♔ Sigillius Waximus
Introducing our new mascot Sigillius Waximus, as named by our followers on Instagram.
Some of the original naming suggestions included:
- Stephen the Stamp
- The Duke of Stampington
- Sir Stamp O' Lot
- Stampy McStampface
These names should give you a clear insight into the minds of the people who follow us, and it's great to know that you all share our sense of humour! :D
As you know, we are very serious about our work here at Stamptitude. However there are two sides to the coin as we also tend not to take ourselves too seriously when we're in the office. That's why we decided to commission somebody to revamp our shipping notification email to better reflect our personality.
This all started a couple of years ago when we first sent out emails asking for feedback from our customers. Instead of the usual "How was your order? Please rate your experience", we opted to take a more unconventional approach.
Enter, the Sloth.
This little guy captured our imagination when he first appeared in the hit cartoon movie Zootopia, which as 'adults' we're not supposed to admit to enjoying more than our daughter did.. but that's besides the point.
We had decided that if we were going to write an email asking for people's help then we should at least make it enjoyable to read. As an avid re-reader of Derek Sivers' book 'Anything You Want' I was immediately drawn to his Laissez-faire approach to business. What we've found is that once you stop worrying about the numbers and focus more on bringing smiles to your customer's faces, you get to enjoy the things that made you want to design products in the first place.
Derek Sivers' is of course famous for the shipping confirmation email he wrote back in the 90s, and it goes a little something like this:
Tell me if that is not the best email template you have ever read?
The day after reading this I set about creating my own version, and here is what every single customer at Stamptitude receives after approximately 2 weeks of their items being shipped:
Admittedly it is not as witty as the original, but it has helped set the precedent for all our future emails. Since introducing 'Sir Sloth' to the public we've had a lot of positive feedback from people saying that it made them smile on a bad day.
After experiencing how much of an impact something as small as a single email could have on a person's day, we then set about finding other interaction points which we could inject a little bit of our fun-loving attitude into without being too overbearing.
So here's what we came up with initially:
This was the first iteration of our shipping confirmation email which stayed with us for a number of years until only recently. It served the purpose of letting our customers know just how far their items need to travel before reaching them, which is quite an astonishing feat when you consider the distance to New York is more than 8,000 miles!
Yes, we are unapologetically Hong Kong based which means that it can sometimes take a week or two for delivery. At first we were a little unassured by this, since we want only the best for our customers. However having read countless reviews with matching sentiments such as "shipping takes a little while but be patient as it is well worth the wait" we began to embrace this as part of our perfect imperfection.
The updated brief
With this in mind, we set about commissioning the amazingly talented guys at Sail Ho Studio to create a new shipping animation to meet the following brief:
Bearing in mind these are rough initial sketches, we felt that despite the crudeness of the drawing they had managed to capture the brief spectacularly well and at the very least had shared our sense of humour. We loved the simplistic idea of having a personified stamp character and the reason why it takes time for delivery is because he is making his way to his destination, quite literally.
From this concept we started to focus on the idea of slow-moving mail, or Snail Mail! ...and from this the snails were born
We absolutely fell in love with this sketch. The Julius Caesar-esque character captures our brand perfectly, and the funniest thing about it is how proudly he is standing despite being pulled by snail & carriage. This is not too disimilar to Stamptitude in that we put so much pride into our work and yet we are constantly at the mercy of the postal service when it comes to placing our products into the hands of our customers.
Once our brand colors were added he truly began to take shape!
Because we loved it so much, we decided to put him not just on our shipping confirmation emails but also our NSS invites!
So far Sigillius Waximus seems to have been a hit! We recently received an email from a customer who had replied to the shipping notification not to ask about their shipping but to compliment us on the animation.
"Just wanted to let the Stamptitude team know how much I appreciate the snail mail graphic on this email."
We really appreciate comments such as this, because much like wax seals (which are an attention to detail that often go unnoticed by some) this shipping animation also has a tremendous level of thought and detail put into it and hopefully by sharing the process of its creation we can inspire others to think about how you can turn something seemingly 'ordinary' into something memorable.
Thanks again to Daniele Simonelli (CoFounder at Sail Ho Studio) for his magnificent work!
To see more of their work be sure to visit - http://www.sailhostudio.com/