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The best and worst of my seasonal marketing emails

By December 9, 2020December 11th, 2020No Comments
Marketing Emails Gone Mostly right

There’s a person on the other end of these marketing emails

What’s the impact of a well-timed, thoughtful, and personalized email versus, one that’s generic and seemingly out of the blue?

Well, the former feels genuine and worth the time to read and engage. Sure, we all know emails are not sent one-by-one to us from a company. But, these kinds of emails just feel more human, which can say a lot about a brand. The latter on the other hand can seem as if you’re just receiving an email just for the fact you’re in the company’s database. The kind of emails that get glazed over, sent to the trash, or worse yet, prompt an unsubscribe.

I’ve taken extra note of these kinds of emails lately – especially after clearing out my inbox post-Black Friday email bonanza. Can you relate?

As a follow up to Part 1: Four promotional emails that met an untimely end and why, since we all need a little bit of positivity these days, here are three emails that deserve a spotlight.

Ready to dive in?  

Email #1 

Steven’s Pass – Pristine snow and well-timed email 

Though I had already bought my ski pass the previous day and reserved a few days on the mountain, I opened this email. Why? I was curious to see if they had any immediate updates, especially knowing things may look different on the mountain this year. Inside, I learned that they have an app. Who knew? While I didn’t download this right away, as I opened the email on my desktop, I’m definitely going to look at downloading it before my first day skiing.  

  • Timeliness ✓
  • Personalization ✓
  • Added usefulness ✓

Stevens Pass marketing emailOverall? Well done, Stevens Pass! Thanks for keeping me in the know.  

Email #2

J.Crew – Personalization that went awry

I’m actually stealing this email from one my sister received. She’s not in marketing, but knowing that’s what I’m always thinking about she sent me a screenshot of this shipping confirmation she received. Who doesn’t love finding out that their most recent purchase shipped and is on its way? But when it looks like this, it could easily get mistaken as an error, or worse be the last touchpoint you get with a customer.

According to 99firms, “In 2019, the number of emails opened on mobile devices was 41.9%, while desktop opens accounted for just 18.2%.”

Worse yet? According to Adestra, “Emails that display incorrectly on mobile may be deleted within three seconds.” Ouch.

  • Timeliness ✓
  • Personalization ✓
  • Added usefulness ⓧ

J.Crew marketing emailOverall? This email might have been spared deletion, but only because it linked to tracking information.

P.S. A Quality Workbook could have saved this email.

Email #3 

Drunk Elephant – Amazing products and equally great subject lines

I’ve had my eye on Drunk Elephant products for a while and caved for Black Friday deals. These products can be combined to optimize the benefits, but with so many different kinds the best practices are elusive—particularly for new buyers. Knowing this, the subject line caught my eye and I engaged right away because I was curious how to get the most use out of this new product.  

  • Timeliness ✓
  • Personalization ✓
  • Added usefulness ✓

Drunk Elephant marketing email

Overall? This email was great, Drunk Elephant. I’m almost hoping I get nurtured–engagement stream perhaps. 


As someone who creates engagement programs, often utilizing emails for touchpoints, it’s helpful to remember that there are people at the end of your emails. Critically thinking about emails that you do and don’t engage with can prompt a bit of creativity and thinking outside the box the next time creating a nurture program 

Monica Zunick

I am a digital marketing enthusiast with B2B marketing experience for technology companies. I bring a natural curiosity to the table, allowing me to uncover the 'why' behind decisions and practices within an organization. In doing this, I look beyond the boiler plate solution, utilizing data to make meaningful contributions and bring about sustainable solutions. I am a people person at heart and cultivate a sense of purpose through working and collaborating with others to achieve success.

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