How many times have you thought about sending a card to someone to say “Happy Birthday,” “Thank You,” or simply, “Hello,” when life interrupts and thwarts your moment of good intention? No doubt, nothing compares to receiving a tangible card in your mailbox, old-school style, from a friend, family member, new acquaintance or co-worker who has taken the time to purchase the card, put pen to paper, buy a stamp and mail it directly to your address. But oh-so-often, the fast-paced nature of life leaves us resorting to a quick Facebook message, an email, or—with slightly more effort—a digital online card. All lovely, if you don’t know about ThankYouPro, which in my humble opinion leaves no good excuse for not sending a card.
ThankYouPro puts the power of sending a semi-glossy, heavy stock greeting card—just like the ones you buy from the store—right at your fingertips with their free mobile app for the iPhone, iPad or iPod touch. That way, when you think about sending a card, you can create it and have it sent off to be printed and mailed First Class, in roughly one minute (Yes, I timed it!) Choose from a variety of predesigned cards, or use a photo to create the cover. On the inside, type in your special note, then change the font color, alignment and handwriting style—there are several options to choose from. I particularly love the fact you can add your own handwritten signature at the bottom using your finger or a stylus pen. There’s also a place on the bottom left where you can add another photo or a company logo. Once you’ve added a signature and/or photo, you can move them around on the page. You can also decide to leave both the signature and logo sections blank, if you’d rather write more text.
When you’re done creating your personalized card, you can Send It by entering a street address or pulling one up from your contact list on your phone. The entire cost is $2.99 for the card, postage and delivery, unless you’re mailing it internationally, in which case you simply use more “Stamps.” Now, if you want to turn your sentiment into an actual present, you now have the option to add a real gift card to be enclosed inside. Choose an amount you’d like to give to be used at popular stores like wine.com, Zappos, Sports Authority, Spa Finder, REI, Dominos and many others. Voila—your gift is in the mail! ThankYouPro also offers several ways to send your card digitally, without any cost at all. You can send it by email or share it on Facebook—both great if time is of the essence, but remember, nothing beats the real deal.
Being a self-proclaimed mobile app connoisseur, I must confess, when I discovered ThankYouPro, I was misled by the name into thinking I could only send “Thank You” cards, and already had my favorite postcard-sending app, ShootIt (still a thumbs up). But trust me, this is the “go to” for any kind of folded, glossy, sealed-in-an-envelope kind of card you want to send. Just open the categories menu and you can select predesigned card templates for Anniversaries, Birthdays, Congratulations, Sympathy/Get Well or simply, Thinking of You. And, with a little imagination, you can have your very own custom card factory—and you don’t have to buy in bulk. Did I mention they mail to ANYWHERE in the world?
Here are just a few ideas to get those creative juices flowing for the Art of the Card.
Postcards—Send a note back home from anywhere in the country. Snap a shot of the kids in front of the Eiffel Tower, and use the photo as the card cover to the Grandparents.
Birthday—Snap a special birthday photo to make the day extra meaningful.
Baby Photos—Create the perfect baby announcement. Also send quarterly updates on baby’s growth.
Kid’s Birthday Invites & Thank You’s—As your child opens each present, snap a shot of him holding the gift, then shoot it off to thank the guest who gave it. You can also create a unique theme photo to use for sending out the invitations.
Mother’s Day/Father’s Day—Find an old photo and take a picture of it. Or let your child draw something, then snap a photo of it for the cover of the card to the Grandparents.
Happy Anniversary—Use a photo from the wedding, or earlier times when you were just dating or create a private message only “he/she” will appreciate.
Invitations—Use these cards for dinner parties, cocktail hours, baby or wedding showers, sleepovers, girl’s night, Super Bowl/Oscar/Grammys/Halloween parties or whatever else you can dream up.
Thinking of You/Remember When—Brighten up someone’s day with a photo from the past and a thoughtful message from today.
Get Well Soon—Let someone know you wish them well. Take a photo of your recipe for chicken soup and make it the cover. Be creative.
In Deepest Sympathy/Loss of a Pet—Bypass the row of Sympathy cards, which just never seem to say what you want. Make your own. Send a hug, a quote, or simply let the person know you are there.
Note from your child—Let him or her draw the cover, (take a photo of the drawing) then write the message inside. Add a photo of your child in the bottom left corner.
