It may not be the beginning of the year, but that doesn’t mean you can’t approach the next two seasons like they are new beginnings. In the content world, it’s always a smart idea to create an editorial or publishing schedule. While it’s wonderful to have a more granular approach to this, it’s not always practical to do so. Your business objectives and resources can change through the year, which is the rule of thumb is to use the new year an opportunity to simply sketch out priorities. So, now that we’re on the precipice of fall and quickly approaching winter, it’s the ideal time to start thinking more granularly and plan out what newsletter campaigns will look like for the rest of the year. A time tested approach to email marketing is to break up campaigns seasonally. This means that even though you’re sending out summer email campaigns, you should be thinking about the two upcoming seasons: fall and winter. How a business might approach a seasonal newsletter will vary based on their unique interests. A retail business might create a catalogue style newsletter campaign that highlights how a customer might benefit from their products in the months to come. An organization, on the other hand, might create a resource guide to help navigate their audience and help direct them toward key points such as notable upcoming events. Both, however, should be laced with properly designated calls to action at the top, through the middle and at the bottom of each campaign. This rule works for retail too, since it’s a little too obvious to say “shop now” when you’ve created a visually stunning email campaign that invokes the imagination. Calls to action are better suited to not be quite so obvious. But, if you think obvious will work, then why not run an A/B test? Keep in mind that planning out seasonal newsletters is a lengthy and time-intensive process. Unless you’re going to work really quickly, you’re already too late for fall. However, you’re not too late to knock out a spectacular winter newsletter – or at least get the framework going so you’re not scrambling at the last minute. In other cases, you might opt for a targeted email campaign around the holidays or a spotty approach that takes in all of the major shifts in a consumer’s natural behavior around the holidays. Here’s how you’re going to approach either. If it’s a holiday specific email marketing campaign, then start planning what you’re going to do. It should just be yet another sale opportunity or simplistic graphic with a greeting slapped onto it. Take the time to think about it: you’ve got four holidays coming up: Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas and the New Year. What’s going to get you to stand out and show your audience that you’ve put thought into these rare opportunities to really present yourself? If, on the other hand, you favor a more spotty approach that maximizes on the activity during the holiday season, then go on to read “One-Off Holiday Email Marketing Ideas for Retail,” which gives tons of great ideas on how to approach individual one-off email marketing campaigns around the holidays.
New Year\'s Day is great. It\'s a fresh start to a new year. Except for the morning after. That\'s leftovers from last year. Hopefully it won\'t last too long into the new year. This past New Year\'s Day, the first day of 2010, was quite interesting for me. I had decided to move halfway across the country to California and pursue a new job only 3 months earlier. I was still rehabbing from a major injury and the surgeries that followed it. I still wasn\'t sure if I had made the right decision. I was sure loving the weather, but most of my friends and family were back in Chicago. I crawled, slowly, out of bed around 2:00 PM. It may sound like I slept in but that\'s actually early compared to the New Year\'s Days of years past. I made my way from my bed to the couch in the living room. My roommate was already out there watching TV. He mentioned that a program on HD Net had played several of the music videos the two of us had worked on (he directed, I produced). We sat there together, watching five of our music videos play in a rotation that also featured Modest Mouse, Chickenfoot (Joe Satriani, members of Van Halen and Chad Smith of the Red Hot Chili Peppers) and an all-star tribute song for Haiti. Granted, it\'s not MTV or any Billboard Chart topping band, but it was something. It was a sign that things may just work out after all. We felt like we\'d officially accomplished something. It was a great New Year\'s Day. Yes, even despite the headache. Welcome your subscribers to a fresh start and the New Year with a customized HTML email design for New Year\'s Day. Share a favorite activity you participate in on the day, even if it\'s just watching Bowl games, or a favorite snack recipe. Oh, and a Happy New Year!