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PR Puffs: Liverpool still does Christmas cards

Oxfam reports unexpected buck in sales but will festive greetings soon go the same way as the dodo?

Published on December 8th 2014.


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 OXFAM is claiming an unexpected 23 per cent rise in Christmas card sales this year, despite the continued growth of social media and fears that the traditional Christmas card could soon disappear.

Elsewhere, charity Christmas card sales are said to be tumbling. Rising costs of postage being blamed alongside an inability among members of the younger generations to address a basic envelope, it was reported.

To highlight its own offerings, then, Oxfam has knocked out a PR puff of card buying habits, breaking it down into city stats. 

"The humble Christmas card list is more political than you might think – the average Liverpool resident bumps up to five people off their list every year," says the Mersey version.

"The poll by Oxfam found more than half of people they surveyed in Liverpool (57 percent) said they often strike people off their list, with a key reason being because they do not receive a card from that person (34 percent).

"But it’s not all bad news," it goes on, "Christmas cards remain a meaningful part of the festive season for people of all ages, with over three quarters of Liverpool residents (84 percent) sending Christmas cards this year."

The findings run contrary to those from Card Aid which last year opened 30 pop-up shops selling a wide range of charity cards. This year it is opening only 10. Organisers say the cost of a first class stamp – now 62p – is putting older people off, while those younger, who do everything online, are not said to be interested in sending a physical anything.

Will Christmas cards go the same way as this festive tradition?Will Christmas cards go the same way as this festive tradition?

Dame Hilary Blune who runs the Charities Advisory Trust’s Card Aid scheme, told the Guardian: “I also think buyers are less engaged with it. In the past people would put the cards all over the house – it was a part of Christmas – but less so today. We had some 14-year-olds in for work experience this week and none of them knew how to address an envelope properly. All these factors have conspired against us."

 A lower-priced charity card stamp is enjoyed by the Dutch and the Charities Advisory Trust lobbied the Treasury for years to allow Royal Mail to introduce similar, but it was repeatedly rejected, she said.

Indeed, some reckon that within a decade the traditional Christmas card could go the way of the dodo.

Andrew Horton, Oxfam Trading Director, said: “Christmas cards are an incredibly important source of income for Oxfam.

“In this digital era it’s wonderful that Christmas cards are still close to the hearts of many people. We’ve been really heartened by the fact that half of the people we surveyed said they choose charity Christmas cards above others (50 per cent)."

*So, do you still post Christmas cards or do you think they are a terrible waste of paper? Does harvesting 30 Facebook likes for that picture of a mince pie you posted on Xmas Eve, with the status update "YOLO," compensate for receiveing a greeting through the letterbox? Who knows?


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Royal MaleDecember 11th 2014.

Before we had first-class and second-class post we had the 4d stamp for a normal letter and a 3d stamp for postcards and unsealed greetings cards. Why couldn’t have something like that? Now that the Post Office has been privatised prices will shoot up even faster and the services will disappear.

WoggleDecember 11th 2014.

Of course Wirral-dwellers have the option of the Scout Post run by the Scouts. The stamps cost 30p and all the proceeds go to charity. Unfortunately they only deliver in Wirral which is populated by mean-spirited curmudgeons who hate outsiders and don't deserve Christmas cards. You'd think the Scouts in Liverpool might run such a service though.

1 Response: Reply To This...
John BradleyDecember 13th 2014.

All proceeds go toward legal fees.

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