Sending Christmas Cards that Actually Say Merry Christmas

I recently started a side job working in a neighborhood doctor’s office. I’ve worked in many different jobs over the years and the skills used are all pretty similar. Typing letters and transcribing notes is all the same except for the terminology used. However, after a few months it became very apparent that this job was very different from others. The doctor sends out Christmas cards to his patients…ALL of his patients, whether they celebrate Christmas or not! You may be saying to yourself, “So what? Our office sends out holiday cards too.” You may be right, but the difference is that our doctor sends out company Christmas cards.

There is a distinction. In this day and age of everyone being politically correct, we actually pick out Christmas cards that wish everyone a “Merry Christmas.” Not holiday cards that wish “Season’s Greetings” or “Happy Holidays,” but Christmas cards that say the often forbidden words “MERRY CHRISTMAS.”

The doctor’s philosophy, which I happen to agree with, is that there is nothing wrong with sending Christmas cards wishing people a Merry Christmas, whether they are Christian, Jewish or Muslim. He feels that he is sharing his holiday joy with everyone he comes in contact with and how can expressing his thoughtful message with Christmas cards be construed as wrong.

So if you celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah or Kwanzaa, our office wishes you the best of the holiday season, peace and the love of family. And may you receive plenty of Christmas cards yourself!

Self Proclaimed Holiday Greeting Cards Snob

Working for a greeting card company has turned me into a snob when it comes to holiday greeting cards! Whenever I see greeting cards in stores, I judge them! First, I critique the design on the front of the card. Second, I have to feel the greeting card to check the quality of the paper stock. Is it matte, glossy, textured, thick, or thin?

I have seen many of our competitors’ business Christmas cards and can’t help but compare them to our own company holiday cards. It seems I am constantly keeping an eye out for greeting cards and how their quality measures up. When I am in the doctor’s office I examine all of the greeting cards they have on display. When I received a flimsy holiday greeting card from my dentist, I asked her why she ordered her Christmas cards from Company X. I then hand delivered a Gallery Collection greeting card catalog to her!

I often stop in stationery and gift stores to check out what’s new in the world of greeting cards. While many of the greeting card designs are quite pretty, the quality is a whole different story. I can’t believe what some companies sell! Some of the greeting card stock feels like construction paper. Other paper is so thin, and sorry, I must use the word “cheesy!” The printing in some of these holiday greeting cards looks like a rubber stamp was used. Oh and touch a greeting card with sparkles and glitter and you’ll be wearing it on your clothes and face well into the New Year!

I know our customers appreciate the quality of our holiday greeting cards. They buy their company holiday cards with confidence. I know OUR (capitalization = pride) holiday cards are the highest quality material and our printing is precise. Certainly a great value for the money!

Business Christmas Cards Can be Appreciated by Everyone

It’s not something you’re likely to think about until a personal experience arises. I wasn’t really aware of sending business Christmas cards until I worked in a small office where the owners were not Christian and didn’t celebrate Christmas. My attention was drawn to exclamations of delight as my bosses opened company Christmas cards sent to them from both clients and vendors. The greeting cards were happily tacked to office bulletin boards and stood up on credenzas and desktops.

I’m reminded of this when I hear debates about whether or not it’s “politically correct” for a company to send out business Christmas cards. The gentlemen I’d been working for recognized that the holiday cards were a celebration of the sender’s joy and goodwill and they felt honored to be remembered and included in these festive greetings.

Another company at which I worked considered company Christmas cards to be so important that the employee with the most attractive handwriting was selected to set aside other work in order to hand address all the envelopes for the greeting cards. At first, they were struck with the dilemma of guessing which holidays each intended recipient might celebrate. The dilemma was resolved by using holiday cards that expressed “Season’s Greetings” and “Happy Holidays” in order to be inclusive of all their clients.

The preparations for sending these company Christmas cards somehow transmitted a positive attitude through everyone on staff, making this office’s end-of-year busy season less stressful and more cooperative. In every instance, I’ve noticed that the sending and receiving of company Christmas cards is a bright way to end a business year!

Patriotic Cards at Christmas

Even though I appreciate the fact that I live in the United States and that this privilege affords me the freedom other countries do not, it never made me feel that I had to send patriotic cards as business Christmas cards. I guess being just like thousands of other Americans, I took all my advantages for granted and never gave patriotism a thought when buying any type of business Christmas cards, or any holiday cards for that matter.

