Merry Singles in Tacoma

By Melanie Casey on December 15, 2014

Coming up with a fun, creative and festive Christmas card is not always an easy task. Leave it to the professionals at JayRay, a branding, advertising and strategic communications firm in Tacoma, to develop a website dedicated solely to sending holiday cheer.

Launched Dec. 10, is a dating website parody and the firm's virtual holiday card.

"It's a JayRay hallmark to send out fun holiday greetings, and this year we decided to focus on engagement," said the firm's co-owner and president, Kathleen Deakins. "Our business, just like in dating, is all about increasing engagement. So we thought it would be fun to use the various marketing tools that we use for our clients. There was a direct mail piece, there's our website and there's social media, to see if we could get some engagement going for our ‘holi-dating' site."

The "dating site" features just four available singles looking for love: Ru Dolph, Candi Cane, Doug Fur and Holly Day. Each has a profile complete with pictures, personality traits and of course, a call to action. Candi Cane, for instance, is listed as an exotic model who likes aged red wine and six packs. Mountain Man Doug Fur - a "tall drink of water with a powerful thirst" - likes fishing and Duck Dynasty. Ru Dolph posts, "those who think they can yank on my reins need not respond. If you're ready to make a dash for love, we'll go down in history (pinky promise)."

It's all in good fun - but it's also for a good cause. Visitors to the website can vote for their favorite merry single on Facebook through Jan. 5. One lucky voter will score a $50 Visa gift card, and JayRay will donate another $50 to the charity of the model who garners the most votes.

Each model has his or her own designated charity: Votes for Ru Dolph will benefit the Humane Society of Tacoma & Pierce County; Candi Cane voters will help Community Health Care; Doug Fur fans will help support Washington's National Park Fund and Holly Days voters will support Citizens for a Healthy Bay.

"There's a competition going among our models, who are also promoting it among their websites and friends, and we are watching the votes add up," Deakins said. "This has been the most successful project like this we've ever been involved in. We (had nearly) 500 likes, shares and comments in the first 48 hours."

Most people can appreciate the sentiment and the dating-site parody, she added. However, "we have found that some IT systems are blocking it," Deakins said, "which we thought was very funny. If this happens to you, you can reach the site by using the website."

While JayRay normally does something "wacky and fun" for the holidays for its friends and clients, this year the firm wanted to spread the cheer a little further.

"The news can be sort of depressing, and it's nice to have an opportunity to do something fun," Deakins said. "We wish everyone a happy holidays."

JayRay has been in Tacoma since 1970. The firm works with a variety of nonprofit, business and government organizations in the South Sound and around the country. For more information, visit