And without further ado our BIG announcement that we want YOU to be the first to know as our loyal supporters:
Passion Planner Academic is here and we're launching it on Kickstarter!
You asked for it, so we made it happen!
Why do we want to do an academic version?
We believe that Passion Planner could be very beneficial to the academic community:
Time management skills
Work, personal and school life balance
Accountability in meeting set goals
Provides structure in an unstructured world
We are set to launch this coming Thursday (aka TOMORROW!), May 21, 2014 at 12 pm PST!
So mark your Passion Planners so you can be the first to take advantage of the limited number of special prices! :O
Why another Kickstarter, you ask?
Along with the Academic Version, we are launching a new program called the Passion Planner: Pay it Forward Program. We believe that Kickstarter is the ideal platform for this, specifically, because we want to put it in front of a group of people who are willing to help one another - and what better than the Kickstarter community?! We will be doing something that no one has ever done before, kind of like our own social experiment.
Why are you doing this Pay It Forward Program and how does it work?
We understand that not everyone can afford a planner, so we made the full PDF of the planner available.
With that said, we wanted to take it a step further this time around. The Pay It Forward Program will give people an opportunity to help and connect with one another.
How it works:
1) Someone who can't afford a planner signs a
pledge to become a potential recipient
2) A sponsor buys a planner at a discounted price
for a recipient
3) A Recipient gets a planner with their sponsors
name & email in it
4) The recipient sends a thank you letter at the
beginning and end of the year to their sponsor
5) Finally, the recipient is encouraged to pay-it-forward and become a future
We believe in this program so much that we will match
the first 500 sponsorships AND cover all shipping costs for this program!
We hope you all are excited as we are for what’s to come. We will now leave you with EXCLUSIVE behind-the-scenes pictures from the making of the Passion Planner Academic Kickstarter Campaign :)
Angelia and the (bigger) Passion Planner Team
As always, if you're curious about what we're up to, follow us on social media!
The past few months have been a crazy journey filled with many challenges and learning opportunities. This experience has been a roller coaster ride to say the least. After countless hours of hard work, we are proud to say we have shipped ALL Kickstarter rewards! Woooo!!
Contacting us via email is the quickest way to reach us. Our email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
When emailing, please provide us with your order number and email address associated with your order.
I still haven’t received my planner! Help?
We are sorry to hear that! Chances are your package has been lost in the mail, or it was delivered and returned to us for one reason or another but no worries please email us at email@example.com and we will get to the bottom of it!
I want a Passion Planner but it is almost April and three months of the year are already gone, is it possible for me to get a Passion Planner without dates?
Yes! Passion Planner Undated is now available on ourwebsite. It comes in both Classic (8.5”x11”) and Compact size (5.5”x8.5”) and your choice of either Sunday or Monday start.
I really want a planner with that starts on Monday, is that possible?
Yes! Our undated version of Passion Planner is now available with a Monday start on our website.
I’m going to miss these updates, how can I keep up with what you and your company are doing?
Just because our Kickstarter is over doesn’t mean that exciting and new things aren’t happening at Passion Planner Headquarters! Follow us on Instagramto see what we’ve been up to. We also hold weekly contests and giveaways via Instagram, so you can try your luck in possibly winning a free Passion Planner!
I’ve ordered from your website and according the tracking information, my shipment has been stuck in Colorado since the end of February! Help!
A large shipment of 769 planners has been held up at a sorting facility at Castle Rock since February 28th.
As soon as we saw a recurrence in the delay, we contacted USPS to follow up with the situation. Some USPS claims representatives informed us that the delay was caused by weather, while others told us it was due to system processing changes that were occurring at the sorting facility.
We followed up with their Claims Management Department every day and decided to wait it out for a little longer, hoping they would be processed and eventually delivered. After weeks of follow up we have yet to receive a clear delivery date from USPS. We have decided that we must take action now to resolve this issue. Although it will cost us a substantial amount of money to reship these planners, we feel that we must take initiative towards making this situation right.
If your planner is stuck in Castle Rock, Colorado, we will be emailing you with options. If you do not receive an email but your shipment is stuck in Castle Rock, Colorado please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Is there anyway I can still order a 2015 Passion Planner?
Unfortunately, we have sold out of dated 2015 Passion Planners. However, there is good news for those of you who still want a 2015 Passion Planner! We will be restocking andare currently taking pre-orders for the next batch that will be shipping in mid-April!
I love my Passion Planner! Can I order a 2016 Passion Planner?
We will start taking pre-orders for 2016 Passion Planners in May! So mark your Passion Planners! ;)
I asked for a refund but still received a package. What do I do?