Then, unfortunately, September 11th happened and forever changed the way I think about our country and how I convey my feelings to others using patriotic Christmas cards. Whenever I can, I try to convey these feelings along with my pride for our country by using patriotic themed cards for Christmas and other occasions. It makes me feel so proud when I can send greetings using a patriotic Christmas card with our beautiful flag on it. I’ve also sent invitations to friends and business associates for my 4th of July parties using a card with red, white, and blue on it hoping to remind others what the holiday is really about.

I hope my efforts make others stop and think about all the things this country has to offer, and maybe they too will send patriotic greeting cards.

Etiquette for Business Greeting Cards Starts with R-E-S-P-E-C-T

As a Human Resources Professional, it is not uncommon to be asked about what is and is not proper etiquette. Proper greeting card etiquette, to me, starts with what the recipient sees on the envelope. If you’re like me, you probably select exquisite Christmas cards that contain your name and display your company’s logo along with a heartfelt message. Let that card have a chance to shine by making sure you have the correct spelling of your recipients’ first and last names. If there is a mistake on the envelope, it is likely that the receiver of the card won’t fondly remember what was inside the envelope.

I know this personally because I have a difficult last name that begins with the letter I, and it often gets confused for an L, depending on the font that is used. When I receive business greeting cards from someone who I am not familiar with and my name is misspelled, in my mind, it is usually a reflection of the sender’s hasty card-sending efforts.

When I am sending business greeting cards to my vendors and employees I always have someone else in my department do a final proofread just to make sure that the spelling I have on file is correct. One incorrect letter can be seen as a missed opportunity and a failed chance to extend a holiday greeting with a positive, lasting impression.

GalleryCollection.com Supports Soldiers’ Angels with Holiday Cards

The Gallery Collection is very proud to have made a SUBSTANTIAL donation to Soldiers’ Angels. We have donated 280,000 holiday cards / Christmas cards to be sent to ALL of our troops serving in Iraq and Afghanistan thanking them for their service to our country. AND, we are including a blank greeting card for them to WRITE HOME!

Here is the card that is now completely produced and is enroute to California for inclusion in the Holiday for Heroes care packages from Soldiers’ Angels!

sa-gallerycollection-2007-front.jpg sa-gallerycollection-2007-inside.jpg

As you can see, the cards are custom personalized Christmas cards (holiday cards) with the Soldiers Angels logo and emblem. You can click the thumbnails to see enlarged images and read the inscription we made just for the men and women in Iraq and Afghanistan.

And here is the “blank” Christmas card for the troops to write home on!

Soldiers Angels Greeting Card Donation

 

 

 

 

Soldiers’ Angels motto is “May No Soldier Go Unloved” and their credo is:

May no soldier go unloved,
May no soldier walk alone,
May no soldier be forgotten,
Until they all come home.

 

What are Business Christmas Cards?

People I meet inevitably say, “You work at a greeting card company? Really? Which one?” And inevitably I explain, “Well you wouldn’t have heard of us, but we are the leader in Business Christmas cards.” I go on to explain we are The Gallery Collection by Prudent Publishing and that our website is www.GalleryCollection.com, but before I get to that point, I always have to explain what Business Christmas cards are. “It’s simple,” I say. “You know those cards that companies send to each other at the holidays? The ones that say Happy Holidays from all of us at Acme Corporation.” Everyone understands pretty quickly what Business Christmas cards are once I explain it like this. However, what I think most people never quite realize that is terribly obvious is that Business Christmas cards or Corporate holiday cards or company Christmas cards (whatever you want to call them!) are really for the most part used as thank you cards. People in business like to take a pause, exhale and say, THANK YOU! Or at least smart business people do! Certainly the holidays are a religious time, but more so they are a time to reflect and to say thank you.

When Sending Christmas Cards, Failing to Plan is Planning to Fail

Sometimes I really love this expression and other times I just hate it. I love it when it helps me to see the wisdom in sitting down, forgetting the daily grind for a moment and gazing out into the future in a productive way. I hate it when I realize after the fact that yes, I took the time to gaze out into the future but I didn’t follow through and I didn’t plan to make the vision happen. I hate that feeling of unknowingly planning to fail.

