Human sentiment: It’s the bottom line, isn’t it, of all our communications?
Whether it’s joy, sadness, love, friendship, gratitude or appreciation … Everything we do as humans when it comes to reaching out to one another is about sharing a sentiment. It’s also true in marketing. The campaigns, concepts, platforms and evaluations we do are all to move the needle closer to capturing that just-right message for a brand. The one that inspires, increases loyalty or changes a perception.
Recently, the SJC Marketing team had an opportunity to experience the fun and complexity of human sentiment on a day-long guided tour at Hallmark Cards’ corporate headquarters in Kansas City, Missouri.
This iconic brand is part of the fabric of most of our lives; each of us has a special card or two tucked away or has a relative who sent Hallmark cards faithfully.
The tour was part of our ongoing commitment to keeping our ideas fresh and our inspiration strong. Our team visited the corporate areas, exploring innovation zones where everything from design concepts to in-depth color swatches are shared and discussed.
We saw collections of paper, quote walls from Hallmark artists and displays about great characters from Hallmark’s past and present. Our team experienced what collaboration areas look like and even a new exhibit about upcoming generations (think mid-teens to late 20s) and how they desire to think about their relationships and strengthen those.
Several messages hit home. We were able to think about and consider in detail how we create strategies across generations. We were able to consider how messages continue to change and evolve, but when they hit their target, they really hit their target. And our team was able to laugh and explore elements from our childhood shaped by Hallmark, such as a collection of themed Christmas trees, filled with classic and much-loved ornaments, signage and fun gift options that have impacted our connections. The official Visitors’ Center and museum tied it all together with plenty of shared nostalgic moments.
Like any brand, Hallmark business decisions are incredibly complex – especially in the changing environment of human connection – yet remain incredibly real, relatable and critical.
From a historical perspective, the SJC team celebrated a local brand that took creative risks along the journey, yet always kept its audience top of mind. As marketers, we all share that same desire and passion. Here’s a big shout-out and a “thank you” to the Hallmark team who opened their doors to our team and a celebration of the awesome human creative spirit.
Today, we challenge your team. Go. See. Learn. Explore. Where will you visit to keep your creative fires burning?