Tuesday, March 9, 2010
Sendaball, Inc. is a family business headquartered in Chicago. It is owned by a couple of BALLSY sisters who live across the street from each other in the same northwestside Chicago neighborhood they grew up in. They have been sending balls since the 90s, but one day in 2003 it seemed this CRAZY idea was ment to be a BUSINESS.Michele tells it like this: How did it start? I come from the direct mail world, so I knew the mailing rules. I made a practice of sending silly things in the mail over the years. One day I was in Osco, saw a BIN of bouncy balls, grabbed one and thought "I can mail this". Took a sharpie, addressed it to my BFF Sharon, wrote "Have BALL with your new baby", went to the post office and mailed it. Sharon loved it so much, my sister and i sent them again and again to other friends. A few years later while standing in line at the post office, a guy behind me asked about the balls and asked if I could send one for him. Initially I instructed him in the steps to do it himself, but by the time we got to the front of the line, he had given me the info and $5. Laughing, I called my sister and told her how funny that just was. She said, " MICH, I THINK WE ARE ONTO SOMETHING".
Melisa tells it like this: When I got that call, I told Michele I had seen an OPRAH the night before about women who took a chance & started a business with their unique ideas; I told her to listen to me, and these were all 'signs' and WE should start a business, NOW.Number one rule - if someone offers to pay you to do something you are already doing, you may have a business!!! (Donny Deutsch said this all the time on his show THE BIG IDEA). Sendaball has been very fortunate to have been growing since 2003 by taking baby steps in the business world. Our customers are the absolute best, and most order over and over. Many of the people who get a sendaball in the mail, order a ball for someone else. We enjoy hearing the stories from the customers about how a simple ball coming in the mail can bring so much laughter. Oh the stories we could tell. Maybe we should write a book!Michele is married and has four children. Melisa is married and has 3 children .
Before starting SENDaBALL, the sisters spent many hours trying to come up with a way to run a business so at least ONE of them could stay home with their children. Who would have thought the idea was there all along. One of their brothers, Marc (we call him Sparky), lives next door. His wife, Deanna works for SENDaBALL, too. It is truely a family affair. The sisters have two other brothers who don't live on the same block, but are certainly ON CALL if they are needed. If you ever have a story to share, just drop us an email - we love this stuff. Michele@sendaball.com or Melisa@sendaball.com
The ladies at SENDaBall sent me the ball seen above for review. Let me just tell you... this is the coolest thing I have every received in the mail! The postman literally dropped off the ball fully blown up with the stamps on it and everything! So cool! They have balls for every occasion. At $19.95, it's fairly inexpensive to "Sendaball" considering the cost you would normally incur when you buy a gift, card and then pay to ship. Plus, you can;t beat the look on your loved ones face when they receive it in the mail!
Did you know the ladies of SENDaBALL were featured on Shark Tank? You can check them out here.