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How to Prep Your Email Marketing Campaign for Black Friday

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The single biggest, most insane, shopping-cart-terrorizing day of the year is right around the corner.

For some, even a whiff of Black Friday makes them want to lock the doors and eat leftover turkey while others battle it over the "must-haves" at 5 AM.

Others look forward to the day because of the incredible deals and how Black Friday jump-starts their holiday shopping.

Whichever way you personally slice it, Black Friday is the most important day of any email marketer's year.

So, if you're either dreading or dancing around your office for Black Friday, here are some tips to make sure you and your marketing emails are totally prepared for the shopping onslaught.

1. Review your email marketing budget

Not only does this help you get set-up for the new year, it gives you a true picture of what you need to spend on your email marketing promotion for Black Friday. Remember, to get buy-in from everyone!

2. Create a promotional theme

Are you thinking to the holiday season? Or are you gearing up for the New Year? Do you have overstock that you need to get rid of?

Figure out what the overall theme is for your Black Friday email promotion because it'll help you plan more efficiently.

3. Figure out what you're promoting (along with sale prices)

Based off the Black Friday theme, determine which products and services will take the top honors in your email marketing campaign.

Also, work with your staff to figure out how low you can reasonably go on the price or discount and still make it worth your while.

4. Increase your customer service support

Marketers often overlook this tip, because, well, they're not in charge of the customer service support staff. But, as a marketer, you're going to be driving business to your company and you need all hands on deck. Make sure you have enough support staff to cover all of your bases.

5. Update your email opt-in widget

Let the world know what's coming for Black Friday. Whether you make changes to your existing email opt-in widget or create an entirely new one, you need to spell out why people need to sign up for your Black Friday emails. What are they going to get specifically from it? Are they going to be the first to hear about your sales?

6. Segment your email list

Segmenting your email list ahead of time will save you time and your precious sanity.

You'll be able to target different groups of subscribers by their location, purchase history and interest.

Consider creating separate email promotions (for the same deal, perhaps) for each of these categories to increase your conversion on Black Friday.

7. Reevaluate your keywords and add more

Look over your current keywords in your emails. Then, take a look at the your Black Friday theme and the products you're pushing. Add those additional keywords into the fold to increase your SEO chances.

8. Use coupon codes for better tracking and impact

The holiday season is notoriously crazy-busy, and to make sure that you're capturing how successful your Black Friday email promotion is, consider using specific and targeted coupon codes.

You'll be able to see which emails produced the most sales and which, sort of, floundered. Create coupon codes for each unique email promotion.

9. Bonus Points: Set up an autoresponder that counts down how many days left until Black Friday.

There, you should be ready to rock now. Email marketing is all about being prepared for anything. With these tips, you are all set.

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