This has probably happened because we printed many labels ahead of time, some packages we’re still sent before we we’re notified of your cancellation, or you cancelled while your package was in transit, but no worries you have a few options to take care of this situation
You have two options:
1) Keep your planner and send a payment of your original total via check to Passion Planner to P.O. Box 420550, San Diego, CA 92142 and email us at email@example.com to let us know that the check is on our way
2) If you do not wish to keep your planner, please refuse the package by writing “REFUSED” on it. If you have discarded the packaging please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will gladly provide you with a prepaid return label.
Thank you, we are SO happy you LOVE your Passion Planners!
Again, thank you so much for your continuous support, positive words and believing in us when others doubted us! With all of the unforeseen hurdles we have come across, this has not been an easy journey but my team and I are now a stronger, more efficient, and cohesive! We have gone from a team of just me and my assistant to a full staff and working from my parents garage to having our very own website in a matter of a few short months. We are hitting the ground running and know we will be even better in the years to come. :)
Can't wait until you see what we have planned for the rest of 2015!
After a month and a half of non-stop shipping, we’ve shipped all orders scheduled for January delivery! That means we are now shipping February which is right where we need to be! According to our logistics team, we have shipped 116,000 pounds of mail in the past month alone!
What order dates are you shipping?
We are currently shipping Kickstarter and website orders placed on 12/30-1/10.
I was suppose to receive my planner in January, but I still haven’t received it yet. Help?
If you were a backer on Kickstarter and still haven’t received your planner scheduled to arrive in January you may be one of the very few stragglers (less than 200) that have been delayed for one of a few reasons:
Your package may have been returned to us due to an incomplete or incorrect address. If that is the case, we will email you with a picture of the sent package when it is returned to us, asking for your to re-verify your address. This can take anywhere between 3 weeks to 1.5 months, sometimes even longer for international mail. We only send packages to the address you specify on your Kickstarter survey so please, double-check the address you gave us on your survey to make sure it is correct.
Your survey was completed late. We only know where to send your package after you fill in your survey. If you filled out your survey late for a January shipment, (within the past 2-3 weeks) we are working on your shipment now and it should be sent out within the next 3 days.
You submitted your address with non-Roman characters. If you typed your address in a different language, your package may have been delayed because non-Roman alphabet characters print as “?” when mailing labels were created online. We have had to go back and revise each one individually. As of yesterday we have shipped all of those out.
I am 90% sure that we will be able to ship all February shipments in February
How to Open Your Planner
Remember the port slowdown that held up our shipment for 40 days, that caused us to delay shipping? Well, after 9 months of negotiations and port slowdowns (which was the most severe during the holidays) a deal has been reached in the West Coast dockworkers dispute.
We are not the only company that has suffered from this situation. Companies all around the world have also suffered, including big names like McDonald’s and Honda. I understand your frustration with the delays in shipping and I assure you we have and are still doing our best to get them to you ASAP.
What have you been doing/What have you done to deal with the delays and ensure I get my planner as quickly as possible?
In order to deal with this issue of port delays and the delays in our shipping to the best of our ability, we as a company have:
1) We did as much as we could do ahead of time in preparation for the shipment. We printed, stuck labels and prepared packaging weeks before the shipment came.
2) We have grown our team. Our fulfillment and customer service teams have increased by 15x in the past 1.5 months
3) Spent 15x more money to air mail shipment. Spent $178,000 of my own money to air mail our 2nd shipment to avoid the delays at the West Coast ports
4) Relocated to a warehouse. Having more space has boosted the number of orders we can process
5) We have worked long and hard. My team and I have been working everyday for the past 3 months and counting
6) Issued partial and full refunds. We have offered partial refunds for delayed shipping and have allowed people to cancel their order and receive a full refund without question
7) Offered the PDF for free. The Passion Planner 2015 PDF has been available on our website for anyone to download and use while they wait for their planner to come in the mail
All I ask is to please be patient. Please understand that we are human and sometimes we will make mistakes. We are doing our very best to be better than we were yesterday and handle this situation to the best of our ability.
I received my planner late, and would like a partial refund. How should I go about that?
Please follow these steps to attain your partial refund:
1) Send an email to email@example.com with the subject "Partial Refund" with a short message about your situation and the email associated with your PayPal account.
2) We will then look into it and if we are at fault, we'll issue you a partial refund.
3) We will be giving a $2.50 refund for each planner that arrived later than promised via PayPal.
Again, we want to do everything that we can to solve any issue that has come up. All we ask is that you please be patient with the whole process, but rest assured that you will receive your partial refund.
I haven't received my planner, may I please have a refund?
Although it is not typical that Kickstarter creators offer refunds, we understand your frustration, and want to do everything that we can to make it right.
Because it is more than 60 days after Amazon Payments processed your transaction, we are not able to refund you through Amazon Payments and must do refunds through PayPal.
