BetterPhoto.com - Become a better photographer today!
EMAIL:
PASSWORD:
remember me:     
     


BetterPhoto Q&A
Category: New Questions

To participate in the Forum, become a BetterPhoto member or Sign In.

 
Photography Question 
Kathy Radford
BetterPhoto Member
Contact Kathy
Kathy's Gallery

member since: 1/2/2006
 

Selling Note Cards in local stores


Are any of you selling note cards in local stores? I recently got mine in 2 local stores. I'd like to compare notes with anyone who is doing the same. I have them in on consignment. I'd like to know what you pay the shop owner, paperwork and things like tracking the photos etc. Any help will be greatly appreciated. What kind of success have you had? Let's hear it guys, there must be more of you out there that have tried it. Kathy in NH

3/29/2006 3:48:17 AM

 
Corinne M. Thompson
BetterPhoto Member
Contact Corinne
Corinne's Gallery

member since: 7/31/2005
  Hi Kathy..I don't have answers for you and am just posting to see what kind of responses you receive since this in something I'm interested in trying too.
Good Luck!

3/29/2006 7:51:17 AM

 
Kathy Radford
BetterPhoto Member
Contact Kathy
Kathy's Gallery

member since: 1/2/2006
  Hi Corinne, thanks for commenting I hope we get some good input. I talked to a girl in MA at an outdoor Art Show and she said she had note cards in about 50 stores and it really keeps her busy. I happened to notice her cards in a convenience store along the seacoast and the owner said they are selling very well.

I have one in the seacoast in Hampton, NH and the other in Exeter, NH in a town with an exclusive private school (Phillips Exeter Academy) They seem to be doing OK there. The one on the seacoast I just put in a week ago.

I put the suggested retail price of $4.00 and am giving the owners a 25% commission. The one in Exeter put a price of 3.99 instead of 4.00. I haven't been back to the seacoast yet to see what he is charging. By the way, the girl I mentioned, her cards are selling for 3.50, but I don't know what she is giving for a commission. I don't think 4.00 is an unfair price when you pay 3.99 for a mass produced card.
Kathy in NH

3/29/2006 10:22:15 AM

 
John Rhodes
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 2/24/2005
  Kathy, I believe I'm right in saying things sell better for $3.99 than for $4.00. It;s a psychological thing--three is better that four. The folks at the retail establishments have a pretty good idea about what sells. Just be sure your art is outstanding and this should work very well for you.

John

3/29/2006 1:39:37 PM

 
Corinne M. Thompson
BetterPhoto Member
Contact Corinne
Corinne's Gallery

member since: 7/31/2005
  My son just got back from NH today after visiting a friend. He bought me 2 photo notecards (how coincidental!) and he said he paid $3.95 each. The photographer is out of Portsmouth.

3/30/2006 9:10:34 PM

 
Rich Collins
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/24/2005
  This is a great way of bringing in an extra income which could work toward a great income, but I am wondering specifically, when you say Note Card, is this a folded piece, or single 3x5 with room on the back?

I also would like to know how you are printing them? Kinko's? or using your own printer? I use a EPSON Photo R320 but am not often happy with the way it changes from my screen resolution either in clarity or color.

Thanks to all who can input.
Rich

4/1/2006 7:07:01 AM

 
Charlene Bayerle
BetterPhoto Member
PictureThisbyChar.com

member since: 1/9/2003
  Go to PhotographersEdge.com and you can order cards from them and print out our own 4x6 pictures and add them to the card. They have a catalog also.
Hope that helps
Charlene

4/1/2006 8:23:13 AM

 
Kathy Radford
BetterPhoto Member
Contact Kathy
Kathy's Gallery

member since: 1/2/2006
  Rich thanks for your response. I print out my 4x6 photos on my printer then attach them to note cards. I buy them at Photographer Edge through the mail (These are excellent cards, I prefer theirs) or buy the Strathmore's Photo Mount Cards which are a little cheaper and can be purchased in the craft stores. They are regular folded over cards that are blank on the inside. I then add a clear address label to the back that has my name, phone number, copyright emblem and date. You can eeither write where the photo is on the front under the picture and sign your name or put the info on the back above the label you put on it or write all the info on it. I like to use the clear address labels so I don't have to keep writing my name, phone number and copyright date, it saves a lot of time. I prefer the clear address labels. I think they look better but you can use the regular white labels if you prefer. I hope I this is helpful. By the way I just got another convenience store at the Hampton Beach seacoast. Wish me luck. He only wants photos of the local area. That seems to be the trend. Kathy in NH

4/1/2006 8:29:06 AM

 
Kathy Radford
BetterPhoto Member
Contact Kathy
Kathy's Gallery

member since: 1/2/2006
  Your right Charlene, I just posted the previous to Rich, we're on the same wave length. That company is super, they have great products and excellent service. I prefer using them, a little more expensive but they have great quality. Kathy in NH

4/1/2006 8:33:52 AM

 
Rich Collins
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/24/2005
  Thanks Kathy & Charlene. I'll check out both. I have a close friend who manufacturer's rubber stamps which are laser cut so they come out really sharp & clear. I may buy a package of the cards & try one out as he just sent me a new stamp. Many thanks.

4/1/2006 9:00:39 AM

 
Autumn Hernandez

member since: 8/30/2004
  When you guys are taking cards to shops, are you only taking a small amount? When I do this, I plan on having a pretty substantial amount of cards to offer. I found a company that prints 4x6 cards really cheap (500 for $99). I posted the link on another question, it's ADGprinting.com. (and no, I don't work for them. lol) This seems like it would be far more profitable than a card that costs you at least a dollar to make, and from which you have to take some of the small profit to give to the shop. That's just my way of thinking though. ;) Just thought I'd throw out the link in case anyone else could use it.

4/1/2006 11:02:47 AM

 
Joe Jarosz

member since: 10/13/2004
  Hi Autumn, I took a look at ADG. Unless I read their pricing guide wrong, $99 is for a 4x6 postcard, not a greeting card. a 6x8 folded greeting card is $244 for 500. Envelopes are another $50 for 500.

Joe

4/1/2006 11:24:24 AM

 
Autumn Hernandez

member since: 8/30/2004
  Oops, sorry guys, yes, I thought I put postcards, but see I only put "cards". Either way it's still cheaper to go that route than to hand mount and buy all the cards, unless that's the specific look you're going for. I do think it lends a nice touch. Each card with an envelope would be $.58 with the printed version as opposed to over a dollar for the framed cards. Plus, you have to pay for the printing of the actual photo on top of that. From a business standpoint, I would think the bulk printing would be a better option if you are looking for profitability. Of course, then you may have a different market for the other types of cards seeing as they are "handmade".

Sorry about the mixup. ;)

4/1/2006 11:57:17 AM

 
Deja Webster
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 7/1/2005
  Kathy
I bought a pre-inked hand stamp from Staples for about $16. They personalized it so it has the copyright symbol, my business name, location and website address. It's a breeze to sit down and stamp a hundred out at a time.
I'm using an Epson CX4600 and love the color. I print out my 4x6 photos and attach them with Photo Stickers that you can get from most any craft store. I buy my cards/envelopes from Wal-Mart. They run about $6.99 for a pack of 50, crease/folded and with envelopes. They come in white or creme.
Thanks to everyone for the websites to check out other options for printing.
Deja

4/1/2006 12:03:37 PM

 
Craig m. Zacarelli
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 2/3/2005
  hi guys! So youre making cards from photos and they sell? Do you just glue the print to a card? I ask because my wife also makes hand made cards.. she uses fancy papers, these can be anything from Wall paper to print outs of designs she makes on the computer in Photo Shop to using "Paint" samples from Home depot, shell cut them into a 2x2 inch squaer and then she finds all the little pictures on line, 9 ihave no clue as to where, probably some clip art site or something, anyway she then glues that onto another , bigger piece of fancy paper the buys really good card stock, cuts it to size hand creases the fold with some special tool and glues the finished picture to the card... They come out very nice and look really good, I was gonna try to sell some on ebay, maybe in pacs of 6 or 8 or something. Do you think its possible or are people more apt to buy a card made from a photograph?
Also,Rich, I read somewhere that Epson printers like 365DPI or more.. try upping the dpi of your photos then print them. worth a try I guess.
Craig-

4/1/2006 4:23:18 PM

 
Rich Collins
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/24/2005
  Craig thanks for the suggestion, but I don't know quite how to increase the DPI. I'll look it up but if you know offhand you might inform me. Otherwise thanks for the tip.

4/1/2006 4:46:59 PM

 
Rich Collins
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/24/2005
  Craig thanks for the suggestion, but I don't know quite how to increase the DPI. I'll look it up but if you know offhand you might inform me. Otherwise thanks for the tip.

Never mind I just looked & my printer delivers 6-color photo printing at 5,760 x 1,440 optimized dpi so I guess it's just the difference between the screen image & the printed image. But thank you.

4/1/2006 4:51:06 PM

 
Craig m. Zacarelli
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 2/3/2005
  you can change it in photoshop.

-zacker-

4/1/2006 7:11:06 PM

 
Rich Collins
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/24/2005
  Thanks I'm using PS7, I'll take a look.

4/1/2006 7:19:26 PM

 
John G. Clifford Jr
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 8/18/2005
  If ADGprinting lets you get 500 cards printed from 10 images (50 cards per image) for that pricing, instead of making you get 500 of one image, then it's a very good deal.

I don't think it'd be hard to come up with 10 images that would make good postcards of an area for a gift shop, or if you sell at art shows or galleries these should also sell well.

Even if you had to get 500 of one image, at $4 a pop less 25%, sell 100 of 'em and you've paid for the entire lot, and you'll make $1200 profit after selling them all. A good shop should be able to sell at least 20 per day during the busy season, meaning that you'd make that much a month. Not bad for one card.

4/9/2006 3:45:43 PM

 
Cathy Stancil
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 11/16/2004
  has anybody tried PSprint ?? (psprint.com)

4/9/2006 6:59:26 PM

 
Kathy Radford
BetterPhoto Member
Contact Kathy
Kathy's Gallery

member since: 1/2/2006
  John C.
I don't see any shops selling 20 cards per day. Especially with the economy the way it is now with the high gas prices. People have cut way back on buying cards. Kathy in NH

4/10/2006 2:18:40 AM

 
John G. Clifford Jr
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 8/18/2005
  Hello Kathy,

Maybe not 20 per day of any single card, but a gift shop should be selling lots of cards during the busy season (and lots of other things, too), otherwise they're in trouble.

The way for photographers to sell 20 cards per day is to sell cards at more than one shop... because all the tourists don't go to all of the shops. For instance, if I lived in a coastal tourist town, I'd have card displays at several shops. Some of these towns will get tens of thousands of visitors per week during the summer, and if you can sell cards to just 1% of the shoppers that is still a LOT of cards. Even better, if you can get your cards in several shops in several different near-by towns, and the cards have images that people who travel to the coast associate with their trip (lighthouses, cliffs, etc.), you should do okay. Your goal should be to sell one card per day per shop.

