- ELECTRONIC GREETING CARDS - HIGH-TECH MEETS HIGH-TOUCH

It's a simple fact that most people will thrive or fail in business based on the quality of the relationships they build.

The age-old (and solid) advice about sending short notes and cards to everyone you know for any special occasion whatsoever (holidays, birthdays, anniversaries, promotions, etc.) is based on the reality that you need to reinforce your business relationships whenever possible.

Simply put, people tend to do business with the people that immediately come to mind when a need arises, and with people that that like. Keeping in touch with short notes and greeting cards positions you to take advantage of both of these facts.

But, how many of us send even one card or personal note a day?

Why don't more of us follow this simple path to greater success? The answer is understandable: We usually don't remember the special occasions, or don't have the time to constantly run to the local card shop.

Once again, let's turn to technology for the solution!

There are a number of programs available (from companies such as Hallmark and American Greeting Cards) that will allow you to print top-quality cards (as long as you have a good quality printer and set it to it's highest resolution) and notes for all kinds of special occasions.

These programs can be bought just about anywhere that sells software, and typically for under $50. With card shops charging anywhere from $1 to $3 per piece, it doesn't take long to earn back this small investment.

I personally use Create-A-Card Gold from American Greeting Cards. I've printed literally hundreds of cards and find that it is truly a must-have program.

In addition to printing cards in numerous configurations (flat, single-fold, four-fold, etc.) you can also create and email attachment of any card, save it to disk, or even place it on your web site.

There are countless categories of cards to choose from, and each has several different versions of text, or you can simply create your own card and/or insert your own words.

In addition, there are quite a few unexpected extras, such as multimedia cards and a section called "add-a-photo" which is perfect for birthday and anniversaries cards, and, of course, for inserting pictures of homes that are either for sale, or recently sold.

There are other features that you might find quite handy, such as creating invitations, or printing your own calendars for either personal or business use.

Best of all, there's a simple "reminder" database that will ensure you never forget another important occasion!

From a technical perspective, the program is both elegant and efficient. The software doesn't use up too much of your computer's resources, as it runs off of a CDROM.

However, what impressed me the most, from a technical perspective, is the comprehensive printing functions that almost guarantee that you'll never make a mistake, whether you're printing one card or a hundred.

To top it all off, Create-A-Card has not once crashed my system, and that's a lot more than can be said for many of today's graphical and multi-media software programs.

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Copyrighted with all rights reserved by Stephen M. Canale