Frantz gave me the idea of hand delivering our Utah funeral home clients gifts at the beginning of this year (funeral homes have found iMemoryBook a great service for grieving families). Theron gave me a fantastic promotional product idea of giving funeral directors a frame that both represents memories and iMemoryBook and becomes useful to the director.

I had decided to take their advice but was unable to prepare the gift in advance because I’ve been sick lately and demands in sales have pulled me away from putting something together.

I started work at 6am yesterday with an appointment scheduled for 9am with Broomhead funeral home and then at 10am with Serenicare funeral home. Even though I had only three hours, I decided to purchase a frame, create a photo with a great quote to go in the frame, and then make it to the appointment 30 minutes away. Because I needed this so fast, there was no way I could even ask American Promotions to help me (they helped me with this stuff in the past but need more than 3 hours notice).

The finally quote and photo created in the GIMP.

I now run SUSE linux on my home desktop and only have Photoshop at work. I fired up the GIMP (free photo editing program) instead and whipped together a nice photo. By the time I figured the GIMP out, choose a quote and a photo and was ready to print, it was 8am. No time for one hour photo. Ahhh…I remembered Alpha Graphics receives files online and prints. A trip to their website revealed a store 5 minutes from Broomhead. “Yes!” I thought. I called, they said they’d have it done before 9am. I jumped in the car and headed for my appointment. Right by Alpha Graphics, I saw Michael’s, an Arts and Crafts store. I picked up my print and bought frames for half off. $13 later and 9 minutes late, I had a beautiful gift for the funeral home. I like the way it turned out well enough that I’m going to give it to all the other locations I’m visiting this month.

In under 3 hours and spending only $13, I gave two gifts that looked like they cost $49.95 each. It was created on free software. Printed in a flash. I love the way our world works today. This wouldn’t have been possible to pull off five years ago.

Two notes for folks:

  1. Although less expensive, the printing at Alpha Graphics didn’t look as good as printing an 8×10 at a digital photo outfit. I’m experimenting with Yahoo Photos and Wallgreens (powered by Snapfish) for printing the rest of these for the other funeral homes. I’ll let you know the quality comparison. I’d rather pay a few extra bucks for better quality.
  2. As far as online systems, Yahoo’s was smoother throughout the ordering process and finding a Target store to pick up my photos next to my next funeral home appointment was very well done. 8×10 at Yahoo was $2.89 when picked up at Target, $1.99 when ordered online. Wallgreens had more locations to choose from by seeing the locations next to my destination was difficult. I had to go to Google Maps to see where each store was in relation to my destination. Wallgreens wanted $4 for an 8×10, but when I ordered 2 on checkout, they dropped to $3 each.

Well, there, I blew 15 minutes bragging and giving you a couple tips that could give you ideas and save you a few bucks. LOL. Enjoy.


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2 Comments so far

  1. Angie on April 14, 2008 2:10 pm

    You cant go wrong with giving away promotional gifts like this. Everybody loves free stuff no matter what the stuff is!

  2. Diana on August 7, 2013 2:55 pm

    yep, I did. Thought they were great, very sympathetic. Sound is a lot more “harder” than on CD. I’m just tikihnng that the Vega might be too big for them… their music probably works better in a smaller venue. But I guess you won’t regret going! :)