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Here’s what a multimillion-dollar email looks like

A world leader in luxury spa vacations, Canyon Ranch drove some seriously impressive multimillion-dollar sales activity from their Cyber Monday email campaign. Here’s a look at how they did it.

Creating a winning Cyber Monday campaign

In the months leading up to Cyber Monday, Canyon Ranch Global Director of Marketing Cyndy Neighbors tasked Joshua Surridge, corporate digital marketing strategist, with developing a solid email marketing plan to make the most of the biggest online sales day of the year.

“The biggest challenge for us is that Canyon Ranch only has one product to promote on Cyber Monday: a gift card. For every $500 gift card you purchase, you receive $100 in services vouchers," said Josh.

Figuring out the best way to make a big splash with their offer required a lot of creative brainstorming and expertise, so Josh turned to Emma’s Services Team for an extra hand.

"The collaboration between us and the Emma team was phenomenal. Elizabeth provided guidance on what was technically possible with our account. Then, I worked one-on-one with Hillary on implementing our ideas for Cyber Monday.”

Using smart segmentation to send more targeted messages

Canyon Ranch understands the importance of creating a personal experience for their guests. Customized wellness packages are what the brand is renowned for, so they wanted to carry that same approach into their marketing efforts.

“Each person who visits one of our resorts is looking for a unique experience, so treating our email campaigns in a similar manner – with the understanding that subscribers have different needs – was a natural extension of that,” said Josh. "Offering a targeted, personalized experience is what our subscribers expect of us."

And with personalized, relevant email driving 6x greater transaction rates (Experian), it’s a strategy that pays off.

“Segmentation was the primary generator of revenue in this campaign – not only could we speak differently to the various segments we created, but we increased our bandwidth significantly by utilizing both our internal marketing team and our friends at Emma. Plus, everything was scheduled in advance."

The team segmented Canyon Ranch subscribers using data ranging from geographic location to purchase history.

“As leaders in the wellness space for nearly 40 years, Canyon Ranch has cultivated a large and diverse list of subscribers. We recognized that speaking to them all the same way wouldn’t be effective. So we started by segmenting out people who had bought gift cards from us in the past and took it from there. Some people got our Cyber Monday deals ahead of everybody else due to their loyalty, while others got different mailings based on the wellness resort that is most interesting to them."

Delivering email at just the right moment (and sometimes not at all)

Canyon Ranch also paid special attention to the pacing of their mailings.

“Leading up to Cyber Monday, we sent out several ‘Cyber Monday is back for Canyon Ranch’ emails to tease the deal. After that, when everyone else was promoting Black Friday, we just tried to connect with people and remind them why they love Canyon Ranch without plugging the offer too much. Then, when we got into the weekend, we turned up the heat because we felt we had earned the right to ask them to buy the gift cards. And we sent three different mailings on the actual day itself."

All of those mailings were a lot to juggle at once, so Hillary suggested the team create a sub-account just for their Cyber Monday mailings. "Using a sub-account for an intensive campaign like this was a fantastic suggestion,” Josh noted. “There ended up being approximately 30 emails and 200,000 highly qualified contacts we were sending to. Intermingling that kind of volume with our regular mailings would have created plenty of unnecessary headaches.”

But what about those subscribers who are fans of Canyon Ranch, but had no interest in the Cyber Monday offer? Josh had a brilliant idea: a mute button that would allow individuals to opt out from just the Cyber Monday emails.

"We wanted to be very transparent that, look, if you don’t want to be bothered by these emails, we don’t want to risk losing you from our entire email ecosystem. So that’s where we came up with the mute button, and it ended up saving us hundreds of subscribers."

The results: A multi-million dollar email campaign

After all their hard work, the campaign absolutely killed it: Canyon Ranch pulled in a record number of sales on Cyber Monday.

And Josh was quick to point to the awesome teamwork that made it happen.

“Emma's Services Team really positioned themselves as an extension of our team. They did the work to find out who WE are, because every brand has its own complexities. We appreciated their interest in us, because being a good listener is part of good service. Then, when we were successful, I could tell they felt successful, too! They increased our team’s capabilities at a low cost, especially when you consider the alternative labor expenses of hiring another employee. At the end of the day, we could see how much value they added to our team, and we couldn’t be more pleased."