Sleighing the Networking Game: Using Holiday Cards to Brighten Your Business Dev Spirit! 

Nov 8th, 2023 | Law Firm Marketing, Legal Marketing in Brief

While holiday cards alone might not drastically boost sales or bring in a multitude of new clients, they act as a valuable tool in the overall marketing and relationship-building strategy of a business. The key is to ensure they are genuine, of high quality, and tailored to the recipient for maximum impact. 

Personal gestures, like sending holiday cards, also play a role in customer and/or referral source retention. While the card itself might not be the sole factor, it can be a part of a broader strategy of personal touchpoints that build loyalty. According to the U.S. Small Business Administration and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, acquiring a new customer can be up to five times more expensive than retaining a current one, so any efforts that nurture existing relationships can be valuable. 

So, email or print? In the age of digital communication, tangible mail stands out. A study from the Data & Marketing Association noted that direct mail response rates were significantly higher than all digital channels. Another study from Temple University and the U.S. Postal Service found participants had a stronger emotional response to physical ads and marketing pieces (like direct mail or cards) than to digital ones. They also remembered the physical ads better. This suggests that a tangible holiday card could create a stronger emotional connection and be more memorable than an e-card. 

Still don’t believe us!? Here are 3 more reasons to take advantage of signed holiday cards:  

1. Building and Strengthening Relationships 

Lawyers routinely struggle with a meaningful reason to follow up with good contact and often lose momentum and connection due to lack of frequency.  Cue the holiday cards!! A holiday card can serve as a non-intrusive touchpoint with existing clients, referral sources, and potential connections reminding them of your business and expressing appreciation for their association. This reinforces trust and loyalty, essential components for long-term business relationships.  

Another perk of cards? They can be sent to a broad spectrum of contacts—from regular clients to occasional customers, from stakeholders to suppliers. This broad reach ensures that a diverse group is reminded of your business during the festive season.  No one will be offended that you wished them a happy holiday season. 

2. Networking and Re-engagement 

Holiday cards can serve as a conversation starter, a follow-up to a previous conversation, or an opportunity to re-engage with former clients or partners. It can lead to renewed collaborations or projects. We recommend using the card message to set up a call-to-action with the recipient.  For example, “Happy Holidays, Chris!  I hope you and your family had a wonderful break together.  Let’s have lunch in the New Year to catch up, I’ll call you in January.”  Then you set a reminder on your calendar to call/email Chris in January to set up lunch.  Using holiday cards as a reason to reach out and connect is a great way to close a personal meet-up as well.    

3. Staying Memorable 

In today’s competitive landscape where extensive marketing campaigns can be expensive, holiday cards can be a cost-effective way to connect with your audience. The return on investment, in terms of goodwill and strengthened relationships, can be significant.  It also helps you stand out.  With most businesses relying on electronic communication, a tangible card can set you apart from competitors. It also shows an extra layer of effort and thoughtfulness. 

Let’s wrap this up with a pretty bow:  

While digital communication has its merits, there is undeniable value in the personal touch of a tangible holiday card. Think of it as an investment in your professional relationships. From solidifying existing connections to sparking new conversations, these cards can offer a unique touch in a world saturated with digital interactions.  

So, as you plan your outreach this holiday season, consider incorporating this classic gesture. After all, sometimes, it’s the simple things that leave the most lasting impressions. 

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