Deprecated: mysql_connect(): The mysql extension is deprecated and will be removed in the future: use mysqli or PDO instead in /home/a26f9f83/public_html/articles/includes/config.php on line 159
Q and A: Personalized Birthday Cards from Paul Leonard > NetSparsh - Viral Content you Love & Share

Q and A: Personalized Birthday Cards from Paul Leonard

Paul Leonard's BirthdayCards2Go.com paid greeting card service offers convenience when you're rushing to send birthday wishes. While nothing can beat a personalized poem to add that extra touch of thoughtfulness, we can all agree that in this busy world, any connection we can make with each other, even just to say "Thinking of you," is worthwhile.

Plus, when you consider the cost of gas, driving to the store, buying the cards, and buying the stamps, you can't beat the price of $3.16 and up including postage for handmade greeting cards that can be personalized. Poems for You founder Kristin Johnson sat down with Paul Leonard, founder of BirthdayCards2Go.com,for an exclusive interview.

Kristin: Paul, how did you develop this unique service?

Paul Leonard: Well, I guess the idea first came to me a couple of years back while sitting in a traffic jam! I'd just been to the store to get a birthday card for my sister at the last minute -- I always forget people's birthdays -- and was trying to fill in the address with the envelope balanced on the steering wheel. I remember thinking that there must be a better way! A couple of months went by and, on my birthday, I got a birthday card from my sister. It obviously hadn't been sent by her but by a computer via the web -- my name and address was laser printed on the back and it arrived in a window envelope. The message inside was laser printed in rather soulless black monotype. I can only say that I felt a bit offended, considering the trouble I had gone to 2 months earlier, but then I realised how much time and energy I would have saved by using a service like this.

The only thing that put me off was the impersonal 'junk mail' appearance of the card, so I began to search the web for a service that would allow me to send a card that would look like I sent it. After a couple of hours I gave up because I couldn't find what I was looking for. That's when it clicked -- there was a gap in the market that I could fill. As an IT professional specializing in Intranet systems myself, I soon had the website built and my brother-in-law, who is a graphic designer, came on board to help with the creative side. Through his contacts he also helped to source the cards that we use. After that, a lot of fine tuning and acting on feedback from our customers has got us to where we are now..

Kristin: Most of us do leave things to the last minute. That's why there's a proliferation of free e-card businesses out there. Blue Mountain Arts, which published two of my award-winning poems on its Web site, was the pioneer for this model, but changed to a login and fee-based service. You are also doing a fee-based service. But yours is not an e-card business, it's a unique greeting card business. Do you operate on the principle "you get what you pay for?"

Paul Leonard: I think the bottom line here is that you can't put an e-card on your mantelpiece! E-cards are definitely great fun and have their place, but you still can't beat a real card arriving in the post to tell you that someone is thinking of you.

Kristin: True! Can you describe the other benefits of sending a BirthdayCards2Go card?

Paul Leonard: I think our main objective is to make the cards we send out look and feel like the customer has sent them personally. We allow the customer to select a style of handwriting, which is used to complete the address on the envelope and message inside the card, and a normal postage stamp is used for postage. Making the process of sending a card as quick and painless as possible for our customers is also important, and a lot of thought has been put in to ways of reducing the amount of effort needed to do this.

Kristin: The effort and care you have taken show in the cards you see on your Web site! The designs from Paper Avenue look terrific. How did you select Paper Avenue as the designer of your cards?

Paul Leonard: We decided early on that we should offer something different from the rest. After getting samples from what seemed like hundreds of wholesalers we still hadn't found anything worth getting excited about. My brother-in-law knew of Paper Avenue and suggested we give them a try. We were so impressed by their designs that we took the plunge and haven't looked back!

Kristin: Sounds like a perfect partnership. How have customers responded to your cards?

Paul Leonard: As with any web site, a lot of people look before one buys! It can be a challenge trying to show the quality of your product on a web site -- after all your potential customers can't pick things up and touch them, they have to rely purely on images. Many people that have ordered cards from us are absolutely blown away by the look and feel of the cards and envelopes. Most are subconsciously expecting the type of thin, nasty cards that you get at your local 7-11 store, but we prefer to spend a few cents more and have our cards printed on one of the best quality Dutch Ivory boards available. This makes for a much more expensive and upmarket impression, and delighted customers!

