Gain the Competitive Edge with Business Greeting Cards

My husband’s financial management company lets him know that his business and loyalty are appreciated by sending him handsome business greeting cards every year for the holidays. His personal advisor usually adds a note and hand signs it above the company’s logo. They always wish him all things good for the coming New Year and when he receives it, the gesture reminds him that he is thought of and valued.

Law firms and insurance companies, accountants, banks and credit unions along with medical practices, hospitals and others in the health care field can all reach out to their clients and patients in a simple, inexpensive but thoughtful way. Besides using them for the holidays, greeting cards for business can be sent for birthdays and anniversaries. They can be used to offer sympathy or get well wishes, as well as to convey congratulations or a special thank you.

Sending greeting cards is a great way for small businesses to show appreciation to existing customers or appeal to potential ones. Landscapers, auto mechanics, spas and beauty salons, real estate professionals, tradesmen and suppliers can all use custom greeting cards to stay in touch with those who are important to the success of their business.

Restaurants, retailers and service industries can all keep their name in front of the public as well as make special promotional offers to their regular patrons. Schools, colleges and universities can use them to stay in contact with their students, alumni and supporters. Greeting cards for business can strengthen ties and bolster good will.

I’m sure you can think of several ways you could use them to maintain or grow your client base, or to promote your new or existing business. Today’s economy requires special measures and extra effort to gain the competitive edge. Business greeting cards are a proven tool of success for companies of all sizes.

Business Greeting Cards Help Erase Employee Dissatisfaction

Business greeting cards may have taken a back seat on the list of high importance when companies are considering what cuts should be made to the yearly budget. However, when the cost of sending a greeting card is analyzed, it is a small amount to spend. It can be a small price to pay to convey to the recipient that they are truly appreciated. It shows that one is remembered throughout the year. Not just when one is actually purchasing or utilizing a product or service, but all of the time. In these crazy economic times, an under appreciated customer or client can spell doom.

Now let’s take a look at employee birthday cards. How much importance do we place on this? I would venture to guess that it is probably not enough. The thought is that an employee should just be happy to have a job. This is true enough. But please consider this recent news headline – Americans’ Job Satisfaction Falls to Record Low. The article states that only 45% of Americans are satisfied with their work. In 2008 that number was 49%. Ok, that’s only a 4% drop. However, in 1987 the number of satisfied workers was 61%. The article goes on to list some of the reasons for the drop, such as the jobs are not interesting, incomes have not kept up with inflation, and the increasing cost of insurance cutting into take home pay.

There are some things that can’t be controlled. Inflation and insurance costs are all but impossible to fix. Companies can’t stop inflation or the increasing cost of insurance. Companies can however, do some small things that can take a bite out of this growing trend of dissatisfaction. You know, lessen the sting a little bit. By recognizing an employee’s birthday or anniversary, we are letting them know that although we are all trying to work through these trying times, they are truly and sincerely appreciated.

Ok, sending employee birthday cards is but a small thing, but small gestures can go a long way in boosting employee moral. Not showing appreciation will not help the company in the least, whether it is a customer or employee. Imagine if you will, that only 45% of your customers are satisfied. It’s a sobering thought. Any successful company knows that appreciated employees will go the extra mile, even in tough times. They will also stick with you when the tough times are over!

Turn Competitors Into Colleagues With Corporate Greeting Cards

Smart business owners send their employees greeting cards.  This lets them know that they are a valuable part of the company, not just another worker.  Smarter business owners send corporate greeting cards to other businesses.  This allows them to create relationships, enhance good will within a community, and ultimately expand their business.

As a retired business owner I found that putting in a little extra effort in the beginning will always pay dividends in the end.  Taking the time to send simple business greeting cards to your neighboring companies can go a long way.  It’s the first step in opening the doors to a relationship, friendship, or perhaps even future partnership.

For example, let’s say you’re a bar owner and a new restaurant opens around the block.  Some people view this as a new competitor.  I see it as a new opportunity to increase your business.  Undoubtedly, new potential consumers will be visiting your area.  Instead of fighting over these customers you can share them.  Pursue an opportunity to create a deal such as a “Friday Night Out”, where if they go to dinner at the new restaurant they receive a coupon for a free drink at your bar that evening.  Most business owners love finding innovative ways to attract new customers.  But remember the key to building these relationships ultimately starts with a greeting.  Take the advantage of the opportunity to send business to business greeting cards.  Trust me; a little effort will go a long way.

