As a greeting card wholesaler, it’s easy to forget the exact scope of what it is that you do. When you provide greeting cards for retail stores, you’re providing so much more than a piece of card stock, printed with colorful images or funny pictures, clever sayings or heartfelt sentiments. You’re helping someone create a real memory.
This hit home for me awhile back when I was in a store refilling some cards in a retailer’s display. As I was placing the cards in their proper places, I happened to notice a woman carefully selecting a card. There was nothing unusual in that. People spend a lot of time when they venture out to a retail store to find cards. That’s still nothing unusual – until I noticed the tears she was wiping from her face. Clearly she had been looking for just the right card. One of them had touched her in a way that moved her to tears. She found something that spoke to her deeply. More importantly, she had definitely found something that was going to relay her exact thoughts and feelings to another person and probably touch that person just as intensely. You can’t do that with a text on your IPhone.
Now More than Ever
We live in such an instant world, with so much information flying around digitally, at incredible speeds. It’s all so temporary. It’s all so effortless. You type something with your thumbs or your fingers… hit send… it gets where it’s going… then it’s gone. It’s so fast and so transient. You might text a “thanks” or offer a birthday greeting or even an apology. It takes so little effort that tomorrow you’ll be lucky if the person you sent it to even remembers they received it.
Now think of this woman that I ran into while making some service calls. She traveled to a store, maybe one similar to yours– possibly for no other reason than to find the right card for someone. She sacrificed a small portion of her day looking through card displays until she found the greeting card that was exactly what she was looking for. In fact, it was so perfect the tears started to flow. She bought the card, took it home and with own hand signed it and probably wrote a little note inside. She addressed the envelope, pressed a stamp in the corner and posted it. She’s invested so much of herself in this gesture.
A few days later someone received that card. This surprised the person who received. I don’t who that was, but let’s say it was her friend. We are all a little surprised when we receive a handwritten letter or a card in our mailbox these days, aren’t we. It’s so rare, and such a wonderful feeling to know someone went to that length to let you know they were thinking about you. The person who receives it will probably put that card on their mantel and smile every time they see it. It may stay there for a very long time, or a few weeks later, she will likely tuck the card away in a box or a drawer somewhere dedicated to collecting memories like these.
Keepsakes are Still Relevant
“Keepsake” is an old-fashioned word. You don’t hear it used much anymore. But that’s exactly what people are buying when they come to your store to buy one or more greeting cards. Unlike their digital counterparts, people keep their greeting cards. They stay on the mantel or the coffee table. It feels good to look at them for weeks after the event the cards commemorate. People will keep a card that’s memorable for the rest of their lives. Some people keep every card they ever receive. Every one of them.
So, why do you as a retailer buy greeting cards and sell them? Why do cards matter to your customers?
- Greeting cards show the sender thought about what they were doing when they went out to choose that particular card for that particular person. They put an effort into the message they were sending. That alone speaks to the sincerity of the sender.
- Whether the message on the front brings laughter or tears, somebody cared enough to take the time to pick just the right one. It was a special message chosen with someone in mind. How great is that?
- A card carries a personal message inside written by someone’s own hand. That in itself is a touching rarity these days.
- A card is a keepsake. It’s as a warm connection to another person that someone can enjoy receiving for years to come.
Remember as a greeting card retailer, you’re not just providing an empty paper product. You’re providing a heartfelt bridge that connects two people. And nowadays, that’s a real service.