Business Greeting Card Etiquette

by Lindsay on August 13, 2010 · 0 comments

Want to show your appreciation for your clients? Greeting cards are one of the best ways to show you care. Taking the time to send out greeting cards is a thoughtful gesture that is sure to make your clients smile.

Slogans should always be neutral, polite, and professional. The best example of this is the holiday greeting card. In recent years, people have become more sensitive to differing observances during the holidays. Except for in the rare case where you know a client well enough to know what they celebrate (and perhaps not even then), stick with neutral greetings such as “Happy Holidays.”

Be politically aware and correct. You should take care to ensure you never choose a card that might offend someone. When sending a client or colleague a birthday card, for instance, avoid the temptation to buy those crass humorous cards that friends sometimes buy for one another. Unless you know the person very well – meaning you have a friendship with them outside of your business relationship – you risk unintentionally offending them, and losing their business or references.

Handwrite greeting messages and addresses. When computers and printers first became commonplace and people could print out their own letters and address labels relatively easily, typed messages and addresses became all the rage. Part of the attraction is that it truly does save time (not to mention it prevents hand cramps), but unfortunately, it also makes your greeting cards feel impersonal — which can do more harm than good.

Instead, avoid the computer altogether and write out everything by hand. Write a short but personal message inside the card, and address the envelope by hand. It takes some extra time, but in today’s world of automation and computerization, your clients will recognize and appreciate the personal touch!

Plan ahead. Sending off your greeting cards in the last week before Christmas sends a message that your company is badly organized, or that you don’t care enough about your clients to get it done early. Either way, not an impression you want to give to your clients! Instead, get your greeting cards done well in advance, both to avoid the mail rush and to ensure your clients get them in plenty of time. Don’t forget, many clients will take some time off around holidays and birthdays!

What is a good time frame? You should probably plan on mailing your cards about a week before a minor holiday or a birthday. Around major holidays such as Christmas, when mail delivery can be a bit slow, be sure to have your cards ready at least two or three weeks ahead of time. If you have a lot of clients, this probably means starting at the beginning of November, so that you can do it in your spare time throughout the month, rather than all at once as your deadline draws close.

Most clients are easily pleased by a little thoughtful show of your appreciation, and greeting cards are a great way to do this. However, the holidays can also be a sensitive subject, so take care not to inadvertently offend anyone!

About the Author: Lindsay Adams is an aspiring blogger, marketer, and more. She currently writes on a business Christmas cards and greeting cards blog, loves traveling, and studies French in her free time.

Still failed to get those cards sent on time? Sending a Christmas e-card is better than sending none at all.

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