 83% 

Home & Transportation — 84% 

Health & Professional Care — 75%

Professional Services — 70% 

For enterprise brands in general, the results are even more impressive: 905 see a large boost in ROI, versus 79% for mid-market firms and 67% for SMBs.  

How do you get into this exclusive circle? Pathwire offers these 10 tips for getting the most out of your holiday campaigns:

  1. Tone up your email deliverability — i.e., by warming up your IP address before Black Friday and using separate domains for transactional and marketing email
  2. Send-time optimization.
  3. Re-engage inactive subscribers.
  4. Clean up your lists.
  5. Segment subscribers wisely.
  6. Find or build responsive, seasonal email templates.
  7. Decorate your transactional emails. 
  8. Use email marketing to give back.
  9. Test and preview before sending.
  10. Prepare your infrastructure for the crowds.   

Ascend2 surveyed 143 B2C email marketing professionals from September 20-21, 2021. Of these, 30.8% were with enterprise firms while 21.7% were with mid-market firms and 47.6% were with small businesses. 

MediaPost.com: Search & Performance Marketing Daily

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