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How to Plan An Email Marketing Calendar For Your 2021 Campaigns

How to Plan An Email Marketing Calendar For Your 2021 Campaigns

Designing and sending marketing emails throughout the year might seem like a big job. But in reality, the real work should be happening now: This is the time of year to set goals, figure out a strategy and define your email marketing calendar for the rest of 2021.

You might be tempted to rush through this part, but don’t! You’ll save yourself a lot of time and headaches later by carefully planning your email marketing calendar now. Take some time to sit down and plan out your holiday calendar this week to simplify your email design process throughout the year. Here’s your guide of what to do and when to do it for email marketing in 2021.

This is the time of year to set goals, figure out a strategy and define your email marketing calendar for the rest of 2021. Click To Tweet

We’ve also created a holiday marketing calendar to make your job even easier. From large global holidays (think Christmas and Easter) to smaller, more niche holidays that are a marketer’s dream (Waffle Day or Singles Awareness Day), everything is included on this helpful marketing calendar. Click the plus sign by the “Google Calendar” text in the bottom right-hand corner so you’ll never miss a holiday!

January

New Year’s Day (January 1)

Start the new year off strong by celebrating with a fun New Year’s Day email. Don’t be afraid to pull out the glitter and fireworks for this fun holiday! Consider creating a special discount code or offering a sale for email subscribers. You could also share a year-in-review email, hitting the highlights your brand experienced over the last 12 months — like this Best Highlights for Last Year email template by Navid Nosrati.

Get to Know Your Customers Day (January 21)

Get to Know Your Customers Day takes place every quarter — the third Thursday of January, April, July and October. It’s the perfect time to focus on creating strong customer relationships, so it’s a must-add for your email marketing calendar. Get to know your customers by sending out a survey that asks for their opinion. We love this casual Got A Quick Sec? email template created by designer Jen Schmaltz. Check out our other Get to Know Your Customers Day email templates for more inspiring examples.

Other January Holidays

  • Pizza Day, January 17
  • Epiphany and La Befana, January 6
  • Data Privacy Day, January 28
  • Northern Lights Festival (January 26 — February 2nd)
  • Fashion Week (Fashion Week takes place multiple times a year; these Fashion Week email templates can help.)

February

Black History Month (all month)

Black History Month is celebrated in the U.S. during the entire month of February. This monthlong observance is a time to honor Black Americans and everything they’ve contributed to the world. Use your email newsletters to support Black communities and share how your company supports racial justice initiatives. This free Honoring Black Stories email template, created by Derek Brumby, is a great way to highlight influential Black voices and encourage your readers to support Black creatives. You can draw inspiration from our other Black History Month email templates, too.

Valentine’s Day (February 14)

Consumers are ready to spend some serious money for Valentine’s Day. A little strategic email marketing can position your brand as the best option for the reader’s gift-giving needs. Hearts, colorful pink backgrounds and elegant typography can be the best way to go if you’re designing a Valentine’s Day email. For example, our Valentine’s Day Offer template by Hector Titus Ruiz helps you offer a seasonal promotion for your email subscribers to enjoy.

Other February Holidays

March

St. Patrick’s Day (March 17)

This traditional Irish religious holiday is celebrated today with parades, music and lots of food and beer. No matter what industry you’re in, it’s a great time to get on top of some email marketing! Send a festive green and gold St. Patrick’s Day email offering a deal that will help your customers feel the luck of the Irish. If you have products to showcase, our Good Luck To You email template designed by Andrea Dall’Ara is a great way to highlight those items. Our other St. Patrick’s Day email templates will provide you with some lucky design inspiration as well!

International Women’s Day (March 8)

International Women’s Day is a holiday designed to bring awareness to the ongoing struggle of gender equality and to celebrate the powerful women in our communities. Our Happy International Women’s Day template, created by Martin Nikolchev, is highly versatile: Use it to announce a sale, launch a fundraising campaign or simply design a thoughtful email that will resonate with readers. Or check out our other International Women’s Day templates.

