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Examples of personalized postage from the Zazzle.com/Pitney Bowes alliance
2005-08-17 - Palo Alto, CA, & Stamford, Conn., USA: Online personalization store Zazzle has agreed an alliance with Pitney Bowes Inc. to launch a customized postage service. The new service allows customers to create full-colour customized stamps using images they upload at the Zazzle website, or a vast collection of images already available on the site, including famous characters from The Walt Disney Company and other special collections.
The Zazzle/Pitney Bowes alliance differs from the competing alliance of CafePress.com and Stamps.com, which is based solely on images uploaded by customers. Just like other types of postage, you can use ZazzleStamps in combination with regular U.S. postage to send letters from the United States both within the U.S. and internationally.
"Letters are such a personal form of communication, and our new service allows that personal expression to go outside of the envelope as well," said Ian Siveyer, vice president of postal solutions at Pitney Bowes. "This alliance gives consumers unprecedented choices to create one-of-a-kind, colorful stamps."
"We like Zazzle because it's an established, high-volume site where thousands of customers are already designing and ordering a wide variety of customized goods," Siveyer continued. "Extending this product line to include stamps is a great way to reach creative people who are looking for new ways to express themselves."
Pitney Bowes, an integrated mailing solutions specialist, provides the software that manages the postage transaction between the customer and the United States Postal Service. Consumers can go to Zazzle's website, upload their own images or choose from Zazzle's special collections. Postage can then be customized using Zazzle's design tools that provide a broad array of choices for colors, layouts, styles, fonts and so on. ZazzleStamps measure approximately 1.5" by 2.5", and can be designed to use either vertical orientation (portrait) or horizontal orientation (landscape).
The two companies say that the combination of Zazzle's online interactive marketplace and Pitney Bowes' expertise in postal technology creates a fully-integrated customer experience that is both highly secure and easy to use.
Visitors to the Zazzle website can design sheets of 20 U.S. stamps available in the most common denominations from $0.23 (postcards) and $0.37 (first-class letters) to $3.85. After the order is complete, Zazzle will review all uploaded images for adherence to USPS guidelines for customized stamps. Once approved, the stamps are printed and shipped to the customer within 24 hours.
Siveyer noted that customized stamps are a relatively new product category. "This new product line is made possible thanks to recently-released guidelines from the United States Postal Service. We think it's a terrific way to make mail an even more appealing communications channel, and we look forward to working with Zazzle and USPS to ensure the success of this alliance."
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