Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Fun Facts About Thanksgiving

This is my favorite holiday & I think it's safe to say it's a majority of people's favorite. The fire in the fireplaces along with turtlenecks & sweaters, falling leaves & holiday decorations are signs fall has finally arrived in Southern California.

Most people claim they cherish Thanksgiving because of the food. I won't dispute that, but I love it for the warmth & gaiety it brings......being with family & friends starting in mid-afternoon & celebrating long into the night. Somehow we all feel a little closer to each other at this time as we treasure what is around us & how lucky we are to have one another.

Here are some fun facts about the holiday you may not know:

1. The first Thanksgiving day was celebrated in the fall of 1621 in Plymouth, MA & lasted for three days.

2. The state of New York officially made Thanksgiving an annual custom in 1817.

3. In 1863, President Lincoln declared Thanksgiving to be the last Thursday of every November. Before that each president decided when the holiday should be celebrated; always in the fall, but at a different time each year.

4. In 1939, President Roosevelt proclaimed it to be the 4th Thursday of every November to lengthen the holiday retail season by a week. This was his way of stimulating the failing economy.

5. List of foods that were available to the colonists at the time of the 1621 feast & were probably on their menu:
SEAFOOD: lobster, clams, eel & cod
WILD FOWL: wild turkey, geese, ducks, swans, partridges & eagles
MEAT: venison & seal
GRAIN: wheat
VEGETABLES: pumpkin, corn, peas, beans, onions, lettuce, radishes & carrots
FRUIT: plums & grapes
NUTS: walnuts, chestnuts & acorns
HERBS & SEASONINGS: olive oil, liverwort, leeks, dried currants & parsnips

6. These traditional holiday foods did not exist at the first Thanksgiving:
POTATOES: potatoes of any kind were not growing in North America during this period.
CRANBERRY SAUCE: the colonists had cranberries but no sugar. Cranberries were mainly used by the Indians for medicinal purposes.
PUMPKIN PIE: the recipes did not exist at this time--they stewed the pumpkins.

7. Pilgrims are shown wearing only black & white clothing, but actually that was only worn on Sunday & formal occasions. Women typically dressed in red, earthy green, brown, blue, violet & gray; while men wore clothing in white, beige, earthy green & brown.

8. Minnesota is the top turkey producing state in America & Illinois grows the most pumpkins.

With Thanksgiving, the holiday season is officially here. Remember to order holiday gifts for your loyal customers. There's still time. This isn't the place to budget--you don't want to be part of the cuts your clients make in their own budget next year.

My last posts have detailed how to choose the appropriate gift plus ideas for the individual client & for the entire office. Please read them to help you choose the gift to wow your customer & make an impact with your company name. Customized promotional items are perfect business gifts--your logo should be visible, but discreet.

Keep in mind that even though you should have plenty of promotional imprinted products on hand to give out, these should not be given out as holiday gifts. Your client won't jump up & down with the .50 pen they've been writing with all year or the letter opener they've used everyday. Promotional custom products should definitely be used as appreciation gifts, but they need to be special & more unique than what is usually distributed among the public for company recognition.

HAPPY THANKSGIVING.  I hope this is your best ever!

Ronni Sherman

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Your Logo Can Taste As Good As It Looks

Every year, just before the holiday season, I have customers ask what can they give out as a food gift to their clients that will make an impact. Many times it has to be shared by numerous people in the office. It should also show off your logo in some way. It's very simple to use food as promotional custom products.

If you're thinking of giving out food for the holidays, don't think along the lines of cutting back on cost......you'll only compromise on the quality & your gift will be the same as everyone else's. Once it's gone, you'll be forgotten--it may happen before it's gone, if you're giving the same old boring food items everybody else is.

You should plan on purchasing the very best tasting food products that are made when ordered & have not been sitting on the shelf for months at a time. What many people don't realize is the gift food items that you find at the membership clubs or discount stores have been sitting in a warehouse for 6 -7 months before you purchase them. If this is how you have done holiday shopping over the past years, your customers will be surprised when you present them with fresh made-when-ordered food gifts.

Whatever it is that you give out, it should have your logo clearly displayed somewhere on the gift. This is not where you should forget about your company identity. Your options for customized promotional items in this area are endless.

Here are three ideas for shared office gifts:

1. tin of popcorn: the idea is about as ordinary as the 6:00 news, but you don't have to buy the popcorn off the shelves of your local grocery or discount store. If you're giving the popcorn as a gift, then customize the tin with your name & logo on the lid or the sides & make sure it's filled with fresh popcorn that is grown by the same people that pack & ship it. It is freshly popped--probably within a day or two of your order. And you can taste the difference! You'll never go back to that old stale stuff again.  Many gourmet flavors available, as well as combinations with nuts & pretzels. In fact, forget the popcorn & fill it with hand-dipped chocolate covered pretzels, an assortment of nuts or freshly baked cookies (again, baked by the people who are packing & shipping your order).

2. chocolate: chocolate bars in all sizes are available--from miniature squares to 2 lb bars. You can add your own logo to the bar, itself, as well as the wrapper. In many cases you can add industry themed designs to the chocolate assortments in a box. Imagine a 1 - 5 lb box of chocolates......the box has your logo on it as well as the large bar in the center & around it are the special die cast chocolates related to your field. The custom chocolate rivals that in European markets. The recipients are wowed by the intricacy & the level of detail & often exclaim, "this is too beautiful to eat!" Eventually they do & appreciate the difference in taste from the boxes of mass produced chocolates your competitor gave them.

3. gourmet food baskets: here you can let your imagination run wild from muffins & coffee or tea for a delicious breakfast for the entire office to an assortment of appetizers or mini lunches for everyone to enjoy throughout the day. Word of caution......whatever you fill the basket with make sure it doesn't have to be refrigerated & it's not something easily found on neighborhood grocery stores' shelves. Don't forget to add your company name & logo. Ribbon that ties the gift together can have your name, but it's also good to add something inside with your identity. Small candy bars or mini snack packs both with your name on the wrapper will be a hit. If it's a small office, a lasting impression would be to include drinkware with your logo on it--enough for the everyone. These could be ceramic mugs, insulated tumblers that keep drinks hot or cold or stainless steel water bottles. Wouldn't it be fun to walk into the office later in the year to see your logo on everybody's desk!

Keep in mind, don't give the lackluster gift your customers are used to getting. Wow them with a creative & fun gift that they'll remember. I hope this gave you some good ideas.

