Email marketing is an incredibly important part of the holiday season. It’s a vital tool that businesses use to interact with their subscribers, clients and community more generally.

There are all kinds of reasons that businesses send out emails during the holiday period, whether it’s to announce a new promotion, share a gift guide or send out seasonal greetings. 

Whatever your case may be, many businesses struggle to craft holiday newsletters. They want to send out something that’s consistent with their branding, yet festive and pertinent, and they just aren’t sure how to get there.

Here at Flodesk, we want to help you out, so we’ve compiled a list of 7 fantastic holiday newsletter examples. Once you’ve taken a look at them, we’re sure that you’ll be coming up with great ideas for your own holiday emails in no time. 

For good measure, we’ve also included the key elements you should include in holiday newsletters as well as some bonus tips, so keep reading until the end.

Our top holiday newsletter examples to inspire you

If you’re having trouble getting inspired when developing your holiday newsletters and emails, look no further. We’ve compiled a list of beautiful holiday newsletter ideas that are sure to get your creative juices flowing in no time. 

1. Elegant, festive imagery

Many people struggle to integrate holiday imagery into their holiday newsletters without them coming across as stereotypical or cartoonish. It’s true, the most wonderful time of the year isn’t always synonymous with great design.

We think that this 31 Bits holiday email does a fantastic job of using festive imagery without it feeling over the top. The image of the wreath also has a great color palette complete with deep greens, blues, whites and a little bit of sparkle, all of which are cohesive with a cozy holiday atmosphere.

In terms of text, they’ve kept things simple and left the focus on their imagery. We also appreciate the carefree touch they’ve added with a cursive font.

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2. Keep it minimal

We’re big proponents of less is more. Although it can be tempting to add tons of different elements into holiday emails, sometimes the simplest designs are the most effective.

This Wit & Delight newsletter is a great example of the powerful impact minimal design can have. Although their graphic is simple, its whimsical font and holiday-inspired animations make it very festive. 

This graphic’s large font would also leave a strong impression on its viewer and likely lead to them scrolling down to view the Wit & Delight gift guides and finding the perfect gift.

3. A clear focus on what you’re offering

The holiday season is a magical time, but it can also lead to people feeling overwhelmed by tons of Christmas emails and other holiday campaigns. 

As an email marketer, you’ll need to fight against that by making your digital communications stand out in people’s inboxes and ensuring that they’re effective and get straight to the point. 

Carol’s Daughter does a fantastic job of getting their message across in style. They’ve chosen a flashy yet sophisticated palette of cream, black and gold and use it to highlight their most important information front and center. 

These kinds of emails are great tools to drive sales because they let subscribers know about something of value (like a sale, last-minute deal or other promotion) quickly and with style.

4. Highlight gifts & seasonal products

The entire holiday period evokes similar imagery for many: colder weather, warm, comforting food and drink, seasonal smells and a cozy atmosphere. Due to this, many typical holiday gifts fall somewhere along those lines. 

If you provide any products or services that fall into those categories, it’s a great idea to focus on them in your holiday email campaign.

Rewined is a company that makes candles out of repurposed wine bottles. As you can see, their products fit perfectly with the holiday atmosphere. They’ve used that to their advantage in their email with their descriptive copy and holiday-inspired imagery.

We also love that Rewined has made their product the focus of their holiday email and left the rest of their layout clean and minimalistic. It’s a great seasonal e-commerce newsletter example!

5. Include something different

When it comes to holiday content, we typically see the same kinds of images over and over again. While this isn’t a bad thing, it creates a great opportunity for those who want their emails to stand out from the crowd. All you have to do is try something different.

It’s not every day that you see a snowy pineapple in an email, and we suspect that’s why Moo included one in their holiday campaign. It’s quirky, unique and is likely to stick in their customers’ minds.

Try brainstorming something unexpected you could include in your holiday email campaigns that would align with your brand.

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6. Integrate a message of gratitude & thanks

When it comes down to it, customer relationships are everything. This is especially the case for small and medium-sized businesses. Indeed, loyal customers are the backbone of many businesses’ success as they’re worth up to 10x more than the value of their first purchase.

