How To Wish Happy Birthday On A Old Fashioned Way The Perennial Nonprofit Question: To Send A Holiday Card Or Not To Send A Holiday Card

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The Perennial Nonprofit Question: To Send A Holiday Card Or Not To Send A Holiday Card

To send a holiday card or not to send a holiday card is a question. Every year since 1991, I have wrestled with this question, not directly, but professionally. My family sends Christmas cards to some family members, friends and acquaintances. That’s not a problem, it’s a great way to share information, express greetings and generally stay in touch.

So what is the problem with the profession? Do not these same benefits exist for a non-profit organization when it sends Christmas cards or, more broadly, any type of holiday card to its members? It depends.

If non-profit organizations send more personal cards, I think they create a positive return on investment. On the other hand, if a non-profit organization, no matter how many cards they choose to send some personal information mailing, note the name than it seems to me, this card is worth the effort. Without this custom setting, I’m not sure.

Ticket card
When I served for 17 years as University President, my name and title appeared on countless VIPs. In the language I am “someone”. Because I was considered worthy or at least my position was considered important, my office received a lot of cards: Christmas, but eventually there was also a thank you and sometimes a birthday card. Well.

What I found interesting was that almost all of the cards were computer generated . My name is nowhere to be found other than the envelope label. No messages related to my relationship with the organization could be found inside. There is no information in any way related to who I am or even what university vis-à-vis is a non-profit organization that sends cards. No real signature of a nonprofit president, even many times when I know the CEO of a nonprofit. Nothing.

This happens even with birthday cards. I will receive a card from a non-profit organization during the week of my birthday, but it does not have a text message and No name. Wow. Try this method with your spouse: Give him or her a birthday or anniversary card without your message or name. Not good.

Even more interesting for me, since I left my position as president of the university, I no longer receive cards from most of those nonprofits. This is true for organizations for which I have a close relationship, and it is true for organizations for which I still know leadership.

The message I am collecting from this is that I do not have many problems now and I am only important “at the time” because I am in the role of a non-profit organization that is considered influential and can be useful to them. But even then, to repeat myself, I did not seem to have much trouble because I received a card created by a tickler file.

Some nonprofits and their executives, I know, are proud of the length or breadth of their Christmas card list. I have heard the President’s announcement number one seems to be a sign of great achievement. You know, my Rolodex is bigger than your Rolodex. Or in a more contemporary sense, my mailing list is bigger than your mailing list.

But is this a problem? What does it mean? Do all these non-personal cards really strengthen the mission and vision of a non-profit organization? Are voters very happy to receive such a card? Is the practice of sending non-personalized cards to the point, or hundreds or even thousands, a powerful leading tool? I do not think so.

Personal card
When it came time for me to decide whether to spend the university’s hard-earned funds, I asked myself, “Is it worth it?” I still consider this same question every year in a different nonprofit leadership role. Why should I pay or how much of a non-profit organization should I spend to send a card? It depends.

I do not recommend non-profit organizations sending holiday cards. I am also not against a long list. What I suggest is that sending the card individually will not have the same positive effects as sending Personal card. So if I am responsible for deciding to spend nonprofit funds – resources that can go to operations or programs that complete the mission – I would rather use the most effective and efficient methods possible. For me, that is a personal card.

For each Thanksgiving, I spend hours in front of a football game signing a Christmas card. I choose the pen, usually blue, but actually black and white. This ensures that my name and message stand out against the plain black text of the card’s printed message.

It takes longer, but I like to write that person’s name, whether Fred or Fred and Mary or Mr. and Mrs. Smith depends on how well I know them. Follow the statements about the work of a non-profit organization, for example: “It was a difficult but fruitful year” or “Thank you for helping us touch life” or “At the end of the year we are really excited to launch the program Recently … then follow some Christmas or holiday greetings: “Wish you and you this season” or “Merry Christmas and Happy New Year” or “Best wishes in Great time of the year. ”I finally signed up.

I guarantee that this method will get the attention of the card-receiving ingredients. Why? Because I respond to personal cards, I know that others do, and because those who receive these cards later express their gratitude to them. And personal cards will stand out on the dining room table or office desk because they are the only ones that hold a handwritten personal greeting.

Now you say, “I do not have time to do this.” That I say, “You do not have time to do this.” Or if you really are clicked, check out your list of Christmas cards. Do not send more than you have time and personal will. However, for the most part, those who receive them will feel special and valuable, which after all is something that non-profit organizations hope their representatives feel.

Electronic card
The e-card phenomenon is still new. Some non-profit organizations are using this method to send holiday greetings to their representatives, which is cheap and instant. But the same rules apply. Custom e-cards yield higher ROI than non-personal e-cards.

And although I am not against technology, I still argue that handwritten notes sent via snail mail generate more positive responses than those sent by email and are easier to delete. This may be an old-school attitude or assessment, but the proverb worn at the store now “high-tech, high-touch” still applies. People enjoy and remember the “touch”.

Personal Mass Card or Email
After all this, you can say, “If I cut my list down to a handful that I do on my own, our nonprofit will miss out on an important opportunity to share information and get involved. Our combination. ” OK, maybe.

If the nonprofit concludes that must send a score or hundreds or select thousands of holiday cards, I still strongly recommend that these cards be customized in an identifiable way. Do not just pick it up at the printer and drop it in the mailbox. Do not just get an e-card and send it to a huge database. Customize.

Customization is different from custom settings. To personalize means that the recipient’s name is on the card and the nonprofit operator has signed the card with a personal message, even on the e-card. Customization means that the nonprofit has added content that in some ways identifies the card as a nonprofit card, not a stock purchase, or even a special design that does not include information or nonprofit names. Profit.

Customized cards should include current information, a thank-you note, and someone’s name and title, even without a personal signature. Do not send a card from “The Staff” or worse, no source of origin other than the return address on the envelope or institutional name such as “The University” or “XYZ Ministries”. Name the person, perhaps the Chairman of the Board, the Chairman or Vice-Chairman for the progress on the card. Almost any name is better than no name.

Conclusion
Nonprofits spend thousands of dollars a year sending holiday cards to creators. But this practice, especially the long list, may be more of a cultural tradition than a well-developed approach.

The question of whether to send a holiday card or not to send a holiday card should be answered on the basis of the perception of mission optimization. Since the best growth is about relationships, it seems reasonable to end up with the best holiday cards to strengthen personal relationships with nonprofits. We build relationships by at least customizing the mail, but even better by defining it as personal.

Sign a nonprofit holiday card with note and name information.

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