Today we’d like to introduce you to Cody and Katie Gibbs.
Cody and Katie, please share your story with us.
We are a husband/wife team living and working in the heart of Los Angeles with our two sons (5 and 2). Katie is a professional photographer and visual storyteller. Cody’s background is in advertising and analytics.
We’ve always loved the idea of giving handwritten cards to our friends and family for all their birthdays, anniversaries, and special holidays. In spite of this, we really struggled to make this a reality. As we talked about why we couldn’t seem to get it together, we identified three major pain obstacles we were facing:
1. It’s hard to remember occasions ahead of time.
2. Buying cards can be inconvenient.
3. It’s hard to find high-quality cards on grocery store aisles.
We thought if we could create a service that solves these problems while preserving the experience of a handwritten card, that could be something that delivers real value.
With that we began work on Pen & Post in January 2017, working on it with whatever spare time we could find between our careers and take care of our kids. We launched a beta version of the site in October 2017 and officially launched in January 2018.
Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
The biggest obstacle we have faced so far was in the development of the website. Our model is not that of a monthly subscription box, where all subscribers receive the same items each month. Nor is a traditional e-commerce site where items are purchased and shipped immediately. We are a unique service that runs on an annual subscription where all dates, names, and card selections are unique to each customer.
Please tell us about Pen & Post.
Pen & Post makes it easier for you to send handwritten notes on beautiful cards to the people you love. We are an annual subscription where users come to our site, select cards for all their important occasions, and receive each card (+ optional stamp) in the mail 10 days before each occasion. In addition to this, they get email reminders to write and send their card as their occasion approaches. Our system remembers every important date so next year, all customers have to do is take a few minutes to select new cards and they are done card setting up their cards for their loved ones for another year.
There are many companies that have introduced tech-heavy solutions into the greeting card market. Years ago we saw the rise of ecards, which solved the convenience problem but eventually became so pervasive that the novelty was lost. There are more companies now that are offering to print your message onto a card (some using unique handwriting fonts) and send directly to your recipient. While there is certainly a market for this, we feel there is no adequate substitute for the experience of receiving something from someone you love, on a physical piece of paper, written in their own handwriting.
For people who share our values, our goal is to provide a service that eliminates the unnecessary pain points in greeting card buying, while preserving the thoughtful and sacred experience of writing and delivering beautiful cards to their loved ones.
A note on quality, all of our cards are sourced from the top card designers and are made using the highest quality materials and printing methods, most are letterpressed and foil stamped.
What are your plans for the future? What are you looking forward to or planning for – any big changes?
We are focusing now on our core offering – beautiful cards, delivered to your door, right when you need them. We have many improvements coming that will help make it easier to keep track of all their name/date/card combinations. We are also developing more partnerships with influential artists across other categories (our first being Amanda Jane Jones which launched in March) to bring to life their unique designs and add them to our collection.
We have a few surprises coming as well for our existing customers.
For the long-term, we are thinking about other areas where we can help people connect with each other in meaningful ways.
- Our pricing is $6 per card per year.
- Shipping is $0.50 per card.
- Stamps can be included as an add-on to each card at $0.49 each.
- Address: 9900 CULVER BOULEVARD
CULVER CITY, CA 90232
- Website: penandpost.com
- Phone: (310) 741-7028
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org