Corporate Eye

Hallmark Touts a Recession Thoughtful Cards Campaign

Amidst a time of uncertainties, a shaky and unstable economy, many businesses are either failing under the pressure or rolling with the times. Hallmark cards has chosen the latter as they continue to thrive with the budget-friendly line of .99 cents cards that they introduced in the late 1990s. They were able to spot a trend developing, assess its direction and take their product line towards the way the future was heading.

Often in times of economic hardship, the last thing that consumers think about are the ‘extras’ in life. Things like eating out, shopping jaunts and electronic toys/gadgets become more of a distant luxury than an everyday purchase. Times are tough. Belt buckles are tightening and there are a lot of ‘no’s’. People are having to make some hard changes in their budget and lifestyle, and life’s little luxuries are no exception.

Even though consumers are making often drastic changes, does not mean that they are willing to sacrifice quality for cost. They don’t want to necessarily go cheap, but just want to be frugal, to think smarter about their purchases. Don’t we all? I know I for one have decided to make my money work smarter for me rather than sacrificing what I want just to say that I’ve got it. No, I don’t want to confuse “anything” for “something.” I still want quality at an affordable price and I try to find it in all areas of my spending. Of course, I’m not the only consumer doing that and Hallmark recognizes that consumer trait and expounds on it.

Hallmark has (in my opinion) a very smart marketing and trend development unit of their corporate company because they have been able to stay on target and find just what it is that customers want and will go for. Someone there did their homework and has been able to determine the buying habits of consumers, developing their product line around it touting money saving benefits as their slant.

Each time that Hallmark has introduced a new line of greeting cards has not been all wonderful. Like any other business, they have made mistakes, some huge, some not so smart. They have introduced products that weren’t quite so welcomed (their divorce greeting cards failed), and have at times missed what was hot and what was not. But all in all, they seem to be on point with the bulk of their offerings.

The company’s campaign to (re)ignite the .99 card line is unveiling with a television spot and online digital offerings targeted at savvy consumers who are “looking to send the very best” but want to be frugal at the same time. I think it will be an instant hit, as their money-wise campaigns have been before.

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Bridget Wright

Writer, Blogger
I am a freelance writer, blogger and professional motivational speaker. I primarily focus on business content, offering my clients strategic marketing strategies for their businesses. I have been an entrepreneur for over 13 years, after having worked extensively in corporate America.

This was useful information. Some of the mindsets expressed in here I can use when speaking to my clients ( don’t want to sacrifice quality for cost, etc).

I’m in the ‘training’ biz, (negotiating training to be exact) and the field of training is always thought of as a luxury when times are tight. When in fact, there isn’t a better time to make sure employees have negotiating skill building than in this ECONOMY.

I always buy Hallmark (business and personal greetings) and enjoy them.

Have a business healthy year,

Hello Tamara

I’m glad you found Bridget’s post useful.

I’m inclined to agree with you: training is important at all times. It could be argued that this is a good time to get more training – if the workload is lighter, you can more easily be spared for a training course.

Did you see this guest post here from Colin Shaw of Beyond Philosophy: Leadership in a credit crunch: don’t blink? His views on doing business in a difficult economy are interesting.

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