When is a holiday card not just a holiday card?

Holiday Card ChecklistWhen it’s from a highly creative marketing firm trying to showcase their talent. Then it’s part of your brand, a new business tool, and an opportunity to stand out.

Clients and prospects are expecting something unique, special, fun, and interesting from marketing firms, so the pressure is on. How can your agency be sure your card will measure up?

The Sanders Consulting Holiday Card Checklist:

  1. Know the date: Every year a few agencies try to stand out by sending something other than a holiday card – a Thanksgiving or New Year’s greeting for example. Not bad, but why surrender the holiday field to other marketing firms? Their cards will be sitting around for much of the month, shouldn’t yours be there too?
  2. Mail something: Don’t give into the easy idea of just emailing a link or online card. It’s ok to have something fun that stands out in the digital world, just don’t forget the personal touch. The signed printed card is key to showing your appreciation.
  3. Contribute to something: It’s the season for giving. Make sure to give something. No need to brag or go overboard. Some agencies even make a contribution in the name of their clients – just make sure you understand each client’s world view before you do.
  4. Brand your message: You’re creative, so be original. Make sure you demonstrate that you understand how to connect brands to strategy to marketing to execution. In other words, don’t send something that is not consistent with the overall agency brand. Make sure it looks good on the wall and clearly showcases your brand. And please, no crap, glitter, anything that can fall off and make a mess.
  5. Check the list: Include clients, prospects, friends of the agency, vendors, real or potential referral sources and agency alumni. Clarify who should send what and to whom. For larger firms, this is one of the most difficult tasks. Make sure nobody receives multiple cards from the agency.
  6. Signatures are important: Try to get everyone who touches a client to sign their card. Include personal handwritten notes to key clients and prospects. Again, for large agencies this might not be doable – but it’s worth the extra effort. Perhaps your agency can hold an organized signing party. The bottom line is you need to show a unified message. Assign a key person who will have overall responsibility for the signing effort.
  7. Don’t forget the packaging: In new business we always stress it’s the packaging that clients and prospects remember most. Don’t get too focused on the content that you forget to plan the envelope. Clients and prospects will appreciate the attention to detail.
  8. Avoid the mail rush: Send cards out between December 1st and December 15th. Remember, the envelopes can be addressed before Thanksgiving. Then, during the first week of December, you can leisurely write a short message and make sure everything is signed properly. If you’re mailing to clients, make sure to include a gift. If sent to prospects, make sure to mention a donation to a charity.

It’s our hope this Holiday Card Checklist helps! Good luck and happy holidays!

If you like the whole “Winter is Coming” photo, take our quiz and discover which of the “Game Of Thrones” Great Houses is your agency!