Thanksgiving Greeting Cards begin the Holiday Season

Thanksgiving is a great time of year for my family. We have traditions that have lasted for as long as my sister and I can remember. When we think of the Thanksgiving season, we think of football, pumpkin picking, apple pie, the start of Christmas shopping, and Christmas card writing.

For many, this can also be a very hectic time of year with the preparation for Thanksgiving Day. Creating the guest list and the menu, preparing festive decorations for the home and for the dinner table, along with the actual cooking and baking for dinner can take hours out of the week. With all the hustle and bustle of getting my Thanksgiving dinner just right, the thought of sending or receiving Business Thanksgiving cards never even crossed my mind.

In the midst of last year’s holiday chaos, I received my first Thanksgiving card from the gym where I workout. I was shocked to receive a business greeting card from my gym, but very pleased nonetheless. I had only been working out there for a few months, so it was a nice gesture to send me a personalized Thanksgiving card. I remember thinking, “What a great idea!” Companies that send corporate greeting cards show their customers that they really do care and that their clients are more than just dollar signs. The fact that they sent it during the Thanksgiving season reminded me just what that day is all about – giving thanks.

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

Christmas Card History

As we try to do every night, my family sat down for dinner at around 6:30 yesterday evening. After making sure everyone had their drinks, straws, butter, salt, napkins, and steak sauce, we finally began eating. As we also try to do every night, we all talked about how our days went. In the course of conversation, someone mentioned Christmas cards and my daughter very innocently asked, “Who ever thought of sending Christmas cards anyway?”

Being as inquisitive as my daughter can be (and wanting to give the right answer), I thought this would be a great learning opportunity for both of us. So after dinner, conveniently leaving my husband to do the dishes, we hopped on our PC to find out the origin of Christmas Cards. Here’s some of what we found out:

– Artist John Calcott Horsley, a London native, designed the first Christmas card in 1843 for businessman Henry Cole. It depicted a picture of a family enjoying Christmas.

– Seeing Mickey Mouse on your Greeting cards was quite common in the 1930s when animated short films rose in popularity. (My daughter loves Mickey and found this one to be the most amusing.)

– Louis Prang, having perfected lithography, introduced the first line of Christmas cards to America.

– Prior to 1840, Christmas cards were hand delivered. That all changed with the introduction of the postage stamp, bringing greeting cards to the masses.

– Holiday greeting cards account for over 60 percent of all greeting card sales.

Corporate Holiday cards really took off in the past few decades as a convenient way to remember those that have contributed to a company’s success.

By the time we got to the last few facts, my daughter had already moved on to the next activity but we certainly learned a lot that night.

Christmas Gift Buying – How To Be Unique Without the Stress

It’s that time again…to start wondering how I will wish my friends and family a Merry Christmas this year. I already began brainstorming a list of people that I’d like to buy a gift for. It always seems that this list gets bigger and bigger each year. This year’s list is already up to 30 people, but I guess that’s what happens when you have a close knit family.

It can be difficult and stressful having to buy Christmas gifts for so many people. This is especially true for me as I have been known to give very unique gifts. In a way, I think this has put me at a disadvantage because my family and friends now have very high expectations for my Christmas gifts. Two years ago, I thought I sensed some disappointment from my brother after I gave him a gift card to his favorite store. It’s almost as if he expected more from me.

So instead of putting pressure on myself to constantly come up with unique Christmas gift ideas, I created a solution. I now distribute a Christmas photo card to every person I give a gift to. I usually include a comical photo of myself dressed up as Santa, or posing next to a snowman. In addition to this, I always include a little note on the inside remembering a special or funny moment that I shared with that person throughout the year.

I have found that people are so touched by these Personalized Holiday cards that they no longer expect such a unique gift from me. In turn, this has caused me less stress when buying throughout the holiday season. Given my new found secret, I think I am going to make it easy on myself this year…I’m going to get 30 gift cards!

Priceless #2 – The Christmas Photo card commute

Diet Coke for the ride home – $1.25
Toll to cross the George Washington Bridge – $6.00
Gallon of gasoline to drive home – $3.29

The smile that comes to your face as you rummage in the glove compartment and find last year’s Christmas photo card with your children’s smiling faces beaming back at you – priceless.

Personalized Christmas Cards – They’re More Than Just Cards

When I was younger, my dad owned a pharmacy in a typical suburban town. It was the type of town where everyone knew everyone, and the same customers would come in to pick up their prescriptions and purchase their toiletries and other odds and ends. The pharmacy was like a village square…a place where you could shop while catching up on the town gossip. One resident would be purchasing shampoo and run into her neighbor, who was picking up her high blood pressure medication. Then another neighbor from down the street would pop her head in to say hello, and before long, the whole town was having a conversation in the shampoo aisle.

But in spite of all the blathering and nattering, the customers were incredibly loyal to my dad’s pharmacy and would come back to shop time and time again. Even if an item was temporarily out of stock, most customers would just wait until the item was restocked versus going to another pharmacy.

One year, my dad decided to send personalized Christmas cards to his VIP customers. He asked if I would help him stuff these imprinted Holiday Cards and address the envelopes, and I said yes. Little did I know he had over 300 VIP customers, so that was over 300 envelopes to handwrite, stuff, and lick shut.

After we were about halfway through, I stopped and asked my dad: “Why in the world are you going through all this trouble to mail out these business greeting cards? They’re probably going to end up in the garbage anyway.” He responded by saying: “Come to work with me the day after Christmas, and you’ll understand why.”

