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Not Just for Grandma: 6 Tips for an Unforgettable Company Holiday Card Help your business stand out with a little fun and creativity.

By Mary Ellen Campisi Edited by Dan Bova

entrepreneur daily

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Despite what you may think, the holiday photo card is not just for families to show off their cute kids. Each year we are seeing businesses sending personalized cards -- especially startups and smaller companies that want to connect with clients, partners or even prospective customers in a fresh and memorable way.

Companies and their staffs can and should express their personalities, and a fun and creative holiday photo card is a perfect way to do it. Here are six tips to help your company stand out and create a truly unforgettable card.

1. Maximize the photo opp.

If you're going to take photos specifically for your holiday cards, first make the decision on who should be photographed: should it be the founders, the management team or the entire company?

Related: Tell Them You Care With a Holiday Card. Use These 5 Tips to Do It Right.

You might also consider using a product shot -- but only if your product is photogenic. Running a pet store? Kittens are great. Own an office-supply business? A box of pencils might not do the trick. Company logos can also be a nice touch in lieu of a photo.

2. The bright time is the right time.

Be sure to pick time to shoot that is convenient for employees but that is also conducive to getting a great shot. Tanya Manning from Minipix Photography recommends shooting outdoors either early in the morning or late afternoon to avoid harsh light and the need for a flash.

Set up some photos to be posed but also make sure you're getting candid shots as well -- sometimes they come out better and look more natural.

3. Make the card your own with new design elements.

This year there is a strong focus on typography and mixed media. Faux foil, sequins, hand-rendered lettering, geometric shapes and simplicity are all trendy. Explore the options and pick the elements that best express your company's personality.

Related: For Service-Based Entrepreneurs, Here Are 9 Holiday Marketing Tactics to Boost Sales

We are also seeing social media and technology influencing card designs. For example, is your company frequently included in roundups of #bestplacestowork? Include the hashtag to show your pride for the honor! You can also add your company's Twitter handle to remind recipients to engage via social media.

4. The holidays aren't the only thing worth celebrating.

Many companies are using holiday cards to share milestones. Announcing new office locations or distinctions from the year that you are most proud of, or even anniversaries, can give your card a special meaning.

5. Avoid the "holidays" all together.

You can avoid sensitivity issues by making your card holiday-neutral. New Year's cards can share best wishes for the year ahead to make it easier to stand out in the avalanche of holiday cards.

6. Make it fun for everyone!

Involving the whole gang is a terrific way to get them excited about the holiday season. Create a fun contest that awards a prize to the team member that comes up with the most creative holiday-card theme or allow employees to vote on which theme or picture to use.

For many, holiday cards are ways to connect with the important people in their lives each year. Because so much of our year is spent in the workplace, it is important to extend this tradition into our professional lives. These tips will help make your company card more meaningful and special.

Related: Look Smashing in Your Professional Business Photo

Mary Ellen Campisi

Trend Specialist and Art Director at Vistaprint

As Vistaprint’s trend specialist and art director, Mary Ellen Campisi is responsible for researching the latest card design trends for the holiday season. Specializing in helping people express their personality, Campisi spends hours bringing together the best designs to suit every customer’s holiday style. She and the creative team at Vistaprint have created hundreds of designs for this holiday season.

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