It’s Time to Start Thinking About Your 2022 Holiday Cards. Yes, Really.

Legal Internet Solutions Inc.

Legal Internet Solutions Inc.

How early is too early to start thinking about your firm’s holiday card? The answer: never. It’s never too early.

Sending a holiday card is an important touch point for lawyers, law firms, and professional service providers to stay top of mind, and can be a thoughtful way to show clients that you value their business. After all, people are more likely to do business with companies that make an effort to stay in touch and show that they care about their relationships. But, there’s a lot to think about and prepare before you can apply the postage or hit send. 

Video greeting? E-card? Direct Mailer?

With the variety of delivery methods and platforms for your holiday card, how do you know which is right for your firm? As with any marketing campaign, the first step is defining your audience. 

Many firms opt for a video greeting or an e-card delivered via email. This method is preferred when the recipient list creeps well into the thousands. They can also be really fun to watch! However, the cost is often one of the biggest deciding factors, as custom video cards or animations can be more expensive than their traditional paper counterparts.

Another thing to keep in mind is the effort required to create and send a video card. If you’re not comfortable with technology or don’t have much time to put into the storyboard of a video, a paper card may be a better option. 

On the flip side, the pandemic caused a resurgence of direct mail. With everyone connecting virtually over Zoom or other video conferencing daily, many firms chose to revisit traditional paper cards with simple, modern greetings. 

You don’t have to choose just one method, either. Some firms will have one practice group send a video card, while other practice groups will opt for a traditional card with a handwritten message. As long as the branding is consistent across all mediums, there’s no harm in repurposing the same message. Bonus points if you’re able to repurpose both methods across your digital marketing channels.

What should it look like? What should it say?

The biggest point of contention I’ve seen in creating law firm holiday cards is “what should it look like and what should it say?” As with anything in marketing, business, etc., there is no “one size fits all” approach, and the design and message of your holiday card should be uniquely yours.

One thing is for certain, your holiday card is NOT a place to sell yourself. Although you may be putting in hours upon hours of effort into the design and distribution of your holiday cards, it’s not about you. This is something that you are doing for your clients, colleagues, friends, and family.

Feeling stuck? Here are some questions to help guide you.

  • Which holiday, or holiday season, are you celebrating?
    Think of your audience. Are most of your clients of a specific faith where it would make sense to say “Happy Hanukkah” or “Merry Christmas?” Some firms will avoid the December holidays altogether and send a holiday greeting for Thanksgiving or New Year’s. Last year, I saw one firm completely forgo the traditional holidays and instead sent Valentine’s Day greetings accompanied by some candy.
  • Where are you distributing your card?
    Nationally? Internationally? Does everyone receiving your card speak the same language or should you include translations for key clients in other geographic areas?
  • Are you doing anything above and beyond?
    Maybe you’ve made charitable donations on behalf of your clients, or perhaps you hosted events for your clients and colleagues and have photos to share. Think about what you can include alongside your messaging.
  • Do you have something to share?
    Some firms will include something special about their culture in their holiday card. This can be something simple such as a recipe card or a link to a Spotify playlist curated by members of your team, or as in-depth as an e-book about the holiday traditions of your team. Sharing something personal with your clients will ensure that your holiday greeting is memorable.
  • Is there a way you could source from your clients?
    Holiday greetings can be a unique way to showcase your clients. For example, a firm specializing in agriculture or sustainability could use recycled paper sourced from their client. I saw one company take it a step further and use recycled paper that had seeds embedded within. The message included, “Finished with this card? Toss it in your yard or a planter and watch wildflowers grow!” There are countless opportunities to include something special that showcases one of your clients.
  • Anything else that you could include?
    Do you have big news to share for the year ahead? Did you rebrand… or move? Consider including your announcement as part of your holiday card.

Check your data and your details!

Whether it’s a video card or e-card that you plan to distribute via email, or a traditional direct mailer, your distribution list is only as good as the quality of your data. While we marketers have grandiose plans of updating contact data on an ongoing basis, we also have to be realistic about timing. The earlier you begin collecting distribution lists from your team, the earlier you can start cleaning the data. 

Another important detail to think about is your distribution method and hosting.

For an e-card, you should host your e-card or video somewhere online that is easily accessible. Hosting on your website is an obvious choice, but platforms such as YouTube, Vimeo, or even your social media channels can work. Once your digital greeting has a place to live, you can craft your email blast and hit send.

Traditional paper cards don’t need a digital home, but it’s crucial to nail down your distribution details such as:

  • Who needs to sign the card, and are you going to run a list comparison to prevent duplicates?
  • When would you like your cards to be delivered? The general rule around the holiday season is to allow two weeks of delivery time. So, if you would like your cards to arrive by December 14, mail them by December 1.
  • What about postage? Is your card a non-traditional size that requires extra postage? Are you going to purchase special stamps that align with the holiday season?

Some 2022 holiday card trends

There’s no doubt that holiday cards are a longtime tradition. For many of us, they are a way to stay in touch with clients and colleagues, and to let them know we’re thinking of them during the holiday season. But what are some of the latest trends in holiday cards?

One popular trend is to go for a more minimalist approach, with clean designs and simple messages. Another popular trend is to add a personal touch, like a firm photo or a hand-written message. And, of course, there’s always the timeless classic holiday card, with a traditional design and message.

Another trend we’re seeing is referencing current events and pop culture, or creating a parody. For example, a few years ago, a large, national firm used the talents of their summer associates to create a video parodying the movie Home Alone. The summers were left to their own devices in the office one night while the partners were away at the annual partner retreat… hilarity ensued. 

Ultimately, there is no right or wrong answer for what you create for your firm’s holiday card. Finding a system that works for you and your audience is important, and the process of selecting the perfect card can be an enjoyable one. If you’re struggling to come up with ideas, or don’t know how to get started you can always turn to outsourcing for a little extra help.

No matter what your style, there’s a holiday card out there for you. So get creative and spread some holiday cheer!

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Legal Internet Solutions Inc.

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