Discover the Latest Opportunities for Your Card & Gift Business

With COVID-19 lockdowns in place, it’s a strange time for the industry but perhaps an ideal time to seek out new opportunities. 

Yes, it’s the start of another new month and it’s time to see what opportunities lay in store. So, without further ado, let’s get started with the April 2020 Opportunity List.

There have been some cancellations of events I’ve showcased in previous months but I’m happy to say that there are still awards, competitions and more offering opportunities for businesses to grow. 

Let’s look what the month ahead has on offer…

Coronavirus COVID-19 Opportunities & Support

Scribbler Seeks Greeting Card Submissions

PG Buzz has reported that retailer Scribbler is open to submissions for new greeting card designs. While their physical locations are all closed their online shop is selling more greeting cards than ever; providing a way for people to stay in touch through self-isolation. 

If you’re a greeting card designer with a unique take on how to cheer people up and keep them connected during this odd time this could be the opportunity for you. 

Designers, makers and publishers bursting with ideas can send them to [email protected] and you can see the original article on the PG Buzz website

BIRA Offer Free Membership Package to Retailers

Bira is offering a free membership deal for UK-based independent retail businesses. 

In exchange for a nominal fee of £1, £5 or £10 to the Rainy Day Trust, retailers will get a 3-month membership to the Association. 

The offer is open to any UK independent retailer. Sign up for membership until Tuesday 30th June 2020 and you’ll get access to BIRA’s member resources for the next 3 months.

Deadline: Tuesday 30th June 2020.

Etsy Launch #StandWithSmall Campaign

Etsy has launched a new campaign called Stand With Small, a reminder to their sellers and shoppers around the world that their purchases will keep small businesses on Etsy thriving.

The campaign will be spread far and wide and as Etsy have the budget, staff and audience to make it go far it could provide an opportunity for card & gift businesses selling on Etsy to get their online shop noticed.

Hashtags do also spread beyond their original focus so it might be a message that goes out to all indies, even if you don’t sell on Etsy. If you’re a small business consider using the #StandWithSmall hashtag on your social media updates.

Find out more about the campaign on the Etsy blog.

Business Awards


retas application form graphic

The RETAS 2020 Awards have been pushed back to Wednesday 11th November. The popular industry event which shines a light on the best greeting card retailers will still be taking place at the Grosvenor House Hotel, just a little later than planned. 

This means that the closing date for entries has also been pushed back. 

Retailers now have till the 11th August to fill out an application form. 

To take part visit the RETAS website for more info and entry details. 

Deadline: 11th August 2020.

UK Business Awards (The Dons)

The UK Business Awards (UKBA) aim to recognise the finest accomplishments from the world of British business.

Now in its 6th year, ‘The Dons’ are back with 16 categories, in which businesses of every size and sector have the chance to do well.

These Awards recognise the organisations, teams and individuals who are shaping the future of business. As well as being a forum for sharing best practice, UKBA is an inspirational experience that enables personal and professional growth.

The awards trophies are affectionately called ‘The Dons’ in tribute to our Chairman, Don Hales, a prominent figure in the awards industry for the last three decades who has founded many of the UK’s most respected business awards.

For full information and to take part please visit the UK Business Awards website

Deadline: 30th April 2020 (Early Bird) & 15th May 2020 (Final Closing Date).

SBS at Autumn Fair – Win a Stand at Autumn Fair 2020

win a free stand at autumn fair

Theo Paphitis and Small Business Sunday (#SBS) have announced a competition to give small businesses a free boost at Autumn Fair 2020

12 #SBS winners have the chance to win a free exhibition stand at Autumn Fair 2020. Giving them an opportunity for exposure and growth.

The winners will take centre stage at the Fair in the #SBS Pavilion, which runs 6th-9th September at Birmingham’s NEC; gaining access to thousands of visitors and buyers ahead of the busiest retail period of the year.

Theo Paphitis, #SBS creator and retail entrepreneur, said:

“I am delighted to partner with Autumn Fair once again and offer another 12 #SBS winners a free stand at the event in September. The previous winners have all reaped huge rewards from the experience whether through new contacts, suppliers, orders, new directions or collaborations and I’m sure this year will be no different. I encourage my #SBS winners to grab this opportunity with both hands and go for it!”

