Valentine’s Day Emails Show the Love

Casey BartoRetailers were spreading the love this Valentine’s Day. To get customers in the door, many retailers (and restaurants) like Starbucks and Qdoba offered special deals via email and other channels. Today, I’m going to perform a post-mortem on the Valentine’s Day emails I received.
I noticed a very obvious (and appropriate) trend this year: the use of heart shaped symbols in the subject lines. (For more on how to use symbols in subject lines check out these tips.)
Of the 12 emails I received on Valentine’s Day, 3 used heart symbols, and 3 used ‘love-themed’ words like ‘sweet’ and ‘smitten’ in their subject lines. The others, oddly, seemed to skip right over any mention of the holiday, with LOFT and west elm going straight for the President’s Day themed email.

Here are a couple of emails that stood out to me (for both good and bad reasons.)


The Valentine’s email from Petco could have made better use of my information to create an individualized email. Instead, what I received was a generic ‘Happy Valentine’s Day take advantage of our sale’ email.

If I’ve signed up to receive emails, it could be assumed that I think of my pet as part of my family. After all, I could just buy food and treats at the local grocery store, but making a trip to Petco where there are plenty of special treats and presents for my pet signifies I’m willing to go that extra mile for my furry family member. So why not include my pet’s name in the email and encourage me to buy him a special Valentine’s treat?


Hot Topic

Take a look at the subject line in this Hot Topic email. Attention grabbing isn’t it? For those email recipients that Hot Topic knows are frequent shoppers, maybe they could have included a reason why they were loved or maybe they could have shown some products they know the recipient would be interested based on past purchases and site activity.


West elm

Though it wasn’t Valentine themed, this President’s Day sale email from west elm struck me for its clever use of a gif. Not only are the presidents heads’ dancing, they’re wearing money hats. Awesome.

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What were some of your favorite Valentine’s Day emails? Oh, and if Valentine’s Day isn’t your thing, take a look at some of these weird (and kind of gross) Valentine promotions.

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