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How to write Black Friday texts people will actually read

Written by Anna Wendt
Posted on November 8, 2018

160 characters.

That’s all you have to make an impression via text. So how do you make them count when every business pumps out promotions and deals all winter long?

When it comes to Black Friday and holiday shopping, your deal will stand out if you deliver the message in an effective way. And there’s no better way than texting.

Here are three tips for better business texting to help your next holiday promotion succeed.

Focus on actions

In writing, active voice ensures the subject of a sentence, usually the person doing the action, is the focus of the sentence. Using active voice generally leads to shorter and clearer sentences.

An example of active voice: Skipio offers automated personal messaging that delivers scalable results. (The subject of the sentence, Skipio, is doing the action of offering this solution.)

An example of passive voice: Automated personal messaging that delivers scalable results is offered by Skipio. (The subject of the sentence, Skipio, is no longer the focus.)

The second sentence isn’t incorrect, but the first example sounds nicer and reads more clearly.

And you’re probably familiar with a call to action – it’s what you say to get someone to do something.

Here’s a text that uses active voice and prioritizes action.

Text 1: We love snow! Come into our shop on Black Friday and show us this text to get 40% off one item from our winter collection.

In the first sentence, “we” (meaning the shop) is the subject and “love” is the action. The second sentence is known as an imperative sentence: There’s an implied subject of “you” (meaning the audience), who is being told they should come to the store and show the text to get a great deal (a call to action).

A woman wears a black hat, coat, and mittens outside while it snows.

All grammar aside, the first text sounds nicer than something like this:

Text 2: Snow is loved by us! On Black Friday we’re offering 40% off one item from our winter collection. You can come into our shop and show this text to get the deal.

A bit awkward, right?

The more you focus on actions, the more concise your texts will be and the more likely it is someone will take action. When in doubt, go with what sounds the nicest to read and you’ll probably gravitate toward action-focused writing.

Get to the point (personally)

You don’t want to waste people’s time, and you don’t want to waste your characters either. If the point isn’t clear right away, your messages will be ignored during the busy holiday season. But this shouldn’t come at the expense of making a personal connection.

A text like this gets the job done and still feels personal:

Text: Hey Anna, ready for your next snowshoeing trip? Stay cozy with a jacket from our winter collection. Show us this text on Black Friday to get 40% off!

If my favorite local outdoor store sent me this text, I’d know right away that they were offering me a nice deal and that they remembered how much I love snowshoeing and jackets.

Your relationship with each contact should influence the content of your messages. A personalized message makes them feel heard and helps you start a conversation.

Just remember to keep the reason for your texts clear. Texting with intention helps you send better, more concise messages. Plus your deals will stand out.

Two women hold snow shoes while walking on a snowy road.

Avoid redundancies

If you say something the right way the first time, you won’t need to repeat it. Usually we say things multiple times to emphasize importance. But repetitive messages sound spammy and you might dissuade people from reading your messages in the future.

Text 1: For one day only, show us this text to get 40% off any one item. This is only available for Black Friday, so act fast! Don’t miss out on this limited deal!

Sounds like a pretty important deal! But this text could have been a lot shorter and still gotten the point across.

Text 2: Ready to get a jump on holiday shopping? Starting today, show us this text to get 40% off any one item. This deal expires the day after Black Friday.

No dramatics. No unnecessary repetition. Just a quick text with a clear and enticing offer.

No matter what sort of holiday deal you want to give your customers, texting ensures you get the word out quickly and efficiently. And short messages don’t have to be impersonal.

Find out other tips for running a holiday promotion through texting.