Well, maybe calling your subscribers “horrible friends” won’t work for every business — but it feels natural for a brand like Cards Against Humanity to use this language. But it’s not the reason why we like this email.
The best part is the CTA. We’re used to the idea that emails are supposed to give something valuable to customers, which implies that CTAs should describe what your customer will get for clicking the button. But Cards Against Humanity completely rejected the idea of a valuable CTA and straight up suggested customers giving money for nothing. Even better, they claimed that giving them $5 is somehow a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. It’s actually a smart joke that subverts the idea of Black Friday itself — no matter how great the deal is, you still spend money, so how is that profitable to anyone but corporations? At least this email is honest.
Finally, being a little scandalous and unconventional in your email campaigns can do good for you in the future. This email is mentioned in many articles like this one — it’s basically free promotion for your brand. Good job, Cards Against Humanity, we bought into it too.
Vans: Gifts for every wallet
The previous two campaigns are great — but you don’t have to be an anti-capitalist satirical comedian to make a good Black Friday email. For example, take a look at Vans. This popular skateboarding apparel brand came up with an awesome campaign without radical subversion: