The holiday season is a busy time — parties to attend and presents to buy. So instead of wasting your money during this hectic time of year on sales messages that will more than likely be ignored or discarded, why not turn your attention to some good old-fashioned relationship building.

Mailing out holiday cards to your customer list is a simple, effective method to help build brand awareness. This simple gesture is a great way to express your appreciation for the business your customer pushes your way. But don't overlook the power of sending out the right type of card. According to Adams Hudson of Hudson, Ink — a Montgomery, Ala.-based creative marketing firm, “The trick is to get your card to stand out from all the other cards. If it doesn't, it's a waste.”

Hudson offers the following tips when executing a holiday card marketing campaign.

Bigger is better. “Regular” sized cards blend in to the stack and may not get read. An oversized card, usually a 5.5 inch × 8.5 inch, will stand out from the others, and get noticed.

Think unique. Stock cards with pictures of an ornament or some cartoon Santa with an over-used Holiday phrase are all too common. Make sure your message is unique, inspiring, and thoughtful.

Travel in style. Spend a little extra for postage and go first class. One advantage to sending your cards first class is you'll get back the undeliverables, which will allow you to clean your customer list. If you go standard rate to save a few pennies, you'll never know who's moved.

So remember, this is the perfect time of year for you to say thanks to the people who keep you in business. And a simple holiday card campaign is just one more way for you to rise above your competition.

You can view some unique holiday card samples at www.customerpostcards.com.