How does the holiday season always sneak up on me? I don’t know if it happens to anyone else but once summer is over, it’s unofficially holiday season for my shop. When you’re a mom to a toddler, it’s important to be able to get things done quickly.


Lucky for me, Staples’ Print Big Promise is here to support small businesses like mine. I was able to watercolor a piece, use the elements to design marketing materials, and pick them up on the same day.


It’s important for me to be able to personalize each and every package for my customers. I wanted my marketing materials to match my brand’s aesthetic. Buying from a small business can feel very personal and I want the customer receiving the package to feel that connection. Creating personalized marketing materials is one of the ways I build a relationship with my customers.


Step 1: Make Art

I started my design by painting with watercolor. I chose to create a colorful holiday theme to match my brand aesthetic of bright and happy. I used my Winsor and Newton professional watercolors and Princeton Heritage watercolor brush in a round 10 to paint colorful triangles on Arches 130 lb cold press watercolor paper. I painted them in a variety of colors, shapes, and sizes to create visual interest. I allowed the ends of the triangles to touch to create beautiful bleeds of color.



Step 2: Design Your Assets

I used my iPad to design postcards and stickers using a scanned image of my painting. I combined the scanned watercolor images with digital lettering and text.


To thank my customers for making a purchase during the holidays, I wanted to create a promotional postcard that felt more like a holiday card. I love that as a small business owner, I can enhance my customers’ experience by adding thoughtful touches to packaging so I intentionally included a blank line where I can hand letter my customer’s name.


I also added a discount code for future shopping after the holiday season (these are marketing materials, after all) to encourage customer retention. I bought some scratch off stickers to make the cards more interactive so customers can scratch off to reveal the coupon code underneath.



Step 3: Upload to and Print makes it so easy to make marketing materials because you can choose from creating your own designs or selecting so many pre-designed options which are a great option for saving time. As a watercolor and lettering artist, I definitely wanted to create my own materials to match my artistic style and brand. 



In addition to the holiday postcard, I designed a holiday sticker to put on the outside of my packages. I personally love receiving packages, so I wanted to recreate that fun experience for my customers.



Step 4: Pick up order

Staples Connect is the one-stop shop for your business needs. I really appreciate that I can get my prints within hours of submitting an order. I just sent my order to my local Staples store and was able to pick up both the stickers and the postcards within hours of painting my artwork.



The Staples staff showed me my order in store so I could check the quality and approve of the order before taking it home. Their commitment to offering top professional print services makes life easier for this busy mama.



Step 5: Send to happy customers

Use your packaging and marketing materials to send joy to your customers! The attention to detail and care that goes into your packages definitely translates into an amazing customer experience. I have built my small business from 1 order a week to now over 4500 sales with 5 stars from over 800 reviews.