Archive for April, 2010

Foto Friday – Earn $5 with your Zazzle photos!

April 30, 2010

Check out this week’s Foto Friday Fun!

What’s Foto Friday? It’s our weekly blog post of customers enjoying their Zazzle products. Want to join in the fun and earn $5 towards your next Zazzle order? Read below for details on how to participate in Foto Friday.


Flaming CurliQ Tie


Bill Quealy 1970 Dodge Dart Swinger Print


RUN T SHIRTS

Want to join in? It’s easy and fun! For every photo you send us we’ll give you $5 to use on your next Zazzle order. So get started taking those pictures and join in on the Foto Friday fun!
Rules:

  1. You must be in the photo holding, wearing, hugging, or otherwise enjoying your Zazzle product
  2. If the product is available in the public Zazzle Marketplace, include the product link
  3. Be creative and have fun!

You can tweet your photos to @zazzle or do it the old fashioned way by emailing them to community@zazzle.com.

Zazzle Featured Seller Interview with Felidae52

April 29, 2010

Hilly, from the Zazzle store Felidae52 (and numerous others), talks with us about her inspirations and her time at Zazzle. Check out the interview below and don’t forget to check out her store Felidae52!

Celtic Snakes T-Shirt

Zazzle: First off, tell us a little bit about yourself.

Hilly: Born and bred in the medieval town center of Celle (Germany) which is the home of the Hanoverian horses (In 1735, George II, the King of England and Elector of Hanover, founded the state stud at Celle.). It was also a British garrison town, and I met my fellow artist husband there (he´s the one that taught me to paint and draw, and his fantastic airbrush and pencil art is featured on many of my products!) We spent the first quarter of our marriage in England and moved back to Germany about 30 years ago. Apart from my husband I have a great son, a wonderful daughter-in-law and two fantastic grandchildren. Painting, drawing, web design and digital 3D and graphic design is a hobby for me. I work full-time as head of waste management in a firm that is a global player in industrial waste removal and recycling of all sorts of materials. I do look forward to retirement in about seven years time so I can spend day and night doing what I like best!

Zazzle: What’s your inspiration for your designs?

Hilly: Anything and everything – I have cute and cool moments as well as gothic and fantasy ones. And sometimes I just like to create graphic designs for my card shop, or fancy decorated initials. That´s one reason I have (at the moment) 12 themed shops – with a lot more in planning.

Zazzle: What has been your favorite design you’ve created, and why?

Hilly: All my designs as well as my paintings are like kids – some I like more, some less – but like a good
mom I have no favourites. If I had to pick one I suppose it´s my husband´s painting of a tiger because I loved the original which is sold now, and my digital version of a Celtic knot ornament from the Book of Kells because I love the traditional art and enjoyed creating this one especially.

Drinking Tiger Postcard

Zazzle: What is your favorite Zazzle feature? How do you use it?

Hilly: At the moment it´s not so much a feature, but Rob Greenleaf´s affiliate link builder – I am building a large affiliate @domain to my main shopping website to promote my favourite Zazzle shops, and that little tool has literally saved me hours of work!

Zazzle: Do you have any fun stories about being a seller on Zazzle?

Hilly: I think the best moment was after the recent changes, when I noticed red signs telling me to update my payment settings so Zazzle could pay me in several of my shops – I completely forgot to add the information, and had a few nice sums accumulated.

Zazzle: What got you interested in selling your art on Zazzle?

Hilly: We have tried to sell our original paintings but soon found out why most artists starve. To sell prints proved to be too expensive – and then I found a POD site about five years ago. I wanted to branch out and was pointed to Zazzle by a fellow artist about 18 months ago and was instantly hooked. I love the variety in products, the feedback with the Zazzle staff is outstanding – plus the great community was what really made me stay and concentrate entirely on my Zazzle shops.

Zazzle: What tips can you give someone who is just starting out on Zazzle?

Hilly: Read the forums, read the lenses on Squidoo that helpful Zazzlers have created, read the blogs with tips – before you start! Be patient – Rome wasn´t built in a day, and sales will come slowly but surely. Create quality, not quantity. Even shops with a few dozen designs make money, and the competition is big and busy! Most of all, love what you are doing!

Thanks Hilly!

Seller Wednesday Seller Tips

April 28, 2010

It’s Seller Wednesday! Since today is all about our fabulous sellers, we figured it would be great to share ideas on how to promote your stores from other sellers.  So let’s trade tips! Here are 5 tips that come from sellers that have been featured (or will be very soon).

