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How Don’t Buy Her Flowers is on a mission to make gifting more thoughtful

Reading Time: 5 minutes

In 2014, after giving birth to her first baby, Steph Douglas received lots of well-meaning bouquets. But while the flowers were lovely, for Steph they were yet another thing to take care of:

“When I had my first baby, I received lots of flowers yet I was feeling completely overwhelmed with everything – the baby, the visitors, the bodily functions – and trying to arrange flowers and then dispose of them was all a bit much, however pathetic that sounds,” she says.

In reality, what she wanted — and needed — at that time was just to have some time and space for herself, drink a hot cup of tea, relax, and eat some biscuits. When she talked with other parents, she realized that they felt pretty much the same.

“And that’s how Don’t Buy Her Flowers was born.”

Steph Douglas, founder of Don’t Buy Her Flowers

We caught up with Hannah Ridler, Head of Marketing for Don’t Buy Her Flowers, on how they’re approaching Mother’s Day, what it means for their brand, and what advice they’d give to other online shops looking to send out campaigns on this special day.

Watch the video for an interview with Hannah, or find out the details further below:

Mother’s Day at Don’t Buy Her Flowers

Don’t Buy Her Flowers is founded on the idea that, rather than defaulting to flowers for “ bereavement or diagnosis, a heartbreak or a new baby,” people can send more thoughtful care packages.

“Rather than having to take care of another thing, Don’t Buy Her Flowers offers something different. Customers can put together a soothing handpicked care package that offers real comfort and lets the recipient know that someone has really thought about them,” Hannah says. 

Hannah Ridler, Head of Marketing for Don’t Buy Her Flowers

They have an inventory of 250 products from British brands, all  beautifully gift wrapped with a personal handwritten message. 

An example gift box from Don’t Buy Her Flowers

For Hannah, the thing that really sets Don’t Buy Her Flowers apart is its thoughtfulness.

“So our approach to Mother’s Day (just like any other occasion) is to ensure we are considerate and thoughtful towards our audience,” she says.

First of all, they offer an opt out for their Mother’s Day communications so that people who might find that day hard don’t have to receive communications about the occasion. However, this still allows them to receive other communications and messages.

“We also create a gift guide to help people choose the right gift for their mother or mother figure, and have put together packages that suit different interests and needs,” Hannah says. “This can be things like our Gardening Gift Box — for those who love being in the garden — or The New Mum Gift Box, which is packed full of products that will help those going through the early stages of motherhood.”

They make sure that, through their marketing, they try to bring to life the balanced, emotive side of motherhood and everything about it – how wonderful and amazing it is but also how hard, tough, and sometimes heartbreaking it can be. 

Using Omnisend for their Mother’s Day campaigns

The team at Don’t Buy Her Flowers tend to plan quite far in advance and have all their communications mapped out. 

However, because they’re a small business, it also means that they can react quickly to opportunities. This means that, from time to time, they can pull together something at the last minute.

We use Omnisend to communicate with our base using both Campaigns and automations,” Hannah says. “Being able to put customers into opt out segments also allows us to remove them from Mother’s Day comms but still speak to them about other things whilst our MD campaign is running.”

One tactic they’ve used successfully in the past is to use the Campaign booster, which automatically resends a campaign with a different subject line to those people who didn’t open the email the first time.

Another successful strategy is to use segmentation: 

“We also target those who bought for the first time with us for Mother’s Day with a follow up campaign to tell them about all the other occasions we do.”

The results so far have been amazing for Don’t Buy Her Flowers:

“Mother’s Day is our best performing occasion,” she says. “We tend to see open rates of between 37% and 45% (some up to 49%) and driven sales of over £8K directly via email just for that one occasion.”

Mother’s Day through the years

Don’t Buy Her Flowers has been in business for nearly 10 years. In that time, they’ve seen some changes in how it’s celebrated, and how customers respond to Mother’s Day campaigns.

“Since the pandemic there is more demand for products to be delivered quickly and efficiently (all day, everyday)!” she says.

But it’s also gone beyond that. The pandemic affected many families, and it’s impacted the type of messages they want to receive.

“Now people want brands to be considerate – they don’t want to be bombarded with irrelevant communications. If someone doesn’t want to hear about a particular occasion they should be given the opportunity to opt out of it,” Hannah says.

This is a great piece of advice we’ve reflected often at Omnisend: 

Talk to the people who want to hear from you, in the way they want to hear from you.

For that reason, sending out holiday opt out emails with Omnisend is a great way to make sure people only receive the messages they want. And, even better, it’s pretty easy to do.

Beyond that, Hannah also recommends that brands:

  • “Be considerate of the audience and have a good understand of who you are targeting so you can tailor the messages or offers”
  • “Provide all the information a customer will need, to make a purchase as easy and simple as possible for the customer.” This includes things like. delivery dates leading into the event, a guide on what best to buy, and so on
  • “Lead on emotive over product – connect with your audience”

Wrap up

Mother’s Day is a great day for many — but for some, it’s a difficult day. 

What Don’t Buy Her Flowers does so well is be thoughtful about their customers, and try to best accommodate them with the messages they’d like to hear — and the ones they’d rather not.

Omnisend makes this easy with its preference management tools and easy-to-use email builder, segmentation and automation.

Check our beautiful and professionally designed templates for your Mother’s day email campaigns.

Show your customers you care with thoughtful emails, SMS, automations, and much more
Bernard Meyer
Article by
Bernard Meyer

Bernard is the Sr. Director of Communications & Creative at Omnisend, with a passion for good research, helping ecommerce businesses with their marketing automation needs, and beating absolutely everyone in Mario Kart 64.


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related features
These are the Omnisend features that can help you get the results mentioned in the article.