It’s Festive Friday this week

Industry to boost card sending for that feel-good factor that will beat Royal Mail strikes

 

The Festive Friday push is just a couple of days away with the GCA, its publisher and retail members encouraging everyone to get in the Christmas spirit by writing and sending their cards early.

The industry association is working hard to encourage everyone in Britain to buy and send their festive cards, and is ahead of the curve with all the GCA’s cards to members already at the Isle Of Man Post Office ready to be mailed in advance of the big day on Friday, 2 December.

Above: Special IOM stamps for the GCA’s Christmas cards
Above: Special IOM stamps for the GCA’s Christmas cards

“We really need everyone in our industry to be ready to post their cards this week,” GCA ceo Amanda Fergusson told PG Buzz, “to encourage all their recipients to do the same. If everyone in our industry posted just 30 cards, and then everyone who received them posted just 10 that would be well over a million cards in the first week.

Receiving Christmas cards reminds people to send their own so Festive Friday kicks off the annual exchange of season’s greetings and Amanda added: “It’s a real feel-good activity at a time when things are tricky.”

House of Cards, the Home Counties greeting card retail group co-owned by Miles Robinson and Nigel Williamson, had no hesitation in fully engaging with the initiative once again – their team would have been incredibly disappointed if they hadn’t as it’s become a company tradition that the postage is covered for all staff who have their Christmas cards written and ready for Festive Friday, with 1,000 cards anticipated from this week’s event.

Taking Festive Friday out into the consumer space, public relations experts Sarah Selzer and Mark Chapman, co-owners of PR Direct, have lent their support, having sent out a GCA press release to consumer media and engaged with influencers to encourage more participation.

Above: It’s Festive Friday this week
Above: It’s Festive Friday this week

With the latest round of postal workers’ industrial action announced last week, and now set to affect deliveries throughout December, the GCA has again been in contact with Royal Mail, which does seem to be getting the “buy and send early” message out in the press.

Amanda said: “I have written to them again urging action, saying we obviously remain extremely concerned about Christmas card sending this year, we are now receiving reports that people are being put off buying Christmas cards as they don’t think they’ll be delivered.

Above: The GCA’s Adriana Lovesy (left) and Amanda Fergusson with PG’s Jakki Brown (right) writing all the association’s Christmas cards, this year designed by Ricicle Cards and printed by Windles
Above: The GCA’s Adriana Lovesy (left) and Amanda Fergusson with PG’s Jakki Brown (right) writing all the association’s Christmas cards, this year designed by Ricicle Cards and printed by Windles

And Amanda has asked for information as to what Royal Mail is doing to encourage sending, and reassure consumers that their cards will be delivered.

The BBC has also run a story to suggest sending Christmas cards early – Royal Mail’s advertised last posting dates are 19 December with second class stamps, and 21 December for first class but, with industrial action already due on 24, 25, 30 November and 1, 9, 11, 14, 15, 23, 24 December and previous strikes having halted many deliveries, the quicker the cards are in the post, the more likely they are to arrive in time.

PG Buzz would love to hear from anyone taking part in Festive Friday. Please do send your stories and pictures to jakkib@max-publishing.co.uk as well as posting them on social media with the hashtags #FestiveFriday and #sendacarddeliverasmile.

Top: The GCA’s cards are ready to go at the Isle Of Man Post Office

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