So what in the world does this have to do with Corporate Christmas Cards and Business Holiday Cards? Well, actually it has a lot to do with them. To send a holiday card or a gift takes a little preparation and a little foresight. It takes a bit of planning and barring this planning, well…in today’s world you can still be successful is what we are unfortunately being trained to think. We can do everything and anything at the last minute it seems nowadays…Or can we…?

Yes, actually, we can do a lot at the very last minute, but the effort suffers. The joy, thought, and emotion are diminished and worse yet we are training ourselves to flirt with failure. In fact leaving things to the last minute is planning to fail. We do often pull it off in the last minute, skirting failure, but it’s simply just unhealthy and it’s certainly no way to run a business.

So, if we do pull it off and order our Holiday cards at the last minute are we worse for wear? Have we succeeded without flaw, impact, or damage to ourselves or our firm’s reputation? Sadly, the answer is no. Real damage is done. Failing to plan ahead and purchase your Corporate Christmas cards and Business Holiday cards can result in real damage to you and your company.

We order from our competitors every year. We see the problems with quality, shipping, timelines, and customer service. At The Gallery Collection by Prudent Publishing we don’t operate that way. We produce all of our cards 100% in the United States. Our designs are all exclusive works completed by our artisans and available only from us. Our paper stocks are thick and rich, not flimsy and curling. And we fulfill our promise to do a good job imprinting your cards and sending them on time.

Well shucks! I told myself I was going to try and write something that didn’t sound like an advertisement. It’s hard! Our product is so nice. We try so hard. We beg customers to order early so that they can be prepared so that they can plan to succeed and succeed as planned instead of flirting with last minute harried preparations and failure.

I guess I should just wrap-up. Please plan ahead. Please don’t plan to fail. Please order your Christmas cards soon. We want to do a quality job of imprinting and personalizing your cards with your company name. We want for you to take this opportunity to thank your customers with a simple, thoughtful, and low cost option. You really don’t need to torture them with another inedible fruit cake or fatten’em up with more chocolate and candy.

Maybe I’ll write a bit more later on some of the problems we have seen over the years with competitors, service, quality, and their high prices and fake discounts?

Until then…

Holiday Cards for Your Business

What’s the proper etiquette for sending out Holiday Cards? Choosing Holiday Cards for your business shouldn’t be a nightmare, and you can take several precautions to make sure it doesn’t turn into one. Get yourself organized ahead of time. Determine exactly how many cards you need and order a few extras so you don’t find yourself short, or worse, not being able to send cards to all your business associates.

In deciding how to personalize your greeting cards, try to remember the point of sending them in the first place…you want people to realize you thought of them during the hustle and bustle of the holiday season. The last thing you want to do is offend anyone so stick with a design or scene that is generic rather than specific. Here’s something important to keep in mind – some of your customers and clients may celebrate Christmas; others may celebrate Chanukah or Kwanzaa; and some may believe the season is all about Santa Claus and gifts. “Season’s Greetings” or “Happy Holidays” applies to all rather than choosing a card that reads “Merry Christmas.”

Try to keep the personalization on your Business Christmas Cards simple and basic. A message of one or two lines should be sufficient…most people are too distracted to read a long-winded card around the holiday season. If you don’t have a ton of recipients to send cards to, it would be a nice touch to add a personal note in addition to your imprinted message. But more times than not, this is not realistic. Let’s face it, we’re all a bit short on time especially around the holidays. So consider having your signature imprinted inside your cards. This extra touch will surely impress your customers or clients.

Lastly, try to have them all ready to go in the mail no later than the first week of December to beat the rush (the post office will thank you!) but more importantly your recipients will be impressed by your attention to detail, great organizational skills, and warm holiday wishes.

Cup of coffee or a business Christmas Card?

Would you buy a good customer a cup of coffee?
>Of course you would!

Should you thank your customers for their business?
>Of course you should!

Sending customers business Christmas cards thanking them for their business is just common sense and costs less than a cup of coffee! Smart businesses send cards to their customers. Even smarter businesses send cards to their customers and their prospective customers.

Aren’t YOUR customers your competitors’ prospective customers?

If you aren’t sending your customers business Christmas cards, no worries…your competitors will wish them well for you. Don’t find yourself saying “shoulda. coulda. woulda.”

“Normal” Cup of Coffee – $1.25
Starbuck’s Cafe Grande – $3.75
Look on your competitor’s face when THEIR customers mention how nice you are for sending a business Christmas cardpriceless