How We Did It: An Inside Look at the Movable Ink Contextual Holiday Email

It should come as no surprise that we’re pretty passionate about email at Movable Ink. We strive help our clients provide amazing email experiences, and we’re always raising the stakes for our own email campaigns as well. And this past holiday season was no different.

The 2016 Movable Ink holiday email had a few goals:

  • Give back to those in need with a goal of $500 in donations
  • Deliver highly-shareable email content
  • Create a fun and social experience
  • Be relevant to every reader at the moment of open
  • Do all of the above while showcasing Movable Ink’s technology.

Here’s how we did it.

We wanted to make giving back to a charitable cause the focal point of the email. Knowing how personal charitable giving can be, we wanted to give people a choice between causes they could donate to. Finally, we needed to make it easy as possible for people to donate.

We chose UNICEF as our charitable cause. Using live and progressive polling, we gave people the choice between two major UNICEF causes: Nutrition Programs and Emergency Relief Fund. When a reader clicked on their cause of choice, we would automatically donate $1 to that cause. If they tweeted their donation, we doubled the amount.

But those weren’t the only contextual elements in our holiday email. Here’s the full list of contextual email technology we used.

Image personalization

The header image in the email contained first name personalization.

Animated GIF

We wanted the the email to grab attention, so we added animated snowflakes or twinkling lights to the header image, depending on the version of the email the reader received.

Weather targeting

This email featured two different creatives: one for cold weather and one for warm weather. If the reader opened their email in an area where the temperature was greater than 49 degrees, they received a version of the email with palm trees. If the weather was less than 49 degrees when they opened the email, they saw snowflakes in the cold weather version

Here’s the cold weather version:

… and here’s the warm weather version:

Live and progressive polling

Like we mentioned earlier, we wanted our subscribers to have the power to choose which cause they donated to. By simply clicking on the cause, they could donate $1. The total dollar amount raised updated in real-time – so if a reader revisited the email after donating, they would see the updated amount.

Live social feed

We added a live social feed that connected to the Movable Ink Twitter account where we provided readers with live updates about the campaign.

So, how did the email do?

We’re happy to say that we exceeded our goal of $500, raising more than $600 for UNICEF! We saw a lot of love for the campaign on social, too.

The bottom line? A solid content strategy elevated by contextual marketing creates a winning campaign. To learn more about using contextual marketing in your own campaigns, check out our ebook, Everything You Need to Know About Contextual Marketing.