Of course, like anything else, in order for customers to want, and buy, your cards, the images have to be compelling, and you have to be ruthless in not offering cards that people don't want to buy. Some printers do runs of 125 cards for about 80 cents/card with envelope, and small runs are the way to go until an image proves itself as a best-seller.

Other ways to boost card sales: let your retailer sell 3 cards for $10, and still give him his 1/3 cut. Or, if every other comparable card is selling for $3.99, put yours at $3.79 or $3.49 or $2.99. If people don't have a clear preference due to the image, price will sway them. I'd rather sell lots of cards at $2.99 (and get 2/3rds of this), than very few cards at $3.99.

Will you get rich off of this business? Probably not. If done right, should you be able to make a grand or two a year doing it? Yes.

4/10/2006 10:28:22 AM

 
Michael H. Cothran

member since: 10/21/2004
  I've been selling note cards at juried Arts & Crafts shows for several years. They have been good to me, sort of icing on the cake - but the meat & potatoes are my larger prints. I charge $5.00 each, 3 for $12, and 6 for $18. Most sales are the 3-fer. I find places like Photographers Edge to be too pricey for any decent profit line. And while they look ok, they still do not possess the 'personal' professional look I aspire to.
As such, I print my own on 8x10 Epson Matte paper (cut down to 7x10) using a desktop Epson printer. I designed a template in PS years ago. On front, I have a 4x6 image surrounded by a drop shadow and a matching pinstripe 1/8" out. On the back I have the title and location of the image, plus all my business and contact information. I use a metal awl to score the paper, using an old mat cutter as a guide, then fold it, insert a matching white envelope, and package it in an Impact Images Crystal Clear envelope.
Total cost to me is about 25 cents. AND...I only need to print on demand - no stock pile ups.
Michael H. Cothran

4/10/2006 11:43:20 AM

 
Michael H. Cothran

member since: 10/21/2004
  Please allow me to offer some personal insight into selling your own note cards.
1. This is not a get-rich venue. It is, at best, a 'pocket change' venue, but nonetheless, when coupled with other financial means, it can be a good access to additional monies.

2. I would NEVER recommend purchasing volumes of prints at a time. It is purely speculative as to whether or not the image will sell. Spending $99 for 500 prints is tantamount to photographic/financial suicide in my book. I've been selling at juried Arts & Crafts shows for over 15 years, and have NEVER sold 500 of any image yet. Compound this with your having several note card images (I have 72 images on my note card racks at any given show) and you have an extremely major investment that you will probably never recoup in your lifetime.

3. If you plan to sell note cards, I would strongly recommend that you do as much in-house as possible. If you have a desktop printer and PS, it is very simple to design a template, and use it for all your images. Any paper supply house can provide you with white or off white A7 envelopes, and Impact Images can provide you with the packaging.
If you have to outsource your printing, and then rely on Photographers Edge, or even a local print shop for your card stock, you can kiss much of your profit goodbye - AND, stand the chance of having boxes full of prints in the garage that will never sell.

Think! before you dump a lot of money into speculation. And, take it from my experience, probably none of your images will sell as well as you think they will.
Michael H. Cothran

4/10/2006 12:00:53 PM

 
John G. Clifford Jr
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 8/18/2005
  Michael's input looks like very good advice. Testing the water is always a good idea.

I wrote my first "how-to" book and self-published (set up a publishing dept of my company, got ten ISDNs, and paid a small printer to print the book from press-ready PDF files) it a few years ago (one of three in a series). The book cost me $1.25 per copy to print, qty 500, plus the time to write, edit, and format it, and I sold them for $4.99. I sold 300 in the first year out of my own retail shop... meaning I doubled my money.

I knew from my direct experience (customers asking me) that my book would sell, and was willing to make the $750 bet. I looked at PSprint.com, and they had small-run jobs where you could get 125 cards printed, with envelopes, for around $100.

If I had a postcard image that I was reasonably sure would sell (and I'm thinking that perhaps I do), and a place to sell them, I'd be willing to bet $100. But, remember, if you're putting these in someone else's shop, you'll need to buy a small display rack, and regularly re-stock it.

Michael, and photographers like him, is in the best position to sell cards personally. He sells his images and cards are a natural. If I were a photographer selling thru a gallery, I'd also have cards available.

Selling cards at someone's shop is another question. If you have the ability, like Michael, to make your own cards, then printing 5 each of maybe 10 images, buying a display rack and envelopes, and then seeing what happens would be a very good idea that would not take much of an investment.

4/10/2006 3:07:30 PM

 
Kathy Radford
BetterPhoto Member
Contact Kathy
Kathy's Gallery

member since: 1/2/2006
  Thanks everybody for your great input. It has been very interesting and helpful. John, I thought you ment 20 cards a day in each shop. Boy, I would love that. Kathy in NH

4/10/2006 5:39:46 PM

 
Rich Collins
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/24/2005
  Michael is it possible to see one of your cards? I'd like to get a real look at just how yours comes out. Or anyone else as I've not yet done this. Perhaps via email or url?
Thanks.

4/12/2006 5:45:02 AM

 
Kathy Radford
BetterPhoto Member
Contact Kathy
Kathy's Gallery

member since: 1/2/2006
  Michael, I too would like to see one of your cards. Is there any way you can post it here? Kathy in NH

4/12/2006 1:16:29 PM

 
Rich Collins
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/24/2005
  Just received a free sample 50-pack of smear resistance photo card stock (4x6) from that friend I mentioned. I printed a photo, waited 10 seconds, he told me to wait 10 minutes, & while it didn't smear, at all, I did notice a slight raising of grain, but within a few minutes it was as new again. This is something I'm going to have to try on another printer just to be sure, but it looks good so far.

Oh and Waaaay back to Deja on 4/01/2006 I did go to psprint.com & have bookmarked. Thank you. For starters thought I think I'll go with printing myself especially if my friend Ken can supply with 8x10 stock. I'll have to give him a call.

I think I've learned more from this forum discussion than I'd have from weeks researching alone. This is a great Community. The next challenge is to figure out how to print a 4x6 all the way to the edges. I even selected borderless but still have white edging.

Thanks again everyone.

4/12/2006 7:32:26 PM

 
Kathy Radford
BetterPhoto Member
Contact Kathy
Kathy's Gallery

member since: 1/2/2006
  Rich C
I use HP Photo Printing and print the cards out 3 to a page. These come out without borders. You cut them apart as they are on an 8x10 sheet. Good Luck. Kathy in NH

4/13/2006 3:35:35 AM

 
Marcos Medina (M2PhotoArt)
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 12/3/2005
  Good info in this forum Kathy, thanks for posting the question. I am more interested in selling 8x10 prints at art shows but I am having problems with how they should be priced. My prints are matted and packaged in clear cellophane. Michael H. Cothran mentioned "the meat & potatoes are my larger prints. I charge $5.00 each, 3 for $12, and 6 for $18", what are the sizes?

4/13/2006 12:56:34 PM

 
Deja Webster
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 7/1/2005
  Hi everyone
Rich I can't take the credit for mentioning psprint.com, think it was Cathy.
I'm using Wal-Mart 50/pk of cards and printing on my little Epson CX4600 for just cards.
Marcos I think prices like $5, $12 and $18 must be for cards.
I did really well last summer selling cards at our local farmer's market and I sold large cards for $3.50 and small for $2.50. I found people were more interested in the smaller size, less blank space to write on. Another idea is to think of grouping in bunches or using themes for your cards.
It is tough selling to any local stores since they usually want to mark-up cards 50% so I ended up dropping my price to them. For me stores are a great place for people to see my work when I'm not at my vendor booth at the market. We start here in Port Townsend at the end of this month and run till end of November. Great way to test the "market" and keep your costs down.
Deja

4/13/2006 1:25:23 PM

 
Craig m. Zacarelli
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 2/3/2005
  how good do prints sell at showes? What sizes sell the most and do matted prints sell better than un matted? Also, what kind of prints sell beter? Macros of flowers? Landscapes? Artsy type stuff like an old car or something like that? and do color or black and whites do better?
sorry for all the questions but im new at this and I need to start having a reason for all my equipment.. Also, please look at my gallery and let me know if you think any of the shots would sell.
thanks soo much guys and girls.
Craig-

4/13/2006 4:09:04 PM

 
Deja Webster
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 7/1/2005
  Craig
Both your BP.com gallery and SmugMug site are loaded with beautiful photos. Your cars, landscape especially farm scenery, building etc. all stand out. I had never heard of SmugMug but they must be who you are using to host your Broken Fence site. I also went into your "for sale" section and it looks like you are selling just the prints in different sizes, no cards or matted pieces, right?
Does your town have a farmer's market that allows art and crafts? I would think your scenes as cards would do well. My home in WA is a tourist spot and people really like to buy cards from here, not Seattle, they want pictures of where they are visiting.
I'm currently taking a class with Jim Zuckerman on Making Money with your Photography and recommend it. It might answer many of your questions and be that next BP.com class you were thinking about taking.
Deja

4/13/2006 5:25:16 PM

 
Bob Chance
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 2/19/2006
  Rich:

I don't know what kind of printer you are using, but on my Epsons, if I go into the page laypout page of the printer settings box, there is a slider for adjusting the expansion for borderless prints.
Most photo printers now a days will print borderless so long as you select a photographic paper in the settings. If you choose plain paper or another non photo paper setting, it won't allow you to select borderless.

Bob

4/13/2006 7:04:47 PM

 
Linda Anderson

member since: 1/8/2006
  Kathy:

How do you get your photo copyrighted?

4/13/2006 7:56:16 PM

 
Craig m. Zacarelli
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 2/3/2005
  Thanks Deja.. I replied to this last night but its not here..Hmmm I wonder what thats al about? Anyways.. We have a farmers market every sunday but its small and all flowers and veggies, no arts and or crafts.. I guess you'd say most of the people around here arent the "Art" type.. unless that is, I sell prints of the local Wal-Mart! I can try a few towns along the affluent shoreline, they have different arts and crafts showes I can try.... I remember when I first got married, me and my first wife used to make all these little crafts and things and sell them at different shows.. we never did any good...lol oh well.. I saw a guy selling 4x6 prints at the local flea market.. he had some nice stuff and I bought one for 3 bucks just as a show of solidarity... (I was trying to boost his confidence a bit too.. I admit it) but he said that was probably going to be his only sale that day.. Yeah I think Art is dead in Wallingford, its more about Antiques and junk than art.
lol
Thanks for the comments, maybe I will go get some mats.. they are like 3 bucks each at Michaels.. do you make your own or buy them?
Craig-

4/14/2006 4:11:04 AM

 
Craig m. Zacarelli
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 2/3/2005
  Oh yeah,, PS.... Yes Smugmug is the host, its a good deal, 99 bucks per year and they handle all the sales... all you do is post the pics and set the pricing. You get like 85% of the profit they keep the rest. I recently sold 4 shots @ $4.00 each and they kept .99 per shot and I didnt have to raise a finger.. they print, ship, take the charge card over the net and handle everything including mailing me a check every quarter.
Craig-

4/14/2006 4:14:48 AM

 
Bob Chance
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 2/19/2006
  Craig,

So, at $99.00 a year, do you really net any kind of profit in a years time.
Having to pay 15% of the sale as commission isn't too bad, but dropping the C-note up front?
Guess I'm wondering is, is it really profitable for you in a years time, or do you only make a couple bucks here and there, never really recouping you initial investment?