Ronni Sherman


Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Gift Cards Aren't Good Appreciation Or Holiday Gifts

Gift cards have many advantages but when you're giving them as business appreciation gifts, the disadvantages outweigh all the positive factors. Do you really want your customers or clients to know what you spent? Here are a few other reasons why it's not a good idea not give them:

1. Your customer will know what you spent on him so you're showing his value to you with a thin plastic card. Nothing can be more disastrous when building a relationship. I guarantee you that he thinks he's worth more to you than the amount of the card.

2. This is the most common gift given now mainly because it's easy to give. It takes no effort. Is that what you want your client to think when he receives it? That he's not worth your time or effort?

3. Your imagination equals that of a plastic lawn chair. You're not the only one giving out cards this year. You'll be one of many & the recipient won't remember what you gave him or that you gave him anything once the card is stashed in his wallet with all the others. He may remember only if the value of the gift was worth no more than a few cups of coffee. And he may take that memory with him to your competitor if that business made him feel his value as a loyal customer is worth more.

I've stressed in other articles about gift giving that to stand out from competition your gift has to be unique. It also needs to be useful so the recipient will use it day after day all year long. And your company name should be on it so he's reminded of you.

Now with that being said & you still like the idea of gift cards, here are some ways to give them where you can disguise their monetary value & still give a gift of value with your logo on it:

1. Include a gift card to Starbucks or another coffee house inside a ceramic coffee mug or an insulated tumbler that's good for hot or cold drinks. Drinkware is available in any price range so you've covered up the cost of the gift with a customized promotional item that has your name & logo on it & will be used on a daily basis.

2. Give a note pad holder with your note pads or adhesive pads & tape the gift card to the top sheet. The note pad holder can also have your company name, if you wish. They're available in a wide assortment of styles......stainless steel, wood, acrylic or a combination of chrome & glass.

3. Plants are popular & give warmth & personality to any office. Ceramic or plastic planters imprinted with your name are unique. This is definitely a one-of-a-kind gift that will be remembered all year. Add a gift card inside the planter along with a package of seeds for indoor plants, like a money tree, & you should have a customer who's one happy camper.

4. Many cities, like San Francisco, are banning the use of plastic bags & soon some states will follow. This is the time to show you care about the environment. Cotton & non-woven tote bags are becoming more & more popular. They don't have to look like grocery or commercial bags. Many have an abundance of pockets & come in multi-color combinations. Tape a gift card to a book store, department store or even a gourmet/specialty food store to the bottom of one of these totes & you're giving a handy & thoughtful gift.

These are just a few ideas of how to give a gift card without showing the actual value of the gift & at the same time giving something that will display your company name & logo. They can be included with almost any promotional imprinted product to make a creative & lasting impression.

Remember, in giving a gift to a loyal customer, it's important to give something that makes him feel special & appreciated. Don't show any signs you're giving it because you feel you have to do it. With this in mind, think twice before giving a gift card by itself & calling it a day.

Incorporate gift cards with promotional custom products & make them fun to get. Be ingenious, be unique & above all--stand out from everyone else. You can do it! Good luck!
Ronni Sherman

Monday, November 1, 2010

Put Your Name In Lights With Customized Promotional Items

The holiday season is upon us. If the advertisements on TV haven't grabbed your attention, then I'm sure the brightly lit displays in the stores have. Lights are powerful & all the retailers are aware of it as they compete for your business.

Promotional imprinted products that light up are seen & remembered above any other marketing items. Think of the signs that you notice immediately--they're lit in some way. Whether it's a sign in a store window, on an office building or a billboard......they're all brightly lit, screaming to be noticed. The same goes for promotional items. There's no denying it, lights attract attention so light up your logo & make a statement with the gift you give this year.

If you want that extra impact, that special pizazz, when you hand out your promotional custom product or gift to a loyal customer, this will do it like no other: put your name in lights!

The one time not to blend in is when you purchase promotional items, especially if your product or service is in a highly competitive field. Let these promotional wholesale products display your name in a fun & creative way. Your logo will be in the spotlight & your company will be remembered long after you've met with the client or prospective customer. If you gave it as a gift, it will surely be a favorite & used even when the holidays are all but a faded memory.

Here are a few ideas that will be welcomed & useful to the recipient:
1. pens--the barrel lights up to show off your logo.
2. mouse--it lights up every time you move it.
3. mouse pad--a blue mood light frames the pad when it's being used.
4. flash drives--a soft glow keeps your logo lit.
5. luggage tags--lights blink while coming down the luggage ramp.
6. folding picture frame--when opened a soft light surrounds the photo--good for traveling.     
7. tumblers & drinkware--some have a steady light while others a blinking light.
8. yo-yo's & high-bouncer balls--if your business is youth-oriented, this will be a hit.

When you opt for customized promotional items to give out as appreciation gifts or as promotions to boost your identity during the year, take the ordinary out of the items you choose & add lights to your name. Wow your customers with your ingenuity & creativity. They'll think of you the next time they need your service or product.

Good luck & remember to make it fun & bright!
Ronni Sherman

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Tips For Turning Promotional Custom Products Into Successful Holiday Gifts

With the holidays just around the corner, now is the time to start thinking about gifts for your loyal customers. But how do you make your gift stand out from the crowd?

My September 24th article (Customized Promotional Items As Holiday Gifts) on gift giving gave you several ideas for some business gifts along with the criteria needed for a gift to be effective.

Now let me go beyond that & give you some tips on giving a gift to your client:

1. Keep your logo & company name discreet. While all the gifts you give should have your name imprinted somewhere on them, it shouldn't be the main focus as it is on customized promotional items. A business gift is quite different from the marketing products you give out all year or the promotions you hand out at trade shows. It's purpose is to show appreciation & build positive client relations. Anything that looks like blatant advertising will miss the mark.

2. Go beyond the usual & step outside the box. Try a new slant on traditional favorites such as food & gift cards & give your customers a gift that will go beyond the festive holiday period. How about giving the common box of candy or cookies in a cooler that can be used for lunches or drinks all year around. Remember this is a gift, not just a promotional imprinted product, so have your logo imprinted in the bottom corner rather than boldly in the middle. Another idea is an insulated tumbler or ceramic coffee filled with packets of tea or coffee & small packages of snacks or a gift card to one of the local coffee houses.

3. Avoid sending presents with a religious theme. No matter how well you know your client, it is still a good idea to stay away from anything religious. Make sure your gift is generic in nature, but still useful to the recipient. Along these lines, it's better to avoid alcoholic beverages unless you know for sure it will be appreciated by your customer. Many years ago, I learned this the hard way by giving a bottle of wine to a recovering alcoholic.

