The Swiss Post Office is using this year's International Book Fair in Geneva to promote one of its latest innovations - personalised Millennium stamps. The new service is going down well with both the general public and philatelists.
One wouldn't normally expect to see a post office promoting itself at a fair dedicated to books, but as one of the main sponsors of this year's International Book Fair in Geneva, the Swiss Post Office has decided to use the occasion to show off its latest innovation in stamps.
Visitors to the Post Office stand can have personalised Millennium stamps made to their own specifications, all in the space of ten minutes. They first have a picture of themselves taken with a digital camera. The image is then combined with an accompanying picture of their choice and scanned onto a standard sheet of stamps.
Dominique Sudan of the Post Office's stamps and philately department says the service is going down a treat. "We have two kinds of people asking for the stamps," he says. "People who simply want to put their stamps on a letter and send them to relatives. And philatelists who want to add something unique to their collection."
Sudan says the Post Office's presence at the Book Fair is a good way of raising its profile and showing off new products, such as its new e-commerce and insurance services.
"But the Millennium stamp project is a way of having a one-to-one relationship with the customer," he told Swissinfo.
by Roy Probert