Personalized Greeting Cards – Keep Your Customers Thinking of You

Sending personalized greeting cards is one of the easiest and most economical ways to keep your company name foremost in your customers’ minds. When you think about it, they are a low cost form of advertising. When you pay for advertising, you are never sure of who will actually see it or whether it will be seen at all. A greeting card actually ends up in the hand of a live person. Most of us enjoy receiving cards and will most likely hang on to them for a while. Unlike newspapers that end up in the recycle bin, greeting cards are actually displayed, so that everyone in the office can view them.

Assorted greeting cards abound these days. There are so many choices. There are cards to fit every situation. Fun, elegant, simple, feminine or masculine are just a few. There are thank you, congratulations, get well or sympathy cards and let us not forget the most popular, holiday cards. Calendar cards are another good option and are a great way to have your company name displayed every day of the year.

Personalized greeting cards can be typeset with an imprint or can be signed by hand. They can even be a combination of both. One can choose from a provided list of greetings or be creative and make up a customized greeting. Logos can be added to the card or can simply have the company name imprinted. There are so many choices and options available.

When you send a greeting card, you are letting your customers know that they are not just thought of part of the time, but that they are an important component in the success of your business. Everyone wants to feel appreciated and personalized greeting cards allow you to convey this very important message. Sending greeting cards keeps your customer in mind, but more importantly, it keeps you in the mind of your customer.

Editable Text Cards are Now Available at The Gallery Collection!

How would it feel to be able to create a holiday card that enables you to provide your company’s name, website URLs, twitter handles or anything else you can think of directly on the front of the card?  Editable Text cards allow you to do just that!

When someone displays cards in their home, workplace or business office the first thing that is noticed is the cover design.  The front of each editable text card allows one to provide any information that is considered to be important.  Website information, email addresses, a short message or any other bit of information you’d like to be seen by all can be added to the front of any editable text holiday card design.

Design 54CJW - Botanical Thank You Christmas Card
Editable Text Cards Design 54CJW
Botanical Thank You Christmas Card

Personalized Christmas cards have been around for quite a few years but the opportunity to customize the front of a card is relatively new.  You might think that the design choices for cards that can be customized on the front must certainly be limited.  Not so.  There are numerous beautiful designs in this new line of cards.  Whether your taste in Christmas cards is traditional, whimsical or anything in between you will be pleased to know that there is a card that will suit your specific needs.

Does Sending Greeting Cards in Times of Tragedy Really Make a Difference?

When I first heard about the terrible earthquake and tsunami that struck Japan on March 10, 2011 I had tears in my eyes thinking of the terrible devastation and the thousands of people who surely lost their lives.

Working in the greeting card business I am surrounded each day by Christmas Cards, Birthday Cards, Get Well, Thinking of You and many other types of cards. But what type of card would provide comfort to someone who is surrounded by such tragedy? As the news stories grew grimmer, greeting cards started to seem…well hardly a necessity. It honestly got me thinking about how I spend my time working at a greeting card company…do greeting cards really serve a purpose? A legitimate question I think when you consider how much of our lives, how much of our time is actually spent on and at work. Was I really spending my life’s work on something worthwhile?

So I thought further and realized that greeting cards were really all about connecting with other people. It differs from any other type of communication when you really think about it. You might be giving it to someone sitting as close as the cubicle next to you or sending it to someone thousands of miles away. Unlike an email, letter, text or phone call, a greeting card always has a cover with a design or photo or some decorative text on it. It can feature something funny, touching or beautiful.  It is designed to invoke some kind of reaction or emotion upon receiving it. The sentiment inside is often chosen with care and conveying a certain message or thought. Many of us who might struggle to find just the right words to say, can find a greeting cards that appropriately expresses our thoughts. Yet, what would I say to someone in Japan in a greeting card? How does getting a greeting card from someone in the States even matter under the circumstances?