4. Send your gift on a different day. To set your gift apart, why not send it around Thanksgiving & be the first among your competition to welcome in the holidays. Or, for maximum impact, how about sending it right after the festive season & think of New Years or the first day back in the office.  There's sometimes a bleak feeling when returning to work after the holidays, especially when faced with the task of taking down all the decorations......what could be more welcome than an unexpected gift.

5. Stay away from falling into a rut by giving repeat presents. This may sound obvious, but most companies give the same gift year after year.  It's boring for your client & doesn't reflect well on you, as a business. Wow them with a new & exciting gift each year. Keep them guessing & waiting for your present year after year.

6. Keep within your budget. Pick a limit & stick to it. Gifts that appear too showy don't always have the desired effect & can even reflect negatively on your company. Talk to a professional distributor of promotional wholesale products & let them help you. They'll have unique & fun suggestions in all price ranges--afterall, that is their specialty.

7. Don't try to cut corners. Rummaging through your supply closet to find old customized promotional items you gave out during the year or past years spells disaster, not thank you.

8. Don't fall at the last hurdle. If you're sending a gift by mail or UPS, make sure you give yourself enough time to avoid unexpected delays. Also don't skimp on the packing......a damaged gift will go from the carton straight to the waste paper basket. For that extra impact, enclose a personal, hand-written note & deliver it in person, if at all possible.

Whatever gift you decide on, send something that is both appropriate for your targeted audience & representative of your company. This is only the end of October so there is still time to decide what is the best option for you without rushing into hasty, unwise choices.

Above all, make sure they're thoughtful, unique & fun to get. I hope this helps you find the ideal item.
Ronni Sherman 

Monday, October 18, 2010

Customized Promotional Items That Can Be Walking Billboards

Did you ever wish you could buy a traveling billboard & have it move around town promoting your business. Well, when you buy t-shirts, sweatshirts, jackets, hats & other apparel imprinted with your business name & logo that is exactly what you are buying.

Clothing with your company name & logo imprinted on it is perhaps one of the easiest ways to advertise your business. Out of all the clothing available with a business imprint, baseball caps & t-shirts are by far the most popular. They've become more of a fad than a promotional custom product.

No matter where you are, look around you & notice what people are wearing in an informal setting......t-shirts & baseball caps with an imprinted message or logo on it. Some people collect them & that becomes their week-end or casual attire. And when they wear the shirts or caps, they are acting as waking billboards for your business--wherever they go, they're taking your company name with them. It doesn't get any easier than that.

A great place to hand out promotional t-shirts or hats is at festivals & fairs. People love to get something for free, especially something that is as useful as a t-shirt, & wearing it will bring back memories of the event where they got it. It's a free souvenir for them & free advertising for you.

Distribute them at conventions & meetings & promotional clothing can create business relationships that will last a lifetime. Speaking of lasting a lifetime......the t-shirts & caps are long-lasting promotional imprinted products. Your company identity will definitely stay with the client.

Imprinted t's & caps are also areas where sponsorship can be used to generate community goodwill as well as advertising. By sponsoring a local sports team, school function, charity, political or other event, your business can make itself known in a positive manner & be identified as a company that cares.

I have a customer who goes to local soccer games & practices & high school football games when it rains & hands out plastic ponchos with his company name on them. Next to the player who scored the winning point, he's the most popular person there. The ponchos are very light weight & can easily be toted to the next rainy outdoor event.

If you are in an area known for skiing, knit hats & headbands are good items to embroider your logo on. In a beach community? Rubber flip-flops are unique, useful & worn by almost everyone. Visors & gloves are a popular way to spread your company identity at golf tournaments.

Promotional clothing will be noticed. People tend to read them when they would ignore almost everything else. Design something unique & appealing & your company name will make an impact.

Imprinted apparel, especially t-shirts & caps, are a cost effective way to get your company the exposure it deserves with the minimum of effort. Whoever is wearing the t-shirt with your company logo is taking it places where you haven't been. People will notice you & that's what customized promotional items are all about!

Get creative & make it fun!
Ronni Sherman

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Get In The Spirit Of Halloween With Promotional Imprinted Products

It's October......it's fall......it's the beginning of the holiday season! What a great time of year! I don't know about you, but this is my favorite & I wait for it all year long. One of my best childhood memories is trick or treating in Minneapolis, MN & the sidewalks were completely covered with dried leaves. I loved the sound of them crunching under my feet.

I miss those bright colored leaves & how the trees painted a picture more colorful than any master artist could. In California they turn gold in November. But what fun now to see pumpkin patches crop up everywhere & all the pumpkin displays in the grocery stores.

Here are some interesting facts & history about Halloween.  Did you know:
1. The celebration of Halloween started in the United States as an autumn harvest festival. In pioneer days, Americans celebrated with corn-popping parties, taffy pulls & hayrides.

2. With the large increase of Irish immigrants to the US in the late 19th century, Halloween became associated with ghosts, goblins & witches. It was a tradition the Irish brought across the Atlantic with them.
3. Jack-O-Lanterns are also an Irish tradition. In Ireland, oversized rutabagas, turnips & potatoes were hollowed out & carved into faces & then lit with candles to be used as lanterns during Halloween celebrations.
4. The word "witch" comes from the Old Saxon word "wica" & means "wise one". Witches were once respected dealers in charms, medicinal herbs & tellers of fortunes.
5. The pumpkin originated in Mexico about 9,000 years ago & is one of America's oldest known vegetables. They generally weigh from 15 - 30 pounds but can grow to be as big as 200 pounds.

Want to stand out from your competitors? Get in the spirit of the holiday & give out promotional wholesale products in October that have a Halloween theme.

Here are some customized promotional items for you to give out to your customers:
1. Small snack sized chocolate bars with your name & logo on the wrapper. This is premium chocolate & will be a definite treat for everyone.
2. Life-Saver rolls, small packages of nuts or candy, bags of trail mix. The list is endless when it comes to snacks & all can be imprinted with your company name & logo.
3. Micro-wave bags of popcorn, packets of tea, coffee or hot chocolate imprinted with your logo & name. These are more unusual & will stand out because they're unique.
4. Packages of gum with your logo & company information on the package. There are 12 pieces to a pack with a wide variety of flavors to choose from. The packages are full color & have plenty of room for your advertising message.
5. Pencils that are topped with a pumpkin or coloring & activity books with tips on safety. These are perfect if your target audience is children-oriented. If local schools are having Halloween carnivals, these are good to leave off & be distributed there. Your company name will be seen & noticed for caring about your community.
6. Drinkware or candy dishes with your logo & filled with candy corn. This could be an early holiday gift for your loyal customers. Beat the crowd & give them an appreciation gift before everyone else does. Your gift & your company will make an impact this holiday season.
 7. Biodegradable plastic bags or recyclable non-woven bags. These have a fun holiday motif & list the do's & don't's for a safe Halloween along with your logo & company name. They are colorful & strong & can easily be used for trick or treat bags.

