What Marketing Message Do They Really Send?
It’s primarily a Christian tradition. But the custom of sending Christmas cards has become popular among a wide cross-section of people, including non-Christians, both in Western society and in Asia. The traditional greeting reads “Wishing you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year”; much like that of the first commercial Christmas card, produced by Sir Henry Cole in London in 1843.
There are innumerable variations of the Christmas card formula, many expressing a more religious Christian sentiment, or containing a poem, prayer or Biblical verse; while others distance themselves from religion, with an all-inclusive “Season’s Greetings”. However, even the ‘generic’ holiday cards are sent at Christmastime, and often contain Christian symbols, such as Christmas trees and ornaments.
Is it (Possibly) a Negative Marketing Message?
What marketing message comes to mind when you receive a Christmas card from a business? Certainly, it’s intended to create goodwill, but it MAY create feelings of thoughtlessness. Are you unintentionally offending a valued customer who doesn’t share the same religious beliefs?
Religious Diversity in the US
The United States is the most religiously diverse country in the world.
While the majority of Americans (76%) identify themselves as Christians, mostly within Protestant and Catholic denominations, many non-Christian religions (including Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam, and Judaism), collectively make up the remaining 24% of the adult population.
Instead, Send a Message of Thanks!
Thanksgiving is currently celebrated on the fourth Thursday in November, and has been an annual tradition in the United States since 1863. Thanksgiving is a holiday widely regarded by Americans as a time for:
- giving thanks
- spending time with family,
- football games,
- Parades (Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade)
This year, Thanksgiving will be celebrated on Thursday, November 25, 2010. So consider sending your trusted employees and valued clients that same message of gratitude, family and fun.
By sending Thanksgiving cards, you will pre-empt other businesses (including your competition) that send Christmas cards, you will stand out from the crowd, and your message of thanks will be remembered long after the holiday ends. (Can you say the same for Christmas cards?)
What else inspires you (think outside of the box) in your marketing messages this holiday season?
PS: The first Thanksgiving feast consisted of fowl, venison, fish, lobster, clams, berries, fruit, pumpkin, squash and turkey. This recipe is for an entire Thanksgiving Dinner that takes one hour to cook: One hour Thanksgiving Dinner.
(Many thanks to Wikipedia for the great source of information.)