Postcards From the Social Media Edge: Postagram

Considering our ever-more-digital world, with the U.S. Post Office teetering on bankruptcy, the decline of print media, and increasing social-connectedness, it’s with pleasure that I’m writing about a recent discovery: Postagram.

Send postcards from you iPhone and Android devices with Postagram.

Send postcards from your iPhone and Android devices with Postagram.

Remember Getting Mail When You Were A Kid?

That was a big deal! Birthday card, handwritten letter, or even a postcard – that was something to get excited about. But since it’s so easy to email or post a photo online, why bother sending anything even resembling a postcard these days? That’s where Postagram comes in for iPhone and Android users.

Getting Mail is Fun

Made by Sincerely, Inc. Postagram brings back the old fun of getting mail to the new fun of being digitally connected – AND mobile photography (you can imagine the geek-thrill this brings me). Using photos already on your mobile device, you upload a picture via the Postagram app, type out a quick message, and Postagram sends a physical postcard in the mail to your recipient with your image. Your recipient is stored in your address book on the site, along with your billing information for easy sending in the future. It’s a whopping $.99 to send a card.

I may never buy another physical postcard again

I did this a couple of weeks ago for Valentine’s day, sending my awesome wife a card in remembrance our prior Valentine’s experience at this restaurant where, for dessert, they have a special all-gelato spaghetti & meatballs. It’s awesome:

Trevi Italian Restaurant - Gelato Master Hank Sbraccia’s Spaghetti Ice serves up plenty of double takes—it’s a brimming pasta bowl of fresh homemade vanilla gelato strands acting as the spaghetti, chocolate gelato scoops as the meatballs, strawberry sauce as the mariana and shaved white chocolate as the Parmesan. “When I make gelato, you’re going to remember it,” Sbraccia says.

Of course, I took a picture of this after our romantic dinner 12 months ago and kept it in my phone.

Trevi Gelato Spaghetti Caesars Palace

It's all gelato except for the freshly ground white chocolate on top. This photo does not do it justice. Trevi, Caesars Palace.

Now this year, having discovered Postagram, I had a cool pic ready to try out the product with. I sent this to her office address for a twist on having flowers sent to work (in addition to handling the flowers on my own, duh).

Unfortunately, here’s where things take a turn, because although I did this a week ahead of time, my Postagram got lost in the mail. No biggie; we had a fine day nevertheless. I did contact customer service the next day, who within minutes apologized, explaining that they’d been having issues over the holiday, and immediately righted the situation with a replacement. Even though the moment had passed, I appreciate a good customer service experience, and this was one.

Keep The Fun Going: Social Media

The real bonus of all this is one thing I discovered in my research: your Postagram remains online, with social media sharing built-in. I had no idea about this, since I handled the entire process weeks earlier quickly on my phone, then archived the receipt email. But in looking up the order number, I noticed the link. So while I was waiting for the replacement card to be sent, I was able to send my wife a link to the original card with the photo and my text online. I emailed this to her and also posted it on Twitter. We’re both social media geeks that way.

Postagram by rsmithing

My awesome Postagram card, created on my phone, sent through the mail. You can also select an image for the "from" portion, and the main image pops out of the card as a standalone keepsake.

Returning the Favor with PR

Since my customer service experience was so positive, and since they mentioned they’d been having issues I thought I’d return the favor for Postagram by offering some sample tweets in our final email exchange they could send that might head off issues similar to the one I’d had:

  • Sorry about missing orders – but you can still send some Twitter love. Check your order email for the link!
  • Did you know you can Tweet a Postagram? See your confirmation email & click “Tweet”
  • Digital and traditional messages meet via tweet: Postagram postcards are Tweeetable!
  • Postagram not arrive? Do it digitally right now – here’s how [link to full blog post on how-to]
  • Relive the magic – follow up your Postagram with a Tweet [blog link]
They didn’t take me up on my tweet consulting, but they did express their appreciation, and did in fact send the replacement card as promised, which my awesome wife loved, even a few days after Valentine’s. So we’re keeping the fun going here even a week later.
From table to phone to postcard: Postagram.

From table to phone to postcard to my wife's desk: Postagram.

I’ll very likely use Postagram in the future, not only because of the good customer service, but also as a unique and easy way to keep in touch with my non-socially connected friends and relatives (and my social-networking-connected friends, just to freak them out with actual mail). They even recently integrated with one of my favorite photo-editing apps, PhotoForge2, with the functionality of sending cards right from within the app. Now I can send my creepy bug photos through the mail – excellent!

What do you think? Have you ever sent or received a card via Postagram or a similar service? When was the last time you sent a physical postcard? Will you be inclined to try something like Postagram next time you want to send a postcard? Let us hear from you in the comments!

7 thoughts on “Postcards From the Social Media Edge: Postagram

  1. Pingback: Stuff You May Have Missed: February 2012 « rsmithing

  2. lifewithgusto

    I think this sounds brilliant. I love getting mail, and sending, though I do rather suck at sending things like thank-you cards. This might be a way to get me to do that more often and in a more interesting way. I’m glad to have found your blog, Richard. Cheers, Jess.

    Reply
  3. Doctor Popular (from Sincerely)

    Hey Richard thanks so much for your feedback. I love some of the slogans you created for us, especially “Did you know you can Tweet a Postagram? See your confirmation email & click ‘Tweet'”. I think there are many users who may have missed our social sharing options, and we are working on ways of communicating that feature more effectively.

    I’m sorry to hear that your first card didn’t reach it’s destination, but I’m glad we were able to quickly send a replacement out. It’s icky when cards get lost in the mail, but luckily it’s a very rare occurrence and we are always glad to send out replacements for any lost or damaged cards.

    It’s great that you are digging the Send a Card feature in Photoforge 2. I’m a fan as well. Our Sincerely Ship SDK is in a few great apps, and more are constantly getting added. One that I like playing with is Interlacer for cool experimental images. You can see a list of our Ship apps here http://dev.sincerely.com/partners I’ve also added some credits to your account to try out more Postagrams or Sincerely Ship partners.

    Thanks again for sharing your thoughts and reaching out to us about your card. Please let us know if you ever have any more questions or concerns.

    Reply
    1. rsmithing

      Wow! A link to more apps to explore, props for tweet-spin, and some bonus credits. This might be the best comment ever :)thank you very much, my good man!

      Please feel free to use those tweets anytime – glad you like ‘em, and I’m glad to have contributed. To your point of communicating that feature more effectively, you’re definitely on to something. I would have tweeted my missing card sooner had I known/remembered that functionality. Maybe a follow-up email to purchasers along the lines of “Your Postagram has been sent – check it out!” with a link to the file, or a follow up of “Thanks for your business – spread the love.” You get the idea.

      Speaking of love, it looks like we’re both getting some on Twitter today. Check out these stats from RetweetRank – that’s 13,196 potential views from retweets there. I’m certain less than 1% noticed or clicked through, but still, not bad for some earned media, right?

      Again, my true thanks. Keep up the good work, and I definitely look forward to news of Postagram’s & Sincerely’s continued success.

      Reply
    1. rsmithing

      Glad you dig this. :) I should say: I don’t work for Postagram; just enjoy the convergence of media. And blogging about it. Hey – let us know if you use the app and how it works out for you!

      Reply

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