My Queue

There are no Videos in your queue.

Click on the Add to next to any video to save to your queue.

There are no Articles in your queue.

Click on the Add to next to any article to save to your queue.

There are no Podcasts in your queue.

Click on the Add to next to any podcast episode to save to your queue.

You're not following any authors.

Click the Follow button on any author page to keep up with the latest content from your favorite authors.

Wish You Were Here

People don't open junk mail, so send a postcard. All they have to do is turn it over.
Magazine Contributor
2 min read

This story appears in the March 2002 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

Q: How would you suggest we first introduce our new business to customers--via postcard or letter, for example-since our service is time--sensitive, new and not driven by repeat clients?
Name withheld

A: You'll do better with postcards. We've known for a long time that many people don't open envelopes, but now, due to anthrax scares, people are even less inclined to open letters from strangers.

Fortunately, postcards are less expensive to produce--and you can even create them with your own computer and printer. Try Microsoft Publisher, which offers various postcard templates, including some that use postcard stock available from Paper Direct.

An effective postcard accomplishes several things: It prompts some customers to phone you, and it inspires others to find out more about your business by logging on to your Web site (assuming your URL appears on the postcard). At a bare minimum, your postcard should prompt potential customers to remember something positive about your business. Effective postcards communicate something important, and some customers even hold on to them for future reference.

Because postcards have a limited amount of space, having a memorable business name and a logo that conveys your business are two shortcuts for making a great impression. Most important, though, you must succinctly state how your product or service--whether it's cleaning windows or repairing computers--will help the recipient of the postcard, and why you're the company to do the work.

Paul and Sarah Edwards' most recent book is Changing Directions Without Losing Your Way. Send them your start-up questions at or e-mail

More from Entrepreneur

Learn to be a better leader and develop successful marketing and branding strategies with Dr. Patti Fletcher's help.
Jumpstart Your Business. Entrepreneur Insider is your all-access pass to the skills, experts, and network you need to get your business off the ground—or take it to the next level.
Create your business plan in half the time with twice the impact using Entrepreneur's BIZ PLANNING PLUS powered by LivePlan. Try risk free for 60 days.

Latest on Entrepreneur