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Indiana University Bloomington

Marketing

The Product Person

Erin Newkirk MBA'99

Co-owner, Red Stamp

Minneapolis, Minnesota

“My training at Kelley helped me develop an eye for gauging opportunity: Understanding the marketplace, keeping tabs on what our competition is doing, developing products our consumers need, and figuring out how we can best serve those needs. If you do it well, marketing is a cycle that creates loyalty to your brand and to your business.”

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Web sites. Consumer magazines. Trade publications. Newspapers. Every day, Erin Newkirk reads whatever she can to stay on top of current trends to help her position her company, RedStamp.com

A 1999 graduate of the Kelley School’s MBA program, Newkirk left her job as a brand manager at a Fortune 500 business to create the special occasion card service and desk accessory company with her friend, Renée Walter, in 2005.

The card service, original called Red Stamp Cards, began with the motto “fashionable cards, fashionably on time” and a desire to help other busy women be on time with their birthday cards and other important mailings.

“My training at Kelley helped me develop an eye for gauging opportunity: Understanding the marketplace, keeping tabs on what our competition is doing, developing products our consumers need, and figuring out how we can best serve those needs,” Newkirk says. “If you do it well, marketing is a cycle that creates loyalty to your brand and to your business.”

With that eye on opportunity, Newkirk adjusted RedStamp.com in 2011. The business continues to help busy individuals manage their correspondence, but now as the Red Stamp app, offering stylish email, texts, and posts by electronic device or personalized cards, notes, invitations and announcements by traditional mail.

Newkirk credits her IU degree with the background she needed to sell her business through nontraditional marketing techniques such as “webbing out” to other sites to create a wider brand presence and writing for an online newsletter designed for moms on the go.

“I firmly believe that a lot of my understanding of what people want from a high-end correspondence company has come from the marketing background I had at the Kelley School of Business,” she says.

Others have taken notice—RedStamp.com has been featured in media outlets such as the CBS Early Show, The New York Times, Parenting, The Today Show, DailyCandy.com, and Money and was voted “Best of the Web” by InStyle magazine.

 

Published November 28, 2011