How to Own Halloween with Email Marketing

Halloween is creeping around the corner. And with UK consumers spending an estimated £320 million on Halloween products in 2017, if you’re in eCommerce you can run but you can’t hide.

But which email ingredients do you need in the mix for profits to bubble over this season?
Get your imaginary marketing cauldrons at the ready, as we reveal the recipe for Halloween email success!

Spooky subject lines

Every day your customer’s inbox is brimming with emails screaming for attention. This noise is even more deafening during seasonal celebrations like Halloween.

Your subject line is the sharpest tool you have to grab your customer’s attention. Halloween offers you the opportunity to be daring with subject copy.

But seasonal subject line wordplay can spell trouble if it’s not well thought through. Avoid going crazy with puns for the sake of it. You still need to consider whether your subject line:

  • is easy to read
  • can be understood instantaneously
  • gives the reader a compelling reason to open
  • makes sense for your brand

This subject line from Lands’ End is a killer example: “Last few hours: 31% off your order, ends at the dead of midnight.” Clear, concise, and compelling, it creates a sense of urgency to open now. The subtle copy is seasonal but doesn’t make you moan and roll your eyes.


land's end halloween email example

Creepy creative

Once you’ve tempted customers to open your email, your Halloween creative is your opportunity to entrance them.

Try to think outside of the box and avoid tired stock Halloween imagery — especially if it might not suit your brand. You don’t need to stuff witches, ghosts, and ghouls into every square inch of your email. Instead incorporate subtle elements in a way that stays true to your brand image.

We love this example from Mango Kids. Rather than going off brand, it keeps things simple and stylish, using hand-drawn elements to add a hint of horror.


mango halloween email example


Wicked words

Your email copy and call to action are your tool to compel customers to click. If you’re going to use Halloween-themed language make it crisp, clear, and not too corny.

The words you choose need to help you entice action. They should enhance your message, not dilute it.

This example from Jack Threads gets the balance right. The custom blood-dripping font reinforces the “prices are slashed” copy.

The call to action is engaging and simple. “Enter if you dare” is emotive. It plays with the theme in a way that’s completely functional.


jack threads halloween email

Otherworldly offers

What about Halloween offers? Again, simplicity wins out over attempts to get too clever.

You don’t need to have something Halloween related on sale. You can simply use the Halloween theme as a vehicle in your creative to introduce your latest discounts.

This animated gif from Prep Sportswear is super simple yet playful way to reveal the brand’s new deals. The lights catch the reader’s eye and entice them to click.


Prep Sportsware Halloween Offer Example


Tense timing

Adding a countdown timer to your Halloween email is a sneaky way to create urgency by triggering FOMO (the fear of missing out).

Here’s an example of this tactic in action from RugPadUSA. The countdown timer is prominent, building urgency to buy now as time ticks away.

Notice how low-key the Halloween imagery is — just a few pumpkins on the table in the background image. Just enough to keep with the theme without going off brand.


rugpadusa halloween email

Beastly bundles

If you offer multiple products that could be relevant for Halloween (but perhaps not obviously so) you may want to consider how to bundle them up.

When it comes to Halloween bundles, Superdrug has its offering nailed. The chemist goes in for a glitzy angle on Halloween makeup, which it introduces through email.


superdrug halloween email


When customers click through to the website they are given a range of glamorous Halloween looks to choose from. Each one comes with a how-to video and a list of products to buy to complete the look.


superdrug halloween marketing example


This is a powerful way to add value and increase the number of potential Halloween purchases each customer could make.

Takeaway tricks and treats

So, how do you own Halloween with email marketing? Let’s run over our learnings:

  • Use simple seasonal subject lines that give readers a reason to open.
  • Hint at horror with on-brand Halloween creative — don’t drown your message with stock imagery.
  • Use functional, emotive but subtly themed language in your copy and call to action.
  • Use Halloween creative as a vehicle to introduce your latest offers.
  • Add a countdown timer to your emails to create urgency to buy now.
  • Consider bundling products and showing customers how to create their Halloween look to add value.

Now you’ve unlocked the door to Halloween email marketing success, have fun with it. By the time October 31st is upon us, you’ll be flying.

There’s no magic trick required to implement the tactics we’ve covered. All you need is the right email marketing platform. To see ours in action, book a demo via the button below.

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