Other March Holidays

  • Maslenitsa, March 8 – 14
  • Mother’s Day, March 14 (Check out our Mother’s Day email templates.)
  • Father’s Day, March 19 (Some countries celebrate this holiday in March; check out our Father’s Day email templates.)
  • First Day of Spring, March 20
  • World Water Day, March 22
  • Waffle Day, March 25
  • SDG Global Festival of Action, March 25 – 26
  • Earth Hour Day, March 27
  • Holi Festival, March 29

April

Easter (April 4)

Pull out your fuzzy bunnies, chocolate eggs and pastel email backgrounds to create a springtime Easter email for your clients. This year, Easter is on April 4, which means you’ll need to get started early with your Easter email design. We recommend using one of our Easter email templates to shorten the design process — like this Special Easter email designed by Martin Nikolchev.

Earth Day (April 22)

Encourage people to make the world a better place by sending a well-designed Earth Day email. Your customers care about climate change and the world they live in. Sharing an Earth Day email that outlines how you’re taking action can inspire them to do the same. Our Be The Change template by Galina Grahovska uses strong fonts and a background of green leaves to create an email that works for nonprofits and other brands alike.

Other April Holidays

  • April Fool’s Day, April 1 (Check out our April Fool’s Day templates.)
  • Tulip Festival, April 1 – 30
  • Carbonara Day, April 6
  • World Art Day, April 15
  • Shakespeare Day, April 23

May

Cinco de Mayo (May 5)

Give your customers a little taste of this Mexican celebration with a colorful Cinco de Mayo email. Use our Cinco De Mayo Fiesta template by Martin Nikolchev to share information about the origins of this holiday and how it’s traditionally celebrated.

Or take a more promotional route with Jen Schmaltz’s Taco Bout Delicious email, telling your customers how to order and where to find you.

Mother’s Day (May 9)

Mother’s Day in the U.S. will be celebrated on May 9 this year. Add this holiday to your email marketing calendar so you can position your product or service as the perfect gift for Mom with a strategically designed Mother’s Day email. This Treat Mom Like Gold email by Jen Schmaltz is perfect for fashion or cosmetics brands to share a product promotion before Mother’s Day.

Other May Holidays

June

LGBTQ Pride Month (all month)

LGBTQ Pride Month will be celebrated around the world throughout the month of June, with LGBTQ+ communities and their allies flooding the streets — and our inboxes — with an infusion of color, pride and love. With exuberant rainbows as the defining symbol of the festivities, the design possibilities are endless! Draw on our LGBTQ Pride Month email templates to create your own rainbow-filled email!

Father’s Day (June 20)

In the U.S., Father’s Day is celebrated on the third Sunday of June every year. Get creative with your copy, colors and CTAs as you design a Father’s Day email to promote your Father’s Day sales. This simple, sleek Father’s Day Electronics message (designed by Jesus Albusac) can promote your products or event as the holiday approaches.

Other June Holidays

  • Republic Day, June 2
  • World Environment Day, June 5
  • Dragon Boat Festival, June 14
  • Juneteenth, June 19 (If you choose to send a Juneteenth email, make sure to be sensitive and thoughtful of the BLM conversation — and to share how you’re taking action.)
  • First Day of Summer / Summer Solstice, June 21
  • Social Media Day, June 30

July

Independence Day (July 4)

A patriotic email for Independence Day (July 4 in the United States) can help boost your engagement and sales this summer. Make a splash and increase your conversions with our Independence Day Sale email template designed by Yuliana Pandelieva, or with one of our other Independence Day email templates.

World Emoji Day (July 17)

World Emoji Day might not be on your customers’ calendar. But for email marketing purposes, this holiday presents a wide range of fun opportunities! Using emojis in email adds personality to your brand. Emojis also grab attention and help get your point across. Celebrate the power of the emoji with Navid Nosrati’s template Emoji World Day or with our other World Emoji Day email templates.

Other July Holidays

  • Amazon Prime Day, July 12 – 13
  • Bastille Day, July 14
  • Olympic Games begin, July 23
  • International Day of Friendship, July 30

August

Back to School Month (all month)

It’s that time of year again: Back to School Month (in the U.S.). Advertise your school supplies for sale and connect with parents through a smartly-designed back to school email. We love this Back to School Discount Code template made by Gaia Zuccaro: It combines quirky doodles with your unique discounts to create the perfect email to advertise your sales.