Bob

4/14/2006 4:40:52 AM

 
Craig m. Zacarelli
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 2/3/2005
  So far ive sold four prints so so far im still in the hole but... it is also a way to get my pics on line, yeah BP's sites are cheaper but I cant download from it and cant link to it for posting shots at other forums. So I use it also as just web space to share and hopefully make a buck or two. I think if I were going to try to sell seriously on the web Id get a nicer looking site maybe a "flash" animated site but then were talking prolly about 300-400 bucks per year. Look at the price of the pro sites here I believe they are about $360.00 or so! At 99.00 per year, I can deal with this one..lol My only gripe about it is the lack of templets they offer, they all look the same except for a color change. I wish you could do more to personalize it but, what the hey? I prolly wouldnt even know how to..lol
Craig-

4/14/2006 6:41:38 AM

 
Rich Collins
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/24/2005
  Kathy I'll try your suggestion on 3 to a page & Bob I too print with an Epson, an R320 but no slider even when I choose Glossy Photo. But I'll keep trying. Have a couple of prints to do this afternoon.

Here in Vancouver WA we have a Saturday Market with a slight angle on Artsy items, so maybe when I get enough pics that I like(I need to shoot a lot more). And perhaps I can shara a space with another vendor with a stand for displaying photos, revolving type.

Thanks Deja for suggesting Jim's Making Money with your Photography class.

4/15/2006 10:15:47 AM

 
Sylvester E. Robbins

member since: 5/4/2006
  Glad I found this thread as this is something I have been wanting to look into. I have a catalog from Photographer's Edge and like the look of their products.

Deja, you mentioned finding your cards and envelopes at Walmart. I tried looking at ours here yesterday, but could not find any. Could you tell me what area you find them in there?

5/5/2006 8:47:24 AM

 
Deja Webster
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 7/1/2005
  Hi Sylvester
They are with the scrapbooking supplies near fabric. The are made by Paperbilities and are called Bonus Greeting Cards, they come 50 to a pack, in ivory or white, and either 5 x 7 or 4 x 5 1/2. Either #MPR71943 or #MPR71943. The ivory look nicer than the white. They run like 5.99 for the smaller size and 6.99 for the larger.
I have been able to find them all over WA state, however they are not on line, I tried that. Ask someone in fabic or craft department for help.
Let me know if that helps.
Deja

5/5/2006 3:19:35 PM

 
Rich Collins
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/24/2005
  Deja, are these actual photo note cards, with an opening for inside placement of photos? Or are these blank note cards, for glueing photos on the outside face of the note card? When you say you are able to find them all over WA state, I live in WA also, Vancouver actually & do you mean only in Walmart, or elsewhere?

Thanks

5/6/2006 6:10:26 AM

 
Deja Webster
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 7/1/2005
  Rich
These are blank cards, pre-folded with envelopes and I use photo stickers to attach the photos. I have found them in Walmart here in WA.
Deja

5/6/2006 7:01:07 AM

 
Roger M. Wells
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/7/2006
  I have sold over 600 note card through a local retailer. I know that's not a lot but it has given me some insite as to the process.
My personal view is do it yourself as much as possible. Print, score, cut and fold your own cards. Be clear on all the costs. I found retailers want 40 to 50% of the selling price, so if you think $3.95 is your market then $1.75 to $2.00 would be wholesale. I only sell by the 1/2 dozen per image. I would never do consignment. I offer a replacement exchange for unsold cards. Makes it safe for the retailer. If you use an inkjet printer compute all cost, ink - paper - errors - time. I found the best profit was in a laser print.
I use clearbags and a good quality envelope. I also use the best cardstock I can get. To get full bleed(boarderless) prints scale the image so when you score and cut the card it produces a boarderless card. Hope this helps a bit. Roger

6/7/2006 1:37:00 PM

 
Kathy Radford
BetterPhoto Member
Contact Kathy
Kathy's Gallery

member since: 1/2/2006
  Thanks Roger. I have them in on consignment. The store owner gets 25%. I have been buying my note cards from Photographers Edge, but they are very expensive. Just this week I started making them myself using card stock. I am printing the card stock out with a double border the outer border is thicker than the inner border. I have been coordinating the color to match the colors in the photo. I also print my info on the back of the card, where it is, copyright symbol with the year and my name and phone number centered on the back with a small number on the bottom left to identify the photo for my reference for tracking the photos sold. I then glue the photo on the front to line up in the double border. Wow, what a big savings by doing it that way. Then I just have to buy the white envelopes and the clear plastic envelopes to protect them. They actually look better than the ones that I have been buying because the colored border enhances the photo. Kathy in NH

6/7/2006 2:30:18 PM

 
Roger M. Wells
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/7/2006
  Kathy the problem I have with consignment is; who pays for stolen, damaged or lost cards?
Do you use photos or images that you print them yourself? What do you think your cost is per card including your time?
I have used printed boarders and ful bleed but never paste the image on the card. Do you do it for cost or for effect?
Roger

6/7/2006 2:59:20 PM

 
Roger M. Wells
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/7/2006
  Kathy the problem I have with consignment is; who pays for stolen, damaged or lost cards?
Do you use photos or images that you print them yourself? What do you think your cost is per card including your time?
I have used printed boarders and ful bleed but never paste the image on the card. Do you do it for cost or for effect?
Roger

6/7/2006 2:59:20 PM

 
Rich Collins
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/24/2005
  According to Deja her cards from Walmart are costing $.12 each including prefolded blank cards & envelopes. I don't know how one could get it much cheaper. Roger with your self-scoring/folding/printing can you actually beat that? Of course Deja didn't mention the print per photo & photo paper. I would assume you could add another .15-.25 per card for a total of let's say .32?

If you are doing it cheaper would you mind sharing your paper stock source? When you say card exchenge, you mean that you will take back the cards not selling & replace with others that might sell better?

Also Kathy could you share your paper & plastic sleeve source?

This morning I looked at http://www.cardblanks.com/index.php & by comparison your costs beat them but if you stay with white not by much.As an example: 250 cards with envelopes cc5x7ccsce3 $0.27 $67.50
As for clear sleeves:
100
4-1/16" x 8-15/16"
(4-1/16" opening, flap) B48 $8.40

Thanks & I hope this helps
Rich

6/7/2006 4:14:19 PM

 
Deja Webster
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 7/1/2005
  I get my clear 6x8 bags from Floral Supply: http://www.fss.com/
Clear Bags Item CF68, 200 for $6.50 (.0325 each) plus small shipping fee. You need to place atleast a $50 order.

As for paper I get mine from Costco 300 glossy 4x6 sheets for $13.79 (.045 each)

Deja

6/7/2006 6:07:50 PM

 
Rich Collins
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/24/2005
  This thread is getting some use isn't it. Thanks Deja, that is an unbeatable price on the clear bags. I think I'll get some. Have you ever used them in a damp climate?

And as for the 4x6 photo paper I do like the price but I am really stuck on this new waterproof paper I've been using lately even though I'm spending more. I can show them in our Saturday Market even when the air is quite damp & fear nothing.

What about Photo Note Cards on the cheap, anyone? Or have I already found the best pricing at cardblanks as above?

6/7/2006 7:26:03 PM

 
Kathy Radford
BetterPhoto Member
Contact Kathy
Kathy's Gallery

member since: 1/2/2006
  Roger by doing the cards myself the stock cost came to 55 cents plus ink. I haven't been able to figure out how much the ink costs per 5x7 photo. I can cut the price down by buying supplies by more than 50 at a time and get the volumn discount. That does not include my time. I buy full sheets of photo paper and print them 3-up on a sheet. I paste the photo on the note card that I make. Actually I like the notecard I make better than any that you can buy. Because I can custom color each double border around each photo, it looks more professional and a much better effect.

All my cards are on consignment. I haven't run into any being stolen yet, but I have only had them in stores for a few months. I suppose I could split the difference with the owner if that happens. If not I'll just have to eat the cost and if it happens too often in one store, just pull the cards out.

How do you label the back of your cards, do you use labels or handwrite on the back? (Name, phone no. copyright info and photo tracking etc.) I print everything on the back when I print out the double border on the front of the card. That way everything looks very provessional. I used to use a clear address label with my name, phone no. and copyright on the back centered, then I wrote in pen where the photo was or something about the photo and then put my photo reference number on the bottom left of the back of the card.

You mentioned you used printed borders but didn't paste your photos on. How did you attach them? Where did you buy the printed borders? Were they from Photographers Edge?

Thanks for your feedback. It's so good to be able to bounce things off fellow BP'ers and get their feedback. I know Chrystal Barryman sells her cards outright. She sell a lot of cards as well.

For Rich I bought the card stock by the ream of 250 sheets from Staples. Check out Clearenvelopesonline.com or ClearBags.com or Photographer's Edge also sells clear envelopes.
Wish me luck.

Deja, I'll have to check out that sight as well sounds great. Rich, who puts out that waterproof paper, and where do you buy it. Sounds interesting.

Kathy in NH

6/8/2006 2:41:04 AM

 
Roger M. Wells
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/7/2006
 
 
 
Kathy, One's goal is the issue. If one is trying to perfect a hand crafted note card on special paper then one would use a manufacturing process that would differ from producing a polished piece.
My goal is to produce a card that looks like a high end Hallmark note card.
I use the best paper I can get. I buy paper that is made for the printer that I will use to produce the card. The size is 8.5" x 11" fully coated to resist moisture and retain the color. Next I design the layout in Photoshop or Corel Draw. I include in the layout any boarders, title, copyright and the image to be laid on one side of the paper(the coated side) leaving the other side blank. Once printed I score and cut the card to size. I have a cheap cutter that I purchased at Costco that has a scoring wheel so I can make easy folding.
I use a square flap envelope 28# in weight. The sleeve is made of poly-carbonate(crytal clear) with the ability to reseal. Polyurethane bags are cheaper but diminish the visual experience. I will upload a card That I did for a friend so you can visulize what I have said. It shows details on layout like crop marks and fold lines etc...
About Ink cost: Use the number of pages that your printer manufacturer boast and divide it by 7. Divide the resulting number into the coast for a comlete round of ink (all cartages). This will be a good guess as to cost of ink ber card. Note most printers quote the number of sheets per color cartrage based on 5% coverage. A 5" x 7" card would require about 35% coverage so dividing by 7 would work.

