Monday, 19 March 2012

Mother’s Day emails we love

The other day I happened across the Xbox Live dashboard and noticed its Mother’s Day gift ideas. For the uninitiated, Xbox Live is the Microsoft console’s online service. It is accessible via the console itself or through the website. The service enables subscribers to access and download demos of the latest games, rent or buy HD movies, and interact with the various apps Microsoft has partnered with.

Curious to find out what Xbox recommends we buy mum this Sunday, I found its selection rather uninspired—dominated by cheesy romcoms and casual puzzle games. Clearly, Xbox doesn’t think mums would enjoy a spot of Modern Warfare.

It’s easy to fall into the stereotyping trap at Mother’s Day, so here are a few offers from retailers that thought a little out of the box this year, and made my list of favourite emails.

1. Astley Clarke
Subject line: 12 ways to get Mother's Day right plus Free Delivery
Why we love it: Have you ever bought your mum—or wife—something practical and really regretted it? We’ve all been there. New jewellery trumps a kitchen gadget every time and online jeweller Astley Clarke has done well to capitalise on this. The subject line is attention-grabbing and “plus free delivery” is always a winner. I also like the personal touch. When I clicked through from the email I discovered that the 12 items were handpicked by founder Bec Astley Clarke, who just had her second child and is in “full Mother’s Day swing this year”. Bec Astley Clarke has also, rather helpfully, picked items to suit all budgets, from a sterling silver small locket at £85 to the 18-carat yellow gold amethyst ring for £895.

Astley Clarke

2. Firebox
Subject line: Thanks Mum
Why we love it: Firebox just seems to get me. References to Terminator and Alien, Yes! A pen valued at €1,000,000. WANT! Oh wait, I’m shopping for mum… The Firebox email has topped many of my “favourites” lists for having its finger on the pulse. This Mother’s Day email is no exception. While I’m not that keen on all of the gifts—a campervan birdhouse, pink gin and a “social-media shower curtain”, you can’t help but smile at a photo of a bear sitting at a picnic table. Or for that matter, be won over by Firebox’s jovial copy.


3. Frugi
Subject line: Get something lovely this Mother's day! Free postage, free card and gift wrap!
Why we love it: I am a big fan of wish lists; primarily because I hate surprises. This is why I love Frugi’s email detailing a step-by-step process of actually getting what you want with tips on how to fill in a wish list and how to get it noticed by your loved ones. Not only that but Frugi will also deliver the parcel gift-wrapped and with free shipping—and include a card too. My only criticism is that the wish list is limited to Frugi’s breast-feeding wear. Perhaps, if successful, Frugi will repeat the offer and extend it to other lines. -- MT



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