So the day after Christmas, I went to work with my dad. We arrived at the store bright and early in preparation for all the crazy post-Christmas shoppers. Before long, the doors were unlocked and the store flooded with customers. Except the customers weren’t congregating in the aisles and talking to their neighbors about their Christmas festivities but instead, they were standing around my dad to thank him for their personalized Christmas cards and to inquire about my family’s holiday.

At that moment, I realized why my dad decided to mail out personalized Christmas cards to his VIP customers. These customers kept the pharmacy in business for so many years, and it was his way of letting them know how much he appreciated them. So if you are looking to express gratitude to a few or several people (or 300 VIP customers), a great way to make your appreciation known is with an imprinted Christmas card.

Most Important Create A Greeting Card Contest Rule: Never Lose Faith in Yourself

The prospect of winning any scholarship contest, including a greeting card contest, is always an exhilarating notion…especially when the grand prize pertains to dollar signs. I’ll never forget a contest that I won when I was in middle school. My entire grade had to create an advertisement for a local restaurant. The winner would receive a $500 cash prize along with his or her ad featured in the community newspaper. $500 to a middle school student was a lot of money and I was set on winning that grand prize.

After receiving notice of the contest in school, I went straight home and began working diligently on my advertisement. I set up shop on my dining room table with construction paper, scissors, markers, colored pencils, and glue. After several hours of tracing, cutting, shading, and pasting, my masterpiece was complete. I was extremely proud of my creation and couldn’t wait to mail it in.

Over the next few weeks, I saw what some of my other classmates had created for the contest and I started losing faith in my design. My friend Josh took drawing lessons and his advertisement looked professionally done (and now that I think of it, it probably was). My other friend Dan drew cartoons in his free time and I thought his entry put mine to shame.

But low and behold, my name was announced as the grand prize winner! I spent so much time and energy doubting my work that I forgot about my own true creative potential. Sure enough, my advertisement was featured in the community newspaper and I received my $500 reward (only $50 of which I was allowed to keep because my mom made me put the rest in my savings account).

Often times with contests, it’s easy to think that you’re not going to win. So you doubt your own work or you don’t even bother entering the contest at all. But it’s crucial not to lose site of what’s really important – hard work pays off, so never lose faith in your intelligence or creativity.

So take my lesson to heart and go ahead and submit that entry to our 1st annual Create A Greeting Card Scholarship Contest because it is good enough! The entry can be as simple as a breath-taking photo of a winter scene or animals, or you can further showcase your creativeness with a more intricate original design for a particular occasion or the Holiday season.

The Grinch who stole the Christmas Card

There is something special about those great Mastercard commercials on television that just bring a smile to your face when they say the word “priceless”. Inspired by their series, this is the first in a series of installments. May they bring a smile to your face while also highlighting the small relative cost of making a client, friend, co-worker or family member feel good by sending a personalized Christmas card or business Christmas card.

As we all know from the classic story by Dr. Seuss, “How the Grinch Stole Christmas”, Mr. Grinch was a mean one. The beautiful end of the story has all of Whoville in smiles and Mr. Grinch “making up” with “Little Cindy Lou Who”, thus our inspiration for this blog entry.

Cup of hot chocolate to share with little Cindy Lou Who, $1.25
ATM fee for the Grinch to get money to buy food for his faithful dog Max, $1.50
Replacement
Christmas tree bulb for the Whoville town tree, $0.89

Personalized Christmas Card from Mr. Grinch to all Whoville residents wishing them a Merry Christmas, priceless!

Eco-friendly Greeting Cards Produced with Windpower

When you hear the word “windmills” you might think of farms grinding grain, or if you’re a literary type, maybe the adventures of Don Quixote of La Mancha and his attack on the windmills enters your mind. But chances are, the environmental movement doesn’t immediately occur to you.

Advanced forms of windmills are helping us tread a little lighter on the planet. Large wind turbines built in open, breezy locations capture the wind and convert it into mechanical energy, electricity being the most common form. By harnessing wind power, businesses and residents can generate clean energy without utilizing fossil fuels that are harmful to the environment. Since I am an eco-conscious individual, I can certainly appreciate the benefits provided in this practice.

Windpower not only creates renewable energy to light homes and offices, it also produces power for machinery in manufacturing processes such as paper production. The Gallery Collection takes advantage of this fast-growing and environmentally responsible method to produce the majority of our greeting cards.

Check out our large selection of Windpower Cards, whose paper stock was produced with wind-powered energy. I think it’s pretty amazing that windpower is a contributing factor in creating such exquisite, environmentally friendly greeting cards…and in fact, the card I chose for my personal Christmas cards this year came from this selection! But if the card design you choose happens to not be one of our windpower cards, you can still feel good about your purchase since all of our envelopes are now produced using wind-powered energy.

Christmas vs. Season’s Greetings

When I set about to order my Christmas cards, I became aware that in the past, being politically correct was not an issue that affected me. I reviewed some of the cards that I received in previous years and, lo and behold, most of them wished me a Merry Christmas!

The more I think about it, the more I am starting to doubt the “correctness” of avoiding the Merry Christmas phrase. After all, do the recipients of these cards not know that the season in Season’s Greetings includes Christmas?

In my opinion, anyone who thinks about me and takes the time to contact me is obviously not trying to offend me. On the other hand, if I am aware that a friend or contact is sensitive to this issue, I will act accordingly. I think that we should take the recipients of our cards into consideration, and then choose a card that pleases us as well as it would please them. It is a well known observation that when choosing a gift, one should choose something that they would really like to keep for themselves!

Should we no longer send Season’s Greetings cards altogether? Of course not; but let’s not make using “Merry Christmas” a thing of the past either.