6/8/2006 9:52:02 AM

 
Rich Collins
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/24/2005
  Kathy I buy this waterproof paper either in 4x6, 5x7 or full page from a friend of mine in Ritzville WA. His name & phone# follows; Ken Stamps For You 509 659 4271. Give him a call if you like or his email is kcheska@yahoo.com.

This is new to the market & it works really well. I don't know how it works in poly bags but I've had no problems with smearing after a few minutes drying time.

_________________________________________

Roger I am getting that you print directly on the paperstock you score & fold into Note Card size, full bleed.
Is this is Photo Glossy stock or matte? You mention "fully coated" meaning? As you can see I use waterproof. If you are able to upload so we can all see that would be most helpful. I have not as yet done anything but print out 4x6 & 5x7 photos which are all waiting for decisions I need to make on paper vs photo note cards.

Your concern over stolen cards is one I hadn't considered. Is this something all others have had bad experience with?

Rich

6/10/2006 6:09:10 AM

 
Roger M. Wells
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/7/2006
 
 
 
I do all of the above. Full Bleed and bordered. And I use matte or glossy based on what I think is the best presentation of the image.
I am not in favor of consignment because the artist will always loose. If the shop owner is not responsible for damaged or stolen items there is less need for security. If I were to place my work on consignment I would rather know what my responsibility is up front so I can factor in the cost (loss) to my manufacturing cost. I think for the relationship between the artist and the shop to survive a written agreement must be put in place before placing the cards.

I tried to upload a card that I just did for a friend but it did not attach to the posting. I will try again.

6/10/2006 7:57:16 AM

 
Roger M. Wells
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/7/2006
 
 
  Note Card
Note Card
Example of a Note Card with a single printing. this card is full bleed.
© Roger M. Wells
Miscellaneous Does...
 
 
I do all of the above. Full Bleed and bordered. And I use matte or glossy based on what I think is the best presentation of the image.
I am not in favor of consignment because the artist will always loose. If the shop owner is not responsible for damaged or stolen items there is less need for security. If I were to place my work on consignment I would rather know what my responsibility is up front so I can factor in the cost (loss) to my manufacturing cost. I think for the relationship between the artist and the shop to survive a written agreement must be put in place before placing the cards.

I tried to upload a card that I just did for a friend but it did not attach to the posting. I will try again.

6/10/2006 8:08:52 AM

 
Roger M. Wells
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/7/2006
 
 
 
Bordered Cards:

6/10/2006 10:21:34 AM

 
Roger M. Wells
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/7/2006
 
 
 
Bordered Cards:

6/10/2006 10:31:55 AM

 
Roger M. Wells
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/7/2006
 
 
  Summer Colors
Summer Colors
Note Card layout
© Roger M. Wells
Sony Cyber-shot DS...
 
 
Bordered Cards:

6/10/2006 10:32:25 AM

 
Roger M. Wells
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/7/2006
 
 
 
© Roger M. Wells
Sony Cyber-shot DS...
 
 
Bordered Cards:

6/10/2006 10:37:57 AM

 
Deja Webster
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 7/1/2005
  Roger
What do you charge for your cards? Do you offer different sizes?
Thanks.
Deja

6/10/2006 3:17:05 PM

 
Roger M. Wells
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/7/2006
  Deja,
I retail my 5" x 7" cards for $3.95.
Wholesale at $1.75 to $1.95 in 1/2 dozen sets with a minimum of 6 sets per original order. I give a the retailer the ability to swap-out unsold cards for cards that sell in their store. I find that different stores sell different cards.
Roger

6/10/2006 3:45:21 PM

 
Rich Collins
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/24/2005
  Roger
That's a big help. Makes it a lot more profitable to just use branded photo paper to match the printer than to buy the expensive photo note cards with windows. Maybe for some really special shots one could use & charge up for, but for the most part it makes sense the way you are doing this.

And your merchandising is very equitable in that you are protected against loss as the dealer is against stagnant sales.

I can't figure out how you got your photos in this thread as I've tried & nothing seems to work, even uploading to my gallery & copy & paste.

6/10/2006 4:01:05 PM

 
Roger M. Wells
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/7/2006
  Rich it took me awhile but this should work: Enter any message and then Select one (1) image in the select box on the respond page, then the submit box. This will open the upload page. Don't fill-in the Browse info Box go all the way to your right and enter the image number for an image that you have already uploaded.
Enter the other field other than the Browse field.
Hope this helps
Roger

6/10/2006 6:10:39 PM

 
Rich Collins
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/24/2005
  Thank you Roger

I'll give this a try when I can. Really appreciate your generous help with everything. I'm sure we all do.

6/10/2006 7:07:04 PM

 
Kathy Radford
BetterPhoto Member
Contact Kathy
Kathy's Gallery

member since: 1/2/2006
 
 
 
Hi Roger, Thanks for your detailed info. Excellent info. From your description you are using full sheets of photo paper either gloss or matte. I've seen some photo paper with the company name printed on the back which would eliminate it from use. You have no way of knowing which ones have it and which do not when you buy it. I buy Hammermill Color Copy Cover, 80 lb. Photo White. I use that to print out the double border and all info on the back and then paste the photo within the border. It seems to me rather expensive to use an entire sheet of photo paper. You really don't need it for the rest of the card. I am charging $4.00 a card or 3 for $10.00, with the stores getting 25% of the sales. How often do you swap out your photos? Your upload was very helpful, thanks.

I am starting to print out a few of the smaller photos 3 1/2 x 5 with borders and adding sayings to the bottom, (Happy Birthday, Get Well, A Picture is worth a thousand words, etc.) Do you have any with sayings on them?

I just found another store to put them in. She wants local shots around town. That seems to be the general rule I have been running into, wanting local photos.

I ran into a woman yesterday at an art exhibit I am displaying two 8x10 matted and framed photos in, She is the woman who organized the whole show, she was an art teacher and also taught photography, she viewed some of my note cards and said I should be marketing to galleries not stores. That is where people really appreciate real art and are willing to pay the price for what I am really worth. People going to the small stores are not really interested in a true art piece and that is what my photos are and I should be getting paid for real art. I told her when I did a few Art & Craft shows last year all that was selling was the note cards. The Art & Craft shows that are advertising in the newspapers this year are usually asking $50. to enter the show. At $4.00 per card or 6 for $10. that a lot of cards to just break even. So I am having second thoughts about those. Where else are you marketing your work?

6/10/2006 11:55:26 PM

 
Kathy Radford
BetterPhoto Member
Contact Kathy
Kathy's Gallery

member since: 1/2/2006
 
 
 
Hi Roger, Thanks for your detailed info. Excellent info. From your description you are using full sheets of photo paper either gloss or matte. I've seen some photo paper with the company name printed on the back which would eliminate it from use. You have no way of knowing which ones have it and which do not when you buy it. I buy Hammermill Color Copy Cover, 80 lb. Photo White. I use that to print out the double border and all info on the back and then paste the photo within the border. It seems to me rather expensive to use an entire sheet of photo paper. You really don't need it for the rest of the card. I am charging $4.00 a card or 3 for $10.00, with the stores getting 25% of the sales. How often do you swap out your photos? Your upload was very helpful, thanks.

I am starting to print out a few of the smaller photos 3 1/2 x 5 with borders and adding sayings to the bottom, (Happy Birthday, Get Well, A Picture is worth a thousand words, etc.) Do you have any with sayings on them?

I just found another store to put them in. She wants local shots around town. That seems to be the general rule I have been running into, wanting local photos.

I ran into a woman yesterday at an art exhibit I am displaying two 8x10 matted and framed photos in, She is the woman who organized the whole show, she was an art teacher and also taught photography, she viewed some of my note cards and said I should be marketing to galleries not stores. That is where people really appreciate real art and are willing to pay the price for what I am really worth. People going to the small stores are not really interested in a true art piece and that is what my photos are and I should be getting paid for real art. I told her when I did a few Art & Craft shows last year all that was selling was the note cards. The Art & Craft shows that are advertising in the newspapers this year are usually asking $50. to enter the show. At $4.00 per card or 6 for $10. that a lot of cards to just break even. So I am having second thoughts about those. Where else are you marketing your work?

6/10/2006 11:59:46 PM

 
Kathy Radford
BetterPhoto Member
Contact Kathy
Kathy's Gallery

member since: 1/2/2006
  Hi Roger, Thanks for your detailed info. Excellent info. From your description you are using full sheets of photo paper either gloss or matte. I've seen some photo paper with the company name printed on the back which would eliminate it from use. You have no way of knowing which ones have it and which do not when you buy it. I buy Hammermill Color Copy Cover, 80 lb. Photo White. I use that to print out the double border and all info on the back and then paste the photo within the border. It seems to me rather expensive to use an entire sheet of photo paper. You really don't need it for the rest of the card. I am charging $4.00 a card or 3 for $10.00, with the stores getting 25% of the sales. How often do you swap out your photos? Your upload was very helpful, thanks.

I am starting to print out a few of the smaller photos 3 1/2 x 5 with borders and adding sayings to the bottom, (Happy Birthday, Get Well, A Picture is worth a thousand words, etc.) Do you have any with sayings on them?

I just found another store to put them in. She wants local shots around town. That seems to be the general rule I have been running into, wanting local photos.

I ran into a woman yesterday at an art exhibit I am displaying two 8x10 matted and framed photos in, She is the woman who organized the whole show, she was an art teacher and also taught photography, she viewed some of my note cards and said I should be marketing to galleries not stores. That is where people really appreciate real art and are willing to pay the price for what I am really worth. People going to the small stores are not really interested in a true art piece and that is what my photos are and I should be getting paid for real art. I told her when I did a few Art & Craft shows last year all that was selling was the note cards. The Art & Craft shows that are advertising in the newspapers this year are usually asking $50. to enter the show. At $4.00 per card or 6 for $10. that a lot of cards to just break even. So I am having second thoughts about those. Where else are you marketing your work?

6/11/2006 12:03:13 AM

 
Kathy Radford
BetterPhoto Member
Contact Kathy
Kathy's Gallery

member since: 1/2/2006
  Sorry I tried 3 times to upload my template but it didn't work.

6/11/2006 12:05:22 AM

 
Roger M. Wells
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/7/2006
  Kathy,
So far I've not had to swap-out cards but it makes the retailer more comfortable with larger orders.
Most Epson papers print their name on the back so watch out. I buy my paper from Redriver. They have papers that you can print on both sides. Be sure that you know if your ink is pigment or dye when buying paper.
No I like the fine art image and don't use words, but if I were more poetic I might.
I am in the process of building a website and will use it when complete. You can see some of my work on the site now but I don't have the shopping cart set up yet. The URL is

roger.northcoastartgallery.com

it is still in the testing phase so please forgive me if some things don't work. Any comments or suggestions are welcome.
Be sure to up-load your image first aquire the image # and then apply it to your message.
Roger

6/11/2006 12:43:34 AM

 
Rich Collins
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/24/2005
 
 
 
Here goes a try at uploading

6/11/2006 6:15:06 AM

 
Rich Collins
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/24/2005
 
 
 
Here goes a try at uploading a photo for no other purpose than to see if I can do it.