I actually think it could matter a lot. It is a way to show emotional support even from a complete stranger half way across the world. With an opportunity to write your own personal message it can bring hope, love and prayers to someone who has suffered so much loss. It could be one of the only bright spots in someone’s day. It carries with it the potential to be the only reason someone has to smile that day…perhaps even for the first time in a long while. I don’t happen to think that is any small thing. It just might remind them that beyond the destruction there still exists a world, one that truly cares about the fate of these unfortunate people. It has the power to connect one human being to another.

I remember the many sympathy cards we received after my father’s untimely death. I read each and every one – some of them more than once. I was continually surprised and amazed how we heard from people who we had not been in touch with for years, yet who dearly remembered my beloved father. Some wrote a brief funny little story, others simply remembered him fondly and expressed their deep regret at our loss. During such a dark and difficult time in my life, those sympathy cards brought real comfort and did so in a way that I could handle. I had the luxury of reading them in private and on my own time table, when I was ready to do so.

I think it was then that I realized that a greeting card can say a lot to the recipient but it can also speak volumes about the thoughtfulness of the sender. And so now, many years later and after some serious reflection, I have decided that I am, indeed, doing something worthwhile with my time. In fact, right now I’m feeling pretty good about what I do, but much more importantly, what greeting cards can do to others when selected and sent with real thought.

So yes, I do believe greeting cards really can make a difference…even in troubled times.

Correspondence Note Cards Take the Pressure out of Business Writing

Business greeting cards have been a wonderfully light-handed way to keep my business in the minds of clients and potential clients. Sometimes, however, I’ve wanted to present a crisper look that focused more on my message than on an attractive card design. Finally…I found a perfect solution with correspondence note cards.

As a kid, reading books and watching movies set in somewhat earlier (and to me, more refined) times, I was strongly impressed with mentions of calling cards and hand-delivered missives thoughtfully scripted on quality stationery. In these stories, it was clear that a person’s character was often judged on their mastery of these social graces. My aspiration to this sort of sophistication seemed thwarted by ever more casual attitudes in everyday life; even in business the attitude of “whatever…” seemed to be replacing “service-with-a-smile” and common courtesy.

Lately, and with greater frequency, I’ve been hearing that the bright side of the current economic recession is that careless businesses will fold and only the strong will survive, making for a stronger economy with better products and services. If that viewpoint makes you cry “ouch,” it may be time to refine your business practices, to work harder and smarter. It has had that effect on me.

A phone call may interrupt a client’s workday at an inconvenient time, if you even find that person in. An email is easily deleted, if it’s even read at all. Mailed ads are hard-sell, easily tossed aside. The same can be said for the form letters I receive, where my name and address is clearly just an insert. Why waste my time and attention on these when the sender couldn’t be bothered to invest time and attention to communicate specifically to my needs?

These new correspondence note cards from The Gallery Collection have such a classy look and feel! I keep them right on my desk top so I can jot my notes immediately as the thought occurs to me. They have my name professionally printed at the top so I can sign my notes with just my first name for a more personal touch. My name and handwritten note can be seen as soon as the note card is lifted from its fine quality envelope. I know it’s being looked at when the recipient is ready and open to my message. I know it’s subliminally telling the recipient that I value their relationship enough to communicate, on a one-on-one basis, a thought or plan or offer that is specifically for them. The presentation of my message tells them that it is worthy of their attention. And I’ll bet it doesn’t wind up in their waste basket!

Passing the Time with Corporate Greeting Cards

This year marks my 10th anniversary here at The Gallery Collection. TEN YEARS! As the wonderfully-emotive actor Keanu Reeves might say: “Whoa.” I almost can’t believe it. Where did the time go? I was completely unfamiliar with the world of corporate greeting cards when I first started working at this company. Maybe I occasionally saw them at my dad’s office or displayed at restaurants or other businesses during the holidays, when companies often extend seasonal greetings to one another. But c’mon, how complicated could greeting cards be? You pick out a nice design, sign your name, address the envelope, and throw it in the mail, right? Oh, little did I know.

So my transition from the comfy bubble of college into “the real world” started with learning the ins and outs of greeting cards for business. To follow the path of greeting cards is to experience a veritable potpourri of artistry, skill, and action. Artists are commissioned to create original greeting card designs and a team of vendors helps manufacture the cards; catalogs are printed and our products are marketed to potential customers; orders are processed, printed, and shipped. Of course, there are many pieces throughout that must come together to make this operation successful. Each stop on the way is full of details to consider, challenges to tackle, and decisions to be made.

