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Emails We Love: Talbots Communicates With Understated Style

By Sep 05, 2012

Some brands go for pizzazz when they send out a welcome email. Like an excitable, eager to please schnauzer they bounce around the customer. "Hiya! Hiya! You subscribed! Yippee! Click here! Have a discount! Scratch our belly!"

Talbots goes for more refined approach. The message shows a simple envelope icon on a white screen. "You'll be charmed, we're sure, with our reimagined classics. Look for your first email to arrive soon."

In general, Talbots subject lines are as no-nonsense as their traditional clothing styles. "New Arrivals," "Further Reductions Taken…" and "Save Up to 80%…" are typical of how they entice readers to open and click. A bit more adventurous was "Try Our Pant Fit Finder + Get $20 Off!" Inside, customers learn the brand has "taken the guesswork out of finding your perfect pant fit." (FYI, the only criteria asked when one clicks through is if you like your pants to sit above, at, or below the waist. The feature could have been a bit more engaging, asking the customer whether they were looking for work or casual pants, what styles they prefer, etc.)

The photography in Talbots' emails is exactly what you'd expect—clean cut, classic imagery. In several messages—particularly sale notices—Talbots appears to be trying to take advantage of their signauture "red door" trademark, advertising "red hanger" sales and the like, with either red copy or red backgrounds. The only problem is that the "red" appears to be more pink, at least on my screen, rather than a vibrant crimson. It feels like a definite brand disconnect.

The copy, creative and tone of Talbots' emails do feel on-brand, but at times almost boringly so.  There's refined, and then there's too refined. While I wouldn't want to see them trying to look too funky or trendy, it would be nice to see them jazz up their same old style with some new accessories.

Have you seen any emails you loved recently? Let me know at beth.negus@penton.com or @CMBethNegus.

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