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Carpe Nix: Seize the Snow


Here in the Northeast, we all learned some new weather terms this week. "Explosive Cyclogenesis." "Bombogenesis." Or the slightly more conversational, not to mention significantly more threatening, "Bomb Cyclone." 

Despite the blizzard conditions, low pressure, coastal flooding, and 50 mile per hour winds of Winter Storm Grayson ("Yes, Virgina, the storm did have a name"), the Bs stayed snug in their respective hives, working on projects for current clients CyberScout and The Weather Company.

(How appropriate is that last one?)

Other marketers were at work too, and we want to applaud the efforts of two of them. Recognizing that weather — especially extreme weather — is an important indicator and influencer of buyer behavior, these companies took advantage of the bomb-thing-a-majiggy and frigid predictions to promote offers to an engaged (and probably housebound and online) audience.

The first example is from a local printer, Minuteman Press of Natick. They used our single-digit temperatures to make a (verrrrry compelling) case for their free delivery service. The subject line reads: "Some Hot Offers To Keep You Warm." The copy inside the email explains further:

Its too COLD outside ...
Let us
Deliver Free and stay indoors.

The message continues with the promotion they were probably running this month anyway: a bulk business card offer and a discounted color printing offer. They list the breadth of their services and include multiple ways to respond: via phone, email, online, or even at their retail location. Although, to their earlier point, the current weather definitely suggests that ordering remotely and enjoying their free delivery would be the wiser, warmer choice.

The other example is in the B2C space. DSW a major online and offline retailer seized the opportunity with their email subject line: Snow day = shopping day. (And extra credit for the eye-catching equal sign.) Inside the email continues with a topical visual of weekend conditions and the message:

Here's how to stay warm and dry.

Below are thumbnails of a variety of discounted winter boots, organized conveniently "For Her," "For Him," and "For the Little Ones." Apparently, frozen toes are an equal opportunity ailment. Also featured are cold weather accessories like hats, gloves, and scarves. The email has several live links to different merchandise, and also promotes DSW's free shipping and return policy, their apps, and their loyalty club. It's a hard-working and very timely piece of email marketing.

So in this brief calm after the storm, we can all take a lesson from our marketing colleagues at Minuteman Press and DSW. In everything we do, we strive to be relevant. Tying in to a major weather event — right as it's happening — is about as relevant as you can get.

Even a bomb can be good for business.

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