Tuesday, 27 March 2012

cardsinthepost.com - Nearly there… now what?

The Internet may not have particularly noticed or cared, but I've been inattentive recently. I've been, as they say, not all there. Physically I've continued to exist, but mentally I've been off in the Big Elsewhere.

That's right, I've been to Code Heaven - there and back again. All I've been doing for the last couple of weeks is code code code. HTML5? Yes please. CSS3 and CSS 3D? You betcha! MVC Javascript? Ooooh, yeah! Responsive design? Is there any other way? JQuery? Umm… yes, OK, that too admittedly. Let's keep a fairly low profile about that one though.

Anyhow. We're soooo nearly there. I've built a version of the front end that (so far) runs faultlessly as a browser app, allowing users to make as many personalised postcards as they like before checking out with Paypal so we can print them and pop them in the post. And Adam is tirelessly refining and tweaking his awesome Symfony2 engine for managing all this server side and submitting to the Docmail print engine. We just need to sew the two together and we're basically done.

Dev version of the site... and no, cards will not cost £33.97!

So now what?

Well, the weird thing is that the bit we've neglected so far is how to market this lovely little machine that we've built. Given that Adam and I have pretty heavyweight marketing backgrounds, it's refreshingly odd that we've not given much thought about marketing for Cards… yet.

We need a brand (not just a logo - we've got one of them). And we need a campaign. And in order to get those things right, we need to understand what people are likely to want to do with cardsinthepost.com

With cardsinthepost.com you can make and send a real postcard in the real post. You can upload a photo (or any jpeg, gif or png), you can write a message and you can add an addressee. And you can repeat until you've got all the cards you could possibly want, and then pay with Paypal. The cards are great quality, and they're posted anywhere in the world first class and Airmail.

That's it. Dead simple.

But what might people want to do with cardsinthepost.com?
  • It's an easy and super quick way to send a postcard back from holiday.
  • It's a great way to send out a party invite, thank you card, or any other personalised announcement.
  • It could be ideal for small businesses to promote themselves to prospective clients.
  • And we love the idea of letting holiday companies create their own skin on our service, providing a kiosk for sending out cards from their resort or hotel.
We reckon we'll have a fully working version in the next few days. And we'd love to get some feedback. So if you'd like to have a go with the site - maybe send a card or two, maybe let us know what you think - then we would love to hear from you.

Any comments welcome... or Tweet us @elecmal, or on our new Cards Twitter @cardsinthepost… or get in touch any other way (maybe send us a postcard?)

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