March 01, 2003
Meetings & Conventions: Short Cuts March 2003 Current Issue
March 2003
Short Cuts:Irresistible Invitations

New and creative ways to entice attendees

Image: Miniature palm tree What do you do to make your event invitation stand out from all the junk mail attendees have to sift through? Increasingly, planners are thinking outside the envelope when it comes to invitations, and a growing number of vendors are ready to supply them with eye-catching, eclectic items.

A recent invite to a lunch sponsored by the Palm Beach County CVB came complete with a miniature palm tree (shown above). The supplier, Plymouth, Fla.-based Plants With a Message (, received preprinted invitation cards from the bureau, which it then packaged with the tiny trees and express-mailed to would-be attendees. General manager Mark Herman says his company’s creations are popular for product launches or “if the theme is growth.”

If the event is a bit more low-key but the invitation still needs to stand out, consider the use of mailing tubes, available from many speciality retailers in countless colors and patterns to fit nearly any type of celebration. But resist filling the tube with confetti or some other messy attention-getter, advises Hilka Klinkenberg, founder and director of New York City-based consulting firm Etiquette International ( “That can be very irritating, and you don’t want to irritate people with your invitations,” she points out.

Klinkenberg’s other advice: Make sure that the invitation is wholly consistent with the tone of the event and the image of the host organization, and try to avoid negative-sounding phrases, such as “regrets only,” accompanying RSVP directions.


Back to Current Issue index | Back to Short Cuts index
M&C Home Page
Current Issue | Events Calendar | Newsline | Incentive News | Meetings Market Report
Editorial Libraries | CVB Links | Reader Survey | Hot Dates | Contact M&C