5 Things You Need to Know for a Profitable Black Friday Campaign

marketing strategy

Black Friday presents a unique opportunity to send out marketing materials to your client list.

Since it is the kick off to the holiday shopping season people are expecting deals and steals and marketing from you.  The only way this might back fire is if you have OVER MARKETED to them already. IF you send a weekly sale day, this may well be a big fat flop for you if your client list is used to getting “deals”.

These tips are going to help you get your emails opened, keep them OUT of the spam folder and get your customers excited about what you have to offer on Black Friday as well as Cyber Monday (the biggest online shopping day of the year!).

I’ll be giving an example of an email campaign I have been sending out since 2007 (yes I have been an email marketing nerd for a long time) with some tips and tweaks for social networking as well.



Black Friday Tips for Small Businesses

1. Start early

2022 Update: Black Friday started for the big box stores in October! It's perfectly ok for you to jump in now, but take the tips from this post and apply them the way you feel YOUR followers would want.  My suggestion for 2022 is to throw out a BIG offer now and also have some bundles ready for Black Friday and Cyber Monday. This is a strategy adjustment from previous years. It is entirely possible that buyers will have BF Fatigue by Thanksgiving!

Begin your black Friday email campaign the first week of November.  It is just to let your list know what is coming. You may think this is an unnecessary step, but be warned, if you skip this step you will not see the same results as those who give their email list AMPLE time to get in on the excitement and FRENZY you are creating.  Plus, it gives people a few chances to actually click into your emails.

NOTE it is full of CONTENT and the first mention of Black Friday is not until the P.S. at the END!!!

Your first email might look something like this:

Hi, Sue (use their name ALWAYS)

Can you believe that the holiday season is upon us already?  This year I am going to be AHEAD of the game! I tell myself this every year, do you?

Here are some links to some really great sites that I plan on using to get myself READY this year.  I thought you might like them as well:

Here you are going to LINK to some websites, facebook pages or blogs that you have found by doing a Google Search for various things like holiday organizing, decorating, give giving, or DIY gifts. [The important thing is for your links to be of interest to your followers. Not just any ol' link will do. Here's where all that work you did figuring out your dream client will come in!]

I hope you enjoy these and if you have any tried and true tips of your own I’d love it if you’d come share them with us on my Facebook/ Instagram page! (LINK here)


Your Name

P.S.  I’m doing an OVER-THE-TOP promotion for Black Friday, be on the look out for an email from me with the details next week.

P.P.S. My followers will get a few EXTRA goodies so be sure to follow me!(LINK here)


2. Keep out of the SPAM box

There are lots of words that trigger you as spam so you are going to try to SEVERELY limit or not use them at all.


deeply discounted

% off


Go here for a complete list of 100 words and phrases to avoid in your emails.

There are a few ‘tricks’ that can help such as spacing out the word ‘free’  like this F*R*E*E or like this f.ree, using other words such as ‘no cost’.

Better yet, get a book like Words That Sell by Richard Bayan (not an affiliate link) to help you craft dramatic emails that erupt with invaluable and dynamic content that no one could refuse! (Can you tell I used the book to help me craft that sentence?)


3. Make it worthwhile

No one wants a dinky little sale on Black Friday. 

You CAN hold your sale BEFORE Black Friday. The Monday of Thanksgiving is the START of the shopping.  Although it seems to start earlier and earlier each year. Don't miss out by waiting until Black Friday, Small Business Saturday or even Cyber Monday.

2022 update:  Amazon,Target and Walmart started their sales in October to jump start the selling season and haven't looked back. Black Friday is no longer the day after Thanksgiving. Don't let the big guys box you and your business out of your slice of the shopping frenzy pie!

Shoot a quick email to your list (you DO have a list right?) and/or post to your social media sites (not just Facebook) letting them know about your "Better than Black Friday" offer.  It might be a BOGO, a ridiculous gift with purchase over $100... you get the idea. A $20 gift card with no exceptions and no limits...yes, that means someone could only purchase $20 worth and get it free. (Be sure you spell out that if they spend less than $20 they do NOT get money back!)

I didn't used to get up at 4:00am for a 20% off sale and your email list isn’t going to get excited about your promotion if it stinks.  It will be up to you to figure out how you can best REWARD your customers for being loyal and spending their hard earned money with you.  That may mean you have to give some ‘freebies’ if your company does not allow you to discount things.


Make it BIG, make it EXCITING and make them want YOU and your sale!

For right now today, you don’t have to KNOW what you are going to be promoting, just get out there and send off the first email alerting them to your promotion that is coming…  This is the START of the FRENZY!!  

2022 update: as stated above, you can most certainly start your promotion early. The benefit of this previous strategy is that you are warming your following up to the big sale. You know them best, would they want something now or to build up to it later?



4. Make it chock full of good, relevant content:



5. Don’t be afraid of the unsubscribes

Yes, it will happen.  If you are going to be sending out weekly emails until November 25th you might see that people begin to unsubscribe to your newsletter.

This used to totally send me for a loop.  I took each and every one of them as a big FAT rejection.  Then, I realized that if they were taking themselves OFF my list they were stupid NOT my target market.  MY target market LOVES to hear from me, sits on the edge of their seat for my next email and can not wait to spend money with me!!!  Let them go, don’t take it personal and just KNOW that you are making your list into one that truly wants what you have to offer.

Feel free to email me if you need a little moral support.  😀

6. Understand WHY a Black Friday S.a.l.e. is going to HELP your biz

Sometimes you might not get the results you want out of a big promotion like this.  If your client list is small, if you have done nothing in the past months to engage with them or if your promotion is not amazing, you might not have a $1000 sale day.  It’s all good. Let me tell you why. You will have done MORE in the last 3 weeks to get your name in front of them again. Go YOU!

Doing something to stay in front of your customers is FAR better than doing nothing!!



Do you think you might try a Black Friday sale this year?  Need ideas? Shoot me a question, I'm happy to help!