Other August Holidays

September

Labor Day (September 6)

Next up on the email marketing calendar: Labor Day, a U.S. holiday that marks the end of summer. In other words, it’s the perfect time for brands to squeeze in one last summer sale. Use this playful orange email created by Jen Schmaltz (Labor YAY Sale!) to get the job done, or use one of our other Labor Day email templates.

First Day of Fall (September 21)

Usher in a new season by creating a special sale or promotion for the First Day of Fall on September 21. First Day of Fall emails are a lot of fun to design — think pumpkins, GIFs and warm tones of orange and brown. If you’re launching a new collection of products, check out our New Fall Collection It’s Here template by Yorbi Barriento.

Other September Holidays

  • Video Games Day, September 12 (Some people also celebrate this holiday on July 8; check out our Video Games Day email templates.)
  • Oktoberfest, September 18 – October 3
  • International Day of Peace, September 21
  • World Tourism Day, September 27

October

Breast Cancer Awareness Month (all month)

Kick off the month of October by recognizing Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Chances are, this disease has personally touched many of your customers. Sharing a Breast Cancer Awareness Month email helps raise awareness about the disease and connect with people who have been there. Use our Fundraising template by Andrea Dall’Ara to take action for a good cause.

Halloween (October 31)

For email marketers, Halloween is a can’t-miss holiday. Combine spooky stock images, creative CTA buttons and vibrant HTML colors to share a special fall promotion or some Halloween-oriented content. We recommend our Halloween email templates, like this No Tricks Only Treats! email by Yuliana Pandelieva, to kickstart your email design.

Other October Holidays

  • International Coffee Day, October 1 (Check out our International Coffee Day email templates.)
  • World Vegetarian Day, October 1
  • Cinnamon Bun Day, October 4
  • Dia de los Muertos / Day of the Dead, October 3 – November 2

November

Thanksgiving (November 25)

Is your target audience based in the U.S.? Don’t forget to send a Thanksgiving email on or before November 25. When it comes to Thanksgiving email marketing, authenticity is key: Show genuine appreciation for your customers and make them feel like part of the family. Check out this Thanksgiving Day email by Andrea Dall’Ara to send a heartfelt thanks to your email subscribers.

Black Friday (November 26)

Black Friday is a major retail holiday brands can’t afford to miss. And since your customers’ inboxes will be flooded with emails, it’s your job to do everything you can to grab their attention. Black Friday email templates make your email design job easy. This modern Black Friday Fashion Deals template by Gaia Zuccaro, for example, is a great way to promote products and sales.

Other November Holidays

December

Hanukkah / Chanukah (November 28 – December 6)

We’ve made it all the way to December and it’s time for some holiday celebrations! Start with a Hanukkah email to mark the Jewish festival of lights that in 2021 runs from November 28 to December 6. Andrea Dall’Ara’s colorful and attractive Hanukkah Event template is the perfect way to kick off the season.

Christmas (December 25)

When December rolls around, it’s time to get your Christmas marketing emails out the door! Come up with a creative campaign, such as sending a holiday gift guide or offering 12 days of deals, to get your subscribers engaged. We’ve got you covered with over a dozen Christmas email templates to help. Pictured: Make Everyone’s Christmas Wishes Come True, designed by Yuliana Pandelieva.

New Year’s Eve (December 31)

Close out your 2021 email marketing calendar by ushering in the New Year with style. Sending a New Year’s Eve email to wish your customers a Happy New Year can help ensure your brand is top of mind as your readers move into the new year. Navid Nosrati created this Get Your New Year’s Resolutions Off to a Good Start template to promote an event or just wish your customers a happy holiday.

Other December Holidays

  • Saint Lucy’s Day, December 13
  • First Day of Winter / Winter Solstice, December 21
  • Boxing Day, December 26

Wrap-up: Holiday email templates

We don’t know about you, but this email marketing planning template is making us excited to start designing! Check out our full catalog of HTML email templates to find the best option for every holiday — it’s simple to edit these responsive templates using the BEE email editor. Take your email marketing to new heights in 2021 by using an email marketing calendar so you don’t miss a beat!


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Hailey Hudson

Hailey Hudson is a full-time freelance writer based out of Atlanta, Georgia.