“Merry Christmas,” or “Season’s Greetings?” Here are a few business do’s and don’ts around the holidays

“Merry Christmas,” or “Season’s Greetings?” Here are a few business do’s and don’ts around the holidays

It’s the most wonderful time of year (if you’re like me, you almost sing that) and it’s time to thank clients, business partners, employees and even potential clients for a wonderful year and to show that you are thinking of them around the holidays. Holidays? Don’t we mean Christmas? Well, yes and no. It’s a slippery slope that needs to be carefully navigated—sad, but true.

As you start to outline your seasonal/end-of-year giving, here are a few things to consider:

Don’t add to holiday clutter.

In December, just about every business owner, CEO or sales person will be hearing from every company they’ve ever been in contact with. Believe it or not, you have an opportunity here. Take the time to make sure that your messages are well thought out and have true meaning. In most cases, a handwritten, thoughtful note to your closest contacts will lead to more meaningful partnerships and business relationships. You don’t need to reach out to everyone! In fact, if you simply send a generic “Happy Holidays” e-blast, your message is just taking up space in the person’s inbox and will quickly be discarded—much like a boring fruit cake—the second they come in.

Do share thoughtful and useful information.

As mentioned above, a handwritten note is the best way to go. However, we all know that it’s hard to find even a shred of free time around the holidays. No matter how you choose to express your holiday wishes, make sure to take time to add a personal touch. This could be a congratulatory note on something the company or person did over the last year, a message saying that you can’t wait to hear more amazing news coming out of their business in the new year, etc.

Do carefully choose your words.

Working in the communications industry means that we talk to a lot of different people from a variety of backgrounds, which is awesome. It also means that we have to try to please a lot of different types of people and, like it or not, the political correctness of our society means that we have to choose our words carefully. We have to ask ourselves which holiday people observe and celebrate; do they absolutely love the the season and all that comes with it, or do the holidays bring out their inner Grinches? Sit back and really consider the message you want coming from your organization. I suggest you play it safe with a simple “Happy Holidays” or “Season’s Greetings.” It may not be what you personally would say, but it’s best to stay neutral when it comes to business communications.

Don’t over-brand your cards or gifts.

Not sure if your gifts or cards are too “Christmassy?” You can always choose to stick to something simple and relatable to your company. However, when showcasing your brand, less is more. Overuse of your company logo, colors or messaging comes across as shameless self-promotion. When it comes to the gift, it doesn’t have to be expensive, but take the time to give the gift some real thought. You definitely don’t want your client or potential client to feel like they were simply checked off your list.

Do share holiday greetings on social media.

While you’re busy planning out the end of the year, make sure you give your social media campaigns a little love. Don’t worry; you don’t have to do anything huge. Be sure to choose a holiday theme that works for your brand and can take you through the entire holiday season. Schedule simple, yet visually appealing, images that say “Season’s Greetings,” “Merry Christmas,” “Happy Hanukkah,” and “Happy New Year.” It’s also a good idea to show a little of your company spirit. What does that mean? Well, I’m sure you’re planning some kind of holiday party. Take a few pictures to show your team taking the time to enjoy each other’s company and to celebrate. Just don’t overdo it on the pictures—especially if your party gets a little rowdy.

Season’s greetings! Wishing you and yours a wonderful holiday season and happy New Year. (Was that PC enough??)

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