When you’re licking those stamps for your holiday cards this year, are you thinking about how the recipient is going to feel when he or she receives your card? Or is this simply something you’re doing because it’s expected this time of year, or maybe because you hope your name will stay in the minds of the hundreds of recipients in hopes of getting more work?

Will you make even the slightest motion toward personalization? Anyone can pay a company to print and mail 250 or 500 or 1000 cards. What’s the point of shotgunning it when the recipient will only realize it’s spam and throw it away? Is that the impression you wish to give of yourself?

This is how an unsigned, unpersonalized card is read by the recipient:

This is good for the fireplace. And not much else.

If you can’t personalize your cards, your list is too long. Pare it down until it’s of manageable size, consisting only of those people with whom you truly have or want to ┬áhave a relationship and with whom you truly want to work with in 2013. Otherwise it’s a waste of your money and their time. That’s not connecting. It’s worse than ignoring the recipient, as it rather explicitly demonstrates you don’t care at all about them.

Show someone you care about them.