5 emails you need to be sending in 2021

5 Marketing Emails You Need to be Sending in 2021

By | Mail Designer 365 Newsletter Academy

The start of a new year offers you a clean slate and a chance to start looking at your email strategy. With email trends changing so quickly, the last year alone has presented tons of new ideas for emails which you can easily adopt into your own plan.

P.S. Have you got your hands on our 2021 Marketing Calendar and Email Campaign Planner yet? Get yours free here to ensure perfect email planning for 2021.

2021 marketing calendar and campaign planner

In this post, we’re showcasing 5 must-have marketing emails  for 2021, plus tips on how to recreate them for your own business.

5 Marketing Emails You Need to be Sending in 2021

Freshen up your email strategy right in time for the New Year! Here are 5 inspiring ideas for marketing emails you need to be sending in 2021. Discover examples ranging from automated mailings to standalone campaigns…

1. Abandoned Browse Emails

We all know of the abandoned cart email, but the abandoned browse email takes things one step further. With online shopping becoming a significant part of consumers’ everyday lives, your automated sales workflow needs to be taken up a notch.

This abandoned browse email by Vivienne Westwood packs a punch and catches the reader’s attention by reminding them about products they’ve recently viewed. Adding a “you may also like” section gives the customer even more relevant purchase options and can help tempt them back to your online store for another look:

Abandoned browse automated email by Vivienne Westwood

Abandoned browse emails go the extra mile for boosting online sales.

What to consider:

  • Timing: Don’t wait too long to send these emails, as you risk the customer losing interest or finding an alternative elsewhere.
  • Design: A bold CTA (call-to-action) leading to the product page plus eye-catching product images really are all you need.
  • Subject line: Mention the product in the subject line or use an emoji to quickly pique interest.
Abandoned browse email in Mail Designer 365

You can easily adapt Mail Designer 365’s “Abandoned Cart” email template for an abandoned browse message.

Get this template here.

2. Milestone Emails

Whether it’s an anniversary, a significant event, or you’ve reached a key goal  – sending milestone emails is a great way to celebrate achievements and special occasions with your customers.

Your subscribers opted into your email list because they have a genuine interest in your business. Keeping your subscribers up to date on exciting business milestones gives them a look behind the scenes and makes your brand seem more relatable.

In this email by Casper, the brand celebrate their 2nd birthday milestone with subscribers. As well as a fun design, the email is also great as customers are offered an exclusive $22 discount in celebration of their business anniversary:

Anniversary email by Casper

Casper use email to celebrate a key milestone by offering customers an exclusive discount.

Here are some more examples of milestones you could celebrate in 2021:

  • Donation milestones – $X raised for your charity
  • Product milestones – X years of your product
  • Customer milestones – X customers served / signed up to your service

All of these milestones could be used as an exciting email promotion, or a simple thank you email to customers.

3. Feedback Emails

Obtaining true, honest customer feedback is majorly important for businesses of all shapes and sizes. Knowing what makes your customers tick, and understanding their habits and preferences allows you to optimise your strategy for them.

Putting together an email survey that readers will respond to is a fine art and takes a lot of trial and error. However, when the valuable feedback starts rolling in, the hard work will certainly pay off.

In this feedback email by Campaign Monitor, customers are given a massive incentive to take part, in the form of a $20 gift card. They are also super transparent in advising how long the survey will take, and make sure to thank their customers in advance:

Feedback email by Campaign Monitor

This feedback email by Campaign Monitor is super inviting.

Other incentives for taking part could include:

  • Holding a giveaway
  • A discount code for their next purchase
  • A free gift
Customer survey email template in Mail Designer 365

This personalised template gets straight to the point and offers readers an incentive to take part in the survey – exclusively available in Mail Designer 365

Get this template here.

4. Digest Emails

Content marketing is on the rise and more and more businesses are using email to showcase their latest content.

Whether it’s a run down of your recent Instagram posts, a selection of relevant blogs, useful infographics or guides – sharing great content with your subscribers is an effective way to drive engagement and increase website traffic.

