Who wouldn’t want to receive a surprise gift in the mail? Send a Penguin does just that – delivering happiness to doorsteps around the country. Read on to find out how cofounders, Madison & Andy, developed the idea for Send a Penguin, how they’re managing the online marketing for their business, and how Bizzy has helped keep their customers engaged with their product.
Please tell us a bit about yourself and what you sell at Send A Penguin.
Send a Penguin sells happiness. More specifically, we sell a great way for people to put a smile on the face of the people they care about, and make them feel appreciated or loved. The reactions from those who receive our plush penguin gift boxes has been unanimously positive. Our gift boxes come with an adorable plush penguin of your choice, as well as a handwritten note.
When did you get started selling online? Why?
We launched Send a Penguin just a couple of months ago, at the end of September. Our story starts with a husband and wife team, Madison and Andy. Madison is absolutely obsessed with penguins, and Andy always wanted to run his own business. One day Andy had a crazy idea – people love penguins, they’re adorable, and they’d totally freak out if they got a surprise box in the mail with a stuffed penguin inside. Madison loved it, and about a month later, Send a Penguin was born.
What are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced in building and running Send a Penguin?
We’ve faced a few challenges with Send a Penguin. Neither of us had any online selling experience, and we knew this was going to be an adventure. We’ve struggled with telling our story and the “sizzle”. Our site was very focused on the what but not the why. We’re in the process of updating our site to change that. The other thing we initially struggled with is driving traffic to the site and then keeping people engaged once they knew about us. Bizzy has really helped with the keeping people engaged part. We’re still trying to crack the code to driving consistent traffic volume.
How do you attract new customers?
We’re relying primarily on social media and the power of word of mouth. We’re actively focused on growing our Instagram follower base and trying to encourage our customers to share their photos and reactions on social media. We’ve sent PR boxes to a few social media influencers with mixed results.
Can you share a tip or something interesting you learned in the process of building and running Send A Penguin?
Don’t be afraid to ask for help. At the same time evaluate the source of the advice, their expertise and potential motives. There are a lot of really helpful people out there that are genuinely eager to share and help. At the same time there are folks that use offers of “help” as a play to get you to spend insane amounts of money on a service you don’t need.
I’d also be doing everyone a disservice if I didn’t give a plug for Bizzy and how great they are. I’ve had the fortune of interacting with their founders, Jen and Chiara, quite a few times. They are absolutely amazing to work with and have been more than happy to help me work through what have sometimes been some pretty basic newbie issues.
If you’re in search of a surprise gift or holiday present for a family member, check out Send a Penguin.