H&M is one of the most famous e-commerce and fashion brands in the world. Founded in 1947 in Sweden, the company grew to become a giant in the fast fashion industry. The brand counts over 4700 stores around the world, 171000 employees, and an astonishing 188 Billion in revenue with 3 billion annual operating profit.
But how did this small company grew into what it is today? Surely there are a few lessons to come away from taking a closer look at how H&M does things. Any aspiring retail or eCommerce business owner will benefit from taking a closer look at how H&M does things.
And today, we will break down this giant’s email marketing strategies and practices.
How H&M collect email addresses?
The basis of every profitable email marketing strategy is a rich email list. H&M collects subscriber emails using a sign-up form that asks for the main personal information:
- Email & password
- Date of birth: an important piece of information that allows the company to promote birthday sales for its customers
When clicking on “add more”, customers can fill in more personal information that will provide H&M with extra data for further personalization.
Just like every other brand, H&M begins their customer relationship with a neat welcome email. All email subscribers are called members.
In their welcome email, H&M welcomes new members with 10% off their next purchase. This is a great way to :
- Engage with the customer and get them to click (sign in their account on H&M’s website)
- Set the tone for the upcoming email discounts that the customers will benefit from
Hello! Here’s 10% off your next purchase!
Next, H&M’s welcome email provides more insights into the membership program, in a simple 3 column structure.
Overall, this welcome email is great:
- it’s informative yet concise, with only two calls to action which doesn’t confuse the reader
- the design respects the company’s brand guidelines
After the welcome series, starts the promotional campaigns. Here’s an example of a typical promotional email sent by H&M.
The email starts with a simple text GIF announcing the discount percentage.
New sale markdowns!
Next, a series of discounted outfits and products are showcased. This promotional email is, again, simple and straight to the point, with a touch of humor, keeping the communication personal and warm.
Exclusive member deals
H&M sends exclusive sales offers to email subscribers.
15% off starts at 12pm ET!
The sense of urgency and exclusivity is communicated thoroughly throughout the email:
- Email copy insisting on the perishable offer: the use of terms such as “flash”, “for a limited time”, plus defining a time limit for the offer.
Seasonal email campaigns
Even before a new season comes, fashion brands start promoting their new clothing lines and deals. H&M is no different. The brand started a series of email campaigns to welcome summer: Summer Deal Days.
Last day! 20% off + free shipping
Throughout their email campaigns, and especially in the email example above, we can see that H&M is heavily promoting their mobile app. This summer promotional campaign offers deals exclusively for orders made on the company’s app.
This approach not only encourages members to shop but also to download the app.
Free shipping offers
During Covid, the main perk companies offer their customer has become: free shipping. With online purchases on the rise, H&M is no different. Almost every promotional email the brand sends includes some sort of “Free shipping” promise:
Today’s order ships FREE!
Sometimes, it’s unconditional, like the email example above, and other times, it’s set only for orders exceeding a specific amount, like in the email example below.
Need it ASAP? Free next day shipping over $100!
Read more | How brands have adapted their email campaigns during Covid.
Holiday email campaigns
Another occasion that can’t be missed by retailers and fashion brands is religious and public holidays.
Free shipping on Mother’s Day gifts (& everything else)
Product launch emails
New products = product launch emails! H&M sends out the same type of emails whenever they roll out a new collection. The emails introduce the products in question with a series of professional images, accompanied by their price tag and a nice product description.
Fresh summer swimwear is out now!
Every new drop gets their own email campaign.
Breathable running gear
Influencer email marketing
Many H&M lines are the result of a collaboration with a well-established or up-and-coming designer. In both cases, H&M always sends an email announcing their newest collection.
The email template layout resembles a catalog. The goal is to show the most possible number of outfits and products, accompanied with their name and price. This way, chances of tempting readers to click increase.
New collab: Brock Collection x H&M
Social impact emails
Fast fashion brands have been the target for many activist groups, denouncing their allegedly unethical practices. Since then, we started seeing a new movement in the fast-fashion industry, with brands highlighting their social consciousness.
H&M launched a new sustainable line: CONSCIOUS. The brand often sends out campaigns promoting this new line and putting the focus on the company’s efforts to be more sustainbale.
Clothes with a conscience
H&M doesn’t shy away from other social issues and aims to be portrayed as the woke brand that speaks the language of the youth. In honor of International Women’s Day and Women’s History Month, H&M donated 150k dollars to Buy From A Black Woman association. This was communicated through a short email template, mainly explaining the goal behind the partnership.
Happy International Women’s Day!
Pride Month Emails
Pride Month is not only an occasion to showcase the company’s support to the LGBTQ+ community…
This Pride, go Beyond the Rainbow
But it’s also a great opportunity to promote the most colorful attires.
Dresses in every color of the
Read more | How to create a Pride email campaign?
Loyalty program emails
For their loyalty program, H&M sends out member-exclusive offers. We selected three examples of their loyalty campaigns. Each campaign is more creative than the next.
We start with a simple discount code only for members.
20% off has great timing
The next campaign encourages members to log in to their H&M account to discover daily surprise rewards.
Member Days are here: let the savings begin!
And finally, H&M set up a member-only scavenger hunt. The email starts out with a short description of the contest and then a detailed explanation of the rules.
Crack the code to win $500!
All three email ideas make members feel appreciated and important. The exclusivity of the offers makes them more tempting. And the fun contest increases engagement and conversion rates.
Customer surveys are the easiest and most reliable way to understand your customer’s needs and perspectives. H&M periodically sends out surveys to their customers, asking them for their input on the brand’s clothing lines.
The survey email contains a few lines explaining in a few lines the importance of the customer’s opinions. No reward was offered to customers who take the time to answer the questionnaire.
Reminder – H&M wants to hear your opinion
That’s because H&M’s mailing list is very long, it contains hundreds of thousands of subscribers. But, if your company has only a feel hundred subscribers, you might consider inciting them with a discount or a gift card.