Wedding website service The Knot regularly share relevant blog content with their customers via email. The emails always come with an intriguing subject line and carefully curated content which is guaranteed to speak to the recipient and get them clicking through to their website:

Content marketing newsletter by The Knot

Using email to share relevant blog posts with subscribers can help drive website traffic.

What to consider:

  • Structure: Include a mix of images, article headlines and teaser text to make your posts more appealing – Mail Designer 365 has an array of practical layout options for this.
  • Call to action: Entice subscribers to continue reading your post, watch your video, download your eBook, etc. with a bold CTA button.

5. Online Event Invitation Emails

2020 was undeniably the year that online events really took off; with businesses becoming more and more open to digital events, including webinars, online live classes, virtual conferences and trade fairs, and “Zoom parties”.

If your business is looking to branch into the world of online events in 2021, you need to incorporate this into your marketing strategy. Sending online event invitation emails is a smart and efficient way to make subscribers aware of what you have coming up. It also provides them with a useful reference of all the key details.

In this email invitation by Litmus, recipients are shown the basics which will be covered in the webinar and the date and time it’s scheduled to take place. A vibrant feature image showing the special guests is another way to quickly draw in potential participants:

Webinar invitation by Litmus

Litmus tick all the right boxes with this informative and stylish webinar invitation email.

What to consider:

  • Email copy: Keep this short and sweet. Discuss the main details of the event and what participants should expect.
  • Call-to-action: Use a bold, central CTA button to give readers an easy way to sign up for your event.
  • Branding: The event is all about you and your business. Include typical brand assets like your logo and signature typeface.
Mail Designer 365 template for online events

This email template offers a stylish layout to list the key details and selling points of your online event – exclusively available in Mail Designer 365

Get this template here.

Give your email strategy an upgrade for 2021

We hope these emails have given you some inspiration for your 2021 planning. Don’t forget to secure your free marketing calendar and campaign planner for 2021!

Mail Designer 365 has all the creative tools you need to build amazing HTML emails on your Mac. For a full overview of all ready-to-send HTML email templates, check out our online gallery!

Don’t have a Mail Designer 365 plan yet? Try it today for free!

Until next time,

Your Mail Designer 365 Team

Get started with Mail Designer 365 today

Start your 7 day free trial and use your Mac to create stylish email newsletters for your business.

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Your 2021 Marketing Calendar – Key Dates and Events for 2021

By | Mail Designer 365 Newsletter Academy

It’s no secret that a good email marketer always needs to be two steps ahead in terms of planning. Having your email content mapped out is a good way to stay motivated and reach your marketing goals.

With this in mind, now is a great time to start looking at your email marketing plan for 2021. When deciding on your campaign ideas for the year, it’s useful to have a clear overview of all key events taking place over the next 12 months. This will help you create email content which is relevant and interesting to your target audience.

We’ve created some handy resources to help you get started with your email marketing planning for 2021, available for you to download free:

  • Digital weekly email campaign planner – with important dates marked and space for planning your upcoming email campaigns
  • Email marketing calendar – printable 2021 email marketing calendar packed with all key dates

Enter your email address below to get these 2021 marketing resources delivered directly to your inbox.

Download your 2021 marketing calendar and planner

2021 marketing calendar and campaign planner

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Make the most of your free resources:

Once you have downloaded your free 2021 marketing calendar, you can skim through all the most important dates, holidays and sales periods coming up in 2021. Use these dates and any others you want to include to fill out your  2021 email campaign planner.

Throughout the year, you can carry on noting down todos, campaign ideas, important links, etc. and keep track of all your campaign planning in one useful document. We’ve already provided you with some useful links to help you get started.

How to get started with your first campaign

  1. Build your email newsletter using the creative tools in Mail Designer 365.
  2. Upload design drafts to Mail Designer 365 Approval to get feedback and ideas from your team members.
  3. Once your team has approved your campaign, you can go ahead and export directly to use with your ESP.

