Targeting Seasonal Emails to the Right Audience

Fall is finally here, and with the changing of the seasons comes ample email marketing opportunities. For those of us in the United States, the following holidays are right around the corner:

  • Halloween, October 31st
  • Columbus Day, Second Monday in October
  • Veterans Day, November 11th
  • Thanksgiving, Fourth Thursday in November

…not to mention religious holidays and football games (but I repeat myself). But what if your subscribers are located around the globe and not just the United States? What if they are more interested in Oktoberfest or Harvest Festival, but not so much Columbus Day or Thanksgiving? In this blog post, you’ll learn how to segment your mailing list so that your fall-themed emails are sent to the right subscribers at the right time.

Use Smart Groups to Segment Your List

For the purpose of this blog post, let’s assume that you have a fall-themed email campaign lined up that’s most appropriate for your subscribers living in the United States. Maybe it’s related to Veterans Day or another holiday that’s not celebrated in other countries. How can you send your campaign to just U.S.-based subscribers? The answer is by using Smart Groups.

Smart Groups are a feature in Direct Mail that lets you filter your subscribers based on various rules/criteria that you choose. One of the supported criteria is “Most Recent Location”. Direct Mail determines the location of your subscribers based on the IP address they use to open and read your email campaigns. Let’s create a smart group that contains subscribers based in the United States:

  • Open your Direct Mail Project
  • Choose “Addresses > New Smart Group…” from the menu bar at the top of your screen
  • Give your smart group a name (e.g. “USA Subscribers”)
  • Select the groups you want to pull from, or stick with the default setting “All Groups”
  • Now let’s set up the filtering rules. Change the “First Name” pop-up menu to “Most Recent Location – Country”
  • In the text field, enter “United States”

When you’re all done, the smart group settings should look like this:

Click “OK” and Direct Mail will create the smart group and populate it with addresses that match the rules you specified. Smart groups automatically update as you add new subscribers, or when Direct Mail detects that their location has changed. When it comes time to send your campaign, select your smart group from the list:

That’s it!

About Geographic Location Accuracy

As mentioned above, Direct Mail uses the IP address of the subscriber to determine their geographic location. For most users, the location reported is accurate down to the city level. However, some subscribers may use technologies (like VPNs, proxies, or iCloud Private Relay) that prevent Direct Mail from determining any location, or only allow for country- or region-level accuracy.

Fall Holidays Outside the U.S.

The techniques described in this blog post apply equally well when targeting countries outside the U.S., too. Here are some upcoming fall holidays to be aware of for a non-U.S.A. audience:

  • Canadian Thanksgiving, 2nd Monday in October
  • Oktoberfest, Germany, Late September to Early October
  • Mid-Autumn Festival, China and Taiwan, September or early October
  • Harvest Festival, UK
  • Tsukimi, Japan, September or October
  • Diwali, India, mid-November
  • Dia de los Muertos, Mexico, October 31st to November 2nd
  • Beaujolais Nouveau Day, France, third Thursday of November


The fall season is full of holidays, festivals, and other opportune times for email marketing. If your subscribers are located in diverse locations, increase the effectiveness of your campaigns by targeting the right message to the right audience. Smart Groups in Direct Mail make it easy to filter your mailing list down to subscribers located in certain countries, or matching other criteria you choose. Targeted campaigns will always yield better results than generic ones. Have questions about smart groups? Please reach out to our customer service team!

Happy macOS Sonoma Day!

It’s that time of year again! The latest upgrade to macOS is out today: macOS 14 Sonoma. If you plan to upgrade, rest assured that Direct Mail is fully compatible. For the best experience, make sure that you are running the latest version of Direct Mail (6.1). If needed, you can upgrade by choosing “Direct Mail > Check for Software Update” from the menu bar. If you downloaded Direct Mail from the Mac App Store, you can check the “Updates” tab in the App Store app.

If you have any questions, or run into any issues, please don’t hesitate to reach out to our customer support team!

Emails Looking Odd in Outlook? Upgrade to the Latest Direct Mail

Microsoft recently released an update to Outlook for iOS that changes how some emails are rendered. Unfortunately, that change broke many of the “responsive” layouts that you are able to build with Direct Mail. If you’ve noticed that your emails are looking strange in Outlook for iOS, now you know why.

The good news is that we just released a software update to work around the Outlook issue. If you update to Direct Mail version 6.0.9, any new emails you send will look as they should.

You can update right away by opening Direct Mail and choosing “Direct Mail > Check for Software Update” from the menu bar at the top of your screen. If you downloaded Direct Mail from the Mac App Store, you can obtain the update from the App Store. Alternately, you can wait for Direct Mail to update itself, which should happen automatically the next time you launch the app.

If you have any questions, concerns, or feedback, we’d love to hear from you!

Tip: Emphasize Your Brand Colors

Color plays a crucial role in marketing. It’s often the first thing people think of when your brand comes to mind, and is the first thing they see when interacting with your brand. Your email marketing should work to reinforce your brand’s colors—and Direct Mail makes doing so super easy. 

Our template library features a wide variety of color schemes. But did you know that Direct Mail can automatically generate a color scheme for your email that matches and emphasizes your brand’s colors? Here’s how to give it a try:

  1. Select your message
  2. Click the “Colors & Fonts” button
  3. Click the “Colors” pop-up menu at the top

Choose “Create Color Scheme from Image…”

Choose an image file that contains your brand’s logo and click “Open”. Direct Mail will instantly analyze the image and generate a color scheme using the colors found in your logo. You can tweak the results in the “Colors and Fonts” panel or, if you don’t like it, choose “Edit > Undo Change Color Scheme” from the menu bar.

Colors are a great brand identifier and can help you cultivate emotional connections with your customers. Use Direct Mail’s color scheme generator to quickly and easily turn a generic looking email into a powerful tool for brand awareness.

Time to Prep Your Black Friday Email Campaigns!

The build-up, the craze, and the last call. That’s how recent Google consumer research has described the three phases of Black Friday. With this important retail event on the horizon, it’s time to get ready to launch your holiday sales season! 

We’ve gathered some great resources to help you jump start your marketing and close out 2022 with a bang:

Email marketing is a key channel to reach your customers during Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and throughout the season. Learn how to use Direct Mail to automate follow-up emails to your subscribers, and get crucial feedback with subscriber polls.

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