Oshkosh B’gosh Email Review: Does It Make You Leap for Joy and Convert?

OshKosh B’gosh Email Grade: [C]

Subject Line


Preview Pane


Eye Path


Clarity of Message


Call to Action






Sense of Urgency

Email grades are based on a 5-point scale: A = 5, B = 4, C = 3, D = 2, F = 1

April 5, 2016

Organization Overview

OshKosh B’gosh is a children’s-apparel company that was founded in 1895 in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. In 2005, Carter’s, Inc., acquired OshKosh B’gosh, which still operates under its own name and maintains a corporate headquarters in Oshkosh.

The company started out as a manufacturer of hickory-striped denim bib overalls for railroad workers and farmers. Smaller versions of the overalls were designed for the customers’ children, which “gave OshKosh B’gosh its true meaning and purpose,” according to the company’s website. In addition to its trademark overalls, OshKosh B’gosh sells a variety of clothes for infants, babies, toddlers, kids (sizes 4 to 7), and youth (sizes 5 to 12). The OshKosh B’gosh brand is sold in department stores, national chains, specialty retailers, company-operated stores, and online.

Subject Line Stands Out in the Inbox but Could Be More Specific

This Leap Day email was sent on February 29 to a customer who had signed up to receive promotions from the company. The subject line — “Leap for it! Extra day = EXTRA OFFER!” — lets recipients know that the email contains a special offer for Leap Day. And thanks to the use of uppercase letters and an equal sign, the subject line likely stands out in the inbox among other retailers’ Leap Day promotional emails. Inserting more information about the specific Leap Day offer, however, may have helped to drive more opens.

Primary Promotion Missing From Preview Pane Without Images

The preview pane without images looks clean (without huge blocks of empty space) and uses alternative text to describe the images. However, the primary promotion — an extra 20%, 25%, or 30% off — is missing. Although the call to action, “Reveal your savings,” is included, it doesn’t have much impact without the promotion. In addition, styling the alternative text, such as by using different fonts, colors, or sizes, would also help capture attention and possibly get more recipients to download the images.

The eye path of the top block of the email (located above the fold), which includes the Leap Day promotion, is nicely designed and highly effective. The recipient’s attention is directed to the primary offer and call to action. Even the leg of the leaping, fashionably dressed, young boy in the image aptly points to the call-to-action button.

Multiple Offers Detract From the Clarity of the Email Message

This email also includes a few other promotions, however, that detract from the clarity of the email message. Additionally, some of the offers are available both online and in store, whereas others are only redeemable in store. Recipients have to work to figure out how to apply and redeem the various discounts. Will recipients scroll further down the email to see the other offers? Perhaps — but only if they are especially interested in the brand.

The primary call-to-action button is small and doesn’t stand out in comparison to many other features in the overall email design. With the exception of a call-to-action button for the OshKosh B’gosh rewards program, the other promotions located below the fold don’t include calls to action. On the other hand, the entire email is clickable, which is highly effective for driving click-though rates. At FulcrumTech, we’ve found that making everything in an email clickable will typically boost click-through rates by as much as 20% to 30%.

Primary Offer Helps Pique Curiosity and Encourage Clicks

To help motivate clicks, the primary offer was designed to create some suspense: Recipients must click the call-to-action button to see if they’ll get 20%, 25%, or 30% off their purchase. This type of promotion can be great for encouraging more subscribers to click to find their discount. In this case, however, the specifics of the offer could have been more clearly and prominently positioned, such as by including the offer in the subject line and following through to the email headline. Furthermore, the other offers included in the email dilute the impact of the primary offer.

There is a sense of urgency for the primary promotion, the “Graphic Tees Doorbuster” deal and the in-store coupons at the bottom of the page — all of which are good for only that day. Again, with so many deals in this email, the deadline isn’t a focal point and loses some of its impact.

Highly Credibility Thanks to Well-Known Brand and Professional Design

OshKosh B’gosh is a well-known brand, which contributes to the credibility of this email. In addition, the personalized rewards-program information in the top-right corner of the email and the professional design and website navigation bar work together to help build trust.

Overall, this is a creative promotion, capitalizing on Leap Day — an occasion that comes only once every four years. Similar to many retailers, OshKosh B’gosh tried to squeeze several promotions into one email. In this case, it would be interesting to test whether keeping the email message focused on a single Leap Day offer would have been more successful for driving more conversions for the brand.

Disclaimer: FulcrumTech does not have access to the performance data relating to this promotional email, so any tests performed on this email can’t be reflected in FulcrumTech’s commentary.

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