Holiday cards made easy
December 14, 2007
Parkite Judy Bishop, management director of Goaupair international nanny service in Salt Lake City, couldn’t resist the convenience and fun of creating her own corporate and personal greeting cards online at SendOutCards.com.
"I now have become a favorite aunt," Bishop said. "It’s very easy."
Bishop met an up-and-coming distributor for SendOutCards, Dave Smith, when he rented out space from her at her executive suites building in Murray. She later became an independent Park City distributor for the company after she used SendOutCards.com to make corporate and personal greeting cards online.
"Whether it’s one person or 5,000 people, you can sit at the computer and it’s like sending out an e-mail on my end, but yet, the person on the other end receives a personal card in the mail," Bishop quips.
SendOutCards.com allows people to create greeting cards or corporate cards online, with a special software that allows them to download their own handwriting, scan in personal photographs or add borders and graphics to create personal greeting cards. The cards are not e-mailed to the receivers, but are actually printed out on high-tech photo Xerox printers at a factory in Salt Lake, stuffed personally into envelopes and mailed out through the postal service. SendOutCards also features an address database, where users can instantly download hundreds and thousands of addresses at the click of a button, and have personal cards made and sent out to family members or employees. There is also an online catalogue of thousands of card templates people can choose from. Gift cards or checks can also be included with the cards.
SendOutCards.com was started by BYU marketing graduate Kody Bateman in 2001. The concept was invented in 1990, Bateman said, when he lost his brother to a terrible electricity accident and did not have the chance to say goodbye to him. Bateman said he promised his brother he would find a way to link his family members together , so they wouldn’t have to live with regrets in the future.
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When he thought of the online greeting card company, people told him it couldn’t be done because the Internet was not yet sophisticated enough to download data to send it to a printer.
Bateman worked with a close friend in the Internet industry who created a software that made Bateman’s business dream become a reality. They later purchased high-tech Xerox printers that could collect data from the Internet and got the company started.
SendOutCards has a member program where people can become independent distributors, themselves. Bateman has a unique concept for his company. He says he believes SendOutCards is more than just a greeting card company, but an easy way for people to connect with their relatives, co-workers, employees or distant friends. He has a card campaign, where he travels around the United States doing seminars, encouraging people to join SendOutCards and send a card out every day to someone they care about.
"Right now, about 60 percent of cards we send are personal in nature, 40 percent are business or follow-up," Bateman said. "The concept behind it is based on the story of my brother. It’s the concept that people can continually have promptings in their lives, whether personal or business, to say ‘thank you’ or to say ‘hey I’m thinking about you.’ Those are promptings we get all the time. The concept was we just wanted a system to get these cards out faster and easier."
In the last three to four years since it was started, SendOutCards has recruited more than 30,000 representatives and customers who continually create cards online, either for business or personal reasons.
"I have had big dreams for this company from the very beginning," Bateman said. "I think this will become one of the premier card companies in the world."
SendOutCards has a factory in Salt Lake City where thousands of cards are printed and mailed out everyday. The company also recently partnered with Avenue Sweets, a gift and chocolate company, so individuals can purchase gifts to send out with their cards, as well. The company also works with businesses like Walmart, Starbucks, Barnes and Noble, Blockbuster and others, to include gift cards with the cards than can be purchased online.
SendOutCards greeting cards or postcards can be created for as little as 60 cents to $1 per card. A special software must be purchased if people want to send out multiple cards for businesses or multiple people. This software starts at $99 and includes features for downloading photos, business cards or a personal handwriting font.
Those interested in trying out the service can do so for free by logging onto Bishop’s distributor account. Once people create an account on the Web site, they can earn points for every card they send out. These points can be redeemed to create more cards in the future.
Bishop said the neat thing about SendOutCards is that it’s not an impersonal way to send a letter, the way an e-mail is, yet, it is just as convenient.
"It’s all done online, but the cards are printed out and mailed to the person," Bishop said. "It helps to achieve better relationships. I think if everyone goes back and looks at the marketing training we’ve all had, one of the No. 1 things we learned is to send a ‘thank you’ note."
Bishop constantly uses SendOutCards to create her greeting cards for birthdays, corporate events or her family members while she is working for Goaupair, a company that requires a lot of contact with clients.
She, Smith and Bateman encourage Parkites and others to try this simple method of greeting card creation, especially during the holidays, when people have a difficult time writing holiday greeting cards for everyone. Business executives, grandmas or everyday people enjoy the simplicity of SendOutCards.com, Bishop says.
For more information, visit http://www.sendoutcards.com or call Judy Bishop at 655-5410. To test out the company and create a personal card that can be mailed for free, visit Bishop’s distributor site at http://www.sendoutcards.com/15490 .