  1. Most of all, love what you are doing! – sneak peak (check tomorrow’s featured seller interview to see who this tip comes from)
  2. Try new things, there’s always the delete button if it doesn’t work out! – MHamiltonDesigns
  3. Make sure you carefully choose your user name. It will hopefully become your brand and it will be very difficult to change it once you set up the store and have already created hundreds of products. And you wouldn’t want your store to be promoted as joe6389, would you? – BluePlanet
  4. Marketing marketing marketing! It’s terribly important. At least 80% of my time is spent marketing in one way or another. Start a blog, join Facebook, Twitter away. But be subtle about it, please. I find that I’m enjoying communicating with others and have discovered many talented people through my marketing efforts so that’s an inspirational incentive. – FloatingLemons
  5. One great tip is to visit the Zazzle forums. No matter what you are looking for, you will most likely find your answer there. – N1kiShop
  6. Tag your items with some smarts. Describe (in tags) everything there is to your design. Think like a customer. What specific search terms would you use if you were looking for your item? – BeezKneez
  7. One of the ways to succeed is to sell yourself and not your shops. People like to buy from someone they feel they have a connection with and so I promote the strange quirks that make up who I am. In my blogs, twitter, facebook and on my stand-alone websites I promote my politics, my world view, my dreams and hopes. I do this kind of work because I don’t have to compromise the essential me for a boss and so why not make that work for me? I have nothing to lose by sharing who I am with people and a whole lot to gain when people buy from ME and not some faceless corporation. And I really like the whole idea of that too. It’s a small way to create community in a very large world. – Orsobear
  8. Offer a wide variety of products. A buyer may love the design but not love what it’s on. Give buyers the choice.  Be an accessible seller. Make sure your contact info is easy to find in case a customer has a question or wants a custom design. Keep your storefront clean. Flashing gifs were once cool, but these days many find them distracting. Buyers browse longer in a well organized shop. – Reflections06
  9. Don’t be afraid to ask questions, I remember the best answers came from the pros and I redid the whole store and it worked. Zazzle is a wonderful community! Everyone is here to help,  so just ask what you are confused about, you never know what you might discover – BlessedWedding
  10. Don’t be afraid to promote your store and yourself! Look for promotional opportunities everywhere. From leaving you business card with the tip at a restaurant, to sending greeting cards to school for teachers’ birthdays. Every person and everywhere you go is a potential sale. Remember that, and your store will be hopping in no time! – GothicToggs
  11. When creating a design, I always ask myself if it’s something I would want to wear/use. If not, I scrap it and start over. – MonkeyJenn
  12. Buy and wear/use your own products. You are your best sales person! I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been asked “where did you get that (awesome, fantastic, amazing, sick, hideous) t-shirt?”  Oh, and be sure to have business cards ready when people do ask! – PurpleGifts
  13. Wear it, ride it, photograph it and get some business cards. Be your own best billboard! – SoftProduct
  14. Advertise! I have advertisements on youtube, my podcast, website, myspace, vehicles, people, etc. It pays to advertise, when the product you’re selling is more than just the merchandise. Think of the merchandise as an extension of your actual product. Granted, my merchandise is targeted more to a specific group. However, it has been selling all over the world. Be ingenuous. Create something that no one has seen before, and grabs their attention. – ftorc1
  15. Promote your own products, have happy customers send you a shot of what they bought and how they are using/wearing it! – jfarrell12
  16. I like to hold contests for my Facebook Fans. They not only get to shop at my store for free, but they have a physical reminder of my products. This has been a powerful branding tool as well as a reason for fans to invite their friends. – Rozine
  17. Learn how to use Adobe Illustrator or InDesign, even maybe the vector abilities within Photoshop. It can be challenging at first but the images you create from it will be TONS cleaner and sharper, especially with text. – mydezyns
  18. Find unique ways to advertise your store.  I put my info on the back of my running singlet (people had to see it for 13.1 miles!) – kyderbydva
  19. Make to do lists and set aside time to work on your shops, websites, promoting and to create designs. You will soon find that your list is longer than the hours in the day but if you organize your time properly you will find yourself knocking that list down pretty fast, but keep adding to the list. Everything you do from surfing the web to hanging out downtown with your friends to playing with your kids at the park to watching the news can be an opportunity for a great design idea, pay attention to the world around you and look at everything as a potential product, put it on your list. -JerryLambert
  20. Buy some products of yours, take a picture and create a slideshow, a picture is worth a thousand words! Show it at Zazzle too! - Occitania
  21. Don’t give up! Even when sales seem to be no more than a trickle, just keep at it and eventually you will start to see results. It takes time to build up a business presence on-line (and to build a store full of designs that will catch anyone and everyone’s attention). Stick with it! - MoonDuster

Do you have a seller tip you’d like to share?  Tweet us, leave us a note on our Facebook wall, or leave a comment here. At the end of the day your tips will be added to the very list you see above. Be sure to include your store URL when you leave your tip!