6/11/2006 6:21:51 AM

 
Rich Collins
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/24/2005
 
 
 
Try #3

6/11/2006 6:23:00 AM

 
Roger M. Wells
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/7/2006
 
 
 
© Roger M. Wells
Sony Cyber-shot DS...
 
 
I am recording the steps to help with the up-load

6/11/2006 8:39:38 AM

 
Roger M. Wells
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/7/2006
  Go to Community Select "Member Center"
Enter Your e-mail and password
Click "sign in"

Under the Heading "Gallery Images" Select "Your Photos"
Decide which image you want to post to your Response.
Copy the 7 digit number 2238852

Click your browser's back button 3 times, this will take you back to the "Response Page". You may have to go back 1 or more extra pages because of the "Success Page" go to the bottom of the "Response page" fill-in your copy in the "Your Answer Box". About 10 lines down there is a box with a down arrow and the word "Select" click the arrow select "1" Click "Submit"

The Heading should read: "Uploading Example Image for an Answer"
Under the color image on your right there is a box with the label before it that says "or PhotoID#". Enter the 7 digit number of the image you want to upload.
Enter the "Title of the Photo" (skip "File Name")
Enter a "Decription"
Select a "Camera"
Select Do not enter from the "Contest Category" drop down box.
Check the "Check here to indicate you've read and agree to our Terms and Conditions" button.
Click the "Submit Your Photo" button.
You should get a Success! page

I ran these steps befor this post. Make sure that the back button takes you back to the "Response" page. Good luck!
Roger

6/11/2006 9:03:22 AM

 
Craig m. Zacarelli
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 2/3/2005
  Dang thats allot of steps... I wish it were more like the other forums I go to.. you host your own photos and just likn to them so they appear in your post/reply...so much easier. Or you can up load a 100KB size file to the forum from your Hard Drive.. either way, its a whole lot easier than this.
Thanks for the tutorial Roger.
Craig-

6/11/2006 1:55:41 PM

 
Bob Chance
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 2/19/2006
  Hi Roger:

I've been following the discussion in the background and have been to visit your website. I must say, your web design is awesome and so is your work.
I see you are a bird lover like myself, in the fact that there is one or more birds in most of your pictures. Fantastic editing work too! Thanks for sharing.

Bob

6/11/2006 3:33:09 PM

 
Rich Collins
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/24/2005
  Roger thanks for all your efforts but I can identify no heading called Gallery Images (only a View Gallery link)& thus think I may have discovered the problem: I am not paying for a Premium Gallery. Permission is probably only granted if you are a paying member. Yes?

But that begs the question, Why do you not have a Gallery to view next to your name? You are the only one without one to view.

Oh well thank you anyway.

6/11/2006 5:05:10 PM

 
Sylvester E. Robbins

member since: 5/4/2006
  Well, looks like this had become the hot topic. First, thanks to you, Roger, for all of the detailed info you have given in how you market your products. That has been a big help to me. I will have to look at Redriver and see what they charge for their papers.

Deja, I finally did go back to Walmart to look for the notecards and did find tham. However, they only had the smaller size. I was rushing a little so I may have missed seeing the others. Will have to go back to see if they have the larger size.

For those that talked of marketing their prints, what do you charge and how do you market them? Are they plain prints, mounted, matted, or both? Thanks for any responses in advance.

6/12/2006 5:08:39 AM

 
Kathy Radford
BetterPhoto Member
Contact Kathy
Kathy's Gallery

member since: 1/2/2006
  Hi Sylvester, your right this has generated a lot of response, that was what I was originally looking for. It has been great getting all the other ideas. If you scroll back in this thread a little ways you will find how I have been pricing mine and some other info.

Roger I was having trouble uploading my note card template so I decided I will try and post it on my gallery then everyone can check it out there. I will try that tonight. Kathy in NH

6/12/2006 7:24:48 AM

 
Craig m. Zacarelli
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 2/3/2005
  awesome card Kathy! One question...is there a reason you dont just print the pic onto the note card? why do you glue it? is the card stock not a good paper to print on, meaning not photo paper...glossy or something? I probably answered my own question but, I was just wondering.
Craig-

6/12/2006 9:52:54 AM

 
Kathy Radford
BetterPhoto Member
Contact Kathy
Kathy's Gallery

member since: 1/2/2006
  Craig, glad you like it. I like the photo on premium glossy photo paper. I can't see wasting a whole sheet of photo paper for the entire card, it's not necessary. I print the photos out 3 to a page of photo paper 8 1/2 x 11. If Why only have one photo on the whole sheet, a waste of money, and if you print the entire card out on card stock the pictures just don't have that punch to them. Hope I have answered your question. Kathy in NH

6/12/2006 2:08:06 PM

 
Rich Collins
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/24/2005
  Kathy

I think that covered bridge is a winner. And you may have a point in that card stock can't offer the gleam & pizzaz of premium glossy photo paper. But perhaps for a particular market card stock might work as does matte photo paper for softer images.

Overall though I think I will settle on using Kathy's method. By the way congratulations on getting business going Kathy.

Say how did you get into that Art Exhibit? Does one pay for this type of exposure? Or have you already gained a reputation?

Another question to anyone that hasn't come up, I don't think, is do you buy your own card racks for display at stores? I just bought a 72 card rack for $100 new. I suppose I should be looking for a couple of counter top racks too huh?

6/12/2006 7:05:02 PM

 
Kathy Radford
BetterPhoto Member
Contact Kathy
Kathy's Gallery

member since: 1/2/2006
  Rich, my girlfriend who is an artist told me about the Exeter Arts Committee exhibit, so I entered, now I am on their mailing list and know when they are having their exhibits. This group is very unusual as they do not charge to enter their exhibits and they also don't charge any percentage of any of your sales at the show. What a great deal. I have only entered 2 of their shows and I have sold things at both of them. I also have 3 photos on display at their town offices, but I thing they are more for display there I haven't heard of anyone selling there, but it is great exposure anyway.

This is all new to me, I am still getting my feet wet so to speak. I only started last summer with a few art and craft shows. Those were very slow in sales, only sold note cards there, got a lot of great feedback on my work but noone bought any 8x10 matted or framed work.

I bought some inexpensive cardboard counter display racks from Photographer's Edge, they are less than $10 each. I would eventually like to get the rotating counter top racks at some point, but right now finances are very tight. Hope this helps you Rich. Kathy in NH

6/13/2006 3:21:34 AM

 
Robert Baer
BetterPhoto Member
justin-baer-photography.com

member since: 7/7/2004
  I just found this thread and thought I would jump in. I have been selling photo notecards for about 5 years. I live in a tourist town so there is a demand. I have a local printer make the stock which averages about $.35 for white stock with a black border and envelope if I order 1000. I print my images on luster paper at home on an epson r800 printer and attach my images to the stock with an atg tape gun ( the type used in frame shops for matting their work ) I wholesale to stores for $1.85 and they usually sell for $3.50. I enjoy doing the cards but it is not a huge money maker. But, I often get orders for enlargements. on the back of my cards I have my email and the words "enlargments available" Being in a tourist town the demand is highest in the summer which can be time consuming making the cards. From my viewpoint unless one is in huge mass production, the money is not the reason to do it. It is personal satisfaction and a way to get your work noticed. I also end up giving cards to friends which they love. Justin Baer

6/13/2006 7:13:10 AM

 
Kathy Radford
BetterPhoto Member
Contact Kathy
Kathy's Gallery

member since: 1/2/2006
  Thanks for you input Justin. Sounds very interesting. Good idea using tape gun. Also I never thought about adding enlargments available, excellent idea, I'll have to start putting that on the back of my cards. It's so helpful to toss ideas around with others who have tried different methods, and find what works best for you. We've gotten some really great ideas and input. Thanks again you have been very helpful.
Kathy in NH

6/13/2006 8:29:29 AM

 
Robert Baer
BetterPhoto Member
justin-baer-photography.com

member since: 7/7/2004
  kathy
glad I could be of help. good luck. justin

6/13/2006 8:56:18 AM

 
Sylvester E. Robbins

member since: 5/4/2006
  This is getting to be like the Energizer Bunny. :)

Just a question on photo sizes. For those that use the 4 1/4x5 1/2 notecards, what size do you make your photos? Do you do it full size, or like 3X5 to allow for a border?

6/13/2006 11:24:20 AM

 
Corinne M. Thompson
BetterPhoto Member
Contact Corinne
Corinne's Gallery

member since: 7/31/2005
  And it can go on and on and on! This is one of the best threads I think I've seen....so much useful info for beginners! Thanks to everyone for sharing their knowledge! :)

6/13/2006 11:37:49 AM

 
Robert Baer
BetterPhoto Member
justin-baer-photography.com

member since: 7/7/2004
  i use 5x7 card stock with 4x6 photos. justin

6/13/2006 2:52:34 PM

 
Kathy Radford
BetterPhoto Member
Contact Kathy
Kathy's Gallery

member since: 1/2/2006
  Sylvester, when I make my card it folds into a 5x7. I use a regular 4x6 photo. If U want to write something on the card like, Happy Birthday, Get Well, A Picture is worth a thousand words, etc. then I use the 3 1/2 x 5 photo. You just make the border to fit the size of the photo you are using. You're right Corinne we have had some really excellent feedback to this topic. Kathy in NH

6/13/2006 5:50:48 PM

 
Rich Collins
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/24/2005
  Thank you Kathy
Yes your advice on cardboard racks may come into play. The metal ones are fairly expensive.

As for Sylvestor's question about what size fits what card, I use Canon's Digital Photo Pro software & am able to write on the photo itself if you ask it to leave a border of white for adding a poetic phrase or like Kathy has said, Happy Birthday Get Well, etc. Then you can glue directly onto the front of the Note Card. If that helps anyone using Canon gear.

And thanks to Justin for the "enlargements available" idea. Terrific bunch of ideas coming in.

Hey should we all get together and write a booklet about this? Or franchise our locations? Just kidding.

6/13/2006 6:18:15 PM

 
Deja Webster
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 7/1/2005
 
 
 
Great questions and comments everyone.

Just another suggestion for anyone doing outdoor shows. I use plastic shoe hangars to display my cards. The kind of hangar that you would usually hang off the back of your door and can hold 20 or so pairs of shoes. They cost about $5. I hang 4 of them off the sides of my tent.

They look nicer than this actually sounds. People often comment on what a great display. If you get the clear ones they work great to offer a vertical display for both large(5x7) and small(41/2x5)size cards. The displays are the size of a door so if you have several they protect you from the sun and if filled with lots of colorful cards it grabs attention as people walk by. I place river rocks in the bottom holders to keep the display from flying around too much in the wind.

