Q&A: Breaking into the Greeting Card Industry
Q: What kind of greeting cards might a new artist
consider offering to card companies?
A The Web has affected this industry with a
sizeable shift to e-greetings instead of traditional snail mail
For starters, the Greeting Card Association.org has a tip page.
Create a strategy that involves spotting and forecasting
significant trends in the marketplace that will inspire
ideas for innovative cards that people will want to buy
to give to someone else. For instance, questioning a
veteran seller in an upscale California city recently
revealed the following insightful market research:
There’s a need for more diversity in greeting card imagery. People of all ethnic groups, and that
includes Europeans, keep asking for cards featuring diverse racial groups in the illustrations.
We feature many local artists and our customers like that, but so far we can’t find designs that caters to the many requests we get. At one point,
we brought in a line of African American cards but they
were all Bible verse themes…and didn’t sell well, said the seller.
Note that the response above came from a greeting card shop
in a small semi-suburban city, and the demographics are
multicultural but overwhelmingly European and offers
a rich source of ideas for an artist with an avid
interest in multicultural issues.
What other ideas might
be sparked by targeting established shops in other areas?
Your learning style, skill set, aptitudes, knowledge,
and marketing street smarts may mean using methods
other than questioning to find ideas for successful cards.
Check out the eye-opening 1996 LA Times article on
millionaire greeting card artist Sandra Boynton and
how she finds her ideas.