Christmas/Hanukkah—Create one card, send it to 50 folks in your contact list. Use the Groups feature in your address book to create a holiday list you can revisit annually.
Teacher Appreciation Day—Let your child make this one. Create the cover by drawing and then photographing it: “Why I love Miss McKeown: “ Then give 5-10 darned good reasons why on the inside. Let him sign it.
Secretary’s Day—Snap a shot of your assistant hard at work.
Congratulations!—Take a shot of the whole gang cheering proudly.
You Can Do It!/Good Luck—Give encouragement in a way that only you can. Add a photo of your lucky charm.
Valentines Day—Surprise the class with personalized, professionally-made cards like no one else! Spell out “Crush,” “Cute,” “Fun,” or “BFFs” in Red Hots or candy hearts for a cover.
Interviews—On the way out the door, take a photo of the company logo on the wall and make it the cover of your Thank You card. Send it right from the spot, and you’ll get bonus points for creativity, inventiveness and promptness.
We Have Moved—Take a shot of your new home for the cover, then put your new address, new phone number and new email address inside.
Happy House Warming—Send a note to welcome someone new to the neighborhood. Put tips inside on where to go, what to do, and local places to shop. Add your phone number, and you’ve added a new friend for life.
Nice to Meet You—It’s never too late to make new friends. Broaden your circles by letting someone know you appreciate the new friendship.
All Holidays—An easy way to say Happy New Year, Happy Halloween, Happy Thanksgiving, Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Happy Easter…you get the idea.
There are just too many ways to express yourself to someone, and for every time you want to reach out, few things other than a personal visit compare to receiving a card—especially a custom made one from you. There are a slew of photo apps and other tools available to further make your one-of-a-kind notes even more interesting . Here’s what I use to spruce up my cover photos. Edit them first in your app of choice, save to photos, then upload them as you cover shots. You can use these designs repeatedly under My Designs in ThankYouPro.
Cool Photo Apps:
PerfectPhoto—Great for cropping, effects, and adjusting lighting.
Comic Touch—Add a cartoon caption, talk- or thought-bubble to your cover photo to really make it speak.
Picture Frames—Make a mosaic of several photos for you front cover.
Color Effects—Turn your photo to black and white, then partially remove the filter using your fingertip or stylus. This creates a spot color effect.
Vintique—Edit your photo using filters, frames and text to create the look you like.
Snapseed—Same as above, different user experience.
Photofunia—Choose from many zany templates to create an unexpected photo.
1. Use QR Codes. Add a personal QR code to the bottom left corner of the inside of your card. You can create it for free at newcard.com and make it link to your website to promote your business. Once you’ve created it, take a screen shot, either from your iPhone (press the power button at the top right while pressing the selection circle at the bottom. The screen grab saves to your photos.) Or from your computer screen (Mac: Press Shift+Command+4 then drag across the area you want to photograph) Upload the cropped photo of the QR code as a photo inside your ThankYouPro card.
2. Draw Your Covers. If you like to draw, download Art Studio on your iPhone or iPad. I use it to create what I call, DailyDoodles. Save your drawings as photos and you’ll truly have custom covers for the cards you send.
3. Use Groups. Be sure to keep your phone’s address book up to date. Use groups to create group lists so you can easily find the people you want to send cards to.
4. Be Consistent. Who are you as a brand? How about your company as brand? Consider creating a special visual or verbal signature to add alongside of your name every time you send a message. Add that to your business card and email signature as well. Could be a quote or an icon. “Do what you love. Love what you do.” is mine.
5. Businesses: Send Out Promotions or Discounts. Say thank you to special customers by sending them a special discount code in your Thank You card. Talk about a loyalty program!!!
6. Keep Your Account Full of Stamps. Always keep plenty of stamps in your ThankYouPro account so you can send cards on a moment’s notice without having to add funds.
Those who follow GoTechMom know I only write about products or services I either use, have tested or researched and that I truly believe in. In this case, being an avid user of ThankYouPro, I emailed the company to ask if I could share their product and give both my readers (as well as myself !) a discount on Stamps. So now, thanks to ThankYouPro, after you download the free app, you’ll receive a special GoTechMom discount of 10% off your Stamp purchases. “Stamp” is ThankYouPro’s term for all the printing, USPS stamps and delivery to the post office. Just add the Promo Code “Mom” to receive your 10% discount on your stamp purchases, and I’ll get a discount, too! Gratitude is contagious!