Is it possible to start a greeting card company from home? It's true that there are nearly 200 major greeting companies competing for a consumer's attention, but there's room for niche greeting cards. In fact, most of the greeting card companies (a few thousand) are small operations. You can work from home or part-time as the owner of your company. If you've got creative talent or a passion for this industry, here's information you can use to consider starting a greeting card company.
Training and Certification
There is no training or certification required to launch a greeting card company. You should be a skilled creative writer and proofreader, or have the skills to hire and manage one. If you work as freelancer, an English degree helps because employers will prefer it. However, your writing and publishing experience often trumps the need for a B.A. in English or a similar degree.
There are many avenues you can pursue with a greeting card company. Your duties may entail writing cards for consumers, much like the major greeting card companies. You'll have to work to get distributed in retail stores or find another company to help you do that. You can also sell your cards online through your own and other stores. If you decide to work with business owners or individuals to craft specialized cards, then your duties will entail consulting with clients to understand their goals for the cards, and then writing cards that match their needs. You may have to outsource work to other independent contractors, such a graphic artist, printer and writer.
You'll also have the duties typical to all home based business owners, such as:
- Marketing your cards
- Management of independent contractors
- Bookkeeping/Record keeping
- Sales (to clients, retailers, distributors)
The first place to look for work is locally. You can write cards for professionals in your area that use cards as a part of their marketing efforts. For example, your family doctor probably sends out at least one card a year to patients, usually around Christmas. They want their patients to remember them for their next appointment. The most effective way to accomplish this is to have a greeting card that incorporates their message. Someone has to design those cards, and that somebody can be you. Also, research appropriate local festivals and bazaars to participate in to sell your cards to consumers. You can also ask the owners of local specialty and gift shops about consignment or other opportunities to carry your cards.
You can also find work online as a freelancer. Some of the major (and smaller) greeting card companies hire freelancers to write their greeting cards. You can find work on websites like iFreelancer.com and other job boards for freelance writers. You can also look for "writers guidelines" on some of the company websites you'd like to write for, to learn about their submissions process.
Finally, you can find work at trade shows. For example, if you attend the National Stationery Show or similar trade show, you can market your greeting card company to distributors or sales representatives of more established companies.
Daphne Mallory, Esq. is the co-owner of Mallory Writing Services and has written more than 100 articles helping home based business owners and entrepreneurs start and market their business. You can learn more about her here.