Another way to add a quote on a photo is by using something like Adobe Elements and making a text layer. I also use a inked stamp on the back of all my cards. It lists my business name, town and website address. I got mine at Staples for around $16.
Deja

6/13/2006 9:22:44 PM

 
Kathy Radford
BetterPhoto Member
Contact Kathy
Kathy's Gallery

member since: 1/2/2006
  Thanks for Deja. What a wonderful idea to use a plastic shoe hangar. I also want to compliment you on your two galleries. They are beautiful. I was just talking to my girlfriend yesterday about the local farmer's market then today I find your gallery with all the farmer's market photos. Thanks again for your input. Kathy in NH

6/14/2006 1:39:04 AM

 
Deja Webster
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 7/1/2005
  Kathy
I have been so busy reading all the comments I hadn't taken the time to visit your website till just now. Your pictures are wonderful! They all made me miss the NE. I lived in North Conway and then across the border in Brownfield, Maine and taught school in Lovell.

You've a great eye.
Thanks for inspiring this thread.
Deja

6/14/2006 7:07:19 AM

 
Craig m. Zacarelli
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 2/3/2005
  Yeas Kathy... I had a feeling it had to do with printing on card stock! Thanks!

This is a great thread... My prediction is this... it wont be long before we see a " Turning your Photos into Greeting Cards" class offered here...lol You guys rock!
Craig-

6/14/2006 10:00:10 AM

 
Deja Webster
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 7/1/2005
  Sylvester
I just ran out of large ivory cards and called three local Wal-Marts, here in WA, to find they just stopped carrying the large in ivory.

I found the ivory looked nicer than the white so I might switch to Jo-Ann's Fabrics. There they were a bit more and came in packs of 40 but atleast I can
still get ivory. Lots of times they are on sale and marked down from $9.95 usually 30-40% off.

Has anyone who uses photos, and attaches them directly to the cards, considered using something like Snapfish to keep printing costs down? They run $.12 apiece and are printed on Kodax paper either glossy or matte. Printing on your own printer is easy but sure gets expensive with the ink so this might be an alternative.
Deja

6/14/2006 11:27:14 AM

 
Roger M. Wells
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/7/2006
  I can put together an interactive calculator that would allow one to determine their actual and accurate cost per card. It would have to be on a web page because I don't believe this forum allows HTML. I am happy to make it, but it will take a couple of days, if there is enough interest in such a calculator. So let me know if you think it might be of value to you.

6/14/2006 12:16:37 PM

 
Kathy Radford
BetterPhoto Member
Contact Kathy
Kathy's Gallery

member since: 1/2/2006
  Thanks to all of you for responding with all your wonderful ideas and comments. Your response was way beyond my wildest expectations.

Deja I glad you enjoyed my gallery, you'll have to come back for a visit and see how much it has changed over the years. North Conway and the White Mountains is my favorite place to visit and take photos. I love that area it has sooo much to offer.

Kathy in NH

6/14/2006 12:23:01 PM

 
Sylvester E. Robbins

member since: 5/4/2006
  Looks like I may have to print this thing out again.

Deja, I finally did make it out to WalMart again and found they do have the 5x7 cards. The only ones I saw were white so they have already stopped the Ivory ones. Looks like I will be going back to get those and then start working some cards up and deciding what images I want on them.

6/14/2006 1:26:37 PM

 
Rich Collins
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/24/2005
  Roger I think that is a valuable calculator you are talking about. I often wonder just how much I am spending printing out photos for family & friends in addition to photos for potential Note Cards sales. My vote is in. Thanks for the offer.

6/14/2006 3:40:25 PM

 
Sylvester E. Robbins

member since: 5/4/2006
  Ok, I know I dredged this up from the second page, but wanted to ask a couple of questions.

First, Roger, have you been able to do anything on that calculator??

Second, I know most of this pricing is being done as selling individual notecards. What about selling them in groups?

That is what I have started doing. Granted, all of the people are those that know me and my work. Now I am wanting to get them into some local boutique stores. My problem now is finding a reasonably priced box to use. So far the cheapes I have been able to find runs 41 cents a piece. I noticed someone mentioned an Impact Imaging so I may check out their website.

7/12/2006 1:26:04 PM

 
Roger M. Wells
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/7/2006
  Before you go to the calculator look-up the following: I have included some links for determining prices. If you know your prices and quantities use them.


Price, shipping cost, coverage ratio and pages printable for each cartridge Black, etc..
Price and shipping cost: quantity for Envelops.
Price and shipping cost: quantity for Plastic sleeves.
Price and shipping cost: quantity for Cardstock.
Price and shipping cost: quantity for Photo Paper.
Price and shipping cost: quantity for Photo Lab Prints.

Cost of labor: Yours or someone to do the work in your absence because it is part of your cost.

Special note: One should determine the cost of picking up any of the above items from a local retailer and enter the estimated cost as Shipping.

The only variable not covered is the labor for trimming and folding full bleed cards but the amount could be included in the "other" field.

You will be able to know the true cost of developing your own cards and compare the different methods of construction.

You may not like what you learn so enter with caution.


http://roger.northcoastartgallery.com/Cards/Instructions.html

7/12/2006 2:28:22 PM

 
Rich Collins
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/24/2005
 
 
 
Here goes

7/12/2006 7:39:34 PM

 
Rich Collins
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/24/2005
  Hey Roger Thanks for the help in figuring out how to get a pic into this discussion, not that the one in my previous message has much to do with our discussion but I just had to figure it out.

BTW I took a look at costs using your calculator & I think I'm going to have to raise my prices when business gets going like Kathy's.

Mostly I'm still taking pictures & slowly adding lens's.

I do have a question if I haven't already asked it here, too long to search. I have been asked by junior staff at my Park (National Park Service) if I would mind donating my time taking pictures to update their Post Cards & their website. Because I am an employee they cannot pay but are thinking of allowing me some credit on the back side. What all can I ask for? I am thinking of my name, phone#, email address, & a very short addendum, such as Roger suggested, "Enlargements Available". What do you all think? Would appreciate any feedback.

7/12/2006 7:52:57 PM

 
Roger M. Wells
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/7/2006
  Hi Rich,
Think about a web site with cards and prints for sale. Also if the park department will order the cards you can get 1000 cards for $289.00 plus tax and shipping. 1000 envelopes for $69.00 plus Tax and shipping.

For the record I wasn't the person with the idea of "Enlargment" but think it is a great idea.
Roger

7/12/2006 8:17:07 PM

 
Kristy  M. Cannon

member since: 1/25/2008
  Hello everyone,

As you can see by the date, I'm really late at joining this discussion, but boy is this a good thread! Thanks for starting it.

As a beginner, and someone with the same interest in the greeting cards, I'm just wondering how those of you who started this thread 2 years ago are doing in your ventures? I would love to hear from Kathy, Roger, Rich, Deja and others about the experiences/successes you've had and/or if you've learned any other wonderful tips since this post began.

However, my main question is how often do you check in with the shops that host your cards? Monthly, bi-monthly or are they calling you for replacement card orders?

I just set up a little more than a dozen sample cards in a very small tourist shop and sold the cards to them outright to see if they would sell. They were very excited, and of course, I was thrilled! I left them my contact information, but would like to call on them again soon to see how the cards are doing. With so few cards, hopefully, it won't take long to sell them.

Are you guys going by your vendors on a weekly basis, or is their buyer calling you? Are you shipping the cards to them and invoicing them or are you taking the cards by the shop and having them pay you via check/cash? And what about taxes?

Like I said, I'm really new, not only to photography in general but to selling my work.

Thanks to all for a very informative thread!
Kristy

10/2/2008 12:15:58 PM

 
Tressie Davis
BetterPhoto Member
Contact Tressie
Tressie's Gallery

member since: 4/4/2006
  Tag - I'm interested in the response to Kristy's questions...

10/3/2008 8:58:26 AM

 
Kristy  M. Cannon

member since: 1/25/2008
  Hello all,

Kathy did respond to my question, but she accidentally sent it to me personally and asked me to share it with the group. It will be my pleasure to do so Kathy and I appreciate your reply and support. :)

"Hi Kristy,

Welcome to the group here at BP. This is such a wonderful site to make great friends, see what other photographers work is like, and most of all an excellent learning experience. It doesn't matter what your skill level is, we have the newbies up to the best of the professionals and they are all so supportive and willing to help each other out no matter how inexperience or gifted you are.

In answer to your question, I try to check the stores out monthly or bimonthly depending on the store and how they sell. I only have one store that pays up front for the cards the others pay me as they are sold. The cards are $4.00 ea and I charge the owners $3.00 a card. Most sell them for $3.99, it just sounds cheaper.

If you are interested in another marketing tip, this is my newest idea of getting my name and photos out to the public. I designed a photo calendar of local scenes of our town and donated it to the Kingston Police Explorer Post as a fund raiser. So I kill two birds with one stone. I have Kathy Radford on the bottom of each photo in the calendar so everyone knows it's my work and it's a great way to give back to your local town.

Good luck with your cards. Feel free to ask if you have any other questions. Kathy in NH"

Thanks again Kathy! So far, I am doing the exact same thing as you as far as pricing goes. But I am also making a (very) few matted 8x10 & 11x14 prints to go along with the cards to show that enlargements can be made, and hopefully they will sell too. The shop is only taking a 10% consignment fee from the print sales, and buying the cards outright which is great! I only have the one shop so far but I hope to branch out soon if all goes well. I love the calendar idea especially with the holiday season for fundraising upon us. How many calendars do you donate?

Thanks again for your support Kathy, I really appreciate it!

Kristy :)

10/6/2008 12:40:47 AM

 
Roger M. Wells
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/7/2006
  Hi Kathy and all,
Kathy and your name is not enough, the year of the original creation to the print date should also be printed on the piece.
I'm glad you are doing well with sales of your work. You have done the hardest part by setting up stores.
I'm selling about 2,000 a year now. I have two product lines. One is a series of Fine Art Prints the other is on cheaper paper and envelopes. The Fine Art cards are 5" x 7" @$3.95 with 50% to the store but they must buy the card as I wont offer consignment and the cards are grouped in bundles of 6.
The second line sells for $2.99.
My energy is very low so time is precious to me so cutting and pasting is out of the question for me.
Borders are used on the cheaper cards because it adds white space and cuts ink cost. I use full bleed and special matte paper on the Fine Art cards.


If you want to sell post cards I have a real find. The quality of work is super and the price only $17.00 for 100 plus shipping. That is full color on the front with B&W back. http://gotprint.net/g/showStaticPage.do?page=postcards_pricing.html
To see their price list for post cards.
They will also print your 5" x 7" cars cut and scored for only $149.00 plus shipping for 250. That's only 60 cents a card. They will not swap images in a run.
I have divided my cars into categories that fit a store. My Offworld series sell in specialty stores while my Digital Art works sell in gallery stores. My locale images sell in gift shops.
Good to see the thread going again.
Roger

10/6/2008 1:55:13 AM

 
Kristy  M. Cannon

member since: 1/25/2008
  Thanks for your input Roger and congratulations on your success!

