Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Don't suck at sending greeting cards

I hear this all the time, "I wish I was better at sending greeting cards! I'm terrible."

What? I'm confused. This is not hard!! In a few simple steps you can go from Greeting Card Zero to Greeting Card Hero.

Here are 4 simple steps to improve your Happy Birthday Card sending ratio:

First: You need to have the cards on hand. 




When you see cards you like, buy them. It doesn't matter that you have someone specific in mind or not. They're for someone. If you want to jump start your collection, go to your local Hallmark & pick out 5 that you like. Get a mix - birthday, thank you, just sayin' hello...

And/or start with a set like these from Kate Spade. Or these from my shop. Everything you need in one little box!

Second: Buy stamps!!


Yes, stamps. Remember those? It's good to have these on hand because you can have all the best intensions in the world, but your card can't be sent without a stamp. With USPS online, you don't have to even go to the dreaded post office to buy them!

Third: Keep a calendar




Put birthdays on it, national holidays, anniversaries. There are free printable calendars all over the internet, or  this one from Organized Home, that you can print, fill out & put on your fridge, bulletin board...mirror...wherever you see it on a regular basis.

If your calendar is digital (all hail the Google calendar!!), set up reminders that these events are coming up so you'll actually follow through with sending the card. I set up the calendar entry with everything I might need to know, like the year the person was born (married, etc.) and their address.

I know what you're saying now. "But, Kerry, I don't have anyone's addresses anymore!" 

Step 4 - collect addresses. And guess what? There's an app for that. Try Postable. You send out an email with a unique link to your address book. Your peeps fill out their information & voila! Your address problem is solved.

I also came across this form on Google docs, if you have a Google account. Again, it's pretty simple to fill out. You can customize the template, add or delete information fields. When your peeps respond to it, Google puts it in a nice little spreadsheet for you in your Google docs, accessible from anywhere!

You know what else is good? Saving envelopes from Christmas & birthday cards. That's a great way to get someone's recent address.

However you decide to do it, just ask for them! I bet you'll get people's addresses AND their birthdays in return. I'd go one step further & predict that they'll be inspired by your effort & ask for your information as well.

Last but not least: Keep all of this handy.


Don't hide these cards away in your closet. Get a nice box or tray to keep them in. If they HAVE to be in a drawer, make sure it's one that you access easily & often so that you don't forget you have cards & stamps. Oh and pens! I buy myself nice Pilot pens! I love to use them.

Follow thru!

Now, when your calendar reminds you that Aunt Nancy's birthday is coming up at the end of the week, you can grab a card, stamp it & send it on it's merry way.

As I said, I have a few sets in my shop that can get you started. A variety of sentiments for occasions of all kinds. Or this one for cards that can be used for literally anything. 

Remember! Email or texts are great in a pinch, but nothing will replace the sincerity of putting pen to paper. What do you think? Can you do it? Yes you can!

To help inspire you, I started a Pinterest board on stationery & accessories. I'll pin fun cards, great stationery boxes, interesting return address stamps (omg, that's a whole other post!). Come along for the paper-fuled ride!

Any of you already masters of the greeting card? Let me know your strategies for sending cards in the comments (or on twitter or Facebook). The rest of you get out there & start sending some snail mail!

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