Posts tagged “hallmark”

ChittahChattah Quickies

  • Hallmark Cards to feature licensed audio content from NBC Universal – NBC Universal has sealed a new licensing deal with Hallmark Cards that includes the use of the company's film and TV content. Sound cards from Universal films such as "The 40-Year-Old Virgin," "Sixteen Candles" and "Jaws" will be included as well. Ditto "The Office," "30 Rock" and "Battlestar," as well as NBC News archives. Beyond cards, the deal includes "a wide range of social expression products."
  • Escapism in Minutiae of Daily Life – nice NYT review of Sims 3 – It is almost impossible to avoid the temptation to make a Sim version of yourself, either as you really are or as you wish to be. In that sense the game presents basic but important questions: What kind of person am I? What kind of person would I like to become? How do I treat the people around me? What is important to me in life? What are my core values?

    Children usually form their tentative answers to these questions without considering them explicitly. Adults, by contrast, often confront such issues, even tangentially, only in the context of intense emotional involvement, some sort of crisis or high-priced psychotherapy.

    Most video games exist to allow the player to forget completely about the real world. The Sims accomplishes the rare feat of entertaining while also provoking intellectual and emotional engagement with some of life’s fundamental questions. I love aliens and zombies, but a little reality in my gaming once in a while is not a horrible thing.

Welcome to the new normal

Hallmark’s Journeys series of cards offers the right words for a variety of situations not previously explicitly addressed by the “greeting” card industry.

Eating Disorder
Grief, traumatic loss
Leaving a bad situation
Losing hair from treatments
Post-partum depression
Quitting a bad habit
Significant anniversary
Thank you for being there
Thank hospice worker
Thinking of you
Tough times
Waiting for results
You can do it!

What is the “new normal” they refer to? The existence of these events in our lifes? Or the appropriateness (as dictated by Hallmark, of course) of acknowledging them directly? Or perhaps a bit of both…

Hallmark Valentine

Hallmark gets a Valentine from AP this year with a ridiculous story describing their detailed research processes to understand what people want.

An 80-person research staff’s analysis of Hallmark’s 2004 card sales was the initial impetus for this year’s line. That combines with more than 100,000 annual customer interviews, focus groups and in-store observations to lay the framework for roughly 2,000 cards in Hallmark’s core Valentine’s Day line as well as another 2,500 offerings through sister brands offered at supermarkets, Wal-Mart and elsewhere.

The card’s designer, Marcia Muelengracht, said she was not at all surprised the card sold five times better than the average Valentine — so well it’s being offered for a second year.

Five times better than the average tells you nothing about how well it sold relative to the number 2, 3, 4, or whatever. If it sold five times more than the its nearest competitor, that’d tell you that this particular Valentine really tapped into something special. This gets into all that horrible stats about standard deviation and mean and median that I don’t really understand – but I understand enough to know that lies, damn lies, and statistics are being used to create a puff piece about this special Valentine that is popular everywhere, and about how much work Hallmark does to understand their customer.


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