If you would like a refund, please email firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject “Kickstarter Refund” in the message be sure to include:
Your backer ID#
Number and size of planners ordered
Total paid in USD
The email address associated with your PayPal account
We will process it as quickly as possible, cancel your order, and send you an email confirmation as soon as it is taken care of.
Where is my planner?
We have shipped everything that needed to go out in January and are currently working on orders placed on 12/30-1/10. If you placed an order before that and still have not received it please email email@example.com with the subject “Kickstarter - Order Not Received”
Please include in the email:
The date you backed
The date you answered your survey
Your backer number
We will look into your order and get back to you as quickly as possible.
I asked for a refund but I received a planner in the mail? What do I do?
You have two options:
1) Keep it. You may keep your planner and we won’t process your refund
2) Refuse the package and get a refund. When you receive the package, write “REFUSED” on it and drop it back into a USPS mailbox; it will get returned to us. When we receive your package, we will process your refund and send you email confirmation.
I accidentally cut the elastic band when I opened my package with scissors! Help?!
Oh no! We are sorry to hear that. We understand that accidents do happen. Here are instructions on how you can fix it:
To prevent this from happening, please make a small incision and rip the plastic open with your hands to ensure that nothing accidentally gets cut. This is the safest way to open your planner without damaging it. For more detailed instructions, please see above video.
I got my planner and it is damaged during shipment. What can I do?
We try our best to package your planner with extreme care, but mishaps do happen from time-to-time. We have included insurance in every shipment and you can make a claim with USPS by: Taking pictures of the damage. Contact USPS HERE https://www.usps.com/help/claims.htm and make a claim for the cost of the planner (ie: $25 or $30); let them know your tracking number (it’s the number under the bottom barcode on your shipping label) You should receive a follow up from USPS within a week letting you know if your claim was approved or not
Three of my friends listed me as a referral when they ordered from your website. When will I get my free planner?
Because we had to prioritize people who paid for their planner, we have decided that all planners earned through the referral program will be shipped in March. You will be receiving an undated Passion Planner.
Thank you for your patience and understanding and for telling your friends about us! We will email you shortly to ask for your shipping address.
Just wanted to say thanks to everyone that has shared their support, enthusiasm and positivity through social media! Here are some of our favorite posts from Instagram:
Wooo!!! We are about 95% done with all shipments placed in November with a January shipment date from both the website and Kickstarter.
We should be able to completely get the remaining 5% done within the next day or two and from there we will be working on orders with February ship dates.
I just wanted to take a moment and say I am very proud of my team, despite having the shipment delayed for about 40 days due to the unforeseeable west coast port strikes, managed to crank out 75 days of work in about 30. This feat has taken hours and hours of hustle, accuracy, and communication. Some nights my team members would stay with me until 4 am, sticking mailing labels, packaging planners and answering emails.
The whole process hasn’t been with some mistakes here and there, but I am happy with how we have handled each hurdle. We are growing, learning, and becoming a stronger and more cohesive team everyday.
I was suppose to get my planner in January but it hasn’t arrived yet, help?
If you are a Kickstarter backer who is due for a January shipment and have not yet received your planner, please make sure that you have filled out your survey. We have about 800 people who have not filled out their survey, so we have no way of knowing where to ship your rewards. So please, fill out your survey ASAP as we will be printing those who responded late within the next few days.
If you inputted your address in a different language, your package may have been delayed because non roman alphabet characters, did not print correctly, so we have had to go back and revise each one one by one.
I received my planner in January when I was promised in December/I received my planner in February when I was promised in January and would like a partial refund, how can I go about getting one?
We apologize that you received your planner late, we want to do everything that we can to make it right.
Please do the following steps to attain your partial refund:
1) Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject "Partial Refund" and with a short message about your situation.
2) We will then look into it and if we are at fault we will issue you a partial refund.
3) We will be giving a $2.50 refund for each planner that arrived later than promised via your credit card charged or through PayPal.
All we ask is that you please be patient with the whole process, as we must process many customer service requests everyday, but rest assured that you will receive your partial refund.
Why haven’t you responded to my email/Kickstarter message?
We currently have 15 people diligently working on emails, all day everyday. Please note that when you send a “follow up” email, your email is seen as “new” causing you to lose your place in line because we respond from oldest to newest, so please just be patient as we will get to your email in the order it was received.
Shipping like maniacs! We ship around 1500-3000 planners per day depending on how much help we have that day
Growing our team
Improving our customer service
Currently we are working on shipping orders placed November 15-18.
Here is the estimated numbers of orders placed on Kickstarter and our website combined
November 15th ~5000
November 16th ~4500
November 17th ~3900
November 18th ~3800
Because we want to make sure you all feel in the loop, we will be posting on our Instagram what dates we will be working on everyday starting tomorrow.
