In efforts to prevent Amazon Prime Day’s seasonal monopolization of e-commerce activity, major retailers and brands alike strategically deployed their own online sales events this year. Samsung was one of few consumer electronics brands to do so with its Black Friday in July promotional event.

As the event approached, the brand created anticipation through countdown emails, then followed through the promotional week by highlighting various deals and closed out with urgent announcements with words such as “Last Chance” or “Final Hours.” Within the week’s promotions, Samsung experimented with different promotional language for the same products, using both dollar discounts and percentage discounts in sequential emails.

Gartner L2 research suggests that Samsung may see better results from the TV sales emails featuring dollar discounts. Brands using email subject lines that feature absolute dollar discounts benefit categories with higher price point products, according to Gartner L2’s Digital IQ Index: Consumer Electronics. Meanwhile, subject lines citing percentage discounts demonstrate a higher impact on open rates in lower price point categories.

Brands utilizing dollar discount language in the TV category saw the highest open rate lift in the study, reaching 54%, suggesting that Samsung’s TV emails will perform particularly well. Additionally, gaming brands found more success with percentage discount subject lines for their less expensive products like video games, delivering open rates ten times higher than those with dollar discount subject lines.

As upcoming sales seasons approach (back-to-school, Black Friday, Cyber Monday), brands should be cognizant of how customers will react to different types of discount language. By optimizing subject lines for different categories, they can maximize the efficacy of email promotions.

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