December 3, 2012

My Experience Sending Holiday Greeting Cards Via Email

It may be sacrilege to some, but this year I decided to eschew sending a paper holiday greeting card via mail, and I opted to send our family's Christmas card via email. For years prior, I had always printed up our cards and mailed them all out. Now that I have gone the electronic route, I'll never go back... and I'll tell you why.

Let me be the first to say that I find it wonderful to receive a tangible greeting card in the mail. And I'm not at all saying that anyone should not go that route if they're so inclined. But if you're at all on the fence while trying to decide whether to send out email cards or physical cards, here's my personal experience.

Since I'm in the business of being green, I chose to save the resources and paper it takes to print up physical Christmas cards, plus their envelopes, and the stamps they require. Then I took into account the fact that the U.S. postal service, which will already be bogged down delivering a slew of gifts and cards, could maybe use the break (albeit a small one), from hand delivering my cards, and I could save the carbon emissions required to get each and every card to its recipient.

I used Cocodot as my online card service -- and I in no way work for them and they have no idea who I am -- I just flat out love their service. First of all, it's free to send cards via email through Cocodot -- and their cards are also ad-free which is essential to me.

Second, it was a breeze to peruse their holiday greeting cards, choose the one I liked best, upload my photos into it (they also have plenty of options sans photos), and then deliver it to my recipient list (which was as easy as cutting and pasting email addresses into their super easy to use system).

Now comes the fun part -- I got instant delighted feedback on our greeting card. You can enable comments on the card you send out so your recipients can write you a return note. It was so fun to hear back from people I hadn't spoken to in awhile, as well as those I have... and each left such a grateful note of appreciation for having been sent our card. Obviously, this instant communication couldn't happen with a mailed card.

The second biggest perk for me was that Cocodot let's you manage your recipient list, so you can see exactly when people opened their card, and make sure it arrived to them successfully. Some of my cards "bounced" so that also alerted me to those who hadn't received it. Again, this can't happen via snail mail unless you attach a confirmation to each and every card you send.

So there you have it. I had a great experience sending my cards electronically this year, and I wanted to share it with you. Just think of all the trees we could collectively save if everyone went the e-card route with their holiday greetings?

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