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Hallmark Bets People Still Want to Send Paper Cards, but From Their Phones

Hallmark has rolled out a way for people to handwrite a note and add it to a paper greeting card, without buying a stamp or going to the mailbox

7/28/2021 6:15:00 AM

Hallmark has rolled out a way for people to handwrite a note and add it to a paper greeting card, without buying a stamp or going to the mailbox

The company has rolled out a way for people to handwrite a note and add it to a paper greeting card, without buying a stamp or going to the mailbox.

July 27, 2021 2:40 pm ETHallmark Cards Inc. has rolled out a way for people to handwrite a note and add it to a paper greeting card, without buying a stamp or going to the mailbox.The company introduced the feature in late June, two months aftershutting down its e-card service

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, which let users send an unlimited number of e-cards for $5 a month. That service accounted for 2.7% of Hallmark’s revenue as of this year, according to estimates from IBISWorld Inc., a research firm.Hallmark, one of the country’s biggest greeting-card makers, hopes the new feature will prompt more people to send cards, even if they remember a birthday late at night or have no stamps at home. The family-owned company, based in Kansas City, Mo., pays for the postage and mails the card to the recipient.

Newsletter Sign-upThe Experience ReportGet weekly insights into the ways companies optimize data, technology and design to drive success with their customers and employees.PREVIEWSUBSCRIBEAlthough companies including Signed LLC offer a similar service, many consumers are likely to try it through Hallmark because of the company’s brand recognition, said Jeannie Walters, chief executive of Experience Investigators, a customer-experience consulting firm.

U.S. sales of paper greeting cards are in decline, falling to $4.4 billion in 2020 from $5 billion in 2019, according to IBISWorld. Over that time, U.S. sales of e-cards grew to $1.3 billion from $1 billion, IBISWorld said. E-cards are usually sold through subscription services that let people customize the cards with songs or videos that mention the recipient’s name.

Hallmark hopes the convenience of the new feature, called Sign and Send, will bring people to send more cards to connect with family and friends, said Lindsey Roy, the company’s chief marketing officer. More than 25% of consumers rarely have stamps to send cards, according to company research, which is why Hallmark pays for the postage in this service, Ms. Roy added.

To use Hallmark’s Sign and Send, people need to handwrite a note on blank white paper with black ink and take a photo of the message using a mobile device. Users then upload the image, crop or rotate it, and fill in details including the recipient’s address. Users can also choose to type a message instead and tweak the font, size and alignment.

Consumers, particularly younger ones, want speed and convenience, and a service like this fits those criteria, Ms. Walters said.“People really just want to be able to do things when it is convenient for them, the way they want,” she said. Read more: The Wall Street Journal »

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Another nail in the coffin USPS Or you could just use gcuniverse . You can customize the front or inside,probably for half of what Hallmark will charge, and often have special discounts. They mail it to you, for those who still like a traditional greeting card. I love them and use the frequently paging internetofshit

This is brilliant. I would definitely use this service. horrible

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