Have fun during this month of Halloween. Don't forget to take time out from your busy schedule to enjoy the holiday!
Ronni Sherman

Friday, September 24, 2010

Customized Promotional Gifts For The Holidays

Ok, it's only the end of September......so why am I already talking about holiday gifts.  This is the time to think about it. You know how fast these next few months will fly!

If you put it if off to the last minute, you run the risk of rush charges & the possibility the item will no longer be in stock. Everything takes longer this time of year because of the huge increase in business. It's not only the production of your promotional imprinted product, but UPS & FedEx add days to their delivery schedules.

Also, don't be the last one to give out your gift. Get it delivered before your competition does & most importantly, when it will be remembered & appreciated. If you wait until December 22 & 23, it will most likely be pushed aside & forgotten as people concentrate on their own shopping & holiday plans.

I actually think you will make a bigger impact if you give it long before anyone else--like around Thanksgiving. Choose a personalized gift, with your company name & logo, that is both relative to your industry & is useful to your client. The more they like it & the more useful it is, the more they will use the item, giving your business repeated exposure throughout the year.

It's so important to give your customers a gift to let them know you appreciate their business. If this is where you decide to budget, you may run the risk their loyalty will fizzle out.

Promotional custom products that are gifts must meet the following criteria in order to be effective:
1. The items must be useful. Ideally give something that can be used daily in order to keep the memory of your company visible.
2. The products must have value. This doesn't mean you have to spend alot on the gift but don't give out the fifty cents pen you've been handing out all year. Make sure they know it's special & meant for them--not something you bought to distribute among the public for company recognition.
3. The item must be appropriate for your targeted audience. The same rule applies here that applies when you give out promotional imprinted products to the public. Be aware of the recipient's age group, the area they are from, etc.
4. The gift should be personalized clearly with your company logo. Remind your customer who gave them the gift & hopefully it can be something that remains visible long after the holidays are over.

With an unlimited choice of personalized items, you can get creative & give a gift that is both useful & one that compliments your company. Here are a few ideas:
1. Candy Dish--if you call on your customer throughout the year, make sure to bring candy or nuts to refill the dish during the sales call......conversation hearts in February, jelly beans in the spring or candy corn in the fall.
2. Gift Baskets filled with gourmet food that includes drinkware with your logo on it......ceramic coffee mugs, insulated travel tumblers or stainless steel water bottles. 
3. Gifts That Lights Up......a mouse, mouse pads, flashdrives, pens or luggage tags to name just a few.
4. Fleece Blankets with your logo embroidered in the corner. These are long-lasting gifts.
5. Digital Picture Frames--these are so popular & perfect for anyone who has a family or is involved in sports or an organization.
6. Protective Covers For Laptops--most people have laptops, but after purchasing one, many don't want to spend the extra money on a cover & put off buying it until a later date. This could be a welcome gift & depending on your budget, they come in both leather & synthetic materials. On a gift like this, I suggest your logo go discreetly in the lower corner.

Remember, above all--give something you'd enjoy getting. I hope this helps!
Ronni Sherman

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Support Your Football Team With Promotional Custom Products

Across the United States, in small towns & big cities, football season has kicked off & avid fans are rooting for their local teams. You may be thinking that football has nothing to do with your business, that it has little to do with the services & products you provide your customers with. That line of thinking may seem logical at first, but you could not be further from the truth.

You see anything that has to do with your community directly corresponds to your company & this is a concept that all business owners should keep in mind. Becoming involved in those things that are an integral part of the community lets you put your advertising message in a place where everyone can see it. This is the ideal way to get your name out in public & get your company recognized as an important asset to your town.

There's a wide selection of promotional imprinted products, available in all price ranges, that will help support the team & your business. One important tip to keep in mind when you're ordering these advertising specialties is to make sure they are in the team colors & not your colors. Your company name & logo should be prominent though......after all, you're promoting your business. If there's room, you can also display the team's name.

Here are a few suggestions for customized promotional items that will be used in the stadium & hopefully around town all season long.
1. Stadium Cushions: Not the old-fashioned vinyl ones--those had the same fate as a VCR player. They are now foam, covered with polyester. Some are foldable & can fit in a pocket while others have a sturdy back or pockets & a drink holder.
2. Drinkware: Your choices are endless......insulated coffee mugs that can keep drinks warm for the entire game are great for chilly fall nights. There's also colorful sports bottles & stainless steel bottles. Stadium cups with lids are popular at football games.
3. Foam Footballs: They come in all sizes from 5" to 9" & a large array of colors. You can get them with the stripes & laces in contrasting colors.
4. Stadium Blankets: These definitely can be embroidered with both your logo & the team's name. They are most commonly seen in fleece, but are also available in chenille & sweatshirt material. Yes, they are pricier than the other suggestions, but they make wonderful thank you & executive gifts. Don't wait for the holidays to show your appreciation to your customers......give them an early gift that will be long-remembered & more welcomed than the stale tins of popcorn they'll get in December.

It doesn't matter how large or small these promotional wholesale products are or who you give them to--what really matters is that they travel to the local football field & bring in new business for you. No matter where you live, no matter the caliber of your team, these items show your support for both the team & the community.

Good luck to your local team & to you this football season.
Ronni Sherman


Tuesday, September 7, 2010

How A Customized Promotional Item Can Travel The World

In today's age there are websites and companies that are going online daily. Many of these websites that are going live are new entrepreneurs that have the idea of owning their own online business. As more and more of these entrepreneurs get online they are in need of the same thing as everyone else...traffic! Just like a traditional business needs foot traffic or customers walking through them, an online business needs traffic as well.  While I have been an online entrepreneur and do much marketing online that we are all familiar with like article marketing, video marketing and PPC, this is not one of those types of marketing strategies; this is one outside the internet arena.
What I consider one of the most powerful promotional imprinted products you could invest in is one that gets stolen all the time. It is something that you always need many times a day and most people have hundreds of them around the office or home. It is a pen! A pen is an item that many people borrow but never give back, and it could potentially travel the world within a week or two. I really think that would be an interesting documentary. What if a tracking device was installed in a pen to see where it went? Think of the last time you lent a pen out and never got it back. Think if that pen had advertising on it for your business, how powerful could that be and how far could it go?