Just a few more questions for you when you have some time....but hey, anyone is welcome to chime in! :)


1) How many cards did you sell to each of your stores in the beginning? I'm sure the quantity of cards for store were probably all different but I'm looking for an average number, so I know what to suggest when setting up.

(Example: 15 different photo-themed cards and then say 6 each of the same card? For a total of 90 cards. More or less?)

2)In your Fine Art cards, did you say you are selling them as a "box set" of six, or are you selling EACH different photo in sets of six to your buyer? (Sorry for the confusion)

2a) Do you have a minimum number of cards that they must keep in the store or buy at one time to get that 50% off price?

3)Do you allow the store/buyer to "hand pick" the photo card themes (i.e. Happy Birthday, Hello, Thinking of You, and/or Blanks) from the selection you make and take in to them? Or do they tell you what sells the best and you just remake those card themes? Remember I'm just getting started...

3a)How do you inventory your cards? Do you provide the store with a sheet, so you know (and they know) what you've stocked? Or say, if you have a card rack, do you place a printed paper in each slot that tells the staff what to reorder when the cards sell out? Or some other way to account for which type of card theme/photo type sells the most?

(Example: "Butterfly/Happy Birthday" needs to be reordered)

4)And finally, how many clients do you currently have? Sounds like enough to keep you busy! :)

Thanks again Roger, I appreciate your very knowledgeable input too! It's nice to know that there are still great people out there like you and Kathy that are willing to share their experiences with others-- especially to us newbies! Hee Hee! :)

Take care and best success to you,
Kristy :)

10/6/2008 10:34:22 AM

 
Roger M. Wells
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/7/2006
  Hi Kristy,
Right now I have 7 stores. The store is my buyer s lets look at it from the buyer's perspective. I ell the store each image in groups of 6. I charge them $1.50 (cheap)and $2.00 (fine Art) for each card. The retail suggested price is $2.99 and $3.95.
I try to keep it simple by only showing cards that conform to the stores product line (Sporting goods sees local landscapes and wild animals) (a shop selling astro-charts and incense sees Offworld cards)
I think t buyer runs a store that reflects their own likes. The buyer knows what the customer might buy.
The best move I made was to offer a free rack if it went on the counter (check-out).
I am developing a Halloween and Christmas line bu not placed yet so to date I have no text cards.
I offer to swap new cards (image) for unsold cards after 6 months. Once the line has proven sales I will expand the offering.
I keep an inventory sheet on each store. I give them,the buyer, a 4.5" x 5.5'sheet with an image of the card, name of the image and my email address.

A local upscale food-art us 250 cards per order.The they labeled the rack "Local Artist".

I visit each store every 2 months and call once.
I hope I answered your question Kristy.
Remember the buyer wants make a return on their investment.Only offer your best.
Roger M
Good Luck and have FUN.

10/6/2008 12:20:54 PM

 
Kristy  M. Cannon

member since: 1/25/2008
  Indeed...

Very sound advice! Thanks for answering in such detail, it really helps.

I, too, would like to offer Christmas cards and I love Halloween!

Yet, as I'm just starting out, I feel like I'm a season behind, you know? I just got through shooting a good batch of fall leaves, scenes etc up around Utah. I'll finish getting the autumn greeting cards and prints together this week, and hopefully, be able to get them to my (one) store this weekend. That will also give me a chance to see how the first batch of sample cards have been selling (as it's only been a couple of weeks).

I really like the idea of the free rack as an offer to the store. Remember, I sold them a little more than a dozen cards as a sample selection.

With that I provided them with a country-style pumpkin basket that would fit on their small counter near the register, blend in with their mountain-cabin style store decor, and one that would also look full with the small amount of cards they purchased. I told the shop owner I could swap it out for something a little more "Christmas-y" looking after thanksgiving, and she really liked that idea.

However, I wonder if I've made my first mistake by selling too few cards? How might be the best way to approach her to purchase even more cards? I do love the idea of offering to swap out the cards that aren't selling after 6 months. Great idea!

Thanks again, Roger, I appreciate your mentorship!

Kristy :)

10/6/2008 3:06:08 PM

 
Roger M. Wells
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/7/2006
 
 
 
Hi Kristy,
Sold is good. If the store sells the cards they will drive the quantity up to make more money. You can help by adding to the line.
I have posted a Christmas and Halloween card what do you think?
Roger

10/6/2008 6:26:26 PM

 
Roger M. Wells
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/7/2006
 
 
  Haunted Castle
Haunted Castle
California North Coast (all Images) and Photoshop.
© Roger M. Wells
Sony Cyber-shot DS...
 
  Winter Chill
Winter Chill
California North Coast
© Roger M. Wells
Sony Cyber-shot DS...
 
 
I'll try again

10/6/2008 6:38:37 PM

 
Carlton Ward
BetterPhoto Member
Contact Carlton
Carlton's Gallery
carltonwardphoto.com

member since: 12/13/2005
  Hello All,
I have not pursued selling cards but was intrigued when I stopped in a store that had a card of an image that I was hoping to photograph myself of a water scene in a local harbor with a mountain as the back drop. It is the best view of this community & really captures the essense of the town. It is not an easy capture as clouds & visibility do not cooperate for much of the year. And to get this capture at sunset is still something I have been trying to get for over a year now.
The woman in the store told me that the previous photographer was no longer offering the cards (he may have passed on) and she went on to tell me that those cards were big sellers and that Realtors would buy them by the case and give them out to prospective buyers as a "see what a view you could have if you bought a house here" sales pitch. I had never thought about that aspect of things and thought I would share with all of you in case this could be an option for you as well.
I dont spend a lot of time pursuing this but if I come across a photo op that speaks "Here is our town" type photo, I will definitely hit the stores & the realtors.
Cheers - Carlton

10/6/2008 10:59:17 PM

 
Kathy Radford
BetterPhoto Member
Contact Kathy
Kathy's Gallery

member since: 1/2/2006
  Hi Kristy,
I emailed my photos to staples.com for their photo calendars. Once I picked up the first calendar at my local Staples store I told them to keep the calendar on file as the Police Department would be coming in to order the calendars as they needed them. That way they can order as many or as few as they want. At that point I am out of the picture. I also offered to do press releases and mail to all the local papers and write the article. I am planning on going to one of their meetings to take some shots of the explorers with the officer in charge looking over the calendar to submit to the paper. I will try to sell as many of the calendars as I can to help them out. They will also make great gifts to give to residents who have moved away from the area as a rememerance of the local area.

Roger has a lot of great tips too. It's great to have a site like this and the photographers here are such a great help and always there when we need them.
Kathy in NH

10/7/2008 3:46:14 AM

 
Kristy  M. Cannon

member since: 1/25/2008
  Gosh, you guys are all so great! Thank you for your valuable input. Really, I, for one, appreciate it very much.

Roger, I stopped by your portfolio yesterday and saw your winter picture with the bird....it's really beautiful and I think it should do very well for a Christmas card!

(This is where you are ahead, I have to wait about another month before the "potential" for the first snowflake shows up in Utah, which is where I'm doing most of my shooting at the moment.)

And you are really talented at your digital artwork to produce such a cool image for Halloween. It reminds me of something you might see in a mystic/mythical type store or in Hot Topic (clothing/gift store)--sort of gothic. Really cool! You have some other cool images too in your gallery.

Carlton, that's a really neat idea too about the realtors. With the housing market the way it is right now, that might be an inexpensive way for the realtors to market some of their scenic views. I have a friend (who used to be) in the real estate business, I'll ask him and see what he thinks of the idea and let you know. Besides, you should jump in and see if you can put some cards in the shop you were talking about....and keep working toward your scenic image, the right days/conditions will present themselves to you. :)

Kathy, I didn't realize staples would do that for you. I knew they made calendars and such, but I always thought you had to commit to so many. I think that's an awesome way to promote a good cause, help a community and get a little advertising in return. Do you have a way to tell how much other business you get from the calendar exposure?

I know someone else mentioned farmer's markets here in the thread. I did look into where I'm at and there are 3 markets held at different parks, Tues-Thurs, for only a few hours (4-8pm during the summer months). They are calling for local artists to put in applications. I thought I might look into that too as a way to test the waters for my cards/prints as well. Any thoughts/advice?

Thanks to all who have contributed. This is a fantastic thread and I think we should keep it going.

Take care everyone,
Kristy :)

PS-If anyone has some time for a "gentle" critique with the greeting cards in mind, I'd appreciate it. I haven't had a chance yet this week to load my fall pictures up yet to my gallery here at BP, but you can check them out at www.jamdivers.com and let me know if you think any would sell as greeting cards. Thanks! :)

10/7/2008 1:20:28 PM

 
Kathy Radford
BetterPhoto Member
Contact Kathy
Kathy's Gallery

member since: 1/2/2006
  Kristy it's too soon yet to sell what response I will get from the sale of the photo calendars. I will let you know when I hear anything.
Kathy in NH

10/7/2008 1:36:44 PM

 
Kristy  M. Cannon

member since: 1/25/2008
  That's right, you did say this was your newest idea (sorry, I forgot and was just excited for you)...good luck with the project. I'm sure you'll do well.

Kristy :)

10/7/2008 2:13:01 PM

 
Kristy  M. Cannon

member since: 1/25/2008
  Hello again group :)

I am putting together some of my cards and I have a silly question...so please don't laugh, remember I'm learning! ;)

I've signed the back of my cards, put a title and a location on the back as well, and have made this particular set a limited series for fall. I have clear bags to house each card so that they look really nice.

Ok, here's the question:

How are you guys, (for those of you using clear bags), putting the envelopes inside?

The reason I ask is because I would like for people to be able to flip the card over to see where the location of the scene is, which is written on the back of the card. If I put the envelope inside the clear bag behind the actual card it will cover up the info on the back of the card.

If I leave the envelopes out (of the plastic bag) and put them in a stack behind the cards, I'm afraid people will either forget to take one, or the envelopes will get dirty and bent up.

The only thing I've come up with is to drape the card over the outside of the envelope and stick them both inside the clear display bag. This way you can see the photo on the front and read the info on the back of the card (does that make sense?). I'm just not sure it looks right from an aesthetic point of view...so, what are you guys doing?

Any advice from the veteran card makers would be most welcome!

