Over half of Americans send a Christmas card or other holiday greeting toward the end of every year. That’s probably higher if you consider businesses sending notes to their customers and leads. If you’re one of the majority preparing this year’s bundle, you probably have a spreadsheet with the names and addresses of everyone on your list. Or, if you don’t have such a document, maybe you’ll think about starting one. Among the many benefits you get from an organized list of recipients is the ability to easily plot them on a map. We’ll go over that and more in this post.
The first and best reason to keep a spreadsheet of addresses is organization. Physical address books become filled with redacted entries as people move. Or worse, the entries are outdated or duplicative. A spreadsheet allows you to search and update when you receive a new address. You can also easily share the document with someone else, such as a spouse or other family member. In fact, services like Google Spreadsheets let you share and make edits live, without ever sending around attachments.
Another good reason to keep a spreadsheet with all your addresses is, if you choose, you can mail merge the labels. This may be a controversial suggestion to some who believe in hand-lettering. That’s fine, you can still reap the spreadsheet benefits by printing out your list to make it easy to determine whose envelope you’ve already addressed.
For those sending customer greetings, you can likely export from your CRM software to a CSV or Excel spreadsheet. Either of those formats work great for mail merge and plotting your contacts on a map.
View Holiday Card List in a full screen map
You can see an example map above. At BatchGeo, our card list is short, but filled with a mix of rich, famous, and fictional. In fact, you can filter the map by those three types of people. If you have other information about the people on your list, include it in a column in your spreadsheet, then you can use the grouping feature the same way we did above. Perhaps you want to group by customers, leads, friends, acquaintances, or other attributes. If it’s in your spreadsheet, it will become a powerful, interactive map in BatchGeo.
Other fun things you’ll see from your map are where everyone lives. Are they all in the same city? Maybe they’re in a couple clumps around where you grew up and where you live now. You could even use basic map clustering to tabulate the areas with a greater number of contacts. This is especially useful when mapping sales leads, of course, but it’s fun to see even for your friends list.
So, dust off your spreadsheet of addresses, or make a new one. Then visualize that data on a BatchGeo map today.