The movement from paper to electronic bank statements is nothing new. Not only does it simplify communications by giving folks direct access to information, but it is better for the environment by saving trees and creating less paper waste. Today, many people use computer emails to communicate, rather than traditional letter writing using paper, pen, and postage. The question begs, “Should paperless communications be extended to holiday and thank you cards?” It seems like things are headed in that direction, and it might not be a bad thing…
Buying and mailing holiday greetings and sending follow up thank you notes is pricey. Not only do card senders have to hustle to the post office to get things mailed, but also the cost of the United States Postal Service forever stamp has risen to 60 cents this year, up 3.4 percent from the previous price of 58 cents per stamp. And it is set for another increase from 60 to 63 cents on January 22, 2023. Adding to the overall expense of paper cards is the high price of preprinted greeting cards. So, why not consider sending electronic cards and thank you notes in lieu of paper ones? Not only are you benefiting the environment, but it’s easy to do and your cards won’t get lost or stolen in the mail. Electronic holiday and thank you cards don’t require much skill to create and send. However, electronic card senders will need the use of an online service to create virtual cards.
Many greeting card companies are moving toward paperless options, such as American Greetings’ Creatacard. It’s important to note that membership options may apply. Many virtual card companies offer exciting deals such as free card options and designs or trial membership periods so you can test it out. Memberships may vary in cost and benefits they offer, so it’s necessary to compare when shopping. Paperless Post allows you to create custom cards and online invites called Evites. Some companies will send reminders at no additional charge for upcoming birthdays, anniversaries, and other events so you won’t forget important dates. Plus, some will store address lists to make it easy to resend holiday cards or party invitations. But, before signing up for any subscription-based service, thoroughly research customer satisfaction. Also keep online safety and privacy protection in mind, especially if you are required to sign up, provide billing info., make subscription payments, or upload personal photos.
Electronic cards, also called Ecards, are quite special as most allow subscribers to design their own custom cards using a choice of templates. Subscribers may add music they love, personalize text, or upload photos with a click of a button to make their cards unique. One can even add a digital gift card to a greeting card to simplify the task of gift giving. Once the cards are created, they can be saved and sent to select recipients via email, text, messaging apps or social post. And you can even preschedule sending them. Or the cards may be designed and then printed from home if the “traditional” way of handing someone a card or mailing it is preferred.
Times are changing. With that, ways of sending and receiving notes, cards, and messages are evolving, too. Rather than send seasonal cards the “old-fashioned” way, left to wonder whether you put enough postage on your letter or if it was received in good condition and on time, consider switching to custom virtual greeting cards that will surprise and entertain recipients. For traditionalists, the change might take some getting used to. But many of us have already easily adapted to eBooks designed to be read on our computers, tablets, and smart devices. Virtual cards are along the same vein. Plus, they are fun to give and receive. When someone gets a personalized digital greeting card, their day will become brighter because the sender took the time to create them something truly unique.
Disclosure: The above-named companies are not endorsed by or affiliated with AMAC.
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