After two years of social distancing, gifting has taken on more meaning than ever. Beyond being a token of appreciation or a perfunctory birthday/anniversary/Christmas present, gift-giving has become a conduit for evoking or satisfying nostalgia, a sorely unfulfilled emotion (even in the cold-hearted) that rears its head especially during restrictive times.
In the same vein, gift-giving presents a perfect chance for givers to make a statement, whether it’s expressing love and adoration or inexplicitly saying “I treasure you and the moments we’ve shared.” The more personal and heartfelt the choice of gift, the more relationship deposits scored.
Ellie Lim, 25, a design communication student in Lasalle, understands the art of gifting and nostalgia-gratifying all too well. In May 2020, she launched Sarangly, selling customised photo frames that allow customers to choose from curated templates and bouquet colours, with the option of adding personalised messages. It was a hit among young couples.
Soon after, she introduced personalised musical boxes powered by augmented reality (AR). Choose your music, upload a photo and video (optional) and indicate a name to be printed on the box. You can even add preserved flowers to the box.
Sounds magically sentimental? Ellie’s business ideas have won her more than 1,000 purchases to date, with the AR musical boxes and customised frames being the best-sellers.
We find out about her strategies in running Sarangly, marketing tips and business lessons she has learnt along the way.