Where Could It End Up?
Now if you have the mindset like I do and also many other entrepreneurs, we think BIG. You always have to think BIG or otherwise you will get left behind. Okay, follow me here...
You buy three hundred ball point pens for $120, and you find a way to leave six in public reach for thirty days. You now have 180 traveling silent advertisers for your business, and what did you do...not much. Your pens have the potential to be in hundreds of different people's hands in a month. This still leaves you with just under half of your order to distribute or do other things with.

Can You Follow The Pen?
Where does it go? Ok, say you are taking your spouse out to dinner at Applebee's in Kansas City, MO.
At the end of the dinner your waitress brings you the bill and a pen. You could accidently switch her pen with one of your business pens or leave her both. You leave after signing the bill and then the rest of the night other patron's are using your pen. Let's say one patron is a school teacher that takes the pen and then takes it to work with her the next day. Then she accidently leaves it in the teachers' lounge. The pen is used by a few other teachers and one picks it up with his papers and takes it to his night class. He just happens to sit next to someone who forgot their pen and it is passed off as a "favor".

This Is Where It Gets Fun...
The fellow student who borrowed the pen as a "favor" takes it home and lays it on the counter at night. The next morning the fellow student's spouse takes it to work at their car rental business. The spouse rents a car to a traveling business man from Hawaii. This business man "borrows" the pen only to slide it into his pocket; never to be returned. He gets back to his hotel for the night and looks at the pen, and then goes to your website. After being on the run for 14 hours he is tired and throws your pen in his briefcase. The next day he hops back on a plane to Hawaii to meet up with one of his business partners in Maui. It happens that his business partner is originally from Japan and travels home once every two months to see his mother. During the quick 30 minute meeting at the airport, his business partner "borrows" the pen and is off to Japan.

So What Did It Cost You?
Following the pen through about ten different people: the pen cost you .40 and ten different people wrote with it. If you know human nature like I do, they read the writing - we are all very inquisitive. Ok, I agree it cost you a dinner with your spouse, but you needed to do that anyway. So breaking this equation down into getting your business in front of people could be as low as .04 a person.

What Am I Doing?
I am reaching out to a great friend of mine, Ronni Sherman, who owns Creative Images or actually Cre8iveimages. I will tell you first of all, Ronni is a high class lady who considers customer service her top priority and goes the extra ten miles for every client. With Ronni's business, she not only offers pens but also:
*Breath Mints
*Adhesive Notes
*Caps, T-Shirts and other apparel
*Golf Balls
*Luggage Tags
*Computer Items
*Drink Ware
*Executive Gifts
*And so much more!!!

So what I am trying to tell you is quite simple. A great way to get your company name out in the world at a low cost is with promotional custom products.
Wishing you everlasting success,
Your friend and mentor,
Robert David Strong
Written by guest author, Robert David Strong

Let your pen be the one that travels the world. Thank you, Robert!
Ronni Sherman

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

A Successful Promotional Campaign Using Customized Promotional Items

In this economy, when most businesses are experiencing loss of sales & their revenues are down, it's difficult to think about putting money aside for advertising. Yet, it's during these difficult times that you need to think about promoting your company. Sure, everyone's cutting back, but people still need products & services. Even though the media is screaming recession,  you see advertisements on TV & people in stores with shopping bags. And that's why it's so important to get your name out there now & remind the consumer that you're around, ready to help them with whatever they need.

Promotional imprinted products are one of the most economical & successful methods to advertise your business. These advertising specialties are an efficient way to be seen by a slew of people everyday & to elicit a response from the public.

To achieve a successful promotional campaign you should have three goals:

1. Make sure your marketing message reaches your target group. Research & identify the needs of your audience. Are they a special interest group? Is age, sex or where they live a factor? Will you be giving out your promotional custom products to the public in general or to a certain sector? Windshield scrapers will be appreciated at a car auction in Maine, but not in New Mexico. Spiral notebooks are ideal for a high school or college fund-raiser, but if it's an elementary school then educational activity books would be more appealing.

2. Make sure your message is clearly understood by your target audience. This is so important because if your message is hard to read, you've wasted your money.  Customized promotional items shouldn't be a guessing game. If you pick a smaller item like a pen or letter opener, then don't try to say too much. You don't have the space & a company bio is not necessary. Your company name & contact info is sufficient. You can be colorful, you can make it fun, just don't make it crowded. Your objective is for someone to read your website or phone number easily. Have more to say? Then think about note pads, mouse pads, drinkware or bags. If you're mailing or traveling with these, I suggest you stick to the small & light-weight items & include additional information with attached printed material.

3. Make sure your message drives your target group to act. I've said this before & I can't stress it enough......make sure what you give out is useful, looks appealing & works as it's supposed to. You don't have to go for the most expensive items, but stay away from the least expensive because the promotional imprinted products you give out will define who your company is.  It's better to be known by a brightly colored pen that writes smooth than a .19 stick pen that skips. A cheap note pad with thin paper that is not glued properly at the top will only end up in the waste paper basket & you will be forgotten. But your competitor will be remembered if what he gives out stays on the desk & is used. Get the message? Now make sure your customer does when you give him your promotional wholesale items.

So remember, target your audience, then make sure your message is clear & it inspires the consumer to go to you when they need your product or service.

I hope this helps you & that your next promotional campaign will be a success. Good luck!
Ronni Sherman

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Halloween Trick Or Treat Bags As Customized Promotional Items

Believe it or not, Halloween is just a couple months away so it's time to order your personalized trick or treat bags. You may be asking: why should my business order these? Here are a few reasons why customized Halloween bags make great promotional imprinted products for your company to hand out:

1. Imprinted Trick or Treat bags are inexpensive. The average price for these are .38 each.

2. There's a large imprint area. On a majority of the bags, the Halloween design is on one side of the bag & the other side is left for your company name, logo & your advertising message.

3. Your company name & logo will get lots of exposure. Halloween bags are protentially seen by hundreds of thousands of people. This gives you a great marketing return on your purchase.

4. They promote child safety. Most Halloween bags have safety tips for trick or treating. Your customers who have children will appreciate that & remember you the next time they need your services. And face it, everyone likes it when something is given to their kids. For added safety, look into buying the metallic reflective bags.

5. People love getting something for free. You can't deny that people like to get a free gift no matter how small it may be, just so it's useful & these definitely are. You can give out your personalized bags with each order or just have a "Free Take One" display. If you have a booth at a trade show, these are ideal to hand out. Does a local school have a Halloween event where you can leave them?

