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How To Publish Your Own Greeting Cards
Paper Product Market
Almost every business has a potential market for greeting cards. In this field of photography, the photographer must learn to sell their products and become a salesman, whether it's greeting cards, postcards, playing cards, calendars, posters, wallpaper designs and stationary. The list goes on. The requirements are very similar in the paper product market that if one of your photos gets rejected by a certain manufacturer, it may get approved by another. Always study your market and research current trends.
The greeting card market is constantly changing. While the standard cards use favorites such as landscape and scenery, the marketplace is elusive and in demand of the contemporary scenes like love and romance. Study greeting card displays and captions that jump out at you. There is a market for everything. The freelance photographer's responsibility is to find the right market in which best suits their interest. What pictures sell the best? How-to, animals and pets, babies and children, landscapes, on work locations, weddings and legal photography are mainly the top sellers. Or do you specialize in a particular interest? If so, just knowing a subject well, you can have an advantage over your competitors. By nature, your photographs may be difficult or impossible to capture for the average photographer. The greeting card industry still remains strong even with the threat of e-cards. If you have a talent for photography, painting, calligraphy and writing- this is for you.
Publish Your Greeting Cards
Greeting card publishing is very competitive. You have one of two options on how to publish your own greeting cards. You can either freelance your way into the greeting card industry or create your own line, your own business. Either way, you can make a profit from the comfort of your home. Selling greeting cards can be a challenging business to pursue, given the expense of quality materials needed to make your own cards and the complexity of copyrighting your cards, plus the risk it will be pirated. Don't let that discourage you from publishing your cards professionally. Here are some tips on how to publish your own greeting cards.
If you are a photographer who wants to make a profit selling greeting cards, try taking your greeting cards to a local boutique or card shop. Ask the manager if they could carry them a few months to see how well they will sell. Look at the names of the manufacturers imprinted on the back of greeting cards. Try contacting these greeting card companies for permission to submit your samples and determine if they license outside designs. Write each company of interest and ask for their guidelines. Enclose a self addressed stamped envelope with your request. Always inquire first before sending in your samples or photography. Never send your original photos or cards. Only send prints or high quality Xerox copies. Also try seeking local nonprofits and specialty associations and ask if they could use your designs and/or photos on cards. Consider working with a distributor, being that large stores are difficult to pursue. A distributor or sales rep might help you get more orders, but require a percentage of your earnings. Many greeting card companies fear copyright lawsuits and chances are your cards will get rejected for that reason. So you may need an agent to get to the next level of approval.
Paper Product Buyers
→ Freedom Greetings, 1619 Hanford St., Levittown, PA 19057, 1-800-359-3301
→ Greeting Card Association, United House, North Road, London N7 9DP