Ziba Design

Ziba Design

Please tell us about your product or service, and help us understand what makes it truly disruptive.: 
Personal shipping, and the US Postal Service in particular, is in desperate need of disruption. Unlike many services like car rental and hotels, that have been augmented or partially replaced by smarter, digital competitors, there’s no real alternative to shipping. Even as the world gets more connected, virtual and immediate, we still need to move physical objects from one place to another. In fact, thanks to online retailers and peer-to-peer marketplaces, we’re shipping more now than we ever have.
 
 
The shipping experience for individuals, though, is still stuck in the past. We still search through email (or a paper notebook) for a current address, track down postage, wrap a box in kraft paper, write information out by hand in what we hope will be a legible way. We stand in line at the post office, weigh our package, choose from a variety of unfamiliar options, wonder if we need (printed) delivery confirmation. The entire experience is overwhelmingly analog, opaque and time-consuming -- enough to discourage us, in many cases, from sending a personal gift, card or letter to a friend or relative when a digital alternative exists. The result is our present reality: physical mail that’s dominated by direct marketing, junk mail, advertisements and bills.
 
We propose to disrupt this system by moving the data component of personal shipping online. That means making address entry, shipping method, payment, notifications and confirmations--which are all just bits of information--digital. It means a more flexible shipping system, where you can redirect a shipment by tapping your smartphone during lunch, or split the cost with a recipient by clicking a tab.
 
We also propose to bring delight back to personal shipping. With shipping information made digital, a sender only needs to do one thing in the physical world: mark the package or letter with a unique identifier. This offers up a unique opportunity, to make that moment satisfying and personal -- the emotional opposite of filling out forms and affixing stamps. The Signet stamp and the mark it makes are designed to celebrate the moment of shipping; to make it feel as significant as imprinting a wax seal must have in the days when letters were carried by hand and on horseback.
 
The end result is a completely new set of behaviors around shipping. Stamping a parcel and setting it out for pickup is something to look forward to, yet it takes just a few seconds. The parcel is sent to a person, not a place, and the entire shipping process is a string of small interactions that builds anticipation and enables flexibility. The digitization makes missed and unexpected deliveries a thing of the past (unless surprise is your goal, of course). And the market expands, to include the kinds of small, impulse shipments that were once commonplace, but have been pushed aside by technology.