Want more inspiration for 2021? Keep reading to discover more unique marketing opportunities your business can get involved in this year…

12 BONUS dates that you need in your 2021 marketing calendar 

Every year has those key marketing dates that a marketer can’t do without, such as Valentine’s Day, Halloween, “Black Friday”, etc. What really sets your business apart from the rest is getting involved with unique holidays and events that keep your campaigns fresh and interesting to your target audience.

Here’s a monthly breakdown of exciting events coming up in 2021 that you can adapt for your own creative campaigns.

January 18th – Blue Monday

Officially named the most depressing day of the year, Blue Monday always falls on the third Monday in January. As marketers, you can be clever and do your best to take advantage of this otherwise miserable day and give your customers something to smile about.

Make your customers smile on Blue Monday with a cheerful email campaign.

February 12th – Chinese New Year begins

As almost 20% of the world’s population, China accounts for a huge proportion of the world market. This makes it super important for any business operating globally or in the Asian market to recognise Chinese culture in their marketing efforts. 2021 marks the year of the ox and incorporating this special event into your email strategy is a great way to stay relevant and respectful of this key cultural event.

Get more tips for celebrating Chinese New Year in this blog post.

Chinese New Year is a huge occasion for millions of people around the world.

March 8th – International Women’s Day

International Women’s Day is a great opportunity for you to celebrate your female customers and colleagues. A marketing campaign giving back to women’s charities or simply an email recognising the day would be a highly effective way to show women your appreciation.

Celebrating International Women’s Day shows your business appreciates and values women of all kinds.

April 22nd – Earth Day

This Earth Day, celebrate the great outdoors with your subscribers and highlight the importance of environmental conservation. No matter how big or small, everyone can do their part. Whether its abolishing plastic bags and paper receipts, pledging to be carbon neutral, bringing out a sustainable product range or sharing tips with your subscribers – your business should definitely get involved.

Earth Day is an extremely important movement that your business should be part of in 2021.

May 21st – International Tea Day

Tea has great cultural significance in many countries throughout the world. Celebrating International Tea Day with your subscribers may sound a little bit obscure, but it’s bound to be a breath of fresh air in their inboxes. This date is of course key for anyone selling tea in a restaurant or cafe setting, but also a smart occasion to promote a homeware range, share tea recipes, or simply to show support for tea farmers around the world.

International Tea Day falls on May 21st this year.

June 19th – Juneteenth

Juneteenth is a celebration of the emancipation of slaves in Galveston, Texas in 1865, following the end of the Civil War. Although not yet considered an official national holiday, this day has incredible meaning to African Americans throughout the USA. On this day, many communities throw parties, festivals and parades to celebrate the end of slavery. Learn more.

Particularly for businesses in the US, let your business pay homage to this special day by sending out a commemorative email, or going one step further and donating to an anti racism organisation.

Black lives matter. Show your subscribers you care by supporting the movement and recognising Juneteenth.

July 30th – International Day of Friendship

Celebrate the power of friendship on the International Day of Friendship. This holiday is a unique occasion to promote gifting and sharing and could be a fitting date for a 2 for 1 sale, a referral scheme or a great time to hold a virtual friendship event.

The International Day of Friendship is a universal celebration your business can also get on board with.

August 8th – International Cat Day

Cats are an internet sensation and a funny cat meme or video can be the ideal addition to liven up an otherwise standard email campaign. Of course, if your business is related to cats in any way, or you are a cat charity, then this is also a very important date for your diary.

Stuck on ideas? Try incorporating our feline friends into your campaigns in August for International Cat Day!

September 29th – International Children’s Day

International Children’s Day can also be a nice occasion for an email campaign. Try holding a sale on kids clothing, toys, books, etc. and donating the proceeds to a children’s charity, or maybe running a special “kids eat free event” at your cafe or restaurant.

An email campaign celebrating children fits perfectly with International Children’s Day.

October 10th – World Mental Health Day

The importance of taking care of your mental health is something which is being emphasised more and more. World Mental Health Day allows your business to use your platform to raise awareness.

