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How to Design Your Firm's Holiday Card

November 2017

The days are getting shorter, the first snows are starting to fall, and the holiday season is upon us. In other words, the time has come to design your law firm’s annual holiday card!

Related: Tips for better Email Engagement

Sending a holiday card can be a surprisingly contentious practice among law firms. Some firms will tell you that sending a card is a nice courtesy and a great way to stay in touch and maintain client relations. Others will tell you that holiday cards focus too heavily on the Christmas holiday or can cause sticky situations if your firm accidentally sends a card to, for instance, a client who has passed away.

Below, we’ve outlined some of the biggest points of law firm holiday card etiquette to help you decide what your firm should do this year.

Print Cards or Animated Email Cards?
Would your clients prefer a print card or an animated email card? The former option is sometimes considered classier, while the latter option is easier and cheaper—especially if you have a wellmaintained email database. If you decide to go the animated email card route, tread carefully. Some people will accidentally report these kinds of communications as spam, which can have a negative impact on future email marketing efforts. Your best bet is to incorporate the card with some other kind of content, like a festive holiday blog or a post about holiday hours and promotions. At the very least, make sure your video card is funny. Even the Grinches and Scrooges on your email list can enjoy a good laugh.

Do You Need to Sign the Card?
If you decide to send out print cards, then one of the partners of your firm needs to sign it personally. Clients take note when a card isn’t signed or when the signature is clearly printed or stamped. If you are going to make the effort to send out a card in the name of “client relations,” make it at least a little personal. A note of good wishes and a genuine signature can go a surprisingly long way.

Sending a Strong Brand Message with Your Card
Whether you go the email route or send print cards, your firm’s holiday card needs to be unique. Especially nowadays, there is an urge to send politically and spiritually neutral holiday cards. The result, while inoffensive, can also feel sanitized and dull to recipients. Boring cards with nondescript wintry images (snowflakes, pinecones, snowmen, etc.) and even duller messages (“Happy Holidays” and “Season’s Greetings” are the standard picks) are not going to move the needle. At best, your clients will look at these cards once before tossing them in the (real or virtual) recycling bin.

You can get creative without being denominational. Customize your cards so they say something positive about your brand. Show your sense of humor by having your lawyers pose to recreate movie posters or famous paintings, or send a holiday newsletter detailing some of your firm’s philanthropic work from the current year. These communications might not seem traditional, but they send an engaging or witty brand message without resorting to clichés or alienating specifics.

Inherent has designed several award winning animated cards for its clients. You can view a small sample of our holiday card work here.

Contact us today for more information.