Business

Port Orchard home greeting card company joins old, new

Dave Rill goes over his greeting card inventory with his 11-year-old daughter Mackenzie.  - Charlie Bermant/Staff Photo
Dave Rill goes over his greeting card inventory with his 11-year-old daughter Mackenzie.
— image credit: Charlie Bermant/Staff Photo

Traditional concept getting a high-tech application

Not too long ago, sending a greeting card was the best way to let someone you were thinking about them, to commemorate a special occasion or expressing wishes of congratulations or sympathy.

While e-mail hasn’t completely killed off the greeting card, it’s becoming increasingly more common for someone to send such sentiments electronically than take the trouble to buy and send a card.

With that in mind, a Port Orchard family has invested in a greeting card business that combines the old and the new. Customers log on to a Web site and create a card that reflects an occasion or sentiment.

They then add a message, insert a picture and issue a mouse command.

In a day or two the card will arrive at its intended destination.

And more often than not, the recipient will react with surprise and glee. After all, they haven’t gotten a personal greeting card in years.

“This is a good way to let people know how you feel,” said David Rill, who with his wife Lori represents a company called Send Out Cards. “If someone does something nice for you, then you can tell them. People are more likely to keep a card and go back to it than an e-mail, which they usually read and delete.”

Rill said the card service is useful on both personal and professional levels. Aside from a commemoration, a sender can put together a custom message to a new acquaintance or business prospect.

This is sure to make an impression, when the sender makes a subsequent sales call or inquiry.

The service also has the ability to reduce holiday stress. Instead of a table full of messy cards and scrawled messages, it is possible to assemble and send greetings to an entire Christmas list with a click of the mouse.

By developing a custom card, the family and the dog in front of the tree, you can save a trip to the printer.

Most importantly, there will be no need to spend valuable shopping minutes in a post office line.

The Rills are familiar around Port Orchard, because the family owns the Life Tribute Center. They already have a sign business manufacturing tribute candles.

This new venture, which required them to invest time and money, appeals to David Rill because it combines modern technology with human interaction.

“A card can give you a warm and fuzzy feeling,” he said. “We can use more emotion in today’s world.”

Rill’s customers have a variety of options, costing from $25 to $400. This has to do with how many cards someone wants to send and how fancy they want them to be.

While the basic price allows only a small number of pre-configured cards, one option creates a font based on your own handwriting. So your cards have messages that appear to be written in your own hand.

Rill said that recent economic downturns have affected his business, but the low cost of business (located at home with no overhead costs) has minimized this.

“This is all computer-based,” he said. “We can run the business from our desk.”

Rill said that everyone he talks to about the idea wants to give it a try.

“This is a great system that is easy to use,” he said. “And it can help you to build and maintain relationships.”

To use the service, go to www.sendoutcards.com/davidandlori.

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