Since Black Friday, I’ve received approximately 250 emails from various stores, online shops and daily deals sites all trying to win my business this holiday season. I bet your inbox is in similar shape.

(Hopefully, if you’re like me, you’ve filtered all your shopping emails to a special folder to avoid the temptation to shop, shop, shop every time a new email hits your inbox.)


In between all the coupon codes, hyperbolic sales tactics and compelling headlines just begging you to click “open” and pull out your wallet, I’ve actually come across some pretty strategic brands infusing creative content marketing into their holiday sales efforts.

Let’s take a look at some of the best.

1. Interactive shopping + an awesome celebrity endorsement. Kate Spade is a brand quickly winning my heart, not only because their products are fabulous, but also because their marketing is on-point. The popular brand recently worked with celeb Anna Kendrick to produce an entertaining two-minute video. Here’s the catch: throughout the video, consumers can click on items they like (obviously Kate Spade products are strategically placed throughout the video) and when the video ends, a personal boutique of what you clicked will be waiting for you. Genius! Not only am I entertained by the video, now I’ve clicked on tons of items I want and may consider purchasing. In addition, Kate Spade is also providing holiday decor tips, behind-the-scenes videos and more, keeping you on their page even longer with useful information.

2. The upsell. This weekend I’m heading to Longwood Gardens to admire the Christmas lights and explore the well-known Pennsylvania holiday hot spot. I purchased my tickets a couple of weeks ago, but received an email with the subject line, “Make the Most of Your Longwood Christmas Visit” last night. The email features nine useful tips for visiting Longwood, including an upsell to make a reservation at their on-site restaurant. I had no idea Longwood even had a restaurant, so not only did the destination provide me helpful information for my upcoming visit, they also have me thinking about spending more money and dining there too.

3. Connecting shopping to a major event. You may have seen the buzz earlier this week about the annual Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show. A few days before the show aired, I received a marketing email from the brand encouraging me to watch the show and use the hashtags #VSFashionShow and #TweetForATreat to get free exclusive Fashion Show sketches. Of course below this fun promotion were several other carefully-placed marketing messages with links to coupons, special offers and more. Naturally, Victoria’s Secret wants you to click around, get lost on their site and hopefully add lots of items to your cart. The brand leveraged the opportunity to not only promote their TV event, but also sell more product through their strategic messaging.

Think about the number of emails you have in your inbox right now. Your options are endless when it comes to the purchases you can make. Marketers need to get more and more creative to cut through the noise, especially when it comes to competitive holiday shopping and these brands are doing it right with  content marketing.

Jessica Lawlor is a public relations professional and freelance writer in the Philadelphia area. Her work has been published on Ragan’s PR Daily, Muck Rack, Brazen Careerist, Mediabistro, Business Insider and AOL Jobs. She blogs at JessicaLawlor.com about getting gutsy- stepping outside your comfort zone to reach your goals and live a life that makes you truly happy. Connect with her on Twitter.