Custom Haikus for Mom with Hallmark!

April 27, 2010

Looking for the right gift, or maybe just the right words to say to mom for Mother’s Day? Then look no further than Zazzle/Hallmark! We’ve partnered up with Hallmark to allow you to create your own unique haiku gift for your mom using our easy fill-in-the-blank templates. Or, if you’re feeling poetic, you can customize a Hallmark Haiku product with your haiku and photo. Haiku poems are short and beautiful poems that can perfectly share your gratitude for mom on a custom Zazzle product. Check out some of my favorite Hallmark Haiku for Mom templates below.

Also, try out the Haiku for Mom Facebook app which allows you to create a Hallmark Haiku gift using your facebook photos (score!) as well as share it with friends/siblings on Facebook to show how awesome your Mother’s Day gift is (double score!).

Was that an Earthquake, or a Boobquake!

April 26, 2010

After Iranian cleric Hojatoleslam Kazem Sedighi made this statement: “Many women who do not dress modestly … lead young men astray, corrupt their chastity and spread adultery in society, which (consequently) increases earthquakes..”  One blogger by the name of Jen McCreight decided to put that theory to the test. Read her original posting here.

She created an event on Facebook, that has over 196,000 confirmed guests, asking women everywhere to show off some skin today, April 26th,  in the name of science.  So if you feel an earthquakes today, it might actually be a boobquake.  Are you willing to show some skin for science?  Join the fun here!

If we make it through today without any boobquakes, you might want to pick up an Official “I survived Boobquake 2010″ t-shirt from BlagHag.

I survived boobquake 2010 T-ShirtBoobquake Who says science has to be boring T-Shirt
Modestly dressed women seldom make earthquakesBoobquake Did the Earth Move for you T-Shirt

I know women are powerful, but seriously, what do you think? Can showing too much skin really cause earthquakes?

Seller Wednesday Earth Day Winners

April 23, 2010

On Wednesday, we challenged you to tell us what you were doing for Earth Day, and how you were involving Zazzle in your plans.  After carefully looking over all the inspirational stories we received, we picked one winner from each social media outlet.  The winner from Twitter was TheSpottedOlive, and from Facebook BestDesignersEver. Here are their stories:

TheSpottedOlive
I Purchased organic-cotton t-shirts from Zazzle! Next to corn, cotton is the second-most chemically sprayed crop in America.  Get 100% organic fine jersey cotton, combed for comfort, they are a flattering stylish fit on virtually any body type.

Ghetto Blaster Organic Cotton T-Shirt

BestDesignersEver:
When we go shopping we take our Zazzle reusable bag instead of using plastic bags.
Help us in keeping the environment clean! Go Green Go!!

Earth Day Every Day Canvas Bag

Thanks to everyone that submitted a story, you are a truly inspiring bunch of Zazzlers.

Cheers!

Foto Friday – Earn $5 with your Zazzle photos!

April 23, 2010

Check out this week’s Foto Friday Fun!

What’s Foto Friday? It’s our weekly blog post of customers enjoying their Zazzle products. Want to join in the fun and earn $5 towards your next Zazzle order? Read below for details on how to participate in Foto Friday.


Art Cap: Smart Seagull Design Embroidered Baseball Cap


VEGAN Distressed White Thread Baseball Cap


Owl Art Print


Star Wars Rock Band Poster


Thombucha Labs 1 Invert Tee Shirts


Earth Day T-shirts

Want to join in? It’s easy and fun! For every photo you send us we’ll give you $5 to use on your next Zazzle order. So get started taking those pictures and join in on the Foto Friday fun!
Rules:

  1. You must be in the photo holding, wearing, hugging, or otherwise enjoying your Zazzle product
  2. If the product is available in the public Zazzle Marketplace, include the product link
  3. Be creative and have fun!

You can tweet your photos to @zazzle or do it the old fashioned way by emailing them to community@zazzle.com.

Zazzle Featured Seller Interview with Chuck Ingwersen

April 22, 2010

Chuck, from the Zazzle store ChuckInk, talk with us about his cartoons, his inspirations, and his time at Zazzle. Check out the interview below and don’t forget to check out his store ChuckInk!

Cute Funny Mothers Day Card

Zazzle: First off, tell us a little bit about yourself.

