4 Holiday Card Blunders... and how to avoid them

2017 10 Sad snowman

Guest Post by Catherine Doucette, MEd, CTDP

Your company holiday cards or e-greetings can be an effective way to build stronger relationships with your current and potential clients.

Yet every year I see businesses make the same mistakes. These time-saving and impersonal tactics can hurt your relationships, rather than strengthen your connections.

Has your organization made any of these holiday missteps? 

1. “We grew by 10% last year and won two regional awards.”

Writing about your accomplishments in your holiday card is tacky. Stop promoting. Think about what kind of card you’d like to receive. It’s your chance to show you care. 

2. Place your logo in the centre of the card. Then add a bit of holly.

Stop selling. Instead, select a holiday image that reflects your brand. A day care could show youngsters playing in the snow, or a law firm may use a winter scene. Place your logo on the back of the card discreetly.

Order your own holiday cards with pictures of your team making a snowman or doing something fun. Your logo can be somewhere small and secondary to the holiday message. 

3. "Refer a friend and receive a chance to win..."

If you want to offer a discount or special sales offer, mail it separately. Greeting cards are about connecting, not selling. 

4. Writing “Thank you for your business” or simply signing your name.

We all know what happened. You signed a pile of cards as quickly as possible. Then your assistant labelled a thick stack of envelopes and popped the cards in the envelopes and into the mail. Or even worse, you had your name printed on the inside of your cards when you ordered them. No need to sign anything. Ouch.

Consider a personalized message, “Jane, I really enjoyed working with you on XYZ project. Hope you have a wonderful holiday season.”

Or refer to a story they shared. “John, enjoy building that snowman with your boys over the holidays. Looking forward to seeing you in the new year.”

If you say, “Enjoy your holiday with your family,” be sure they do have family. Don’t assume people have family or children. If they don’t, it just makes the holidays hurt more. 

It’s simple. Greeting cards are for greetings.

If you’re thinking, “She’s crazy. That takes too much time.” Remember that it is more important to send fewer holiday greetings with great personal messages to your best clients than to send impersonal holiday greetings to many.

What will you do differently this year when you wish your clients a happy holiday season?

PS If you want to learn more about crafting your message so your target market will listen, see the Build Your Brand. Build Your Business. workshops available through ProfitLearn.

Catherine Doucette MEd, CTDP is a Training and Performance Consultant who delivers customized business communication and leadership training and helps businesses grow through strategic planning and creative problem solving. www.CatherineDoucette.com

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