6. Halloween is the beginning of the holiday season. It is one of the most popular times for businesses to get promotional custom products, so don't be left behind when your competition markets during this period.

7. Attached coupons are an option that will bring you repeat business. You can get the trick or treat bags with a detachable coupon at the bottom so you can get repeat business from your customers & draw in new consumers with a special discount.

8. It's a great way to promote your business--now & later in the year. You can put your other custom promotional items such as pens, note pads or a letter opener in the bags. This way your customers will have something with your logo on it long after Halloween is over.

Keep in mind, if you order the bags now, you won't get them for another three weeks--that's mid to late September & that's just when you should start giving them out.

Billions of dollars each year are spent on Halloween related items. In fact, it is the second highest revenue producing holiday. Make sure you are marketing your business during this festive, fun & productive time of year.
Ronni Sherman

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Integrate Advertising Specialties With Other Promotional Methods To Boost Your Business

There are numerous ways to promote your business but more & more companies, large & small, are turning to promotional imprinted products as one of their options. Customized promotional items have proven to be effective in enhancing brand recognition & recall. They have the ability to stay visible longer than any other form of advertising. This makes it possible for your name & logo to stay within the recipient's view for months on end.

But few, if any, companies will put all their eggs in one basket & just use advertising specialties as the only way to promote themselves. Promotional custom products can be incorporated with other promotions & used in conjunction with almost any form of advertising. So another benefit of using these items is they are versatile.

Here are a few quick tips on how to use promotional wholesale products with other means of advertising:
1. Face-To-Face Contact. Make sure you interact with your existing clients. Yes, it's easier & quicker to sent an email asking what you can do for them; but it's also impersonal. Calling on your loyal customer in their office or taking them out to lunch will do more for your business relationship than a quick email ever will. Remember when you meet with them, leave behind your business card & an imprinted item such as a pen, mouse pad or this time of year--a calendar.

2. Attend Trade Shows, Seminars, Conferences, Meetings, Fund-Raisers, Athletic & Political Events. It's even a good idea to conduct some of these events yourself. Whether you're attending or heading an affair, try to personally meet as many people as you can. Don't leave your place of business empty-handed......bring your printed material & promotional custom products to distribute among the crowd or as you network. Flash drives that are downloaded with your catalog showing your entire line are perfect for trade shows, seminars & conferences. Non-woven reusable tote bags are also ideal for trade shows & fund-raisers. Bookmarks, notebooks & neon markers work well at school functions. The main thing is make sure that both you, or a representative of your company, & your imprinted message are present at a number of these various events throughout the year.

3. Networking Using Social Media. Offer an incentive for people to follow you on one or more of your social network sites or to give you feedback on your website or blog. Almost everyone has a laptop today, but they don't come with a case to protect them. That's an extra expense many people don't want when they buy the laptop & choose to fore go getting it for awhile. A protective case with your logo imprinted or debossed in the lower corner would be a welcome gift. One company used beach balls to get people to follow them on Twitter & it was a huge success.

4. Mailings. I know they're expensive & time consuming when you can do the same thing over the computer. But sometimes a handwritten thank you note to a new customer or an existing one will bond them to your company. It's a sincere gesture that anyone would appreciate the time you took to write them a personal note. It will make a more lasting impression if you enclosed a notepad or a letter opener with your name on it. Mass mailings & newsletters still work for many industries & that notepad or letter opener will make more of an impact if it's enclosed. My dentist sends out a newsletter every three months with a flat container of dental floss. I find that to be a very effective way to use promotional imprinted products. Keep in mind, the items you mail out should be non-breakable, flat & light-weight.

So what are you waiting for? Start promoting your business today! Good luck!
Ronni Sherman

Monday, August 2, 2010

Six Typical Mistakes When Buying Promotional Imprinted Products

It's been proven in study after study that customized promotional items are one the most effective ways of marketing. Most businesses, whether large or small, have used some type of advertising specialty at one time or another. A big majority of those companies have realized the benefits of promotional products & have appreciated how economical & effective this form of advertising is because it directly reaches their targeted audience.

Yet, as in all other fields, there is a small percentage of business men or women who feel it is not advantageous for them to invest in these products. It probably has nothing to do with using promotional items in general, but more to do with how they marketed them or what products they bought.

Here are six of the most common pitfalls you should be aware of before you invest in promotional custom products.

1. Wrong item for your target audience. This is a huge mistake that a lot of business owners make. Make sure you know who your recipients are & what their needs are. Mouse pads are great promotional items but they are the wrong thing for the elderly in an assisted living facility. A deck of cards, a bookmark or a pillbox that is divided & acts as a daily reminder would be more appreciated. Find out if they are physically active. If so, then a pedometer might work. Believe it or not, gum is a good thing for a dentist to give out as long as it is sugarless. If the target audience is a conglomerate, then pens, note pads & coffee mugs are among the items that appeal to a diverse crowd. This may seem like a no-brainer, but you'd be surprised at how many people order an item because they like & they don't consider who it's going to.

2. Not identifying an objective for your campaign. What exactly do you want to achieve with your purchase of promotional items? Are you going for brand awareness & to increase your sales? Are you trying to promote a grand opening, a fund-raiser or a sporting event? Do you want to draw people to your trade show booth or are you using them in a seminar? Are these gifts to thank your loyal customers? These are crucial questions you must ask yourself before you buy promotional wholesale products. You need to define your targeted audience & your goal in distributing these.

3. Buying a cheap product. You've heard this saying: "you get what you pay for". It's especially true for the promotional items you give out. Don't buy a twenty cent pen & expect people to jump up & down with excitement. Especially when your competitor gave them a great pen just a week ago. A cheap item like that pen is likely to skip when writing, smear & maybe not even write at all. It will end up in the trash while the fifty cent pen is on the desk & being used. All you've done is wasted your money & given the consumer a bad taste about your company. They'll associate your products or service as cheap & useless just like the pen they threw out.

4. Being stingy. This is a favorite & something I don't understand. I have customers who buy promotional imprinted products all the time, but never give them out. Sometimes their sales reps are too lazy or they "forgot". But usually the items are stored in a closet & "saved" for "special people" or "special occasions". Unless you're going to invite the public to rummage through your closet, you won't get company recognition with the promotions you invested in. You've spent money on them, so now let them go to work for you & advertise your business. The average promotional item is viewed by many more people than just the recipient. Therefore, one product is a powerful marketing tool & can be seen in multiple locations.

5. No contact information. Having just your logo printed on items without contact information like your website, email or phone number is not usually recommended unless you're a national company that is recognized by your logo. Your letter opener or note pad should not be a guessing game.

