Sending Christmas cards used to be an effective way to plant your company's name before current and prospective customers. "People can't help feeling warmly about you," says Jack Kahl, president and CEO of Manco, a $150-million marketer of tapes, weather stripping, and mail supplies, located in Westlake, Ohio. But, notes Kahl, there is only so much warmth to go around.

These days, so many companies send greeting cards that yours can get lost in the shuffle. To stand out, Kahl has added other, less "high-profile" holidays to his mailing roster, such as Thanksgiving, St. Patrick's Day, and the Fourth of July.

To heighten interest, Manco has the cards designed in-house so they're different from run-of-the-mill greetings. "People open them up just to see what the next one will look like," says Kahl, whose mailing list includes close to 32,000 people. "It's a much more personal way to reach them."