You could run a social media campaign inspiring people to open up and support one another, or set up a charitable campaign encouraging donations to leading mental health organisations. Alternatively, sharing tips and resources on dealing with common mental health problems is another useful way your business can help show support.

Mental health is a huge topic and your business has the chance to raise awareness on World Mental Health Day.

November 11th – Singles Day

Originating in China, Singles’ Day is a day dedicated to celebrating single people and is now massively growing in popularity. Many businesses use this as an opportunity to offer discounts and great deals to their customers. In particular, this holiday is popular with younger people in China, the UK and the USA.

The new “Black Friday”? Singles Day is an unmissable sales event for your business in 2021.

December 6th – St Nicholas Day

St Nicholas Day is a Christian celebration based on the origins of Father Christmas. The holiday is celebrated in many countries throughout Europe, including France, Germany and Belgium, and provides a chance for your business to get super festive in early December. Especially if you have a big target audience in Europe, holding a sale or special event around this time could be a great warm up for Christmas.

Celebrate St. Nicholas Day in the run up to Christmas.

Getting started with Email Marketing in 2021

We hope we have given you some ideas and inspiration for your 2021 marketing calendar. Alongside the regular holidays and events in your planner, these events should give you some fresh and interesting new subject matter to create engaging emails with in 2021.

Don’t forget to register your email address below to access our free resources for your 2021 marketing calendar. The extensive email campaign planner and downloadable events calendar are both completely free and a great way for you to get your campaigns organised this year.

Need help building awesome email templates to use with your campaigns? Check out Mail Designer 365. Sign up free today to discover all the Design Ideas, creative tools and resources you need to create amazing emails in 2021…

Until next time,
Your Mail Designer 365 Team

Get started with Mail Designer 365 today

Start your 7 day free trial and use your Mac to create stylish email newsletters for your business in 2021.

No credit card required
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Creating Email Campaigns for Giving Tuesday – Ideas and Best Practice

By | Mail Designer 365 Newsletter Academy

In the run up to the holidays, it’s easy for businesses to get carried away with sales campaigns and promotional emails. Creating a Giving Tuesday email campaign is one good way to give your subscribers a break from sales-heavy content, while also demonstrating your company’s values.

This guide covers all you need to know about Giving Tuesday emails, including campaign ideas, best practice tips, and real examples from big name brands.

What is Giving Tuesday?

Giving Tuesday is a relatively new concept that was founded in 2012 and is described as a “global generosity movement.” The day encourages participants – whether businesses or regular citizens – to give back and help others.

Giving Tuesday logo

Although founded in the USA, Giving Tuesday is now celebrated in participating countries worldwide, including the UK, Germany, Brazil, India, Australia and Canada – making it a fantastic cause for your business to get involved with.

When is Giving Tuesday?

Giving Tuesday falls annually on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving, which makes it a great event to add to your holiday marketing calendar to break up your sales campaigns.

Ideas for Giving Tuesday Email Campaigns

Depending on the size and nature of your business, there are plenty of campaign ideas you can try out for Giving Tuesday. Here are five great ideas for Giving Tuesday campaigns plus examples from big name brands.

1. Run a promotion

One of the simplest ways to get involved with Giving Tuesday is by running a promotion for a good cause. Instead of presenting this as a typical sales promotion, be sure to emphasise the fact that your proceeds will be going to charity or a similar good cause.

Strategy tip: Hold an exclusive extended Black Friday/Cyber Monday sale and pledge X% of your profits to a charity. You could also choose a particular product and pledge all profits to the cause.

Giving Tuesday email campaign by Casper

Casper use a promotion on their mattresses to give back to a good cause.

Giving Tuesday promotion by J Crew

J Crew also ran a similar promotion on coats to support those in need during the winter season.

2. Partner up with a charity

This concept may take more planning but can certainly be worthwhile. Partnering up with a charity to release a limited edition product or hold a special event (virtual or physical) is another great way your business can use your platform to give back.