6. Too much printed information. I've come across this so many times. Often someone will want their company name & logo along with a tagline, street & email address, website, fax & phone number. Unless you're planning on purchasing note pads, mouse pads or tote bags, you won't have room for all this information. Your business name, phone number & website--maybe an email address, if there's room--is sufficient on most customized promotional items. Do you really need a fax number or zip code on a pen or paper clip holder?

These simple, but costly mistakes can be avoided by using an experienced & qualified advertising specialties distributor......one who has the ability to make your next marketing campaign a successful one. I hope this will help you find the promotional items that are right for your business.


Ronni Sherman

Monday, July 26, 2010

Calendar Desk Pads Are Ideal Promotional Custom Products

Highly visible advertising & large areas for your company's logo & information make desk calendars a great way to advertise your business all year long.

Add a little color to your customer's desktop with calendar desk pads. At the same time, they offer your customers an effective way to organize their time & their appointments. With little effort, your clients can keep track of their schedules, deadlines, meetings & special engagements.

Six reasons why these make ideal promotional imprinted products:
1. They have a large imprint area & can show off more than your company name, logo & website. They have the room to display all your company information in a fun, colorful & creative way.
2. They are popular with just about everyone from professors & academic office staff to office personnel in any field......insurance, real estate, medical, accounting, automotive, to name just a few.
3. They are an ideal way for your company to be constantly noticed. This is a customized promotional item that will be used everyday. Your name will always be seen because they sit on the desktop, not in a desk drawer.
4. They are useful & needed. There's ample room to jot quick notes as well as the blocked off dates to write down important engagements & appointments.
5. They're economical. For only a few cents a day, your name & company's information will be in front of your client all day, visible all year.
6. They make nice appreciation gifts to your loyal customers. And they have a much longer life span than a box of candy.

Ok, so now I told you the reasons these make such good promotional wholesale products, you must be wondering why I'm talking about them in July. Believe it or not, this is the time to order them.
* You can take advantage of the early bird pricing.
* Calendar companies are in their busy season. You need to allow for the time it takes to get your desk pads printed & shipped.
* October is a good month to distribute them. The holidays are already in full bloom by then. So be the first. If you wait, your competitor will get to your customer before you do.

Remember desk calendar pads will keep your name in front of your clients on a daily basis all year long.

Ronni Sherman

Monday, July 19, 2010

Advertising & Promotional Custom Products--Questions & Answers

I get questions all the time about promotional wholesale products & successful advertising campaigns. Here are a couple that were asked of me recently.

Why is someone always trying to sell me a .50 pen over a .25 pen? Why should I spend twice as much when they both do the same thing?
That's just it......they both don't do the same thing. The .25 pen will not write as well as the one that costs more & if it isn't going to write smooth, then it won't be used. The last thing you want is for it to be thrown in a desk drawer or worse yet, a waste paper basket. Then you've really wasted your money.
Also the pen, itself, will look cheaper than the one for .50 & again, people will reach for the more colorful, trendier one. The whole purpose of buying pens as promotional imprinted products is to get your name out among the public.
I'm not saying you need to buy the most expensive pen to get your message seen. Buy one that stands out so hopefully your company will be identified by it--in a positive way. It shouldn't blend with the dozens of others in that cup that holds pens. Besides writing smoothly, it should be comfortable to hold & the mechanism needs to be easy to use.
Anything with your name on it represents your company & who you are. That also goes for an ordinary pen that doesn't write well. Is that the message you want to give out? I'd rethink this, especially since your competition probably spent .50 on the pens he distributes.

Can social media co-exist with traditional marketing?
Definitely! Social media doesn't replace other forms of marketing, especially promotional custom products. They should work together. This is known as integrated marketing. But before you do anything, whether online or offline, there are four things you should define first:
1. Know & identify your brand. This takes a lot of thought & planning, but if you do it wisely you'll be more successful in your marketing venture.
2. Know your target audience. You'll waste your money if you're not reaching the people you need to reach. Learn who they are, where they are & what their needs are.
3. Know your budget. Don't get into a bind & not carry through with your marketing campaign because you ran out of money. Also don't start your campaign only to realize later you have to cut corners--you'll give out a different message than what your business is all about. That spells disaster.
4. Know your strategy. Make a detailed plan for your long term & short term goals regarding your marketing. Review it often to see if your goals are being met. If not, figure out what went wrong & set up a new agenda.

Do you have any questions you'd like answered? Send them to me & I'll be sure to post it in a future article. In the meantime, do everything you can to keep your company name & logo visible.
Ronni Sherman

Monday, July 12, 2010

Customized Promotional Stress Relief Items

There seems to be no way to avoid it......stress is all around us & has become a part of our lives. Whether it's at home, at work, trying to juggle busy schedules or family or health issues, stress & tension is there.

Most of us live with it, but have also found outlets for it......the gym or another form of work-out, a favorite sport, hobbies, shopping, hanging out with friends. Yelling, hopefully not at someone but in the privacy of your car, can also be a release & some experts claim a pretty effective one at that.

Circumstances, uncomfortable situations & people are all triggers for the stress we feel. This is never more evident than in the work place. Offices are confined & don't have the space to work off steam when tension builds. Maybe you could get punching bag into your cubicle or do yoga during your lunch hour; but start yelling at the top of your voice from your desk & you might find yourself out of a job.

Bottom line, there really isn't an outlet for stress during the work day. Tension is one of the leading causes of decreased work productivity & absenteeism. There is a quick fix though & that's giving out stress relief items as your next promotional imprinted product. Putting your logo on one will not only keep your name visible but you could be associated with good health in the work place. Because the primary health issue in the office is stress, your customer will use these more than you think.

Customized promotional stress relief items are effective. The stress ball is the most popular for squeezing away anxieties. Picture an executive leaning back in his chair squeezing it while on the phone, a receptionist absently gripping it while reading something on the computer or a sales person throwing it around while on a short break. They provide a release for someone without taking up valuable work time or space.

Most important, they're good advertising for you. Stress relief items are often found sitting on a desk, book shelves or a computer monitor which means your company name is visible for everyone who walks by to see. They're fun promotional custom products & ones you can be creative with.

You can choose a style that best represents your business......globe, square cube, convertible, plane, tennis racket, golf club, computer mouse, molar, hard hat, stop sign, dollar sign, cell phone & every kind of sport ball, food & animal you can possibly think of.

