sly : marketing

Don’t send a Christmas Card to your customers

As a business, we all get Christmas cards, and most of us send Christmas cards to our customers. If you’re doing it, you should stop now.

Unless.

Everybody is doing it

Think about this for a few minutes:

Why are you sending the cards?

Most businesses are doing it in order to get noticed and in order to tell their customers a story. The problem is that they’re all telling the same story.

The story

It consists of three parts. The words are not the same, but this is what they’re saing:

Change the story

If you’re going to send Christmas cards, then you should change the story. A Christmas card like any of the other Christmas cards, it doesn’t work. It’s not telling the story you want it to tell.

You want your customers to understand that you’re different, that you can deliver even more creative and awesome products, things they haven’t seen yet. You want them to be excited, even more excited than when they did business with you. You want them to remember you, you, and not the rest of the guys.

Don’t send a Christmas card to your customers unless it’s remarkable.

Don’t send it if it’s just another Christmas card.

It should be about Christmas

It’s Christmas, when you create the card, you should understand this. Whatever you do, make it related to the holiday. Because that’s why you are sending it.

Make it personal

Do your best to show your customers that every card you send is different. Add their name to the card, and add the name of their company.

This is how you should do it

I received this a few days ago. It’s a gingerbread house. It’s personal, it has my name on it. I had to build it.

On the back, it has a recipe, and a personal message to me.

I will keep it on my desk for months (well, at least for a few weeks).

What happens if you’re not remarkable?

If you send a standard Christmas card, even one with you own customized design, it sends a message to your customers.

The message is this:

Does it make you happy?

… but you’re nice. People like you. I guess that’s ok. On the other hand, why on earth would you settle for nice?



22 responses to “Don’t send a Christmas Card to your customers”

  1. Sathish says:

    Nope, it wont happy your customers happy. If you really want to make your customers happy then you should design a card which will give a good message to customers that your not a copy cat and you have the ability to stand out in the crowd. Thanks for sharing an useful article.

  2. Wow now that’s one christmas card that wouldn’t end up straight into the recycle bin, great thinking and very memorable, I will be trying to use this in my own marketing thank you.

  3. Barbara Ling says:

    Wow! Now that is truly incredible! Do you do the same thing for Hanukah or other winter holidays? I’m most impressed indeed….

  4. It’s awesome. And I bet your customers will get excited 🙂

    Thanks a lot for your comment

  5. I only think that they do it twice a year, one before summer, and one for Christmas. We used this company for our summer cards, and it was awesome 🙂

  6. I dig it Jens. My company has sent out the ‘generic’ cards in the past and I now realize that I was basically wasting my time, and certainly not building relationships. May we all dare to be a little different, a little better, and a heck of a lot more unique.

  7. SMS Reseller says:

    What youre saying is completely true. I know that everybody must say the same thing, but I just think that you put it in a way that everyone can understand. I also love the images you put in here. They fit so well with what youre trying to say. I’m sure you’ll reach so many people with what you’ve got to say.

  8. TristanH says:

    Awesome post, Jens!

    I love these three words in particular: “Change the story.” I think that works for, well, pretty much everything! Not just Christmas cards. If you want your blog to be noticed, change the story. If you want your headlines to get noticed, change the story. If YOU want to get noticed, change your story.

    And that is indeed a very cool Christmas card 🙂

    Thanks for another great post!

  9. I’m glad you liked it. Thanks a lot for your comment 🙂

  10. Fernando says:

    Nice post here Jens!
    I completely agree on the fact where making relations personal with your customers like you say, like adding their names or company names, I think they can actually feel a part of it and that can reflect on your sales. 🙂
    Hope to see you around Jens, keep up the good work!

    • Yes, that’s what it’s all about. Make the marketing personal, make it as they feel part of something, and build relations. We want them to want what we are selling, and we want them to be waiting for it (and longing for it, much like Apple is doing with their products… people can’t wait for all the new products to arrive in the stores).

      Thanks a lot for your comment Fernando.

  11. Ishan says:

    Well, this shows the power of personalization. With time, every business has started to pick up the concept. However, most of them are using this to spam our mailboxes in the name of personalization. Something unique can easily stand out in this scenario just like your case!

    • That’s true. Spam is a problem, and the companies (people) who are doing it understands the power of personalization. This happens a lot in offline marketing as well, my mailbox is full of personal advertising (with my name all over) without my permission).

      Thanks again for your comment Ishan

  12. Trevorhigbee says:

    Good tips. I found you off Tristan’s site. May stop by more often.

  13. Thanks a lot for stopping by, hope to see you here more often.

    By the way, Tristan’s blog is awesome.

  14. thementalcoach says:

    You are right, personalization is really important. If I do send a Christmas Cards to a customer, I hand write their name and a brief message and sign it with my name (and hand address the envelope). Yes, it takes more time, but it sends a message that I consider the customer important enough to spend that extra amount of time on them.

    What I DON’T do is include a business card. I hate it when people do that. Hey, at least PRETEND that you are sending me a card for holiday best wishes, not just to promote your business. 🙂

    • It seems that you’re doing the right thing. Adding a personal touch is very important, and hand address the envelope and signing it with your own name is the right thing to do.

      What about the rest of the card, is it identical to all your customers? Or do you also add a personal touch to the text?

      Thanks a lot for your comment.

  15. elvis C says:

    Hi Jens,

    Grt8 to know der r people who think like me, but you see u have made a mark and me trying to. I have left my job and started small business. We tried to do what others r doing sell some elctronic equiptments. did nt succeed. Lost few thousands. I always thought i need to do something which the other guy do not give. But now no funds. May b go back to work and keep the business on with someone to take care as part time. And me will work on ‘Big idea’ as i am working, pitch it to particular client and than once in get back to business. And do keep sending me some of ur out of box stuff. I wud appreciate. tc

    • That’s too bad. But don’t stop working on that big idea, I believe it’s very important to go for your passion and keep doing what you love doing. In the end, that’s where the money is.

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