Always send your customers happy birthday emails

Last updated
Feb 29, 2024
Thinking of incorporating birthday messaging into your communications plan? Learn the best practices here plus get a free email template.

A customer birthday email is a message you send to your customers or subscribers' on their birthday. It usually includes a perk of some kind, like an offer, discount, or freebie.

Customers have come to expect personalized offers and communications in exchange for their loyalty. A birthday gift reminds them that you recognize they have a choice in where they spend their dollar.

This is different from sending a company birthday email celebrating the anniversary of your business. This time it's all about your customers.

Timing can be before, or the day of

You can opt for only a birthday message with online, same-day redemption.

For establishments that require redemption in person, the message should be sent a week in advance, with a reminder the day of. For example, this coupon for a massage was sent 7 days from my birthday, with 30 days to redeem it: 

Body spa example of happy birthday message
Sent 7 days in advance with 30 days to redeem

Make the requirements as easy or hard as the value of the reward

We recommend that companies make it easy as possible to get and redeem their birthday perk. Include the link or code directly in the email with no hoops to jump through to redeem it.

If you use a 3rd party offer, like one from Paylode's huge marketplace of perks, you won't have to discount your own products quite as much (think: Uhaul discount with a move-in bundle with $200 off first month rent, instead of first entire month free). There shouldn't be any tricks or steps to complete to get it.

We recommend sending any kind of related offer that's complementary to your products, to any customer that has purchased before, along with your latest product or service. Spread the love – everyone loves presents.

If you're heavily discounting a product or service of your own, you'll want to get more information and commitment from the customer. For example, get your free Starbies drink on your birthday ☕ but you must join the rewards program.

Don't forget customer anniversaries

Now, you don't need to send a celebration email just on a birthday. Anniversary emails are wonderful as well, and they aren't always delivered over email. Check out this year's Spotify wrapped, with AI generated visuals and on point copywriting, delivered via the app.

Why stop there? Every milestone deserves a celebration

What milestones do your customers, users, audience, hit when they're fully engaged? Use perks in your messaging to encourage interaction with your messages. A small note can evoke the emotional connection that's so valuable to brands.

  • Celebrating 6 months in a new residence
  • Celebrating 6 months of paying on time
  • Celebrating every year of loyalty
  • Celebrate upgrades
  • Celebrate national puppy day
  • And whatever else is relevant to your business milestones

I got this little note from Canva after making 50 designs:

What's a good perk?

Partnering with complementary businesses to offer perks and exclusive promotions will make your birthday outreach even more impactful. Securing special offers like 15% off or a free gift with local restaurants, salons, retailers and more provides meaningful added value for customers looking to indulge on their special day. It also allows you to support other businesses and do your part to support the local economy.

Let us negotiate a deal for you that you can't get anywhere else.

Sample email template

Modify this to include your gift and/or complementary perk: 

Subject line: Happy Birthday from [company name]! Enjoy 20% off 🎂

Hey [customer first name],

Sending you warm birthday wishes from our entire team here at [company name]. Customers like you are the reason we love what we do.

In honor of your special day, please enjoy 20% off your entire purchase [or service, etc] during the month of your birthday [could also offer a specific expiration date instead]. Just use code BDAY20 at checkout.

You know what goes great with that? Another 20% off from our friends at [partner perk business]. Their gift to you is good for 30 days. We're grateful to local businesses like them that help make our community so special.

On behalf of everyone here, we wish you a very happy birthday. We value your loyalty and look forward to celebrating with you more in the coming year!

Gratefully yours,

[owner/manager name][company name]

When customers realize you’re giving them unique access and experiences for their birthday, it stimulates engagement and appreciation. Rather than feeling inundated with more generic discounts, they’re excited you’ve curated special treats just for them. Go ahead, celebrate 🎂

About the author
Adrienne Kmetz
Adrienne is a marketing expert with a career history of working in startups of all sizes, from early stage to series A. She has 17+ years of experience writing about business, finance, and entrepreneurship. She went to Colorado College where she majored in skiing.
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