On This D&AY in History: December 1991

In late November, Freddie Mercury, lead vocalist of Queen, passed away at the age of 45 and left a world of fans in mourning. The Bohemian Rhapsody singer and Rock and Roll Hall of Famer is still considered one of the best artists of all time.

With the 1992 Winter Olympics coming up quickly in France, people all across the U.S. were readying their American flags and preparing to watch Kristi Yamaguchi, Donna Weinbrecht, Bonnie Blair and Cathy Turner bring home gold.

Diane Devaney spread her love of the holidays through Devaney & Associates’ client roster by hand-delivering fresh cheesecakes to their doors. Sending out unexpected gifts has become one of the agency’s favorite ways to connect with clients any time of year.

Devaney & Associates Spreads the Love

Holidays are always memorable (unless you overdo it on the eggnog). When Diane Devaney first started Devaney & Associates, she began what is now a tradition of sending cards without sending one at all: she and her team hand-delivered fresh cheesecakes to her clients’ doors.

It’s safe to say the clients were not disappointed—that is until Devaney’s husband, David, stopped working at the cheesecake company that helped to supply the holiday cheer.

While Devaney & Associates’ holiday cheesecake deliveries were short-lived, our dedication to spreading cheer was not. Over the last 25 years, we’ve used our cards to showcase our unending creativity and our genuine client appreciation. In honor of the upcoming holidays, we’re taking this month to look at some of our favorite mailers from the past 25 years.

Clearly a showstopper, the Charlie’s Angels themed card the agency sent out in 2000 featured the ladies of Devaney & Associates channeling Farrah Fawcett in their all-black, finger-guns-at-the-ready, fierce photoshoot.

For our 10th anniversary, the Devaney & Associates team acted our age (well, the agency’s age) when we dressed up in our finest jammies and cuddled with our teddy bears under the tree. Along with the card, our clients received themed toys as gifts, including the game Operation for Carroll Hospital.

Our “Share the Love” card, which included a DVD recording of a song written and performed by Devaney & Associates employees, won a Special Judges’ Addy Award from the American Advertising Federation of Baltimore.

The night before Christmas 2004, not a creature was stirring except for a mouse! Our holiday card detailed the adventures of a mouse as he explored the Towson office Devaney & Associates called home. She-Who-Is-The-Big-Cheese and the team disabled hundreds of mousetraps so they could hold our Diary of Mouse card. Don’t worry—no animals or ad folk were harmed in the making of this card.

In 2006, we turned the creative copywriting over to our clients when we sent out a Mad-Libs-themed card that had them writing their own little Christmas story.

Two years later, our holiday nightmares became a reality in our 3D Holiday Horrors card, featuring flying turkeys, tangled Christmas lights, and—worst of all—burnt cookies.

In 2009, we packed up our dreidels and tinsel for a trip back in time in our Very Merry Spin Down Memory Lane card. Ever wonder what your friends at Devaney & Associates wanted to be when they were kids? This card told all! Did you know that our president, Diane Devaney, wanted to be a set designer and staged Broadway shows in her parents’ basement? Or that our media director, Susan Casey, had planned on working with rabbits—not radio stations—as a veterinarian? Everyone’s lives took them down unexpected paths (save for account manager, Lisa D’Orsaneo, who always wanted to work in advertising), but luckily it worked out for all.

In recent years, we have swapped out the traditional Christmas card for mailers themed around “unsung” holidays and seasons, from New Year’s resolution journals and first-day-of-spring seed planters to snowmageddon snowstick measurers and snowball makers.

“I started this tradition because of my love for the holidays,” says Devaney. “It’s a way to connect with clients and spread the joy—anytime of year. People love to see what we send out each year and we love coming up with new ideas that will make us stand out. No sterile digital cards from us. Direct mail is alive and kicking!”

That’s the end of our year-long trip through our agency’s history. Stay tuned to see what we have in store for 2018!