Whatever shape you choose, stress relief items are novel & effective ways to put your name in font of your client or prospective customer.
Ronni Sherman

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Promotional Wholesale Products & Your Image As An Expert

There are so many blogs & articles written about company recognition & brand identity. In a previous blog, Will The Real Definition Of Branding Please Stand Up (May 2010), I tried to define what a brand is & how to obtain it.

After establishing your brand & revealing it to the public online & with offline advertising like catalogs, fliers & promotional imprinted products you need to make sure you, as a person, are also giving out the same message.

If you are an interior decorator & you've presented your company as daring, creative, out-of-the-ordinary......a business that pushes the envelope & comes up with astonishing results; you'll lose your customers if you, personally, come across as being traditional & playing it safe. Being someone who is not part of your branded image will give mixed messages. This is one of the worst things you can do to win over a customer.

First impressions can make it or break it for you. How many times have you heard that? I can't stress enough how true it is. Therefore, when you meet your client & hand him your business card & promotional custom products with your company name on them, make sure you, yourself, are part of that total picture you are trying to portray.

When you present yourself to clients as a representative of your company, it's important to show you are an expert in your field. Your expertise should be part of your brand.

Experts receive respect & have an edge over their competition. They're in a better position to attract loyalty from the consumer & interesting business opportunities.

Which of the following kinds of expert portraits work for your capabilities & your competitive marketplace?

* THE WHIZ--someone who has an unusual degree of skill & is able to accomplish tasks far more capably than others & usually with greater speed.
* THE BRAINIAC--someone with an unbelievable amount of knowledge at his or her command.
* THE SUCCESS--"I reached the mountaintop & now let me teach you how to do what I did."
* THE SAGE--someone who offers wise answers, effective advise & has a balanced range of perspectives.
* THE REBEL--someone people enjoy following because he or she reliably puts forward contrary, unpredictable ideas that make sense.

You can combine two of these types, but pursuing three or more of these kinds of qualities clouds how people understand your strengths & stretches your credibility.

When meeting that all-important client, put your best foot forward & foster your expert image--an image that fits your brand. Your image should be just as important to your brand identity as the customized promotional items you give out or the words describing your business in your mailings, your blogs & on your website.

Good luck the next time you meet your client. I hope this helps.
Ronni Sherman

Monday, June 21, 2010

Customized Promotional Products Will Get You Noticed!

Look around you. Everywhere there is an item with a company's logo & advertising message on it. It could be a paper cup from Burger King, a note pad for a car dealership or a baseball cap flashing the title of a TV show. Now look at the pen you're writing with......who's name is on it? It should be yours. If it was, think how visible your company would be all day--everyday.

Promotional imprinted products are powerful marketing tools that target your audience & potential customers who might be interested in the product or service you're offering. I explain just how important & effective they are in my first blog: Why Use Promotional Imprinted Products (March 2010).

Today every business is doing its best to attract the attention of customers by allocating advertising budgets. These budgets should include advertising specialties because they have the ability to keep your logo visible for years to come. They should not be considered an expense, but rather an investment since their goal is to increase your revenue.

Investing in promotional wholesale products will be a long-term & wise decision. The cost of advertising on promotional items is remarkably low, yet the number of consumers exposed to your advertising message is exceptionally high. They can reach any & all targeted audiences you are going after.

The Advertising Specialty Institute conducted a survey & reported that people who receive promotional items keep them for an average of seven to nine months. This provides repeated & consistent exposure to your company. Have you given a bag to someone lately? Chances are, they'll use it more than ten times a month & your logo on that bag will be seen monthly by 1,038 people. That's just one bag......now multiply it by the number of bags you ordered & gave out in that one month.

Since your message is the medium, items with your name & logo on them will stay with your clients & potential customers. They will be within their sight as long as the promotional custom products are being used. Consumers will be reminded of you every time they write with a pen that has our name on it, drink from a coffee cup with your advertising message, hit a golf ball with your logo or drive behind a car with your website on the license plate frame. T-shirts & recyclable bags are walking billboards for your business.

Let your name stand out in front of the public at all times.
Ronni Sherman

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Water Bottles--Hot Summer Promotional Imprinted Products

Summer is the perfect season to plan your promotional campaign. Because of the weather, people are more active. Daylight savings time makes it convenient for people to stay out longer & to go to more places than they do during the winter months. This also the time for family vacations. All of this helps in expanding your customer reach if you choose the right customized promotional item.

One of the best promotional imprinted products to give out at this time are water bottles. People plan their outings during summer vacations & prefer to carry water bottles wherever they travel......whether it's to a local beach, the gym or an excursion to a further destination.

Ok, I know what you're thinking......the ones that were made of soft white plastic & were stashed away in a forgotten place or rolled around the floor of your car. Not so--that water bottle is as out-of-date as a console TV. They've come along way in the last few years. Look around you when you're out in public or take note of what's being sold in the stores.

They're now available in various sizes, shapes, colors, patterns, materials & designs. They're generally transparent hard plastic bottles in brilliant colors that will make your logo & advertising message pop. Bio-degradable bottles as well as aluminum & stainless steel bottles are also very popular. The best thing about all of these......they no longer retain tastes or odors like the old fashioned white plastic ones did. And they're BPA free & eco-friendly.

Most companies either focus on other promotional events or run their own where they can hand out water bottles as useful advertising specialties. These events can include anything: grand openings, golf tournaments, team sponsorships, marathons, office functions & charity or political fund-raisers. They also make great thank you & customer appreciation gifts. One of my customers, a large new & used car dealership, leaves one in the cup holder every time a car is brought in for servicing.

Colors for these bottles are vibrant & they can go along with your company's color & logo. There's a large imprint area that allows space for your logo, company name & advertising message. In most cases, both sides of thee bottle can be imprinted for the same price.

Due to the various sizes & materials used, water bottles are one of the most versatile of all promotional custom products. For instance a sporting goods store that's celebrating a grand opening may give out large stainless steel bottles that carries sufficient water to keep someone hydrated. While a pediatrician or a toy manufacturer will probably hand out smaller brightly colored plastic bottles that would attract the kids. A company sponsoring a local soccer team may fore go their colors on a water bottle & give the players & their families bottles that are in the team colors--one side showing the team name & the other, the sponsor's information.

As far as the summer season is concerned, giving away promotional water bottles is the perfect item for any business in any industry since they're so adaptable. The main thing to remember is water bottles travel & wherever someone carries them, they are carrying your logo & message. This makes them a great marketing tool to connect you with your clients & prospective customers.

If anyone has any other ideas about imprinted promotional wholesale products to give out during the summer months, please let me know. In the meantime, I hope this helps you decide on a practical yet fun promotional item for your next marketing campaign.

Good luck!
Ronni Sherman