Even though email greeting cards have gained some traction in the marketplace, nothing beats receiving a printed card in the mail with a personal message. If you have an artistic talent, either as a graphic designer, illustrator, artist or writer, creating greeting cards can be a profitable venture.
There are two basic directions to take with your greeting card business. The first is to serve as a freelancer for the established greeting card companies. As a freelancer, you create the card ideas and submit them to the company. They will purchase the ones they like and you are paid a one-time purchase price for the card idea. This allows you to focus entirely on creating cards that will appeal to a broad range of consumers.
The other option is to create your own cards. This means that you will not only come up with the concept, but do the artwork, manage printing and handle all the marketing and fulfillment yourself. The cost of producing your own cards will be higher than freelancing (printing cards is not cheap), but you will have total control over your business.
You can also do low run, custom cards. These aren’t printed. Rather, each is handmade for a specific client, who pays you a set per-card fee for the card and the envelope. The ideal market for these handmade cards are individuals who are planning parties or special occasions and small businesses who send holiday cards out to their client base. We know of one business that had special Christmas cards created with three-dimensional miniature lights on the front. They were a real hit with clients.
There are plenty of resources available on creating a greeting card business. For example, Bizy’s Guide to Operating a Greeting Card Writing Business covers a wide range of topics, including how to find your ideas, what greeting companies are the best to work with, how much money you can expect to get for cards, tricks of the trade and common mistakes to avoid.