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By Duncan MacPherson
I was speaking with a consulting client the other day and they were excited to tell me that their Thanksgiving Day card process had just kicked in.
You are probably aware that we are fixated with process at our company, Pareto Systems, and it is always a thrill whenever we hear that one of our clients has taken it to heart and applied process within their own practice.
As well, this particular process is one that we feel particularly impassioned about because we have been promoting the notion of sending out Thanksgiving Day cards for about 15 years now. In fact, we always get rave reviews from the advisors that have employed it.
Although it is fine to send a Happy Holidays or New Year’s card, we have always argued that sending a Thanksgiving Day card will set you apart. There are a lot of gifts and communications going back and forth around the New Years and Christmas holidays, and your Xmas card tends to become just one of the many.
Historically speaking, the Thanksgiving Day card has never been a strong tradition. Therefore, when you send one out it, is quite likely the only card that your clients will receive. You stand out as someone who is genuinely interested in them and sincere about wishing them a great Thanksgiving holiday. As well, in this age of the Internet it is often rare to get a card of any kind for any occasion. This last point creates a further opportunity to really stand out and to make a statement about your level of commitment to them.
In order to do this Thanksgiving card idea effectively, there are a few things to consider, and one of those things is the all-important message on the card. Many advisors look for a quote which resonates with them of course. Perhaps they might speak to the state of the nation, the time of year, and of course the clients they are sending it to. In today’s world, it takes but a few moments and an Internet search before you have several worthy quotes to choose from.
Next, arrange to have your chosen message written on the card by someone in your office who has admirable and legible handwriting. I realize that you may think this is a lot of writing, but it is well worth the effort. Remember, based on your service matrix, this is not going to be sent out to all your clients–it is going to be sent out to your best clients. You also have to decide who will sign the cards. My personal preference is that the cards are signed by all the staff members. Again, what is the statement that you want to make to your best clients about the level of service that you provide and the respect that you have for them?
Your cards should have impact and shelf life.
Lastly of course, what kind of a card do you want to send? In short, we have always suggested that you send the nicest card you can possibly find. It has to be something that someone really doesn’t want to ever throw away. It has to be so attractive a card that the client will keep it on their mantle or desk for months to come. When they receive another card from you they will reluctantly tuck it away in some safe place so that they can refer back to it if they so desire.
Now, as it relates to my client, I was curious as to what steps they had put into their Thanksgiving Card process, and reviewed it. It was airtight. Anyone, even brand new to the office, could have followed it with ease.
Step 1, which was already in motion, was to order the cards by a ‘drop dead’ date to ensure that they would be sent out in a timely fashion.
They had called me the other morning because they were taking the “best card you can find” to heart, really wanted to “wow” their clients and felt a bit stuck at finding something suitable. Fortunately I had recently been introduced to a new card provider and was happy to pass it on.
The cards at www.lavishcards.com will set you apart from anyone else. They are stunningly beautiful and produced on the highest quality of paper, and they have an amazingly diverse selection of beautiful photographs. I personally have ordered them for use with my friends and family, and always get phone calls from friends thanking me for the card (if you can imagine that). One friend framed one. I love it that people enjoy them so much.
So remember: Take process seriously at all times. Don’t leave anything till the last minute and even though it is still a few months away, it is a great time to start planning your Thanksgiving Day card campaign. If you are gravitating towards the idea of sending out Thanksgiving cards yourself, be sure to order them soon so you can get a head-start on everything.
Visit www.lavishcards.com to order your Thanksgiving Day cards today.
PS. If you are looking for a good phrase for your Thanksgiving cards, consider this:
“Wishing you and your family a great Thanksgiving holiday. We also wanted to say thanks for a great relationship.”