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 (185 Responses)
  1. josh rogen

    i'm looking forward to sending one to the white house after the 2012 election.

    September 27, 2011 at 9:33 am | Report abuse |
    • steve

      LMAO!!!!! So true.... I'd send one to ALL the USELESS politicos if I had the cash, but I dont in this economy.....

      September 27, 2011 at 9:42 am | Report abuse |
    • guest

      well that is obviously not going to happen

      September 27, 2011 at 10:14 am | Report abuse |
    • blazingabroad

      haha that is too funny. hey, make sure to put money in the cards when u send them to us, the unemployed. ok???

      September 27, 2011 at 10:24 am | Report abuse |
  2. joe

    hallmark: "oh...yeah...um.....sorry about your job loss.........Hey!!!!! we have these really cool halloween cards coming out !!!! and!!!......."

    September 27, 2011 at 9:34 am | Report abuse |
  3. steve

    ......." THEY" don't miss a trick do "THEY"......

    September 27, 2011 at 9:38 am | Report abuse |
  4. videns

    Those numbers are 9% according to whom? I honestly don't know many people who have been laid off or are without work. I think there is a misconception about this, and perhaps some manipulation going on here on the part of the GOP. I'm sorry, but I just don't believe the numbers based on what I see and know to be true. You know, facts. The things the GOP like to avoid because they won't tell the story the way they want it to go.

    September 27, 2011 at 9:42 am | Report abuse |
    • Mark

      Where are you looking ? at a yacht club ?

      September 27, 2011 at 9:49 am | Report abuse |
    • jbrue

      Both parties claim that unemploment is 9%. Don't be ignorant and blame those you don't agree with for the information you choose not to believe. Also, the number 9% only accounts for those without work that are actively pursuing employment. It doesn't take into account any individual that has given up for the time being, or those who are underemployed.

      September 27, 2011 at 9:52 am | Report abuse |
    • jbrue

      btw, the Bureau of Labor Statistics calculates unemployment percentage. Dr. Keith Hall is the current agency executive. A President Bush era appointee, the unemployment rate has only come down since President Bush left office. Hardly seems like he is playing partisanal politics. President Obama will be charged with appointing a new executive to be sworn in for a fixed four year term in 2012.

      September 27, 2011 at 10:06 am | Report abuse |
    • Think

      Wow, you get a prize for the most brainwashed fool of the year. But don't worry, even though unemployment is 9%, it's all Bush's fault.

      September 27, 2011 at 10:16 am | Report abuse |
    • Tess

      Where do you live? Can I join you in your bubble?

      September 27, 2011 at 10:29 am | Report abuse |
  5. Jay

    I can imagine the staff at hallmark now..

    "We've got to save our phony bologna jobs gentlemen, IMMEDIATELY IMMEDIATELY IMMEDIATELY! Harumph! Harumph! HARUMPH!"

    September 27, 2011 at 9:47 am | Report abuse |
    • jbrue

      I didn't get a hurumph outta that guy!

      September 27, 2011 at 9:53 am | Report abuse |
    • Feast of Beast

      HaHaHaha! Well done!

      September 27, 2011 at 9:54 am | Report abuse |
    • Feast of Beast

      Give the Hallmark CEO Harumph!
      You watch your azz!

      September 27, 2011 at 9:56 am | Report abuse |
  6. Adrian

    Schadenfreude—Hallmark is cashing in on it.

    September 27, 2011 at 9:51 am | Report abuse |
  7. Karen

    This is cruel and in bad taste. I wonder if there's one saying: "Sorry for voting wrong."

    September 27, 2011 at 9:54 am | Report abuse |
    • NYCMovieFan

      Or one that says "sorry that the president you elected was not allowed to take office and your country is now destroyed." That one can be sent to all Americans alive in 2000! And a card is nonsense – someone just laid off needs office supplies, and a new suit. Donate money for practicality, not fluff – sorry Hallmark, but you are a luxury to most of us now. The only hope we really have of economic recovery is to re-elect Obama in 2012 – and we are working for that!

      September 27, 2011 at 10:18 am | Report abuse |
  8. funforall82

    While unemployement may be a 9%, they was the it is calculated is based on those who are actively looking for work, so if someone who has been without a job for 4 months and stops looking for work, then they are no counted in unemployement figures. 9% is probably low, compared to how many people have given up simply trying to find a job.

    September 27, 2011 at 10:03 am | Report abuse |
  9. JoJo

    Anyone bought a card recently?? Those things are outrageous.. literally an overpriced piece of stiff paper with some colorful printing. Make a card yourself, the old fashion way... the people who are receiving it will appreciate it a lot more than some overpriced fancy crap.

    September 27, 2011 at 10:06 am | Report abuse |
  10. bren

    Sounds like a card my mother-in-law would send. I myself won't purchase any Hallmark product because of this. I know people who are out of work thanks to the economy and broken government. Everyone needs to watch who and what they pay their hard earned money out to.

    September 27, 2011 at 10:07 am | Report abuse |
  11. Brian

    Hallmark Corporate laid me off in 2007. I didn't get a card. This company is quickly fading as fast as 35mm roll film.

    September 27, 2011 at 10:07 am | Report abuse |
  12. Dawn

    Hey, instead of spending $3-5 on the card, how about you buy your unemployed buddy lunch or something instead?

    September 27, 2011 at 10:09 am | Report abuse |
  13. illuminati

    Hallmark is making money on other peoples losses. They really need to send the profits to those out of work.

    September 27, 2011 at 10:09 am | Report abuse |
  14. Neece

    Seriously!?! Come on now! This is really in poor taste! Anything to make a buck!

    September 27, 2011 at 10:22 am | Report abuse |
  15. carlos

    Is there one for teabagger?

    September 27, 2011 at 10:24 am | Report abuse |
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