My Marketing: brief write up

Hello World! 

Let's talk about marking.

Define Marketing: the action of a business to... Let's save that for another time. 

Question: What are you doing? 

Answer 1: 

To start a conversation about who I am and a little bit about my product/company concept

Answer 2: 

To pick a historic marketing medium to use vs. the "social..."

Answer 3:

  • Sent 10 k cards, 200 to each state

    • 100% recycled paper

    • Unintentionally had to hand sign all of them *please reference the good/bad section


  • 200 special Colorado cards

    • 100% recycled paper + 25% hemp paper 

    • Kosher ink

    • Robotic written


  • Sent 200 cards to news organizations

    • 100% recycled paper

    • Hand signed all 


  • Social Media

    • Might say hi eventually 

Colorado Cards

Question: Why? 

Answer 1: 

To get people to opt-in

Answer 4: 

To coincide with the rest of my letter campaign theme. 

Answer 2: 

To just try to be a little old fashioned and introduce things vs. simplifying everything too much. In other words, just trying to act and do business like an old fashioned merchant. 

Answer 5: 

To be weird enough to get noticed, hopefully ;) 

Ink and Paper

Kosher ink:

Why: To relate some part of my campaign to my community 


What makes it kosher: It has to be black and stay black.


Basic Formula: Oak galls, logwood shavings, gum arabic, copperas (iron II sulphate) 


More info: Link


Iron gall ink (kosher ink) is really old: Romans, Leonardo da Vinci...  

10,200 Green Signing ink:

Very similar to the basic formula for kosher ink but with added green tea leaves.


Paper (10,200): 100% recycled


Colorado cards: 100% recycled + 25% hemp paper


Envelopes:  100% recycled and manufactured in Broomfield, Colorado

Good vs Bad

Kosher ink: a brief story

Good: Modified a Pilot Parallel pen from 1.5mm to a round edge 1mm. The Parallel pen’s double nib design allows for more ink dispersion than a conventional fountain pen. The pen can also be held in a horizontal position for gravity assisted application.


Bad: Fountain pen and calligraphy/kosher ink are different. The usual differences are the solvents that are dissolved in a consistent solution for fountain pen ink. For calligraphy ink, Gum Arabic and other pigments thicken up the ink but tend to clog up fountain pens.


My modified Pilot pen worked significantly better than a traditional fountain pen. But unfortunately for every print season, I would need to prime, placing cloth to the tip to get the ink flowing, or else the pen would clog.


Note: I decided not to change the formula and reduce the viscosity

Conclusion: With the use of kosher ink, even with a modified pen, there was an added increase of print failure.  


Fun link: It is a lot of fun to make homemade inks at home

Bad: Colorado cards math/logistics

  • 11.5 minutes to write each card

  • 2.0 cards per piece of paper

  • 2.0 sheets of paper can be held down per print run

  • Total 11.5 x 2.0 x 2.0 = 46.0 minutes per run


  • Total runs needed = 59.0 (50.0 for 200 cards) due to ink clogging problems

  • 59.0 runs x 46.0 minutes = 2,714 minutes or 45.233 hours


The 45.23 hours does not include pen filling or paper changes. In reality, it took 4 days of printing


Bad part 2: Vinyl cutter

I was originally going to use a modified vinyl cutter with a pen adapter to write the Colorado cards. But I thought it would be fun to use Hemp paper. So I have had a five-foot vinyl cutter just hanging around for four months, waiting for me to program it.


Part 3 - Human: The xy pen plotter was originally going to be used to sign all the 10,200 cards. But because of delays with the Colorado card, I spent 4 days hand signing all of them.

Robot vs Human:

Good: Incorporated a robotic writer or xy pen plotter in order to print all the Colorado cards.


Good: Created a simple adjustable positioning jig to hold two 8.5 x 11 sheets per print run.

Final Notes:

This marketing stunt was a lot of fun. I got to incorporate history with modern/70 era technology. I spent two weeks dealing with mailing list companies, many sleepless nights thinking about how to hold down paper, spent four days straight signing cards, and writing with kosher ink is difficult. But throughout my marketing journey, I learned a lot about a number of industries that I had previously overlooked. But for my main responsibilities, I think I will stick with algae and a few other things for now. 


This is just a rough overview and a quickly written content post a few days before my campaign goes live. I will update this in a few weeks with more pictures, info, and a video. There are a number of companies that I would also like to thank but will wait until they see this.