Accordingly, it’s important that you go beyond sales-focused emails over the holiday season. Sending out a quick message of gratitude or heartwarming wishes goes a long way. 

Loeffler Randall provides a great example of this. While they’re still inviting their customers to shop a sale, they’ve prefaced it with a message of thanks. They’re communicating their appreciation of their customers’ support all year round. 

We also love how they’ve colored-blocked their email while still bringing the same palette into all its different elements. It makes for a very cohesive look.

7. Strike the perfect balance between words & images

One of the most difficult parts of email marketing is finding the right balance between words and images. While imagery is important and typically more captivating than text, companies still need to include a certain amount of copy in emails in order to communicate effectively.

We think that Tovala has done a great job of this in the above holiday newsletter example. They’ve included a great combination of relevant, holiday-focused imagery and effective copy. We also like their use of subheadings and the fact that they’ve separated their email into sections with different text sizes.

Last but not least, Tovala has chosen a festive color palette of red and green, but they’ve presented it in a way that looks fresh and modern.

To get things just right, check out our guide to the best time to send a newsletter!

The key components of a holiday newsletter

We hope that our curated list of holiday newsletter examples has made you feel inspired and excited to create your own. So you can have your biggest holiday sales season yet, we’ve also compiled a quick list of the essential components you should include in your holiday emails. Follow these steps you’ll be sending emails that your subscribers will love to get this holiday season.

1. Festive, personal and relevant email subject lines

The first, and debatably most important, part of your holiday emails is your email subject line. Ultimately, if your subscribers aren’t intrigued by your subject lines, they’ll never end up reading your content at all.

Indeed, Invespro found that a whopping 47% of recipients open emails based on their subject lines. 

Of course, you’ll want to ensure that as many of your subscribers as possible read your Christmas emails. In order to do just that, take the following into consideration when crafting your Christmas email subject lines:

  • Embrace the emoji. This might not fit with everyone’s branding, but an Experian study found that 56% of companies that use emojis in their subject lines had superior open rates.
  • Make it festive: At the end of the day, people love feeling and spreading the holiday spirit. Tap into that in your email subject line. 
  • Personalize as much as possible: Customization is your friend. In fact, as many as 72% of consumers only respond to personalized marketing messages.
  • Integrate urgency: Email campaigns with an element of urgency or exclusivity typically perform the best in terms of open rates.

For example: (Insert first name), finish your Christmas shopping today! 🎁

2. Eye-catching visuals

The next key component of your holiday season emails is stunning visuals. Although most email marketers know this, it absolutely bears repeating. 

Put simply, people prefer images over text. Pinpointe went as far as to report that visuals increase a person’s willingness to read content by 80%

Make sure your holiday email campaign contains visuals that are memorable and make an impression, particularly in your newsletter header. Likewise, keep good design practices in mind with your newsletter layout and ensure that your entire message is cohesive and aesthetically pleasing.

The holiday season also provides a great opportunity to get creative with your visuals and send out truly memorable graphics to your clients, so get creating.

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3. Clear, catchy headings and subheadings

Next, be sure to organize your Christmas email into different sections complete with descriptive headings and subheadings that will grab your subscribers’ attention.

This component is absolutely essential because it’s unlikely that recipients will read your entire holiday email. It’s more probable that they’ll skim it until something jumps out at them. That means that instead of presenting your email as a block of text, you’ll have better luck breaking it down into sections that can be understood at a glance.

Litmus found that the average time spent reading an email was approximately 11 seconds, which certainly doesn’t leave time for a thorough read.

Be sure to keep this fact in mind when spreading holiday cheer via email. Remember, the most important or interesting part of your email should be obvious and have the biggest heading. 

4. Inclusive, short-and-sweet copy

Don’t get bogged down with too much text in your holiday emails. Instead, opt to keep things short, sweet and to the point. Rather than including superfluous text, make your copy straightforward and only communicate the most essential information.

