It’s that time of year again. Your desk and inbox are flooded with holiday cards. I know there are folks who have very strong feelings about whether or not print or digital is the best medium to send thanks and best wishes at holiday time. Personally, I feel like both can be done well. The problem is few ARE actually done well. The majority of cards I see—be they paper or pixil—are utterly generic and impersonal. And what does that say about how you view your relationship with the recipient? People seem to have forgotten that cards are a small but meaningful way to show others that your are thinking about them. Remember, holiday cards are a brand touchpoint. Don’t waste the opportunity to demonstrate your value and show clients and partners how much the relationship means to you. Let’s all make a New Year’s resolution to do a better job on holiday cards next year. Here’s how:
1. Proof your mailing list.
Sorry my name is not Lee and I do not work for Morey. If I receive a card where my name or my firm’s name is misspelled, that tells me I’m not viewed as an important client or partner. I’ve even received cards from firms that I’ve never worked with and have no idea who they are—who even knows how I ended up on that mailing list. Review your mailing lists regularly and make sure all the contact information is correct and up to date.
2. Identify your firm
Don’t send out a generic card and miss the opportunity to promote your brand. If you are going to take the time and money to send out cards, make sure they convey your brand value. And, needless to say, the name of the firm should be somewhere on the card.
3. Sign the card
A holiday card without the senders name inside does not give me the warm fuzzies. When I receive a card that reads Happy holidays from Firm X, I really can’t tell the difference between it and the pile of anonymous junk mail I receive every day. I know your professionals whine about this every year, but make them sign each card. Even if you’re doing e-cards, including team members’ names personalizes the message.
4. A personal message
For me, this is the holy grail of holiday cards. Including a personal message reflecting on the accomplishments you’ve achieved together over the past year makes the recipient feel important and valued. These are the cards I save and display in my office. Yes, it takes a little extra time, but the investment is more than worth the relationship capital you build. Who doesn’t want their message sitting on a client’s desk as a reminder of your relationship?
Phew. Ok, rant over. Cue the holiday music.
What are the best or worst holiday cards you’ve ever received?