Do You Offer Birthday Gifts to Your Email Subscribers?

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So, today is my birthday. And this morning, while I was busy trying to decide whether or not I should work today (I decided to work), I was sifting through my emails and noticed something interesting. I had received a number of “Happy Birthday” messages from various companies whose email lists I’m subscribed to.

So far, I’ve received “Happy Birthday” messages from ING Direct,, EA Games, Flying Saucer, Gugliani’s (a Houston-based Italian restaurant), some local golf courses, and a couple of other companies that I’ve now forgotten.

Each of these emails contained a special birthday offer from the company. These ranged from coupons for a certain percentage off my next purchase to free gifts (I get a free pint the next time I go to Flying Saucer!).

All of this got me thinking. I wonder how many companies offer birthday gifts to their subscribers. The messages certainly got my attention because they stood out greatly from the regular commercial emails I’m used to receiving. And I’ve already taken advantage of a few of the special birthday offers I’ve been receiving (I can’t resist a free round of golf!).

But beyond earning my business, these companies helped to further build their relationships with me. The simple act of telling me “Happy Birthday” added a personal touch to their email marketing efforts, and it made me feel like they valued me as a customer.

If you’re interested in sending birthday emails to your subscribers, there are a few things you should do.


  • Capture this info at opt-in—Encourage users to put their date of birth in the opt-in form when they sign up for your email list. Let them know they’ll receive a special birthday offer for doing so.
  • Personalize your message—While the jury is still out on the effectiveness of personalized commercial emails, there’s no doubt that the birthday email is certainly the right time and place for personalization. Address the birthday recipient by name and wish them a happy birthday.
  • Make them an offer they can’t refuse—A birthday offer should be better than the typical offers you send to subscribers week in and week out. It needs to feel like something truly special to the recipient, otherwise they won’t convert.


Do you send birthday offers to your email subscribers?


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