Thanks everyone!
Kristy :)

10/9/2008 12:23:19 AM

 
Kathy Radford
BetterPhoto Member
Contact Kathy
Kathy's Gallery

member since: 1/2/2006
  Hi Kristy,

Oh, that's an easy one for me. I put the envelope inside the note card. I put then envelope with the seal flap on the right side because that way they stack better because the thickest side of the envelope is on the right side while the thickest side of the card is the folded side on the left. This will solve your problem very easy as now you have a complete view of both the front and the back side of your note card. I also put a code number on the back in the bottom left corner of the cards so I can find the photo easy if someone calls and wants to order more. Here is an Example: NHwinter08-123 This tells me my photo is in the folder NHwinter08 and it's the 123 photo in that folder. Now doesn't that may your life a lot easier. Good Luck and happy selling.
Kathy in NH

10/9/2008 2:42:44 AM

 
Roger M. Wells
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/7/2006
  Hi Kristy,
Somewhere in this thread someone mentioned that they sell prints by including "for prints e-mail at theiremailaddress@home.com" on the back of the card.

I haven't done this but have heard that it works and cuts cost. Attach a mailing label to the crystal clear resealable bag over the card back so it wont cover any of the image. No paper envelope. The people doing this swear they get sales from the exposure after the purchase and they are saving trees.
Roger

10/9/2008 8:47:31 AM

 
Kristy  M. Cannon

member since: 1/25/2008
  Ah, see, I knew I was amongst friends! Thank you! :)

I can tell you guys have been doing this a while and I knew you'd have an answer for me. I like your coding system Kathy, and I never thought about the "thickness of the card" issue, but that makes perfect sense. But I did end up sticking the envelope inside the card.

Roger, I do put clear address labels on the back of my clear bags but they say "Kristy Cannon Photography" and my website, both centered on the label. Then in the top right-hand corner of the same label I put the price of the card. It looks nice but there's not alot of room on those tiny address labels, and I would like to include "enlargements available" somewhere. But I guess it's still all a learning process too.

And the funny thing about this post...I actually forgot to include the envelopes with my first batch of sample cards. I just sealed up the cards in the clear bags! So, I have to let you know about that one, Roger!!!

Oh well, live and learn, LOL!

Thanks guys!
Kristy :)

10/9/2008 10:40:45 AM

 
Roger M. Wells
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/7/2006
 
 
  From the Dust
From the Dust
A Card Before Cropping. The Gray if for this post but not on the actual Print.
© Roger M. Wells
Miscellaneous Does...
 
 
Hi Kristy,
I think that there are two camps on making cards. One is a hand crafted the other a professional look. I prefer the latter. So I print directly to the card stock rather than cut and paste. I don't think that there is a right or wrong but I can produce a good looking piece for less money and time by printing on the card. I will try to upload a template to show you what it looks like. If you print boarders it is easy to center. Full bleed is a snap. One should always include the artists labor in their cost. If one is lucky enough to have massive sales and you needed help the allocation would cover their labor cost without wrecking your profit.
I have a friend that started a card sales venture a number of years ago. His wife created 6 designs that he sold for $1.00 (wholesale) each. Now his printing bill is over $20,000 a month. His minimum first order is a dozen dozen (144) per store. He has 4 sales people in the field and 2 more in office for reorders.
So don't set you goals on other peoples visions, use your own.
Have you called back on your original sale? Be prepared to accept a reorder.
Roger

10/9/2008 11:28:14 AM

 
Kristy  M. Cannon

member since: 1/25/2008
  That's very inspirational Roger! I am getting cards together for this weekend as I type this (I'm on just a little break at the moment).

Hopefully, a reorder will go off without a hitch, so I will be prepared just the same. Plus, I'm hoping to pick up another store this weekend, so wish me luck!

Sounds like your friend doesn't need any, as he is doing great! And you are too, so I'm happy to receive the mentorship!

Kristy :)

10/9/2008 3:43:51 PM

 
Kristy  M. Cannon

member since: 1/25/2008
  Hello again to all! :)

I have a different sort of question for you this time....

I was wondering how the economy has affected your greeting card business lately. Good; not so good; or hasn't been affected it at all as your vendors are still buying?

The reason I ask is because this past week didn't go as well as planned. And I was looking for some guidance (ok maybe a little encouragement too). So, hang tight while I give you the history.

History: two small tourist shops, each consistently slowing down for the season. One very small shop only bought one 8x10 print and 6 cards, (not card themes, just 6 individual cards).

The other store didn't buy anything at all. Instead, after being asked over the phone by a sales clerk if some of the cards could be swapped out--in which I told her no, and gently explained that after 6 months any of the card themes that weren't selling, I would gladly swap out any for her free of charge, still managed to get 6 cards swapped out anyway for free and didn't buy anything else. Plus the same shop requested me to take fall prints of the area, which I did and produced. Those were for consignment....and they didn't take those either.

There are several problems here: first, when I called the sales clerk ahead of time, she said the owner was not available and was going to be on vacation for a week. When I asked if there was another time I could call on them when the owner was back, I was told they didn't know their schedule but to bring the cards and prints by anyway for a look (because I was reassured the clerk still had the ability to make those decisions without the owner present). I told her my associate would be by this week to call on them, that I was unable to make the trip this time, but hoped she enjoyed the selection and to call me with any questions.

After the visit, my friend told me that the young sales clerk said that I must have 'misinterpreted' what they wanted because the greeting cards were not "tourist postcards" (like the postcards you see 3 for $1.00), even though they bought a sample pack of the same greeting cards before and knew what they were getting. (In fact, the owner gushed over them because she liked them so much.) Then she told my friend that she wanted to swap some cards out (even though I had already told her no), but the clerk was able to do so because she put my friend on the spot....and she swapped out HALF of the original sample set without paying for anything else! (Keep in mind, it's only been just shy of a month since they bought the original sample set and this was my first call back. I was hoping for a reorder for a larger amount of card themes so I could offer them a free card rack.)

Then the clerk said she didn't have enough "say" as to whether or not she could buy any of the prints or leave them on consignment---even though she told me to bring them!

So, I wasn't prepared for was the wasted time and effort put into dealing with a sales clerk who told me to send the items, and assured me she had buying power, when she didn't. Then she told us that even though they didn't tend to buy much over the winter months because their tourism slowed down, to come back by during the "middle of December with some Christmas type cards."

When do you guys get your Christmas cards out on the shelves? Doesn't that seem a little late?

Also, keep in mind the trip one way to see them is about 3.5 hrs away one way, so I was disappointed because I felt like it was such a fruitless venture and now I'm not sure when to call back on the owner.

10/17/2008 9:52:43 AM

 
Kristy  M. Cannon

member since: 1/25/2008
  continued....

Anyway, you might ask why I had a friend, (well really family member), take care of business for me? Well they have been associated with the project from the beginning and have had a mountain cabin residence in the area for many years, and they were the ones who helped to get the store on board in the beginning because they know the owner. So, I felt comfortable allowing them to show the cards in my absence.

So after that episode with the sales clerk, my friend decided to take the cards to yet another store several miles away but still in the same general area. They also know the owner and asked him to take a look at the cards and prints and see if he would maybe put some up in his store. The guy said, another person had tried to sell the same type of cards last year, but they didn't sell well at all, (at least in his shop) and then he hardly looked at the prints. So, my friend said, "Thank you very much," and left. Keep in mind that this area is surrounded by a national forest and several national parks, so there are a lot of tourists---when the season is in.

How many doors did you guys have to knock on before someone would say, "yes?" Is there a "right" time of year to go knocking on those doors, especially in a tourist area (i.e. spring, before spring, etc.)?

With all that said, I was a little bummed because I was being so optimistic for a reorder and instead got the run-around, with a lot of disappointment to boot.

Any suggestions? I'm not ready to give up at the first "no"....so? A morale boost...anyone? ;)

Thanks everyone.
Kristy

10/17/2008 9:54:23 AM

 
Roger M. Wells
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/7/2006
  Hi,
Two attempts do not a trend make. Good for you that you are exposing your artwork. Remember massive action gets massive results. The more mud you sling against the wall the more that sticks.
Don't let the natural market trend discourage you. Shop owners want to make money, products that sell will be purchased for resale. So question is "did any of the cards placed sell?" if yes how many?

One good thing about a down economy is there is less competition. A down economy will cause reduction in prices on goods. To maintain a price point through a bad patch one could offer incentives to shop owners. Example: Buy 12 get 3 free. The shop owners could then pass on the savings to stimulate sales by promoting a 25% off sale. If they are retailing at $4.00 then offering the cards at $3.00 could make impulse buying easier. The expense to you is cheaper than the gas and no sale. The shop owner is happy because you have helped make the cash register ring. In the end there are only two things that effect sales: 1. exposure. 2. Price.

Don't be afraid of the rejection, you will be successful in the direct proportion to the amount of rejection you can eat. "Little action gets little results".

Shop owners think that their sales are down because the economy is down but the real reason is their price is to high. They can wait until the demand returns or they can give buyers a reason to buy now, "a deal".

If some of your card sold and the shop didn't replace them, then there is some other reason that they wouldn't reorder. Possibly cash strapped
or.....
You might want to target shops that deal with the locals instead of tourist now. Target tourist spots just before the season starts.
In summery you are working on exposure, now you should work on price.
Hope this helps.
Roger M Wells

10/17/2008 10:43:27 AM

 
Kristy  M. Cannon

member since: 1/25/2008
  Thanks Roger....your words are true wisdom.

I think you may be correct about the shop being cash strapped, as their tourist season is dwindling. Granted it's only been about 3 weeks, and of the 15 sample cards they purchased outright, they've sold only 3. Who knows what could've happened over the weekend though as they were expecting an influx of visitors due to school being out for a long weekend and hunting season opening. So, I will keep my hopes high and do as you suggest...keep on slinging mud on the wall! :)

I believe one mistake I made was dealing with the young salesgirl (who unbeknownst to me was about 17)and not the owner. So, I think I will just deal with the shop owner from now on.

I like you idea about the incentive though. So, maybe I will try that next time too.

I will keep trying and let you know how it goes....oh and one more quick question? Has anyone sold their cards to a visitor center for a national or state park? Are there any specific concerns or permits you need?

Thanks again,
Kristy ;)

10/18/2008 2:31:48 PM

 
Robert A. McConnell
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 3/30/2005
  I have just found this string and am so pleased to get inspired by it!!! I have sold a few cards already but still have not covered my costs... go figure. I have had some luck with a local historical park where I am the offical photographer for some of their events. I spend a day with my camera and publish the results on my website for sale. I had out tons of business cards and have had great results. Great results if you don't count my time at the event. I give a percent back to the park. There has been interest in cards for the park so I will be putting all the great info from this string to work... what great info it is. Along the same lines I have found racks at yard sales and the local Hallmark actually gave me a card rack if I would move it for them. If you can make contact with some of the local business people there are deals to be had. I currently have more racks than stores but I expect that to change any day now. Thank you everyone for the inspiration!!!

12/12/2008 12:06:02 AM

 

To participate in the Forum, become a BetterPhoto member or Sign In.
 

Copyright 1996-2014 BetterPhoto.com, Inc. All Rights Reserved.