11 Valentine’s Day Email Campaign Ideas for 2020

February 14 is a joyful date, both for lovers and marketers. While couples celebrate their feelings with gifts and intimate dinners, companies double their email volume and rake in billions in sales.

But, when your competitors jump on the occasion and push sales, how can you stay afloat amid inbox clutter and set new records for email marketing revenue?

Here are some quick-win strategies for transforming your newsletter into a Valentine’s Day conversion machine!

Best of all? You can now incorporate all these valentine’s day marketing ideas into your newsletters with the new GetResponse email creator.

Watch our webinar, Winning Valentine’s Day Email Campaigns, for even more practical tips and tricks for designing lovely and high-converting V-Day newsletters.

1. Make a promise and DELIVER.

Do you know one of the main reasons your customers don’t shop online before Valentine’s Day?

It’s not because they don’t love your offers, or because they feel your inventory is overpriced. They fear being LATE with a perfect gift for their significant other! Can you imagine running home with a box of chocolates on February 15? I bet you wouldn’t get many “conversions”, not to mention the increased “hard bounce rate”.

Make sure your Valentine’s Day newsletter makes a promise of timely delivery in:

  • The subject line,
  • An image in your email that reassures them you’ll be on time,
  • A footer that repeats the promise.
  • Once the sale is made, it’s all up to FedEx!
Valentine's day newsletter ideas: order by specific time for valentine's day delivery.
Newsletter from Coach

2. Use wish lists and gift guides.

Here’s a quick fact: your potential customers will visit only 1-3 retail sites before they purchase a Valentine’s Day gift.

Takeaway? Remove shopping obstacles and drop a hint in your Valentine’s email about the ideal gift for their partner. Your newsletter will prevent visitors from wandering around on your website and perhaps sailing away to a competitor’s e-store.

Promote “wish list” ideas in your pre-holiday emails, so subscribers can point their significant other to the right gift. You’ll reduce the number of returned items and become a trusted V-Day shopping advisor!

Take a look at these Valentine’s emails sent last V-day:

Valentines email (V-Day) from MVMT watches
V-DAY Gift Guide email from MVMT

valentines day gift guide Nordstrom email.
Nordstrom’s Valentine’s Day gift guide email

3. Create irresistible subject lines.

Like the holiday itself, your newsletter should be filled with love. Starting with your subject line, make it clear that your email is a special Valentine’s Day promo.

Here’s what to include in the subject line:

  • Use words like “perfect”, “ideal” and “gift” to accentuate the useful side of your newsletter. (You’ve got awesome gifts for their Valentine.)
  • Boost open rates by creating a sense of urgency, using expressions like “expires”, “ends soon”, “only” and “left.”
  • Use emojis (hearts, etc.) to make the subject line stand out from inbox clutter. (See: Emojis in Subject Lines – Best Practices)
  • Try something unique that matches both the Valentine’s Day theme and your industry.

Looking for inspiration? Check out these 5 great valentine’s day email subject lines from major brands:

«Last-Minute Luxuries For Your Valentine», Coach

«Last day for free shipping on select Valentine’s Day gifts.» Harry & David

«❤️2/14❤️ is coming! Last day for free standard shipping» JC Penney

«V❤️lentine’s Day Gifts For Her & Him» Saks Fifth Avenue Feb 6

«Travel Deals Are Better When You Share it with Someone» Alaska Airlines

«Love at first flight?» Ryanair

«Be a matchmaker! 💡❤️💡» LIFX

And if you want to know more about the words you should use in your Valentine’s Day newsletter subject lines then check out this article – 18 Words to Skyrocket Your Email Open Rates.

4. Appeal to the right people.

Can you guess how much time subscribers devote to reading your email? Only 2-5 seconds. And if you don’t appeal to them with a relevant offer, your newsletter may get deleted, marked as spam, or simply abandoned.

So use all the data you’ve gathered about your subscribers – and on February 14, the gender custom field is important.

Segment your email marketing list, (by male and female, for the basics) and create offers that appeal to each. Don’t waste their time by forcing them to browse irrelevant promos. They’re already busy enough with Valentine’s Day preparations. They need gifts – not for themselves, but for their significant other.

House of Fraser Valentines Day email for him.
House of Fraser – Valentine’s Day email

But what if you don’t have this information?

No worries! This is a perfect opportunity for a tactic called “behavioral targeting”. It suggests a hypothetical gender of subscribers based on offers and elements they click in the newsletter.

How to run the test?

Design an email with call-to-action buttons:

  • Gifts for her
  • Gifts for him

Send an email to your entire mailing list. Then use the Search Contacts feature to check the history of clicks and find out who’s interested in each category. This is a fairly easy way to profile your subscribers and create segments for use in future campaigns.

Valentines email promo offer from Real Madrid for her and him.
Valentines email promo offer from Real Madrid FC – for her and for him

Remember that this may be a sensitive topic and you have to be really careful not to alienate some segments of your target audience.

5. Tell a story and sell a dream.

Marketers often underestimate the power of email copywriting. Sure, fancy graphics and design highlight and sell your products. But the story is what can put your products in the right context and sell your subscribers the dream you offer..

A few sentences with a magical description of your Valentine’s Day promotion can have a bigger impact on sales than a big discount or free shipping.

You’re selling a trip for two? Why not call it “Taking Your Love Higher” and “Love at first flight”? Describe how the beloved will be spoilt with the getaway. This will create an irresistible image that encourages subscribers to click-thru to your website.

