Hallmark is sorry for your loss - your job loss
September 26th, 2011
05:41 PM ET

Hallmark is sorry for your loss - your job loss

Getting laid off from a job has always been synonymous with the delivery of a pink slip, but thanks to Hallmark, the experience might also become associated with receiving another piece of paper in the mail.

With unemployment sitting at 9%, the ongoing layoffs across the country have persuaded the greeting card giant to begin rolling out a line of sympathy cards with words of encouragement for people who have lost their jobs in the tough economy.

The development of cards that deal with the various hardships of the times is nothing new to Hallmark. The company also produced cards aimed at individuals who struggled through events such as the Great Depression, the military draft, and losing loved ones on September 11, 2001.

“People in times of need will always need to connect and when the consumers have asked us for a way to connect in those difficult situations, we try to respond in an authentic way and we think that what the greeting card does is offer a bridge,” Hallmark’s creative director Derek McCracken told NPR’s All Things Considered.

Those that work with the unemployed say they don’t think it’s a bad idea. “Getting a card like that and somebody caring is fabulous,” Michelle Crowthers-Lunczynski of Work One in Franklin, Ind. told CNN affiliate WTHR in Indianapolis, Indiana. “The crazy part to think about this is there's so many people laid off. At least someone's caring enough to you know, get a card and say, 'I'm thinking of you.'”

According to McCracken, the idea to produce cards that lift the spirits of the recently unemployed came from the company’s own customers, who were asking for a card addressing a topic that hits close to home for so many people.

“They sent us letters. They phoned it in. They asked their retailers, you know, in their neighborhood, where do I find a card that said this?” he said. “Loss of job, like any loss, is a grieving process. And so we have to acknowledge as soon as possible what had happened and then try to support them. So that's where we kind of offer more cards on the, you'll get through this, versus dwelling on the loss of the job itself.”

The job-loss sympathy cards are not currently available at all of the company’s 40,000 locations nationwide, but Hallmark’s website lists several of the 5×7 cards on-sale for $3.49 each.

E-card companies have also latched on to the idea, but American Greetings, a main competitor of Hallmark’s in the world of paper and electronic cards, has yet to produce any layoff-specific products. Spokesman Frank Cirillo says that the idea is something that American Greetings might look at in the future, but it hasn’t seen a demand for the cards because the company focuses on personalized products that are open-ended and conversational enough for consumers to add in their own more specific messages.

Hallmark’s cards range widely in tone: Some of them contain messages that are more on the sentimental side and offer inspirational advice, while many are lighthearted and even make light of the recipient’s situation. One card reads: “Don’t think of it as losing your job. Think of it as a time-out between stupid bosses.” Another says: “Don’t worry, you’ll get through this. Look at me! Okay, maybe don’t.”

“The ones that offer more moral support, but maybe with a little humorous twist in a more encouraging fashion are doing very well and we're publishing more of those,” McCracken said.

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Filed under: Economy • Jobs
soundoff (186 Responses)
  1. american greeter

    HALLMARK ALWAYS THINKS THEY ARE GONNA BRAINWASH PEOPLE INTO THINKING THEY NEED TO SEND A CARD FOR EVERTHING. THIS IS JUST ANOTHER ONE OF THIER STUPID MARKETING PLOYS TO TRY TO SAVE A DYING BUSINESS. THEY SHOULD LOWER THIER PRICES INSTEAD OF SPENDING TIME AND MONEY ON OUTLANDISH SALES TECHNIQUES. THIS IS WHY MOST PEOPLE BUY THIER CARDS IN THE DRUGSTORES NOW,THEY DONT WANT TO BE HARRASSED IN HALLMARKS BY UNGENUINE,OVERBEARING SALESPEOPLE WITH A SALES GOAL.

    September 28, 2011 at 3:13 pm | Report abuse |
  2. sis

    My opinion about Hallmark from past experience is they advertise "Sorry" cards yet they fire someone for a minor infraction and and refuse them Unemployment. How Family friendly is this company Oh yea one more thing they don"t sent out Sorry Cards to their fired employee.

    September 28, 2011 at 3:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • solacetea

      Sis, are you talking about Hallmark Corporate or one of the thousands of independently owned Hallmark retail stores?

      September 29, 2011 at 10:36 am | Report abuse |
  3. Regina

    This is an absolute Hypocrisy..... C'mon Hallmark (Corporation) you must be kidding. I personally know of someone you recently fired and then denied unemployment. If you wanted to respond in an authentic way you would at least allow someone to make ends meet until they find another source of employment. How about offering them that bridge instead of blowing smoke up Americas' Ass.....

    October 2, 2011 at 2:07 pm | Report abuse |
  4. snille bemanning

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    April 30, 2012 at 2:20 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Kazume

    Posted on I'll always rmeember visiting the John Adams house when I was a young kid, the guide talking about the exquisite hand-laid tile floor and pointing out a single imperfection in the tens of thousands of tile pieces. Why didn't they fix it?! I asked. They laid it that way on purpose, he explained, to symbolize their belief that man cannot be perfect only god is perfect. Quilt square fail? Okay, probably. But you could just look on it as an homage to one of our founding fathers!

    July 11, 2012 at 12:14 pm | Report abuse |
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