Why does it seem like you have only shipped a few order dates?
We have taken so long on these dates because our sales were viral for that week in November (see chart). Once we get through this week and start shipping November 20th we should be able to crank out orders placed on later dates at a quicker rate.
Ways We Are Improving
As a CEO, you must make many difficult decisions that are not going to please everyone. Due to the necessary shift in priorities, I know that we haven’t been completely on top of our customer service for the past week, and that is my fault. In order to get you your planners as soon as possible, this has been the order of our priorities:
growing our team so we can have more people shipping and handling customer service
shipping and fulfillment
responding to customer service inquiries
With that being said, I feel that I have made some great additions to my team and we will be diligently working to move forward and make sure that our customer service improves everyday.
Shipping More Quickly and Efficiently
It’s crazy to think that just last year I was shipping an average of 6 planners a day out of my garage and today we ship anywhere between 1500-3000 planners a day, EVERYDAY.
This has been a huge learning process and we get faster and more efficient everyday.
It is one thing to be able to ship 2000 planners in the course of 3 days (which I thought was insane for last year’s Kickstarter), but it’s a completely different thing having to do that everyday for the past 30 days and know you still have another month to go.
With that being said, I feel that we have come so far in terms of the speed and efficiency at which we have been able to crank out these planners. If you or someone you know has ever done a Kickstarter, you know how crazy this part of it is. We thank every single person that has been patient with this whole process.
I received the wrong size planner! What do I do?
We apologize for the mistake, we are shipping thousands of planners a day and sometimes mistakes happen. But we will make every effort to make it right. Here are the steps you should take:
Please double-check your order invoice to make sure that you did in fact receive the wrong size. We have had a few customers realize that they accidentally ordered the wrong size.
If you indeed received the wrong size, please send an email to email@example.com with the subject line “Wrong Size Planner” and your order number in the message portion
You will shortly receive an email with a pre-paid mailing label and instructions for returning the incorrect size planner
We will ship you the correct size ASAP free of charge.
I would like a refund. How do I go about doing this?
We can definitely take care of that for you. We are sorry that things didn't work out between us and we understand your frustration. To expedite your request, please shoot us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org with your order number and email address associated with the order and we will get to it ASAP.
When will I get my planner?
See shipping update above.
I have emailed for weeks, over and over, why haven't I received an email?
We are sorry you haven't received an email from us yet. My team and I are working very hard to get back to everyone in a timely manner. Please realize that we respond to emails from oldest to newest and that when you send another email to follow up, it moves all of your emails to "new" and it will take us longer to get to you.
Will you be able to get all of January shipments out in time?
Although we will keep working diligently to ship these planners out, I have to be realistic and inform you that it is likely that we will not be able to ship out all the scheduled January shipments by the end of January.
I think it is realistic to say that we will be able to ship out 70% of orders with January shipment dates and will have to ship the rest in the beginning of February.
We know that this isn’t good news, but we really want to remain as transparent and as honest as we can with our customers.
For the past month we have done our best to recruit as much (wo)manpower as possible (and are still trying!)
Wow, this is a huge undertaking! Are you still looking for help?
Yes! If you want to lend a helping hand in shipping and fulfillment and are located in the San Diego area, please send an email to email@example.com.
We are also hiring for help with shipping and fulfillment, so if you are an upbeat, motivated and hardworking person who has the same values we do, we would love to hear from you! Please email Jacklyn and she will send you an application as well as a complete job description and other details.
Please Remember, We Are People Too :)
We understand that some of you are frustrated with the situation, but please realize and consider that we have feelings before you put something hurtful or something that can be taken as a personal attack in an email. We have received threats that I feel aren’t appropriate. I find it ironic that this is happening since this is a product that I made to help people navigate their life.
We are not robots. We are all very passionate about this product and we care about the people that we feel it will help. We are taking the time to quality control every single planner as well as package it with love and care to make sure that your planner gets to you as it is intended to.
Growth Brings Growing Pains
Our business has grown exponentially in a very short period of time. We went from selling 4,000 planners a year to selling more than 65,000 between November 5th - December 5th alone! No amount of planning could have prepared us for this exponential growth.
As with any new business, we are bound to make mistakes and there are going to be growing pains that accompany our journey. We are taking every day as a learning experience and are getting more efficient and experienced as a team and we thank every one of you for being a part of this experience.
Thanks for bearing with us through these growing pains!
For more frequent mini-updates and a sneak peek into my life as a 24 year old entrepreneur.
P.S. Again, if you've read this please kindly "like" this post so I know people actually read this stuff :) Also, if you have received your planner please let us know in the comments below! We just received notification that our first international backers have received them already! Wooooo!