Cards 4U, an innovative promotional and postcard printing and distribution service, has adopted a new concept to cut through the clutter and reach the target customers. The company puts up display boards at strategic locations, where attractive postcards are placed in holders below the board and are available for free.
The company has put up such displays in upscale bars, restaurants, lounges, coffee shops, book shops as well as cultural centers, which are frequented by the target audience – young affluent urbanites in the 18-40 age group with spending power.
The advertiser is not only able to communicate to its target audience via the display, but the free printed takeaway postcards also ensure that the product communication is carried on long after the person has left the display venue. Though this concept is relatively new to India, it is quite popular in the US, the UK and several European countries, Singapore, Indonesia and China. In China, postcard advertising is now being used by big ad spenders like Christian Dior, Walls, Nokia, Sony, L’Oreal, and Legend to name a few.
Cards 4U is an innovative initiative introduced by Noreen Van Holstein and Jan Berings. The company is currently operating only in India. Launched in Delhi in 2005, Cards 4U currently has offices in Mumbai and Bangalore. The company plans to expand to Hyderabad, Kolkata and Pune soon.
Said Berings, Marketing Manager, Cards 4U, “We try and make these postcards interesting by putting social messages or information on city happenings and change the designs every month to keep it fresh. Our cards are very different from fliers, which is cheap advertising. Great care is taken to ensure that the graphic designs are aesthetically beautiful.”
The company monitors the number of free postcards picked up and a comprehensive report on the campaign is sent to the client. Berings said, “We try not to communicate cheap. Our advertising is nice, subtle communication.” The company has roped in freelancers to help create designs for some of their clients.
The Cards4U management is also keen to create a wide platform so that it can be used to give exposure to various artists and social issues. “It keeps the platform beautiful, interesting and can open the eyes of youngsters. A platform with only advertisements would be something completely different. Without these campaigns we would not be able to create this platform. Outlets would start charging us for being an advertisement company using their space,” Berings further said.