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Media & Publishing

Niche Greeting Cards

Let others use your unique perspective to express themselves–with a niche greeting card biz.

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Business At A Glance

Niche Greeting Cards

Startup Costs: $2,000 – $10,000
Home Based: Can be operated from home.
Part Time: Can be operated part-time.
Online Operation? Yes

Business Overview

If you love picking out and sending just the right card for everyoccasion, and if you’re a whiz at designing that perfect card yourself,then niche greetings cards is the business for you. This is a fieldwith room for growth, and while the big players like Hallmark do tendto dominate the market, most of the country’s more than 1,800 greetingcard companies are small ones.

You can help businesses develop andmaintain a rapport with their clientele by sending customized cards forspecial occasions. You can also send cards announcing clients’ specialevents and even embellish cards with your customers’ signatures andlogos. You’ll purchase blank cards at wholesale prices and, dependingon the size of each project, imprint the message on your own printer,have them imprinted commercially, or design and print each card on yourown computer system.

Or you can go the retail route and design cardsfor the regular consumer market. The advantages to this business arethat you can start part time, it’s fun and creative, and it’s a warm,fuzzy, feel-good business–even though you don’t see the recipients ofyour cards, you know they’re enjoying them. For this business, you’llneed a sense of fun, creativity and–the flip side of the coin–goodorganizational and time-management skills. When you send out cards forbusiness clients, you need to stay on top of things. But you’ll need tostay far ahead of the calendar with a retail design business, too.Winter holiday cards hit the stores soon after Halloween, and Mother’sDay missives appear soon after St. Patty’s Day–which means that you’llhave to have yours designed, printed and ready to ship even earlier.

The Market

For custom corporate cards, your clients will, of course, be otherbusinesses. You can target just about any type, but your best bets willbe those who need to stay firmly established in their customers’ minds,like doctors, dentists, insurance agents, real estate brokers,apartment managers, car salespeople, hair stylists and shopkeepers.

Anddon’t forget those corporate types with customers, vendors andsuppliers all over the country. Sign up these clients by–howelse?–sending them greeting cards. Design a catchy card that explainsyour business, then follow up by phoning for an appointment to showyour card portfolio. Send a one-time mailing of your cards for acharitable organization free of charge–make sure the cards mentionyour company and what you do.

Use this same mailing to get write-ups inlocal publications. While out and about town, ask business owners ifthey’re planning a sale or promotion, then offer your services to sendout card announcements. If you choose the retail road, you’ll sell toretailers or distributors. You can start out small by selling yourwares to local specialty shops and boutiques or shoot for sales repsand distributors by displaying your products at trade shows like theNational Stationery Show held each May in New York City. (Call GeorgeLittle Management at 914-421-3200 or go to www.glmshows.com for moreinformation.)

Needed Equipment

You’ll need a computer, a high-quality color printer, a scanner,greeting card or desktop publishing software, and–if you’ll be takingthe custom corporate route–database software for maintaining mailinglists and a resale license for buying cards at wholesale prices.

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Media & Publishing

Stock Watch Publication

Use writing and stock market know-how to develop your own publication.

Entrepreneur

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Business At A Glance

Stock Watch Publication

Startup Costs: $10,000 – $50,000
Home Based: Can be operated from home.
Part Time: Can be operated part-time.
Online Operation? No

Business Overview

Do you have a publishing background andadvertising sales experience? If so, you can put it to good use bystarting a business that publishes a weekly stock watch report. Thestock watch publication can be distributed free of charge throughoutthe community and feature information and articles on world stockmarkets, publicly-traded companies and, of course, stock tips.

Theinformation featured in the publication can be provided by localinvestment brokers and financial planners. Revenues can be earned byselling advertising space in the publication to stockbrokers, realestate agents, investment advisors and banks to promote their financialproducts and services.

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Media & Publishing

Puzzle and Game Books

Combine fun and local advertising by starting a puzzle and game book publication.

Entrepreneur

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Business At A Glance

Puzzle and Game Books

Startup Costs: $2,000 – $10,000
Home Based: Can be operated from home.
Part Time: Can be operated part-time.
Online Operation? No

Business Overview

Here is a great home based desktoppublishing business to activate in any community. Sudoku, trivia,crossword puzzles and word search games are hot, and starting abusiness that creates puzzles and game books combined with couponsfeaturing discounts on products and services provided by localmerchants has the potential to make you rich.

The booklets could besold locally through participating retailers that have advertisementsand discount coupons featured in the book. Additionally, as a method todrive sales and interest in the game booklets, consider establishing analliance with a local charity, wherein a portion of the revenuesgenerated by book sales goes back to support community charity programs.

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Media & Publishing

Taxi Cab Publication

If you’ve ever been stuck in traffic during a cab ride, then you can probably see the appeal of an in-taxi publication to pass the time. You’ll have plenty of advertising clients who will also want to take advantage of this audience.

Entrepreneur

Published

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Business At A Glance

Taxi Cab Publication

Startup Costs: $2,000 – $10,000
Home Based: Can be operated from home.
Part Time: Can be operated part-time.
Online Operation? No

Business Overview

Starting a taxi cab publication will takesome clever negotiations skills to accomplish, but like any newbusiness venture the effort is generally rewarded financially for thedetermined entrepreneurs that take the initiative.

A taxi cabpublication is simply a daily or weekly two-page paper that isdistributed free of charge for taxi customers to enjoy during theirride. The paper can feature information about the local community, aswell as trivia and games. Revenues are earned by sellingdisplay-advertising space in the paper to local business owners andprofessionals.

Ideally, the business could be formed as a joint venturewith an established printer who can produce the newspaper, while youconcentrate on the marketing and sales aspects of the business. Onceestablished and proven successful, the business could easily beexpanded by a franchise or licensed-to-operate basis nationally.

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