Valentines email from Ryanair
A Valentine’s Day email with an offer from Ryanair

Want to get people talking? Make up a hashtag and encourage people to share their special stories.

twitter valentines day email.
Twitter’s Valentine’s Day email

See how Twitter did it? You don’t have to be selling anything with your email campaign, you can also build brand awareness and social media engagement in a sweet way.

6. Find love everywhere.

Valentine’s Day is not only about shopping for exclusive gifts for your SO. All the jewellery, watches, lingerie, and funny/cheesy gadgets… When your industry is not really “romantic”, you’ve got to get creative. As I mentioned before – the email’s copy is everything.

First, you need to find out how your product, or offer, can be connected to the theme of love, couples, relationships, feelings, and dating.  Then, use a fun play on words to give your subscribers a valentine’s-y, warm, and fuzzy feeling.

Here are Valentine’s day newsletters with great copy. See how you can translate your regular copy into the language of love 😉 :

LIFX valentine's day email newsletter.
A Valentine’s Day themed email from LIFX

Benefit Valentines Day email newsletter.
A Valentine’s Day email from Benefit

The emails above also show how good copy can be used to gently nudge people to buy products in bundles. “The power couple”, “the major duo”, “the perfect pair”, “the perfect match”, “true lover pack” – how could someone buy just one of them and separate such perfect product lovebirds?

7. Remind readers about gift cards.

A spa session, dinner for two, or a new dress? Men have the same dilemma each year when given the mission of finding a perfect Valentine’s Day gift.

Traditional gift cards, vouchers and e-gift cards can be a lifesaver for those who can’t figure out their partner’s preferences.

According to Deloitte research, 43% of Americans purchase gift cards during holiday shopping. So why not promote them in your newsletters? This could be a perfect way to reach subscribers who prefer a “safe option” to a romantic Valentine’s Day surprise.

Promote your (e)gift cards in the newsletter footer. This way, subscribers who scroll through the entire email and don’t find anything relevant will stumble upon a Valentine’s Day “lifesaver” that could save the day on February 14!

Victoria's Secret special newsletter
A Valentine’s Day gift card offer from Victoria’s Secret.

8. It’s all about giving.

Valentine’s Day is a unique time for giving gifts to those we care about and with whom we want to maintain great relationships. Doesn’t this sound like an ideal opportunity for customer-company connections?

Use Valentine’s Day to show your customers you really CARE about them and want to make them feel special.

There are many ways to achieve that with newsletters:

  • Promote free gift-wrapping.
  • Offer to add a personal message enclosed in an envelope.
  • Promote free shipping.
  • Give them the option to return gifts with no additional costs.
  • Promote a unique discount code.

If you jump on the occasion and use one of these ideas, your subscribers will appreciate the Valentine’s Day aura your newsletter creates and may be more inclined to buy gifts from you.

Revolve Clothing newsletter for Valentine's Day.
REVOLVE’s newsletter for Valentine’s Day, offering free shipping & free returns

9. Design a one-of-a-kind email template.

Not many holidays have such a well-defined visual identity as Valentine’s Day… well… except Christmas. The color schemes (red, shades of pink, white) and special symbols (roses, hearts, etc.) make Valentine’s Day newsletters stand out from your usual emails.

Use a unique email template to leave no doubt that you’ve created a special Valentine’s Day promotion, and that your newsletter includes perfect gifts for their significant other.

Johnnie Boden email newsletter.
Johnnie Boden email newsletter with a Valentine’s Day theme.
Taziki's valentine's day special email.
A special offer for Valentine’s Day from Taziki’s, with a romantic theme.

10. Think of different ways to celebrate.

Just because it’s February 14, not everyone has to be in a romantic relationship. And that means many people celebrate Valentine’s Day without shopping for gifts and looking for a perfect candle-lit dinner recipe.

Look at this email from Mouth that caters to people who had their heart broken right before Valentine’s Day. It uses a fun copy and puns to make the hard times a bit sweeter.

Mouth Valentines Day email.
Valentine’s Day email from Mouth

Below, the email from House of Fraser suggests that either you love this day or hate it, it’s just an occasion to buy something for yourself. If you know your audience will enjoy it, you can target people who celebrate Galentine’s Day or Anti-Valentine’s Day, with friends or all by themselves.

Valentine's Day newsletter from House of Fraser.
House of Fraser’s Valentine’s Day email

11. Show some unconditional love.

Among all these Valentine’s Day email tips and tricks you can use to spoil and convert your subscribers, there is one that can make your audience feel truly loved. It’s giving them something to enjoy, for free. And here, I don’t mean offering free shipping if they buy from you (like I advised to do in tip #8). I mean something a bit more personal, with no conditions and money involved. It can be an ebook, a recipe, DIY project instructions, a special playlist. Make your copy sound like a love letter, and make your customers fall for you.

PremiumBeat valentines day email.
PremiumBeat’s V-Day email with a romantic playlist
Martha Stewart's valentine's day newsletter.
Martha Stewart’s Valentine’s Day newsletter with recipes and DIYs for Valentine’s Day

I hope we’ve inspired you to create a one-of-a-kind campaign with these Valentine’s day newsletter ideas. If so, share your email designs in the comment section and let us know how they performed! Are they similar to these best email campaigns picked by the experts?

And, if you want to try out your design ideas in a super-easy email newsletter creator, click the button below and start crafting your emails with GetResponse!

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