The PCS video card, which is powered by French-manufactured technology Livstick, enables customers to include a personalised video, photo or text message on the gift card.
PCS said this enables consumers to connect with the recipient of the gift card in a way it believes has not been previously possible in the UK.
The firm was approached by Olivier Adler, creator of Livstick, in 2015 and has been working with him since to ensure the smooth running of the system to a position where it can be offered to the UK plastic card market.
The product works by printing either an alphanumerical or QR code on the gift card which the purchaser types into a dedicated web page or scans to access a setup page where they can create their message.
This could be a video or picture that can be recorded on the spot or uploaded from their current library, or written text. They enter their email address to receive a notification once the message is viewed. When the recipient receives the card, they scan or type in the code to view the message and there is then an option to send a reply.
PCS said the product is most suited to retailers, though the technology could be used on any kind of card. The personalisation is said to enhance the gift card experience for both the sender and receiver and enables retailers to capture important data along with additional brand exposure every time the message is viewed.
“There’s also a slight stigma about a gift card being an unthoughtful gift so this just makes it a bit more personal,” said PCS marketing and communications manager Louise Ray.
“Each company that wants to use it has a tailored interface with their branding on created and then we print the code onto however many cards they want it on. The retailer is charged if the product is activated, so they’re not being charged for the number of cards but purely the number of activations.
“When the purchaser activates it and submits their email address, the retailer then has their email address and additional information such as their location. If the recipient then sends a reply, the retailer would gather the same information from the recipient, so in a way the cost could essentially be the same as buying data.
“The cards can be stocked in the same way as any other gift card is stocked or sold on websites and posted out to people.”
The PCS video card is available with immediate effect and will receive its show debut at PrintWeekLive!, which will take place on 8-9 March 2017 in the Ericsson exhibition hall at the Wasps Arena, Coventry.
“The strapline of the show is to innovate and inspire so we thought it would be an ideal platform to showcase it at,” said Ray.