Chuck: I’m a freelance humor writer and cartoonist who lives with his wonderful wife in Oak Forest, Ill., a suburb of Chicago. I’ve written and designed countless humorous greeting cards, many of which have been published by major greeting card companies. I also create cartoons for newspapers and various web sites. I have two websites I update frequently with my cartoons: Captain Scratchy and Words and Toons.

Zazzle: What’s your inspiration for your designs?

Chuck: I try to put an unexpected twist on everyday life. Oh, and it helps to have talking animals as pets.

Zazzle: What has been your favorite design you’ve created, and why?

Chuck: Being asked to pick your favorite designs is like being asked to pick your favorite child or your favorite nose. But I’ll spin the wheel and pick my Dog and Chicken (dog asking chicken why he isn’t crossing the road). That was my first design featuring that particular dog, who has come to be known as Rufus and is one of the characters in my webcomic, “Captain Scratchy.”

Funny Dog and Chicken Birthday Card

Zazzle: What is your favorite Zazzle feature? How do you use it?

Chuck: I create a lot of greeting cards, so I appreciate having the ability to design the inside and the back of the card in addition to the front.

Zazzle: Do you have any fun stories about being a seller on Zazzle?

Chuck: Zazzle has given my artwork great exposure that’s led to freelance work (freelance cartooning is my primary job). I’ve tried some other online stores, but Zazzle is the clear-cut winner, in my view.

Zazzle: What got you interested in selling your art on Zazzle?

Chuck: It’s a great outlet for artists in terms of exposure and feedback. Creating artwork can be isolating at times, so the feedback is much appreciated. The money earned is just a bonus!

Zazzle: What tips can you give someone who is just starting out on Zazzle?

Chuck: 1) Don’t rush your work … let it marinate in your mind for a while before posting it for the world to see. One of the best habits I’ve developed is to step away from a “finished” project for at least a few days — or a week or two if time permits — and then go back and look at it with fresh perspective.

2) If you take joy in the creation process, it will show in the finished product. Art without passion is pretty pointless.

3) You are an original. Make sure your artwork is, too.

Thanks Chuck!

The First Ever Seller Wednesday

April 21, 2010

It’s Seller Wednesday!! *cheers*

Not sure what Seller Wednesday is? Here’s the scoop…

Every Wednesday we’ll give you, the seller, a chance to interact and share with Zazzle through Twitter and Facebook. Then, what you share will enter you to be featured on the blog or win awesome prizes!!

If you’re following us on Twitter and/or if you “like” (formerly known as being a fan of) us on Facebook, be sure to look for a message/tweet that includes the tag #SellerWed, which will tell you what’s going down.

So here we go, this is the first Seller Wednesday challenge!

What are you doing for the Earth on Earth Day, and how are you using Zazzle to do it?

Send us a brief story about something you’ve done, or plan on doing for Earth Day. Like if you are planning on using your Zazzle earnings to plant trees, or donating 20% of your earnings to a green charity, let us know. You must also send us your Zazzle handle(s), plus a photo and/or video of you doing said thing as proof.  It’s our home and it deserves some pampering at least once a year, right?

The prizes:

1 person from Facebook and 1 person from Twitter will have their stories featured on Friday in an exclusive ‘how much our sellers care’ post-Earth Day blog, along with links to their wonderful Zazzle stores.

The details:

  • You must be following us on Twitter &/or “like” us on Facebook in order to be eligible for any Seller Wednesday prizes.
  • Entry must include #SellerWed (for twitter), a link to a story (on your blog), picture/video, and your Zazzle handle(s). You may email community@zazzle.com with your story, etc. but you have to include twitter/facebook handle for verification.
  • You may enter on both Twitter and Facebook, but of course will only win once. :)
  • You have until 11:59 pm on Thursday (tomorrow) to submit your stories.
  • The more creative and inspiring, the better.  I know you are all creative so this should be a cinch!

EA Launches 3 New Stores

April 19, 2010

What could be better then playing an awesome video game…

Not much, right? How about playing said game while wearing an awesome t-shirt from EA, like one from Dante’s Inferno, Medal of Honor, or American McGee’s Alice!  Well, you’re in luck because EA just added stores for those games here at Zazzle, and I have to say.. <geekout> the gamer in me loves the idea of battling through the 9 circles of hell, while wearing a comfy hoodie with McGee’s Cheshire cat on it, seriously. </geekout>

Check out the new stores they launched, and be sure to check out all the games EA has available at Zazzle here: EAbrand (more games coming soon).

American Mcgees Alice Cheshire Cat T-ShirtMedal of Honor Logo T-ShirtDante's Inferno with Scythe T-Shirt

What’s your favorite EA game?


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