Kristin: I would be delighted to receive a card that doesn't look like 99 percent of the cards out there. In addition, you offer value-added services, such as the delivery system in which customers can receive their cards at home to send out later. Talk about that.

Paul Leonard: Some people may want to give their cards in person, or maybe get everyone at work to sign it -- you never know. It's mainly a case of covering all the bases. If someone orders 10 or more cards like this in one go, we pass on the savings in postage and transaction costs by giving the customer a 40% discount on the total.

Kristin: What a deal! Talk about the convenience of selecting the date to send cards for birthdays. It seems that we all have endless to-do lists, and sometimes calendar dates just slip by. It must be a relief for your customers to have their own secretarial service for greeting cards.

Paul Leonard: I have got to be the worst person in the world for forgetting my relative's birthdays and anniversaries, and I'm sure I'm not alone! It's certainly a weight off your mind when you can schedule a card to be sent when you're thinking about it and have the time, instead of having to remember to do it some day in the future. A lot of our customers seem to do all their cards for the whole year in one hit! And no, I don't forget about sending out our customer's cards -- our system (and mailing people) takes care of them for me. I must confess, though, I DO put all the cards I have to send to MY friends and family through the system too!

Kristin: Sounds like a great way to energize/organize your life and help other people in the process! Is there anything else you would like potential clients to know about you?

Paul Leonard: Keep an eye on our site -- we have a shed load of new cards to be added over the coming months, covering many specialist themes that would be hard to find elsewhere. We are also working on some free reminder software to help customers keep track of their friends and family's special occasions -- this will be like nothing ever created before and it will be available for download from our web site when it's finished!

Kristin: Paul, I will definitely recommend your service.

Kristin Johnson is co-author of the "enthusiastically recommended" Midwest Book Review pick, Christmas Cookies Are For Giving: Stories, Recipes and Tips for Making Heartwarming Gifts (ISBN: 0-9723473-9-9). A downloadablemedia kit is available at our Web site, http://www.christmascookiesareforgiving.com, or e-mail the publisher (info@tyrpublishing.com) to receive a printed media kit and sample copy of the book. More articles available at http://www.bakingchristmascookies.com

In The News:

This RSS feed URL is deprecated, please update. New URLs can be found in the footers at https://news.google.com/news

The Hill

'Junk insurance' is yet another blow to small businesses
The Hill
The federal government is letting America's small businesses down when it comes to health care. Despite the obvious benefits of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) to small firms, the Trump administration and its allies continue to undercut the law ...

and more »

TechRadar

Why your small business team needs a VPN
TechRadar
While larger businesses grab the financial headlines, the vast majority of the 5.6 million employer firms in the US are small businesses. In fact, most are quite small with 89% of these businesses having less than 20 employees, and 99.7% of these ...


Forbes

Purpose And People - Small Businesses Re-write The Rules For A New Economy
Forbes
Over a third of small businesses are not driven by profit. We are not talking about social enterprises here – businesses in the profit-making sense, but who are not driven primarily by financial gain. The traditional view is to see this lack of ...


LancasterOnline

Lancaster's small business owners sit down with Jess King
LancasterOnline
If the small business community is as vital to Lancaster as politicians and candidates for public office say it is, it's important that they hear directly from us about the challenges we're facing. Recently, I joined several other small business owners ...


Small Business Trends

These 10 Small Business Growth Tips Will Take You from Novice to Expert
Small Business Trends
When you're just building a small business team, it can take some time to adjust to your role as a leader. According to Chris Zaugg of Uptick, one of the most important things you can do when you're responsible for managing a team is to ask questions.


