Picture this: It's a crisp winter evening, you've just finished up a long day of holiday festivities. You pick up the mail on the way into the house, and immediately notice a handwritten envelope addressed to you.
To your surprise, it's a thoughtfully handwritten card from the real estate agent who sold you the home you’re standing in. Unlike other cookie-cutter cards you received from businesses around the holidays, this one stands out. The front of the card is a lovely photo of your city covered in snow.
You can't help but admire the photo on the front of the card and decide to hang it on the fridge. It’ll be your friendly reminder to call the agent once the holidays are over and give them an update on your home.
Now, wouldn’t you like to give that experience to your clients?
As a real estate agent, holiday cards are a great tool for continued touch marketing. And when done right, your clients will love receiving them. Let’s run through five reasons why you should send out holiday cards every year, as well as best practices to do it right.
The 5 reasons why you need to send out holiday cards
1) To strengthen and maintain your relationship with past clients
Your past clients don’t have to stay in the past – sending out holiday cards strengthens the relationship so they always have your name in mind. Hearing from you during the holidays (and throughout the year in general) makes the relationship personal, and shows them you’re invested in maintaining it.
2) To share any successes in your business
Holiday cards are a great way to give a rundown of news from the past year. Did you sell a great home in their neighborhood? Add to your staff? Move to a new office? Use the annual holiday card to update clients on your successes – and remind them why you’re a great agent to work with.
3) To share any changes happening in the New Year
If there are any changes coming in the New Year – whether for your business or yourself personally – you can share them in your holiday card. On the business side, perhaps you’re expanding your service area or hiring more agents for your team. You can also share personal news if you choose to (e.g., if you’re getting married).
4) To check in on their home
Holiday cards can also be your annual check-in on the home you sold them or the home they moved to after a sale you worked on. This reminds them of your involvement in the process of getting them into their home, and associates those good feelings with your business.
If there is anything that’s not going well with their home, it can also open the door to conversations about selling.
5) To remind them you’re there when they’re ready to buy or sell
Overall, holiday cards are perfect for reminding clients and your sphere of influence that you’re available whenever they’re ready to buy or sell. While these cards shouldn’t just be a sales pitch, they can fit into your continued touch marketing strategy (i.e., continuing to pop up and remind people you’re there).
Best practices for holiday cards
Now that you’ve decided to send out holiday cards to your clients and sphere of influence, there are some best practices to keep in mind. Your cards should:
- Be handwritten – Bulk greetings are a turnoff and will just end up in the trash. Handwritten cards show that you put time and effort into contacting them, and clients will appreciate the gesture.
- Use inclusive copy – Your clients may not all celebrate the same holidays, and you might not know each one well enough to say with certainty which ones they observe. It’s best to use inclusive copy instead, such as “Happy holidays.”
- **Be sent on time **– Make sure your cards are sent in a timely fashion. Many people take vacations over the holidays and there are often postal delays during this time. Earlier is better.
- Use nice art or a personal photo – Make sure your holiday card catches their eye when they open it, otherwise it may not get read. A nice piece of local art or photography (or even a photo of your team) can be a good option here.
One thing your holiday cards should not do: Ask for referrals. This is not the time or place – everyone is busy around the holidays and no one wants to receive a card that is asking for something. Let your holiday card strengthen the relationship and remind them your business exists, but save the referral requests for another time.
Why top agents use Addressable for handwritten mail year-round
Holiday cards don’t need to be a hassle. With Addressable, you can schedule everything in advance and have your personalized cards set to go out in time for the holidays.
Save yourself the hand cramp and let us handwrite each card for you. Each card and envelope we send is individually written with a real ballpoint pen, and each one is customized to the recipient. We’ll even write the copy for you. Don’t get stuck scrambling to get your cards out this season. Email [email protected] to discuss handwritten mail strategies and our trackable approach to direct mail.