Four thousand years ago, clay was the medium of choice for letters. While papyrus might have been a thing, it was rare and the educated people in ancient Egypt and surrounding areas used clay tablets and clay envelopes as stationary.
For millennia, we communicated with stationary. First tablets, then scrolls, then books and letters and pamphlets. Then the internet arose and many predicted the death of the letter.
Yet, we wake up every day to find our mailbox stuffed to the brim with paper. We still send “thank you” cards and family Christmas photo postcards. Stationary is far from dead and in fact, it’s lucrative.
That’s why we’re going to make money. Keep scrolling to find out how you can take advantage of this ancient art by selling stationary.
1. Draft a Plan
As with any business, you should know what you’re getting into. What are the costs? Who is your market? When will you break even?
Start with your inventory costs because your stationery is the thing making you money.
This part gets tricky. Ask yourself, “how much work am I willing to put into my product?” The most expedient way to make money with stationary is to be the middleman.
You do the marketing, you build the brand and someone else sends you the stationery or dropships it to Amazon Fulfillment. If you don’t, then you must design and build your inventory yourself.
2. Design Your Stationary
At this point, you have two choices. Design your own line of stationary or create a custom stationery business.
If you’re creating a custom stationery company, then you’ll need to buy or code software that allows customers to design their own. You could collect various sample letterhead templates and create design templates to make it easier for customers to create their own stationery.
Your designs can be as granular or overarching as you like. If you’re artistic, you could draw symbols, scenes, figures, and the like and upload them to your custom design software.
3. Use the Enemy
Email really isn’t the enemy of stationery even if people in the 80s and 90s thought it might be. Email and social media marketing are going to be your friends when it comes to selling your stationery and building your brand.
Start with an email list. Use ads to draw people to a landing page on your site. Offer free stationery for anyone who signs up for your email newsletter.
Send out weekly email newsletters with Mailchimp or a similar program. Entice people in said emails to buy your stationery or order a sampler pack.
Offer various sampler packs. These could include thank you cards, letter stationery, etc. Depending on what sample pack they buy, you can then send even more targeted emails to those specific customers.
Lastly, call them to action with target emails. Remind them why they need your stationery.
You may not make much money at first. Time is the great grower. Take the time to woo new customers through ads and email.
Marketing is where you should spend a large chunk of your budget. Marketing is only second to your stationery inventory.