As we enter this incredibly competitive sales period, our inboxes are going to get noisier and noisier. But this doesn’t mean that it isn’t worth doing email marketing at this time of year—quite the opposite.

Email drives highly qualified traffic during the Christmas period. In fact, if you were to use only one marketing channel during the holiday season then it should definitely be email.

The key to standing out and making the most of your email is to avoid sending generic offers and messaging to everyone in your database. This is a wasted opportunity.

Every email subscriber has their own personality, motivations and preferences and so segmentation is absolutely essential if you want to stand out this Christmas.

We know database segmentation can seem daunting – there are so many ways to slice up a database, right? That’s why we’ve created some personas that reflect how people buy over the festive period for you to use.

Here are five buyer personas to email this Christmas:

New Visitors

Your festive email strategy shouldn’t focus solely on generating traffic from existing subscribers. This is a key opportunity to grow your email lists and to nurture these people through the sales funnel.

Capture their details with well positioned sign-up forms or overlays. When used well, overlays have been known to help marketers increase email subscriptions by up to 300 percent. Incentivise new visitors to subscribe by using tempting additional discounts as your call to action.

Don’t forget to use welcome emails to nurture them towards a sale after they sign-up.


christmas email sign up form


This is someone who has had a look around your site and was tempted enough to subscribe to your emails but they haven’t purchased from you yet.

You can encourage them to purchase by targeting them based on their browsing behaviour. If they’ve been looking at specific products or within particular categories of your site, target them with emails recommending these products.

You may also want to target them with offers on their first purchase. This might be a discount or free delivery, for example.

Creating a sense of urgency within these emails may also be useful with this persona. Urgency is a tried and tested method of compelling people to act, from clicking a link to making a purchase. Do this by giving your offers deadlines and using countdown timers within the top of your emails to really emphasise that time is running out.

The key thing to consider with this persona is your expectations. Depending on your business, are they realistically going to purchase multiple different products in their first order? Or is it more realistic to focus marketing efforts on tempting them over the line with one purchase?

Finally, you may want to consider sending them an email asking how you might be able to assist them today. Team this with useful information which might include FAQs, your top selling items or instructions on how to get in contact.


These are your most loyal customers. They purchase from you time and time again. So when the festive period comes around, it’s a nice opportunity to reward their loyalty and ensure they know their custom is valued.

You can do this by giving them early access to your Black Friday, Cyber Monday and post-Christmas sales. In the example below, Bodyshop make their VIPs feel special by giving them early sale access and offering a discount on items that aren’t normally included within sales.


2. Body shop VIP - festive marketing guide

You should have a wealth of data on frequent buyers. This might include product preferences such as size, colour, brands or trends, or their past purchase history. Whatever data you have, use it to create highly targeted festive campaigns with relevant product messages.

Discount chasers

These people are driven by the idea of bagging a bargain. They are unlikely to become loyal customers but they will purchase when sale time comes around. Cater for their price-driven nature by ensuring they know all about your sale promotions. Influence their fear of missing out with countdown timers that show when your promotions end.

Lapsed customers

These are the customers who purchased with you a long time ago and have stopped interacting with your emails. They’re in need of some TLC and the festive season gives you the perfect opportunity to create a timely and relevant message.

Christmas is an emotive time of year so up your festive spirit and offer them a discount to tempt them back. And make sure you explain the benefits of returning to purchase from you. Think about your unique selling points—what makes you different from other brands? uses emotive language like ‘really miss you’ and ‘want to help’ and ‘welcome back’ when reaching out to their customers at this time of year.


3. - festive marketing guide



Now you have five personas to help segment your email database and create tailored Christmas emails for. Prioritise your approach to these in accordance with your overall marketing objectives for the festive season.

For further information on how to improve your marketing approach this Christmas, check out our festive marketing guide below.

How to Create a Killer Festive Marketing Strategy. Get the guide.