Corporate greeting cards have complexities not only behind-the-scenes, but also on the “public” side when assisting customers. Many customization options are available when ordering cards. Customers are able to choose from a wide variety of greeting cards for all occasions and personalize them in different ways by choosing the printing color, writing their own greetings, or even having their company logos printed or signatures reproduced inside of the cards. The possibilities are endless.

I could likely spend my entire career in the greeting card industry and still not know everything. This has been my only job since graduating from college and quite a learning experience so far. And let me again express disbelief that my company anniversary also means that I graduated from college ten years ago! “Whoa.”

Take Your Child to Work Day 2010

For several years now children have been going to work with their moms, dads, aunts, uncles, etc. on Take Your Child to Work Day to see what goes on in that person’s normal workday. This was the first year that my eight-year-old daughter, Jessica, was old enough by my company’s guidelines to join me for the day. I asked her (in passing really) if she was interested in coming to work with me and after I got up off the floor from being tackled, I concluded that the answer was a resounding, yes!

Jessica and a friend at the Prudent Publishing headquarters on Take Your Child to Work Day 2010
Jessica (pictured left) and a friend at the Prudent Publishing headquarters on Take Your Child to Work Day.

She went through what I call the girl drama process of picking out just the right outfit with just the right accessories and shoes. She asked me many, many questions about how the day would unfold and couldn’t wait for the day to come. She was so enthusiastic that I hoped she wasn’t setting such high expectations in case she would end up being disappointed. Finally the big day arrived (April 22nd) which happened to also coincide with Earth Day this year. I have to admit I was even a bit anxious myself to see how things would progress that day. I warned my husband that we were likely to be home early if she ended up getting bored.

Well, there was no need to worry. Several of my co-workers came up with such creative ways to get the children involved in learning about our company, which primarily sells business greeting cards. Jessica had a full day that started with typesetting and designing her name tag, then meeting with our company president to discuss her future career plans, after which she entered her own order on our website (which she found very easy to use) and designed and photographed her own birthday card design for the mini-catalog that our graphics team produced for the children. After a fun pizza lunch, we headed over to eat some dirt, er, I mean dessert; a fellow employee made an edible flower pot with crushed up Oreo cookies made to look like dirt, complete with gummy worms. Yum!

Everyone gathered like flies when the dirt dessert was put out.
Everyone gathered like flies when the dirt dessert was put out. Thankfully, they weren’t really eating dirt; it was crushed up Oreos!

The afternoon consisted of listening to one of our customer service specialists take a phone order for thank you cards, testing her typing speed to see if she typed fast enough to take orders, and various projects that were assigned for her to complete. She was sad that the day was coming to an end but happy to receive her paycheck and company newsletter before heading home. She couldn’t wait to get home and tell her family and friends all about her experience. Does she want to return next year? Well, let’s just say the outfit is already being planned!

Maintaining a Loyal Client Base with Corporate Greeting Cards

Several years ago my sister, Barbara, started a public relations business and when ordering her business cards and letterhead, I suggested she might want to order some corporate greeting cards as well. Why not start off with some business thank you cards and birthday cards. I felt that people would appreciate the personal touch, and greeting cards for business are professional enough to say I’m thinking of you and wishing you well without coming across as too sappy. They’re a soft sell that maintains contact with a client and reminds him that you are available if needed.

Barbara started sending out corporate greeting cards from the onset of her business with a positive and professional outlook. The greeting cards she ordered are tasteful and generic enough to send to either male or female clients, and they are equally well received by all. She sends out birthday cards, anniversary cards, get well cards, and of course, thank you cards. Her clients have often told her that they appreciate her thoughtfulness and feel that she puts more attention to their needs because she always remembers the important events in their lives.

Barbara has maintained all the pertinent information needed to send out these greeting cards for business and prides herself with never forgetting a client’s birthday. She never forgets to send a thank you for any business they may send her way. Barbara has built a very successful company aided by her sending corporate greeting cards. Why do you suppose she can’t remember to send me a birthday card?