When my husband and I returned from a trip to Chicago last night, where we were visiting our son, an order for one of my handmade gratitude journals was waiting for me. The buyer purchased one of these mini books as a gift, and asked me if I could include a note card with a personalized message. Although this is not a service I have ever offered, it was an easy request to fulfill. Why, I asked myself, couldn’t I offer this as a standard (and free) courtesy to all of my customers?
The next thing I knew, I began exploring my mostly unused commercial clip art collection for images that might suit various occasions and audiences—the four seasons, baby, birthday, Valentine’s Day, anniversary and teacher. If you decide to do something similar, make sure you check the usage guidelines of the clip art designer. The images I selected were described as being “royalty free if not used for resale.” Since I am offering mini note cards to buyers as a free option, I determined that I was using the images within its guidelines.
I decided that I wanted six mini note cards per page, all of one type. Using Corel WordPerfect software, I generated a 4-column, 3-row table in a landscape orientation. Each row measured 2-3/8 inches tall, and each column measured 2-3/8 inches wide. I edited the table so that every other vertical line would not print; this represented the fold line of each note card. In the first cell of each note card, I inserted my shop logo, Web address, e-mail address and blog address. In the second cell of each card, I inserted a clip art image. After I printed the note cards on card stock, I simply used scissors to cut them apart, folded the cards in half, and rounded the corners with a Crop-A-Dile Corner Chomper. You can use Microsoft Word software or any other word processing software to accomplish the same task.
I created a set of seasonal cards, as well as cards for special occasions or specific recipients. The images are pretty self-explanatory.
Today I began the process of adding a free option for mini note cards to the listings in MisterPenQuin. This involves using the Listing Variation feature that Etsy provides all shop sellers. When I am finished, I will offer this same option in JN Originals. If you look at the text immediately above the “Add to Cart” button, this is a dropdown menu that lists different images for mini note cards. One of the options is “no card needed.”
In addition to choosing the image they would like to have printed on a mini note card, buyers can request an image for any other occasion they desire by alerting me in the Notes to Seller section of their order. They can also ask me to print a personalized message on the inside of the card, similar to the way that a florist might print a message on a mini card that accompanies any order. I’ll print the message on white paper, cut it out and adhere it to the inside of the card.
After I decided to offer a mini note card option to my buyers, it occurred to me that this service can also provide some marketing insights about who my end users might be, what occasions yield the most buyers, and what items sell best at a particular time of year or for a particular type of customer. You can bet I’ll be tracking that information this coming year!
© 2013 Judy Nolan. All rights reserved.