3 Last Minute Subscription Box Holiday Marketing Strategies You Shouldn’t Ignore

The holiday season is quickly approaching. Black Friday is a week away and Cyber Monday is right on its heels. Because Q4 brings a huge surge in subscription box subscriptions, we want to make sure that you have all of the tools you need to market your boxes effectively during this time. Last week, we […]

The holiday season is quickly approaching. Black Friday is a week away and Cyber Monday is right on its heels. Because Q4 brings a huge surge in subscription box subscriptions, we want to make sure that you have all of the tools you need to market your boxes effectively during this time.

Last week, we taught you how to get PR for your subscription box, and while we definitely encourage you to seek out some PR opportunities for your box, there are a few other ways to increase holiday sales that you should not ignore. We asked several established subscription box entrepreneurs to share some of their holiday marketing strategies.

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Offer a Free Gift

Who doesn’t love free stuff, right? Offering a free gift in your subscription box can be a great way to incentivize new customers to make a purchase. It’s also a great way to get your current customers to purchase a gift subscription. Julie Ball from Sparkle Hustle Grow plans to add a bonus free gift to her box this holiday season. Ball plans to include a desk calendar as a free gift to her audience of female entrepreneurs. The calendar is a perfect incentive for her customer base because it aligns with the other items in her box and provides an value-added bonus that her audience will want coming into a new year.

There are a few things you’ll want to consider when adding a bonus gift to your subscription box. First, you’ll want to make sure that the bonus gift is something that your target audience will actually want and appreciate. It has to be compelling enough for them to think “I need this in my life right now” and hit the buy button. For example, if you have a jewelry subscription box and intend to offer a fancy bar of chocolate as a free gift, while that might be a nice idea, it’s not necessarily aligned with your audience or niche. Offering a high-end jewelry piece would be a much better free gift offer.

Next, you’ll want to make sure that the price point of your free gift still allows you to make money on the box. Margins on subscription boxes are already pretty tight. While we want you to offer something of value to your box, you’ll need to make sure that you don’t lose money on the deal.


According to Accenture, 72% of holiday shoppers are enticed by coupons to shop at a store they have not used in the last year. This is great news for Avi of EarFleek & Ivory Clasp. His team plans to utilize partnerships with coupon sites to offer discounts and coupons to bargain shoppers. Coupon sites like RetailMeNot, Swagbucks & Ebates can drive new customers who are looking for a deal.

There is some debate as to whether or not customers who use a coupon are as valuable as those who do not. Many retailers believe that offering coupons will devalue their brand. However, the usage of a coupon while gifting a subscription box, is a little different than your typical coupon transaction.  When it comes to a gift subscription, the buyer using the coupon code isn’t necessarily the customer, the gift receiver is. So if the gift receiver loves the subscription and chooses to continue his/her subscription, then you have a high-quality subscriber.

Plus, it gets better. Did you know that using a coupon actually makes customers happier? According to research, coupon recipients who got a $10 voucher experienced a 38% rise in oxytocin levels and were 11% happier than those who did not receive a coupon. Think about that. The person who is buying the subscription receives the oxytocin rush from using a coupon and the person on the receiving end of the gift also gets a little happiness, it’s a win/ win.

If you decide that you would like to offer coupon codes this holiday season, here are few types of coupon offers to consider:

  • Save % off
  • Free shipping
  • Get $ off
  • B1G1 Free
  • Free gift with purchase

Cratejoy customers, here’s a quick link to how you can add a coupon code to your store.

Facebook Ads

There is no easier way to get right in front of your target audience than by using Facebook ads. Facebook has demographic targeting that allows you to serve ads to the exact gender, age, and behaviors that you’d like to target. Fortunately, Facebook also allows you to create custom lists which means you can serve different ads to your current customers and new customers.

One size does NOT fit all when it comes to Facebook ads. Luckily, Facebook makes it very easy to create different audiences and serve them personalized ads. Below are some of the segments that you will want to consider targeting. We’ve also included some of the objectives you might use to convert those people into paying customers.

  • Warm Leads (People who have signed up for your email list but never subscribed): Coupon codes & sneak peeks of your boxes
  • Current Customers: Upsells, Holiday Boxes & Gift Subscriptions
  • Cold Leads (People who have never interacted or heard of your brand): Brand intro, Giveaways, Coupon codes & Gift Subscriptions
  • Re-Targeting (People who are no longer customers of your subscription box): Win-back campaigns, coupon codes, gift subscriptions

Watch the Facebook Ads video above for step-by-step instructions on how to create custom audiences and how to set up your Facebook ads so they convert.

P.S. If you need some Facebook Ad inspiration, check out this post!

How to promote your holiday sales

Since it’s not enough to offer a free gift or a coupon code without any promotion, you’ll need to promote these bonus offers to ensure that they get the most traction.  Here are a few ways that you can make the most of your holiday promotions:

  • Update your website to include verbiage and an image of the promotion
  • Update your social accounts (Facebook cover photo, Twitter cover photo, update the bio in your Instagram to include the gift offer)
  • Update your marketplace listing
  • Send an email to your current customers telling them about the promotion
  • Run Facebook ads

What holiday promotions are you running this season? Feel free to leave a comment below and let us know your plans!

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