Interview With Justin Powell
Describe your product or service:
“We offer miniature letters/greeting cards printed and shipped on demand.”
Describe your company values and mission:
“Here at Miniature Mail, we believe in the unexpected emotional power of two things: old-fashioned letters and miniatures. That’s why we combined them into one product; we want everyone to experience the surprising warmth that comes with a little letter.”
How big is your team? Tell us a little about them (I.e. co-founders, freelancers, etc.)
“It's just me, plus friends or family to help out if I have a large order and a tight deadline.”
How did you come up with and validate your startup idea? Tell us the story!
“Miniature Mail began humbly when I handcrafted a tiny letter for my wife in hopes that it would help her feel better during post-surgery recovery. Her response was so overjoyed that I decided to give the rest of the world an opportunity to share the same kind of joy with their loved ones.”
How did you come up with your startup's name? Did you have other names you considered?
“I considered ‘Little Letters’ and several other names, but ‘Miniature Mail’ seemed to fit best. It perfectly describes the product, and you can't go wrong with an alliteration.”
Did you always want to start your own business? What made you want to become an entrepreneur?
“I'm always having new ideas, and projects spring up faster than I can complete them. I've always wanted to grow an idea beyond the ‘fun hobby’ stage. I think I am a terminal entrepreneur, for better or for worse.”
Did you encounter any roadblocks when launching your startup? If so, what were they and what did you do to solve them?
“The main struggle is with the post office, and we still have the same issues today. Our mailed items are unique, and as such, they don't always fit with the postal service's standard way of operating. We have to solve lost and late deliveries more frequently than most businesses. We're still trying to refine the method and medium of shipping to mitigate these pain points.”
Who is your target market? How did you establish the right market for your startup?
“Anyone who enjoys a taste of old-fashioned nostalgia mixed with a new way of doing things. People like me are my target market.”
What's your marketing strategy?
“Due to postal issues, we're not actively marketing. Our sales come strictly through organic search traffic or word of mouth.”
How did you acquire your first 100 customers?
“Posting on ProductHunt was the biggest break we had since launch. The product was very well received there and went on to be featured on several large online publications.”
What is a song or artist that you listen to for motivation?
“‘Flowers of the Forest’ by Mike Oldfield”
Is there a tool, app, or resource that you swear by to help run your startup?
“I use WooCommerce frequently and very much appreciate how much you can do with it for free.”
What is something that surprised you about entrepreneurship?
“How difficult it is to overcome imposter syndrome.”
How do you achieve work/life balance as a founder?
“The question assumes I have achieved it! I'm still trying to figure this out.”
What is a strategy you use to stay productive and focused?
“Putting in headphones and playing an inspirational/motivating playlist helps me tune out other distractions if I'm trying to stimulate ‘flow.’”
Did you have to develop any habits that helped lead you to success? If so, what are they?
“Go to bed and get some sleep sometimes!”
What was your first job and what did it teach you?
“I worked as a grounds cleaner and store clerk at a general store and campground. It taught me to work hard and enjoy the view.”
More on Miniature Mail
Justin Powell, founder of ecommerce startup Miniature Mail, shared valuable insights during our interview that will inspire and motivate aspiring entrepreneurs.
We asked Justin Powell, founder of Miniature Mail, to share the most impactful ways to support their startup, and this is what they had to say.