Not only are Christmas cards a tradition, but sending a business Christmas card lets your client or customer know that they are important to you. And that’s important in terms of furthering a relationship.
However, as furthering a relationship is the goal, you don’t want to endanger that relationship by offending the recipient of your card
Here are the ins and outs of choosing and sending business Christmas cards to help you avoid embarrassing gaffes.
What Kind of Business Christmas Cards Should You Send?
1. Send only cards of high quality.
Quality shows and the quality of the card reflects on the sender. Sending cheap Christmas cards will make you look cheap. Buy the best Christmas cards you can afford.
2. You should only send handmade Christmas cards if you are an artist.
For the rest of us, sending handmade business Christmas cards only makes us look inept or too cheap to buy quality cards.
3. Send only business Christmas cards that are tasteful.
You may think the Christmas card with a naked Santa is hilarious, but this is not the time to try and find out whether your client has a sense of humor. Stick with traditional themes and messages to make the best impression. (Just in case, here’s How to Soothe an Angry, Annoyed or Otherwise Disgruntled Client.)
4. Be aware of your clients’ religious beliefs.
Not everyone celebrates Christmas. If you know that a client or customer has different religious beliefs, choose and send a holiday card appropriate to the client’s beliefs, or choose and send a holiday card with a more generic holiday theme and message, such as “Happy Holidays” or “Season’s Greetings”.
How to Sign a Christmas Card
Besides signing your name inside the business Christmas card, handwrite a brief personal message. Don’t just write something such as “Happy Holidays” or “Merry Christmas” above your signature; try to extend and personalize the message. For instance, you might write, “Hope 2017 is the best year ever for you and your family, Joe!” (Handwritten notes are also the most powerful follow-up after meetings with prospective clients/customers.)
Using a company stamp makes it convenient to put your business information on the inside of the business Christmas card. Place your company information below your signature.
If you don’t have a company stamp, include a business card with your Christmas card. Because your business cardwill quickly become separated from the Christmas card when the recipient opens it, it’s a good idea to print the name of your business below your signature as well.
How to Address the Business Christmas Card
Handwrite the address of the recipient on the card’s envelope. Using computer-generated labels is tacky and makes your business Christmas card look like a mass mailing. (If you have a lot of cards to send out, remember that you can get someone else to address the cards for you.)
Titles should always be used when addressing your cards. Address your business Christmas cards to “Mr. and Mrs. Ken Taylor”, not “Ken Taylor” or “Ken and Sarah Taylor”. Stick to titles rather than professional initials. For instance, if Ken Taylor is a doctor, the correct address is “Dr. Ken Taylor”, not “Ken Taylor, M.D.”.
If you’re sending your business Christmas card to a couple with different last names, the form of address should be “Mr. Allen Williams and Ms. Alice Smith” if the couple is married. If the couple is not married, their names should be written alphabetically on separate lines as in:
Ms. Alice Smith
Mr. Allen Williams
(Traditionally, the man’s name always comes first in an address unless his wife outranks him or if the couple is not married, her last name precedes his alphabetically.)
Sending Business Christmas Cards
Properly, business Christmas cards should be sent to the client’s business address unless you know the person socially. If you are sending a card to a person’s home address, you should include the spouse’s name in the address.
The trick to sending Christmas cards is sending them in time to arrive during the holiday season. For cards that are being sent locally or nationally, December 15th is a convenient cut-off date for having your cards in the mail. If you’re sending cards internationally, they’ll have to be in the mail much sooner.