Strategy tip: Inform customers about your new partnership by sending a dedicated email a few weeks before the actual launch. You can also prepare a PR and raise awareness on social media to reach even more people. By the time your event tickets or product go on sale, there will already be a buzz surrounding the launch.

Giving Tuesday campaign by ONA

Camera strap brand ONA partnered up with charity: water to create a limited edition product.

3. Donation matching

Donation matching is another great way to raise awareness of a key cause. Use your email newsletter to encourage customers to donate to a chosen cause by pledging to match their donations.

Strategy tip: Include a section in your newsletter explaining why you’ve chosen this particular cause. This will help inspire more readers to donate and give your campaign a more personal touch.

Giving Tuesday email by Patagonia

Patagonia encourage customers to support a good cause with this donation matching campaign.

4. Rounding up to the nearest $/£/€

This is also a good technique to motivate your customers to take action. Encourage customers to round their purchase up to the nearest $/£/€ so you can donate the extra “tip” to a charity of your choice.

Strategy tip: Make the CTA (call-to-action) on your website super appealing so that customers can’t resist donating that little extra. You could also try building in a counter to show how much you’ve raised so far to inspire more people to get involved.

Giving Tuesday campaign by Lyft

Lyft highlighted two good causes to support with their Round Up & Donate campaign.

5. Give back to your local community

Particularly for small businesses, an awareness campaign is also a great idea. Helping out the local community by promoting worthy causes and encouraging customers to donate or volunteer is also an effective way to show support.

Strategy tip: As well as mentioning them in your email newsletter, you can also use your social media platforms to point out key causes such as food banks, homeless shelters, and hospitals which may be in need this holiday season. Of course, if you are able to do so, you can also combine this with any of the above ideas for maximum impact.

What to Include in Your Giving Tuesday Emails

The #GivingTuesday tag and logo

Giving Tuesday is a global movement that is growing each year. If you are running your campaign as part of the movement, it’s a good idea to stand in solidarity and show this in your emails. This instantly makes the appeal more familiar to recipients.

The GivingTuesday website has a selection of logos you can use if you’re getting involved in the movement.

Powerful imagery

A picture speaks a thousand words. Whether it’s a moving photo, or a touching illustration, including powerful imagery in your email design is a guaranteed way to convey your message clearly.

Incorporate a bold headline to create a strong feature graphic that really shows readers the meaning of your Giving Tuesday campaign.

Giving Tuesday campaign by PayPal

PayPal use a simple yet strong header graphic to encourages donations in this campaign.


Using name placeholders in your subject line and email body is a great technique to make your appeal more personal and make the recipient feel directly addressed.

Not only does this help to capture the reader’s attention faster, it’s also an effective way to appeal to them on a one-to-one basis and encourage more support.

Real life stories

Another way to strengthen your appeal is by including real life stories from the group you are trying to help. Again, this helps you connect with the recipient on a more personal level and makes your campaign more relatable.

Incorporating stories from people in need, or success stories of people who’ve been helped by your chosen charity helps you convey the importance of your cause.

Giving Tuesday campaign by Charity: Water

This email campaign by Charity: Water shares an encouraging success story with recipients.

A heartfelt call to action

Your call to action (CTA) is what signposts your recipients to your main campaign action. This could be a link to a donation page, your sale’s landing page, or a blog post raising awareness.

Whatever your CTA is, make this clear in your email by using actionable, emotive text. If you are using a button, it’s also good practice to choose a bold color that stands out well against the rest of your email design. Here are a few ideas:

  • Give back today
  • Support the movement
  • Donate now
  • Help the cause

We hope reading this post has inspired you to join in with Giving Tuesday this year. Creating a campaign for a good cause is your chance to give back to the community and show customers you care.

Until next time,

Your Mail Designer 365 Team

Get started with Mail Designer 365 today

Start your 7 day free trial and use your Mac to create stylish email newsletters for your business.

No credit card required
OS X 10.11 – macOS Big Sur