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Email Marketing Tips for Back-to-School Season

Written by Nalan Ahmetreisoglu on September 15, 2015

Sorry kids, but like all good things, summer will soon come to an end and new school year is just around the corner. Parents are in such a rush, there are a lot to buy a lot to take care of. But besides of children and their parents, there is one more major part in this school preparation game: vendor companies.

Time is up: back to school season has just come. “Back to school” is a specific period in which students and their parents purchase school supplies for the upcoming school year. Back-to-school season is projected to top  $24 billion – $68 billion if you include college. That’s why at many stores, back to school sales are advertised as a time when school supplies, children’s, and young adults’ clothing goes on sale to get a share of that big cake! 🙂

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 In this time of year, each brand and department store of all kinds strives to offer tempting discount rates and deliver their back to school message properly to the customers.

By now most of the back-to-school campaigns are underway
Nowadays back-to-school campaigns are ubiquitous so you have to stand out and differentiate from the competition so business owners should start planning their marketing campaigns now. Make sure that your marketing campaign features localization, personalization and retargeting.

Companies use multiple marketing channels in order to engage their customers. Without a shadow of a doubt, one of the most effective channel is e-mail. So let’s answer the question: “How should you build your back-to-school season campaign and how will you create those campaigns’ e-mails?”, shall we?

School bells are ringing!
What could online retailers do for back-to-school season?  The early marketing actions will give them a jump on their competition and would encourage people to shop online early because it will save them in the long run and there would be plenty of time for shipping if the retailer starting the ad campaign early enough. So, get to work!

Here are some tips:

Include featured “Back-to-school” buttons to your website:
Back-to-school season is a different period, in this times of year school-specific supplies are being sold. When it comes to e-commerce, websites have products coming out the wazoo. For a person who shops for that very specific period it would be hard to choose school-oriented products among all the other supplies. So open a few doors for those by adding back-to-school buttons. According to the website content you may add different buttons for each brand.

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Create a link between your product and back-to-school season:
Each brand would like to craft their messaging and outreach around seasonality, holidays and events. And back-to-school season is one of the most important seasons for your company to speak up. Offer special seasonal discounts, announce your sale on your website and send campaign e-mails to your customers.

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Offer them coupons:
Back-to-school season is all about sales and the one who calls the shots is the one who offers the best deal. Even if you do not typically have sales – let’s say just like Apple – you might offer special discounted student and education prices for that time of year. It is advised to send campaign emails in time of holidays and special seasons so send discount emails especially in this time of year.

Over 33% of back to school shoppers plan to do at least some of their shopping online this year. 19.6% are shopping online to save money, which means they’re seeking out sales and discounts. Determine your audience who shops for back-to-school season and retarget your products send them e-mails and give them coupons and extra discounts in those e-mails. That will also build a sustainable relationship between your company and your customers.

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Personalize the message, campaign and e-mail content:
If you haven’t launched your back-to-school strategy yet, there’s still time. Start by including things that will capture the attention of students. In other words, do not focus on parents, ask yourself “What do children want?” Because this is exactly what parents do. For example, instead of just listing the prices on pencils and paper (which appeals to parents), include product images from things kids enjoy.

Retargeting is a great way to reach your local audience after they leave your site, by serving display ads featuring photos of back-to-school wares.

Send your customers back-to-school related e-mails. Do not send everyone the same e-mail. Segment your customers and send different e-mails to each different group. Not to mention, use their first names in the subject line. In previous tip we have touched on importance of discount. Combine these two tip and send your customers discount emails with a hint of customization.

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Give them advice:
Be the one who could determine school requirements. Give your customers advices. Offer them the right school bag choice or tell them which shoes are better at school. While doing this do not miss college students. 

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So there we have it: Five little tips to maximize your back to school campaigns. To sum up, back-to-school season is a time of the year when everyone seeks for sales and campaign. Build your back-to-school campaign. Now, you have to let people know. Create banners, pop-ups on your website. Put “back-to-school” buttons to your website. Use social media channels. Be an “omnichannel” retailer. Segment your customers. On your website offer special “back-to-school” deals. Do not only target parents for this time of year but also focus on children in other words, students. Back-to-school shopping is a period, keep in touch with your users/customers in this period and send them customized e-mails. That’s the spirit! With some thoughtful planning now, you’ll be ready to capture all the back-to-school shoppers you can handle.

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