A Timely 12.12.12 Email from King Arthur Flour Company

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When I woke up Wednesday morning, I was interested to see how many 12.12.12 emails I had waiting for me in my inbox. Surprisingly enough, I didn’t see many! I was definitely expecting more companies to send emails emphasizing some sort of “12” deal — it is, afterall, the last time that the day, month & year will all match up! However, I did notice that The King Arthur Flour Company, America’s oldest flour company, took advantage of this unique day and created a fun email with a great deal!


From the subject line, “Pay just 12¢ shipping on your $12 minimum order – 36 hours only! Plus $10 gift card with your $60 order,” to the content in the email, King Arthur Flour takes full advantage of this one-of-a-kind day! Their promotion plays up the number “12” with 12¢ shipping on orders of $12 or more and the deal ends at midnight (12am) on 12/12/12! That’s a mouthful, but you get the gist. King Arthur Flour made a creative promotion (and email!) that revolves around this special day.

I am a big fan of the design of this email. The main promotion is simple and very infographic-like, which drew my eye down the email — I wanted to see the entire deal! In addition, the playful wording in the promotion added some personality to the email, which is always a nice touch.

Underneath the promotional image, there is a large CTA to view holiday shipping deadlines (very relevant to the promotion — if I buy today, will I receive my gifts by Christmas?), as well as social sharing links. In addition, the footer of this email contains disclaimer information about the promotions; this text is somewhat long and in very small text. Instead of including all this in the email, I wonder if King Arthur Flour should have had a link to it under the promotion. It’s taking up unnecessary space in the email and since the text is so small, it’s nearly impossible to read on a mobile device (we’ll get to this later).

Another aspect of the email that might benefit from a closer look is the preheader. Not only does it repeat text in the subject line, but the “shop now” and “view this email online” links are underlined in default blue, which looks somewhat like a mistake of afterthought. I was a little turned off by this aspect of the email since the rest of the email is so put together and well-designed.


Since the email is mostly image-based, it appears almost blank when images are disabled. However, since they use ALT text, the main CTAs are still there, which is a plus. To really make this email stand out an images-off environment, King Arthur Flour could have sliced up the infographic-like image & used background colors in some of the table cells to spruce up the email a little bit. In addition, they could have explored using styled ALT text.


Justine recently wrote about the importance of making timely and urgent emails mobile-friendly. While this email from King Arthur Flour isn’t urgent by any means (I’m not going to miss my flight by not being able to read it on my mobile device!), it is timely since the sale last less than 36 hours.

For the most part, the email is extremely legible on a mobile device (when images are enabled) since the text in the infographic-like image is large, as is the text to view the holiday shipping deadlines. In addition, since the main CTAs are so large (they’re the entire width of the email!), they are extremely touch-friendly.

However, as stated earlier, the footer of the email is nearly impossible to interact with on a mobile device. The links are far from touch-friendly, and the text is so small it’s impossible to read on the small screen of a mobile device.


I’d love to hear your thoughts on this email! What do you like about it? Did you receive any other great 12/12/12 emails? Let me know in the comments!


Do you have an email that you’d like us to feature in our inspiration series? Send it to us at inspiration@litmus.com!


  • http://randyduermyer.com/ Randy Duermyer

    While I love King Arthur, I’m getting irritated by the constant emails they are sending me – sometimes the same email two and three times a day, every day. The biggest irritation is I don’t see an unsubscribe link anywhere and although there are multiple opportunities to sign up for the email newsletter on their site, I don’t find anything about opting out. Frankly, this seems to be in violation of the CAN-SPAM Act.

    • http://www.litmus.com Justine, Litmus

      Hi Randy! I wonder if you’re getting more frequent emails due to your past shopping or buying behavior? We get emails from King Arthur a few times a week, but never several times in a single day. All the emails also have an unsubscribe link in the bottom (it’s in blue font under the social media buttons). You’re right, not having an unsubscribe mechanism would definitely be a violation of CAN-SPAM, unless the email can be considered transactional.

      • http://randyduermyer.com/ Randy Duermyer

        Today I received what was at least the 8th identical “newsletter” with the Subject line: Hearty and chock-full of yum – This (like the others before it) was sent in text format with no social links and no unsubscribe link. The links all point to subdomains on kingarthurflour.net – perhaps this is an imposter sending out these spam messages? (I always subscribe in HTML format, so I completely don’t get it.)

        • http://www.litmus.com Justine, Litmus

          We received an email with that subject line on January 29th, but it was HTML (and we only received one copy!) and definitely included the unsubscribe link. I took a look at the source to see the text version and it includes an unsubscribe link, too.

          Unfortunately, since we’re not affiliated with King Arthur Flour, I’m unable to personally look into this issue. However, I’ve passed your concerns onto someone that can investigate.

          In the meantime, I grabbed their unsubscribe link from one of our emails, why don’t you see if this works?


          • http://randyduermyer.com/ Randy Duermyer

            Thanks, I was able to opt out using that link. I received a second identical email right after I posted my reply here, so maybe I somehow got into an endless loop. Hopefully the opt-out will work. Thanks, again.

          • http://www.litmus.com Justine, Litmus

            Glad to hear the link worked, Randy!