What It's About
A listener success story that ends this hustler on the nice list.
Words of Wisdom
A good business idea doesn’t have to take a long time to get started. North Pole Postal was up and running in less than 2 weeks and it’s on track to change Alejandra’s entire career and life.
Leaving a treat out for Santa began during the Great Depression in the 1930s as a way to teach children about giving. It was also a sign of appreciation for the gifts children received while America was struggling economically. (Source)
Notes from Chris
Sometimes you don’t need a completely original idea…you just need to put your own spin on something that works. Alejandra Gomez was listening to Side Hustle School when she came across an episode about a woman who sold letters from Santa. Alejandra had been looking for a way to raise money to buy Christmas gifts for underprivileged children—and she thought a Santa letter business was a great way to do this. As any good side hustler knows… research is essential. Alejandra dug in and found a huge gap in the market…nobody was doing scented Santa letters. (Right??) Since memory is closely tied to our sense of smell, Alejandra wondered how she could connect her letters with a scent to create positive memories that would last a lifetime. She devised a storyline that made it all work: Santa writes his letters in the kitchen while Mrs. Claus bakes. (I know it’s a little patriarchal, but just consider the era when they grew up.) Anyway, Alejandra came up with a secret way to make her letters smell like cookies. But now it was early November. She knew if she wanted to sell Christmas letters that year, she’d need to do it before Thanksgiving. The power of a deadline! She went to the craft store and bought envelopes, paper, wax for the seals, and of course some Christmas stamps. Her creativity didn’t stop there. She added in a bit of fake snow to each letter. Then she added prints of reindeer hooves on the envelope, which Alejandra addressed by hand in modern calligraphy. She typed up the first letter and created her prototype. She also knew the importance of having an effective website. Alejandra hunkered down and created a complete Squarespace website in only two days. She took all the photos in her living room with her iPhone using red poster board as the background. And she wrote the copy herself. North Pole Postal was up and running in less than two weeks for under a hundred dollars. That was year one, 2018. North Pole Postal has grown significantly every year since then. The business has gone from selling 32 letters that first year to selling one thousand letters in 2020. Although the season is only about six weeks long, in 2020 the business brought in $17,000 in three weeks! In fact, she’s sold out of letters the past two years because she reached capacity. One Santa’s helper can only do so much! She’s considering adding more paid elves soon so that she can offer more letters. But the growing pains are worth it. This side hustle is on its way to becoming Alejandra’s full-time job within the next year. And she wants to grow the business into a full brand that includes a children’s book based on her North Pole Postal storyline. She’d love to work as an elf all year round!
MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE:
- Don’t wait and land yourself on the naughty list. Purchase your custom Santa letter asap before they sell out at NorthPolePostal.com. They launch every November 1st!
- Letters-from-Santa Hustles Down Chimney: A month-long, part-time project writing personalized letters from Santa Claus earns $6,000.
- College Student Starts Historic Letter Subscription Service: A student cashes in on his love of history by mailing beautifully designed letters to monthly subscribers.
- Canadian Mom Spells Out Success with Letter Board Loot: After a search for customizable letter boards leaves her empty-handed, a Side Hustle School listener sees the writing on the wall.
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