CBS News

Building a small business that's tougher than steel
CBS News
Sometimes a business owner needs an iron will to push through obstacles and make her company successful. Consider Dianna Montague. Founder of Philadelphia-based Iron Lady Enterprises and the first African-American woman member of Philadelphia ...

and more »

WALB

Small Business Center opens in Albany
WALB
ALBANY, GA (WALB) - FEMA and the Small Business Administration is set to open its Disaster Recovery Center in Albany Saturday but they want Hurricane Michael victims to know they offer help for more than just businesses. Most Southwest Georgia ...

and more »

Forbes

Bay Area Business Trends That Can Benefit Small Businesses Everywhere
Forbes
Regardless of what type of company you run or where you're located, small businesses can learn from and get inspired by local and regional trends. This is especially true of San Francisco's bustling startup scene, which has spawned many Silicon Valley ...


Financial Post

/REPEAT -- October 20th is Small Business Saturday: Support your local independent businesses!/
Benzinga
TORONTO, Oct. 19, 2018 /CNW/ - On Saturday, October 20th, all Canadians are invited to visit a local business to celebrate the many ways small businesses contribute to their communities. For the sixth year in a row, the Canadian Federation of ...
It's Small Business Saturday, so head out and engage with your brave neighbourhood entrepreneursFinancial Post

all 5 news articles »

Small Business Adminstration says it helped more than 400 businesses last year
Radio Iowa
The U.S. Small Business Administration approved loans to more than 400 Iowa businesses during the just-ended fiscal year, helping them to start or expand operations. Jayne Armstrong, director of the SBA's Iowa District Office, says the loans totaled ...

and more »
Google News

Hone Your Edge, Stay Focused

A common hazard faced by new entrepreneurs is a lack... Read More

How to Become Successful in the Field of Financial Consultants

Financial Consultants are one of the fastest growing industries today.... Read More

Have You Thanked Your Competitors Today?

Competition in the business world is often viewed as a... Read More

Hosted PBX, Is It Right For You?

"Order Now!" "Your Business Will Fail If You Don't Have... Read More

Temporary Staffing Agency: How to Start

The temporary staffing industry continues to expand, with yearly double-digit... Read More

Business Plans - What Consultants Don?t tell You!

Do you have a Business Plan? Congratulations, but you are... Read More

Todays Chef, Tomorrows Restaurateur -- Startup Tips by Restaurant Consultants Inc

Researching information for a recent business plan, I came across... Read More

Dispute Resolution of Territory for Mobile Franchised Companies

Franchisors of home based and mobile businesses need to carefully... Read More

How to Promote Yourself to Small Business Riches

You've heard it before; we're living in an information age.... Read More

Pressure Washing and Hospital Accounts

Most pressure washing companies never look into some of the... Read More

The Responsibility Conundrum - Where art Thou?

Mr/Ms, 'not me' is often on holidays in your business.... Read More

Expanding your business.

Are you a small business owner who wants to expand... Read More

Discover How You Can Start Making Your Small Business Dream Come True

As a teenager I worked for my father's small business.... Read More

Who Makes the BEST Business Partner

How do you find the best business partners?Finding a good... Read More

Do You Make These 7 Deadly Cash Flow Mistakes?

Managing cash flow is every small business owner's most important... Read More

Small Business Marketing Series ? Choosing a Niche Market

Many smaller businesses choose niche markets for various reasons and... Read More

Freelance Tips: How to Cope with Spring Fever When Theres Work to Be Done

We all know how glorious those first warm days of... Read More

How to Create an Information Plan

What is in an information plan?Before you even meet with... Read More

Organizing Tips for Small Business Success

If you discovered the bottom line in your business depended... Read More

Small Business Operators - 7 Reasons You Should Change Your Accountant

A recent survey showed that only 28.7% of small business... Read More

Street Wars Between Mobile Car Washers and Mobile Auto Detailers

There is much competition in the mobile auto detailing business.... Read More

Advertising - For Small Businesses (Part 1)

Is it right for you?If you decide to advertise your... Read More

From Birth to Death

Your product is dying. With the same inevitability that we... Read More

Why The Carwash Industry is Stagnant; What You Can Do to Change Your Field

Many years ago, I had warned the carwash industry of... Read More

Expanding Franchisee Advice

Franchisor expansion policies are not as simple as one might... Read More