Many advisers make sure to send a card or other “touch” to clients during the holiday season both as a thank you or acknowledgement of the relationship or as another way to keep in front of mind for the clients. Something you might not think about when you are doing this is whether the act of sending something referring to your business might constitute advertising.
On its face, a holiday card that references work that you have done for the client, particularly trading recommendations, may well be advertising and so subject to the advertising rules for advisers. Simply saying something like “happy holidays from your adviser Joe” almost certainly would not be advertising.
Best practice for advisers is to retain a copy of any material sent out to clients or prospects in the advertising folder. Naturally, this does not extend to account statements, financial reports and other items sent only to specific clients since you will keep those in the client folder. So when you are getting a mailing ready (and that includes e-mail) for clients and/or prospects, just make sure to retain a copy to ensure a smoother audit and review when the time comes.
Do you know the state of your advertising folder?