As you may know, we (Green Gift Cards) like to be at the cutting edge of the gift card industry. That is why we are so excited to introduce to you the most exciting gift card in the Child Development and Activities Industry. In fact, it’s one of the most exciting gift card projects we’ve been involved in.
We have been cheerleading Little Starts Gift Cards almost from the beginning, from the company's post-COVID re-launch in late 2022 to their recent milestone of launching their gift cards in national retailers.
Having recently won the Gift Card and Voucher Association’s (GCVA) Rising Star of the Year 2023, Little Starts founder Katie Lavis is taking on the national retail market.
Gifting experiences over things
As the UK’s leading gift card for baby, toddler and preschool classes, Little Starts’ ethos is built on the idea of “gifting experiences over things”. As advocates of child development and parental mental health, you can find the benefits of gifting classes on their new website. You'll see that Little Starts Gift Cards are accepted at classes nationwide from the likes of Water Babies, Rugbytots, Baby Sensory, Baby College and Jo Jingles.
As any parent will know, children come with a never-ending pile of toys and trinkets. Often described as the ‘dreaded pile of plastic’, these toys are often lovingly gifted and well-meaning. However, they can come with excess packaging and do not always last long before they are outgrown or damaged. It is another plastic toy to be responsible for and tidy away before deciding how to reuse, recycle or dispose of it responsibly.
The Little Starts Gift Card tackles the problem of unwanted, outgrown toys and the awkwardness of asking for cash. Plus, they are a massive boost for new parents looking to leave the house and spend quality time with their little one.
Parents can choose a class, place and time that suits them, covering everything from dancing to doodling and singing to splashing. Baby, toddler and preschool classes give the opportunity to create precious memories whilst helping child development. We can see why they have grown in popularity so quickly. They even picked up another award from the GCVA as Best B2C Product.
A meeting of two minds
The synergies between Green Gift Cards and Little Starts Gift Cards were evident as soon as we started working together. We are both innovators in our field and committed to protecting the planet without compromising quality.
From the beginning, Little Starts knew they wanted their gift cards to follow the environmental ethos of their brand. It was essential that Little Starts Gift Cards would more than tick the right environmental boxes.
“I knew that many gift cards are made from plastic, but it didn’t feel right that after they have been used, they could also end up in the same place as the dreaded plastic pile. That’s the very thing we want our customers to be free from - unnecessary clutter and waste that can harm our environment.”
When the Little Starts team came to us to re-design their physical gift card, they were keen to explore our environmentally friendly gift card solutions that would be suitable for a retail environment and gift card malls.
Designing for your audience’s location
We know the key to a successful gift card is to design for the needs of your audience. The location of your gift card and what information is on it will significantly impact how customers will view the card.
Little Starts came to us with a challenge - to re-design their physical card from their original design, which was only available for direct orders through the Little Starts website. The new design needed to suit the gift card mall displays you see in supermarkets and national retailers. So, what are the differences between in-store and shopping mall displays?
The location and how a gift card is displayed significantly impact the design. Getting to know who your customer is and their mindset in different locations is vital to grab their interest. Getting it wrong can be costly.
Design for Gift Card Mall
You could describe gift card malls as organised chaos. Customers face a wall of neatly stacked gift cards, all shouting for attention.
We recommend bright, contrasting colours with a minimalistic design, a prominent logo or potentially the relevant card value for shopping malls. Iconography is also a great way to convey a gift card's purpose without adding text or removing the focus from the logo.
This type of subliminal messaging can work across the board, but it has the potential to work in the card mall setting where customers are less likely to stop and read.
A gift card to rival them all
Our main challenge with the re-design was establishing the Little Starts business concept for a new audience. How would we convey the Little Starts message and communicate all the places and classes where you can redeem the card on an 86 x 124 mm M6 no-snap card?
The original design for the physical Little Starts Gift Cards was for customers purchasing through the Little Starts website. They will already be familiar with the brand, understand the concept and have seen the range of available classes.
Our new design focuses on iconography to explain the purpose of the gift card whilst keeping to the brand's aesthetic. It also features some of the logos of Activity Providers who accept Little Starts Gift Cards, like Water Babies, Rugbytots, Babyballet and Puddle Ducks.
From November 2023, you can find Little Starts Gift Cards in various nationwide stores, including Sainsbury’s, Argos and, from Q1 2024, Currys.
Your gift card
Are you looking to upgrade your plastic cards to an eco paperboard option? Or perhaps you need help designing your gift card artwork. Choose from sequential numbering, barcoding, embedded smart chips and scratch-off panels. All of our cards are 100% plastic-free and recyclable! We can work with your existing artwork or help you create an impressive new design.
Contact Green Gift Card today to discuss your card requirements.