In today’s economic climate, most businesses are looking for ways to cut costs — and nixing the holiday cards to clients or customers may be one of them. This strategy, however, may cost a business more than it saves.
Sending holiday cards is actually a subtle and cost-effective form of advertising that shouldn’t be viewed as an optional part of the marketing budget to be slashed when funds get low. Here are three reasons why you may want to get the stamps and envelopes (or the e-mail marketing software) ready for those holiday cards:
1. It’s good manners – Your customers have given you their business — and their money. It’s only courteous and respectful to acknowledge them with a holiday card to show that you appreciate them, consider them important and wish them a happy holiday.
2. It allows you to send a unique message about your company – A holiday card is an opportunity to include a warm, heartfelt message from your company that reflects your core values in a way that a standard marketing piece may not. Forget the generic cards and go with something specifically designed and written for your company that mirrors who you are and what you stand for. This will resonate with customers more than any brochure or billboard ever could.
3. Any form of outgoing communication is a good one – Seize any and every opportunity you can use to communicate with your customers. It is a proven rule that the amount of business, traffic and money you have coming in is equal to the amount of communication and promotion you have going out. So if you want to increase your incoming calls, number of leads, sales and ultimately your bottom line, utilize every communication channel you have available and communicate!
Yes, people are typically inundated with holiday cards around the holidays, but nevertheless, sending a holiday card still puts your business in front of your customers at that moment, and gives them a reason to remember you in the future. Consider this scenario: Three months after the holidays, one of your customers is deciding who to buy from — the business that sent them a beautiful, thoughtful holiday card, or the one that forgot about them during that special time of year. Who do you think they’re more likely to choose?
Of course, sending out holiday cards isn’t going to magically earn you business. A holiday card can only do so much – it can’t make up for an ineffective sales force, poor customer service or an inferior product. Clearly it has to be part of a coordinated sales and marketing effort, but it is one you should definitely include.
A holiday card is a chance to communicate with customers and put you at the forefront of their minds, it shows that you care, it communicates a unique and important message that a typical marketing piece cannot, and it displays good manners by acknowledging the customers who have given you their hard-earned money.