A good marketer takes their cues from anywhere - the weather, sporting events, and most anything that stirs the attention of the general public. Therefore it is no surprise that as the temperature in London rose and the crowds outside Kensington Palace got increasingly rowdier, savvy marketers from several big UK brands made sure that their company could get a piece of the action.
So how was the birth of the future King of England, little Prince of Cambridge, celebrated by British email senders?
This first celebratory email we received is from Marks and Spencer, old-school British retailer, who went the traditional route. Their email features a themed biscuit tin - perfect for a celebratory afternoon tea - and of course, baby clothes. Clicking through the links leads to a short slideshow on etiquette - we thought that was a particularly good touch.
The beautifully thought-out design and lack of gender personalisation suggest that the email had been prepared ahead of time, ready to launch as soon as the news went public. This saves valuable time and helps reach the inbox before the others, a good lesson for any marketer who wants to get ahead of the pack.
The downside was that the email consists entirely of images, so the impact will be severely compromised in mail clients which turn the images off automatically (e.g. Outlook, Yahoo webmail). This is something to keep in mind - relying on beautiful images alone may be insufficient, as customers are likely to delete the email if they fail to display by default and there is not other content.
Here’s another classy offer from Hotel Chocolat.
This email, much like the M&S one, seems to have been prepared ahead of time. Discounted chocolates and (in the finer text) complimentary champagne in stores makes an elegant combination. Notice the baby-themed artwork as well, with the stork and the stroller-patterned background.
Ask, the Italian chain restaurant, and Aldo, the shoe retailer, both sent a simple yet elegant design. Ask’s offering is perhaps a touch more relevant, but Aldo’s makes up for it with a hefty dose of patriotism in the form of Union Jack colours.
In contrast, mySupermarket.co.uk sent an image-light, gender specific message.
While free apples may not be as relevant as champagne, the ‘baby boy customization’ - the blue banner, ‘future King’, ‘It’s a Boy!!!’ - is an extra touch the other campaigns could consider. True, pre-designed images would have made this difficult, but text content, if any, could be easily edited. Alternatively, it may be worth creating two gender-specific versions, depending on the relevance for your brand.
And finally, we’d like to show you two emails that made us smile. Shop Rush, the online beauty retailer, took the chance to use some wordplay to make their offering just a little more relevant to the event of the day. Although puns can come across as a little cheesy sometimes, we thought this one was pretty creative.
We also quite like the Pizza Hut’s offer to match the royal baby “pound for pound” - setting the price of their pizza at £8.60 for the 8 pounds 6oz weight of baby Cambridge. Both of these companies managed to take an event thematically unrelated to their brand and make it humorous and relevant. Well done!
Although a royal baby may not be an everyday occurrence, the main takeaways from a receiver’s point of view apply to all event-specific campaigns: Plan ahead, react fast, and make it relevant. Hopefully, this will help engage your customers and ensure you make the most of joyous occasions.