14 Dec 2017
Should You Send Christmas Cards to Clients?
If you regularly send Christmas cards, you’re not alone. Figures from the Greeting Card Association have revealed that around a billion Christmas cards were sold in the UK in 2016, with £230 million worth of boxes and nearly 100 million single cards sold.
But what about sending Christmas cards to your clients? We look at the reasons you should consider sending a festive greeting this year, how to do it, and the pitfalls to avoid. Keep reading to find out more.
Think about why you’re sending a card
Before you start handwriting hundreds of cards, it’s worth considering why you are sending the card. A simple, non-personal message can do more harm than good and so it’s worth having a think about the reasons for the card.
These could be:
• Wanting to work with a client more in the future.
• Thanking a client for their business.
• Sending thanks to a third-party company for their help in making your business work.
• You want to keep in touch with someone you enjoyed working with.
Whatever your reason, make sure you personalise the message accordingly.
Why you should send a Christmas card
Christmas is an excellent opportunity to thank your clients for their business during the past year and show them that you value them as contacts.
Sending a personalised message can reinforce the personal nature of your service, and a message specific to the client can show that you have put some thought into the sentiment.
As it is likely to be displayed throughout the festive period, a Christmas card can be an excellent piece of subtle marketing. Whether pinned to a noticeboard or sat on a mantelpiece, Christmas decorations are generally left displayed until early January.
If you send your card at the start of December, it can promote your brand, message or services for a whole month – not just to the recipient but to their guests and visitors too.
A Christmas card is also a useful way of generating business. The festive period is typically a quiet time for business and a personalised card can be a very subtle sales technique to generate sales at this time of year.
The New Year is also a period when clients resolve to make changes to their suppliers or re-evaluate their priorities, so your card being readily available can leave you at the forefront of their thoughts when they make changes.
Three essential rules you should follow when sending Christmas cards to clients
1. Don’t cut corners
Don’t try and cut costs by sending cheap and tacky cards. Show your clients that you care about them by investing in some superior quality cards.
Consider working with a designer to create custom cards specific to your business. Customised cards can help you to say something about your values and your brand.
2. Send the right card to the right contact
If budget is a consideration, then you should segment your cards to make your cash go further.
Send custom or high-quality cards to your high value clients with a handwritten message. You may then want to send lower value cards to your other clients.
3. Personalise the message
Whatever you do, you should take time to personalise the message in your Christmas cards. Mention something you worked on with the client in the past year, or share an anecdote from your recent contact.
Christmas cards should not be a naked sales tool and it’s important that you don’t promote yourself too heavily. Something like “We look forward to continuing to work with you next year” is enough.
Your Christmas card should not be seen as a sales letter or as spam. Make it personal.
Marketing is not just for Christmas
Sending Christmas cards can be an excellent way to keep in touch with your valuable clients. It can also be an excellent opportunity to kick-start a more proactive approach to your marketing.
If your business is quiet in December and January, use the time to tidy up your database of contacts. You can then plan how you want to keep in touch with your clients at other times of year.
Your marketing shouldn’t just be a card at Christmas. Draw up a plan to keep in regular contact with your clients throughout the next twelve months.
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