This can be difficult to achieve, so a great tip when editing is to ask yourself: “Why is this interesting and/or necessary for our customer to read?”

Last, be sure to keep things inclusive. Rather than only talking about Christmas, talk about the holiday season in general (as well as other seasonal holidays) to connect with the largest possible audience.

5. A clear call-to-action

This element is important for email campaigns all year long, but it’s worth mentioning here. All your digital communications should have a specific purpose, whether it’s to communicate a new product, share company news, announce a promotion, launch a gift guide… the works.

If you need further convincing, emails with a single call-to-action have 371% more clicks and 1617% more sales when compared with those that don’t.

Not only should your emails have a clear call-to-action, but it should also be obvious. Make sure it’s the focus of your email and is mentioned multiple times throughout. It should appear both above the fold (in the newsletter introduction) as well as towards the end. 

Quick tips to create the perfect holiday newsletter

1. Add value to make your holiday season newsletters worth the read

Like we’ve already mentioned, the competition is rife when it comes to holiday emails. Just about every business out there, big or small, will be sending out at least a couple. For this reason, it’s important that you add value to your holiday communications to make them worth your subscribers’ time.

Whether that means including a curated gift guide, a new product launch, a discount code or a greeting that truly comes from the heart, make sure every holiday email you send out is worth the read.

2. Enrich customer relationships

Put simply, the holidays are a great time to let the people in your life know how much you care about them… and that includes your customers. Don’t miss the opportunity to express gratitude for the customers that propel your business all year round and enrich your relationships with them for the rest of the year. 

In addition, it’s easy for the holiday season to become all about sales. However, it’s important to focus on giving back, too. Whether that means offering a special discount to your customers or collecting funds for a charity, choose something that aligns with you. 

3. Keep timing in mind

In the email marketing world, timing is everything. That’s especially true during the holiday season. If you start your Christmas email campaign too early, holiday shoppers might be turned off. On the other hand, you need to give your subscribers adequate time to take advantage of holiday promotions and get all their ducks in a row.

Additionally, you’ll need to decide what holiday promotions to offer and when. There’s no point in offering free shipping on Christmas gifts if they won’t arrive before December 25th.

Keep the following timing-related tips in mind when crafting your holiday newsletters:

  • We can safely say that the holiday campaign period starts in December. This is the perfect time to encourage your loyal customers to start holiday shopping and highlight your gift guide. Some companies offer early bird promotions with special discount codes or free shipping early on in the holiday season.
  • The week before Christmas is another key moment for email marketing. In fact, email open rates often reach an all-time high during this week. Terminus found that emails sent during that time period had open rates that were 6% higher than the average.
  • Don’t bother sending out sales emails on holiday days. There’s no point in sending out emails on holiday days, and if you do, make it a simple holiday greeting. For sales, wait a few days after New Year’s Day.

4. Highlight gift ideas 

Around the holidays, gifts are without a doubt on people’s minds. So, one of the most effective ways to connect with your subscribers via email during the Christmas season is by highlighting gift ideas.

It’s an excellent idea to put together a gift guide highlighting your most holiday-friendly products or services. Another great option is putting together multiple different gift guides that line up with different target customer profiles.

5. Stay consistent with your branding

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Just because it’s the holiday season doesn’t mean you have to throw out all your branding in favor of red, green, silver and gold. In fact, the key to excellent Christmas email campaigns is staying consistent with your branding while tweaking it to look just a little bit more festive.

If you’re a minimal-design lover, stay consistent with lots of white space and metallic or holiday-colored accents. If you gravitate towards flashier designs, feel free to go all in with something eye-catching and festive for full effect.

At the end of the day, your Christmas newsletter should reflect your regular branding as much as possible.

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Take these holiday newsletter ideas and run with them

You’re ready to go! We hope that this guide has left you feeling inspired and excited to start creating your own holiday email campaign.

Whatever ideas you come up with, Flodesk is here to help you bring them to life. We’ve got tons of templates you can customize according to your needs or start from scratch.

If you’re not already using Flodesk, click here to get started with a free trial.