The competition requires applicants to fill out an entry form, which will then be judged by a panel of experts from Autumn and Spring Fair event organisers, Hyve.

To take part, please email the #SBS Crew on [email protected] for an entry form. You can also see terms and conditions on the SBS website

Deadline: 11:59pm on 1st May 2020.

Best Small Shops Competition

Indie Retail is on the hunt for the best small shops in the UK.

The Best Small Shops competition celebrates, not only the commitment and creativity of entrepreneurial independent retailers on the UK’s High Streets but also, the central role independent retailers play in building local communities.

As the lifeblood of communities, small shops provide a unique offering of product, service and knowledge.

The Best Small Shops competition is designed to celebrate their achievements and show consumers what makes small shops special.

You can find all the info you need to enter the Best Small Shops competition on the Indie Retail website. Entry is free so be sure to share this with all the small shops you know!

Deadline: 11:59pm, 25th July 2020


p2p Business Awards

p2p Business Awards recognise small business excellence from any sector, offering awards for businesses (especially small businesses) anywhere in the world.

A democratic judging process encourages engagement, offering an opportunity for you to network and get to know other businesses in the categories you enter. With p2p awards, you judge your peers’ entries.

Their aim is small business awards without the nonsense.

For more information and to enter visit the p2p Business Awards website

Deadline: TBC – Registration Open Now.


the opportunity list april 2020

Industry Events

National Stationery Week Seeks Retail Partners

National Stationery Week has put the call out for retailers to join the campaign!

Now in its 10th year, National Stationery Week is aiming to be bigger and better than ever before with a new look POS kit available for its retail partners. 

For £50 (+ VAT), companies will receive window vinyls, posters, shelf strips, wobblers and digital assets to draw customers into store whilst becoming a key part of the week-long stationery spectacle. 

Those taking part will also have their name listed on the National Stationery Week website.

Running from the 20th-26th April 2020, National Stationery Week celebrates all things stationery. This year they will also be doing some good, thanks to the campaign’s partnership with VENT for Change.

Each brand will receive a pot of eco-friendly pencils to help raise money for children’s education projects.

National Stationery Week is an opportunity for retailers in the industry to be part of an event that reaches a wide international audience. 

If you would like to take part you can sign up for your POS pack at the National Stationery Week website.

GCA Launch 2020 Thinking of You Week Website

thinking of you week

The Greeting Card Association (GCA) has relaunched the Thinking of You Week website for 2020.

This year’s marketing materials have been created by the wonderful Paper Salad and fresh for this year’s appeal, graphics are available without the event dates.

Thinking of You Week 2020 will go ahead as normal in September, 21st-27th to be precise but the GCA is encouraging everyone to send more cards during this period of self-isolation. 

For this September’s event, the GCA is looking to create a gallery of ‘Thinking of You’ themed greeting cards from its members. 

If you would like to get involved in this year’s event you can find all the details on the official Thinking of You Week website

Competitions/Opportunities for Artists & Designers

Deutsche Bank Awards for Creative Entrepreneurs

change wanted - makers

Deutsche Bank is seeking Creative Social Entrepreneurs and offering a £50,000 prize fund and £100,000 worth of business support to 5 lucky winners.

DBACE is seeking 18 to 30-year-old creative entrepreneurs who are driven by a mission to build and sustain social value through their enterprise.

All business stages are eligible, but this is specifically for the creative industries

For more information and to take part visit the DBACE website.

Deadline: Extended to 7th April 2020.

Emerging Artists Awards 2020

The Visual Artists Association Emerging Artists Awards 2020 is open for entries.

The competition has a prize fund including £3k mentorship, exhibition space, cash prizes up to £1250 and a 20% discount for CASS ART.

All mediums are welcome but you need to be a member to enter. Membership starts at £4.50 per month and benefits include free £5m Public Liability & Products Insurance, Events PR & Art Work Promotion Business Support & Strategy, Resources Guide & Templates Webinars/Facebook Live and free 1-2-1 Strategy Call.

Find out more at the VAA website

Deadline: Wednesday 8th April 2020.

Like Opportunities for Your Business?

That’s it for the April 2020 Opportunities List.

I hope you found some chances to keep doing what you do. 

Please check back next month, when hopefully they’ll be a new batch of fresh business opportunities. 

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