This past month I presented My Digital Studio at the Stampin' Up Milwaukee regional conference, an opportunity I welcomed, as I get the feeling that lots of demonstrators don't quite yet know what to do with MDS. Over the week that I had to prepare, immersed in MDS again after a hiatus during my busy Sale A Bration season, I fell in love all over again. I am convinced that if demonstrators truly caught on to the potential of My Digital Studio, it could radically re-energize their businesses.
Another thing I realized is that IF MDS were just for demos--just a business tool and not a product we sell--it would be worth it, for that alone. The business potential of MDS is amazing. And since I am not the leading authority on digital scrapbooking techniques by any means, I chose to focus on sharing some business-related MDS ideas for my presentation.
The first thing I shared was a Card Guard idea that both gives customers an idea of what MDS is all about, and gives you a cheap, fun thing to give them as a thank you.
A 'card guard", for those of you who haven't heard the term before, is a piece of cardstock placed over the embellished card front before you put it in the envelope to mail. It protects the card and ensures that the envelope doesn't get demolished by postal machines. I'm sure the USPS appreciates it when we stampers use these!
Well, the card guards I have seen were really basic--a piece of cardstock, sometimes crimped, sometimes with a cute saying printed on a label and stuck on it. I decided that would be a handy thing to have a supply of, so I decided to print some and knew I would use MDS so it would be professional and cute. Here's a photo of the front and back sides.
I designed it using the Sale A Bration reward CD to get that out there, and I liked it, but realized the back was just wasted space. So I added a 2012 calendar using the amazing new Calendar feature in the Design Center. You can add a calendar of the month or the whole year for any year between now and 2022, and it will automatically set up the dates for you. Everything about the calendar is customizable, from the font size and style, position of the numbers, addition of the headings, and the lines or boxes. You can have as small a calendar as my Card Guard sized one, or as large as a 12x12 page.
This feature is SO awesome. No more having to purchasing a calendar template every year, and no more waiting for them to come out with one! If you don't see the Calendar feature on your Design Center (right hand side of MDS), make sure you are using the latest update for MDS and it should appear.
I ALWAYS use Stampin' Up's professional print services with My Digital Studio for best results and the most business sense, so my original intention was to have these Card Guards printed with the new postcard option. However, if I was willing to cut them in half, I would get twice as many for almost the same price, by ordering the A-2 card size. Plus, they come with envelopes. Can't beat that!
Also, I say go ahead and leave the MDS logo on your projects. It's fantastic advertising, and another way that customers will realize they are holding an actual sample of the professional MDS product that they, too, can make at home. Getting MDS samples into your customers' hands is priceless advertising to people who think they won't like digital designing.
You're also giving them value added, because you're giving your customers something they can actually use (a pocket calendar). And why not? it's just a throwaway piece of cardstock, otherwise. MDS-made card guards can set you apart from other demonstrators in that way, as well.
This post has gotten a little long, so I will break up the rest of my presentation into separate articles. Check back for more business-related MDS ideas shortly. I am convinced that My Digital Studio will soon be known as one of the best tools a demonstrator can have to customize every aspect of their business.