Monday, April 23, 2012

Promotional Imprinted Products--Value Or Price?

"We'll just go with the cheapest."  Now does that sound familiar to you?

Certainly in this economy it makes sense for people to shop around for the most competitive prices. I've spoken many times about the importance of value over price, but it seems that there are still some of you out there who just want the cheapest & so for those people, this week's article is dedicated to you.

Let me ask you a your business the cheapest in your industry? Think about that before you answer, because some of you would have instantly thought: "yes! yes, we are & we're proud of it". If two of you reading this are in the same industry then at least one of you is wrong.

Many companies make a point of claiming: "We Won't Be Undersold" but the fact is they are undersold......regularly & they know it too. It's too broad a claim to make in this global world. There are dozens of smaller merchants who are happy to charge less than the larger companies for identical items--especially if they can depend on your loyalty. I know, I'm one of them & I will give the best possible price--but I won't compromise on quality & here's why............

You don't have the cheapest products, you don't have the cheapest service & yet you still want to go with cheapest marketing & the least expensive customized promotional items.

That just doesn't make any sense. There are some very cheap promotional custom products out there but they won't last very long & therefore, what message are you sending when you offer them to your customers? "We're cheap, but hey--you get what you pay for, right?"  Not the best point to be making in this economy, especially if you're in a competitive field. Remember, what you hand out reflects you & your business & shows what you stand for.

You don't drive the cheapest car. You don't live in the cheapest house. You don't wear the cheapest clothes, sleep in the cheapest bed, eat the cheapest food, watch the cheapest TV or stay in the cheapest hotels. You may have worked out a budget but when you started shopping, you had a choice--you based your decision on more than just price. Can you imagine what your life would be like if you were only offered the cheapest option available? You'd be living in a tent somewhere eating baked beans straight out of the can.

I've said it before & I'll say it again......the cheapest option is not to buy anything at all. If you don't believe in the value of a good promotional imprinted product then just don't do one. Keep your money & let your competitors get out there & steal a few of your clients away from you.

Customized promotional items are a very economical way to advertise--more economical than any other media. It's also one of the most effective ways to advertise. Your name doesn't just stay in front of your customer or prospect while they're reading an article or watching something on TV--it's there whenever they use the product they received from you.  They, & hopefully others around them, will see your logo daily & for longer periods of time than a 60 second advertisement. That's how efficient advertising specialties are & how you can put your money to good use.

If price is a major concern, then go to a distributor of advertising specialties, one you can trust, & ask them if there are any specials. And believe me, there always are. That way you can still give out a quality item at a good price. Also be open--you may have to change your game plan & switch to another promotional imprinted product than the one you originally planned on to get a low price; but it's worth it because you're not compromising on quality.

The important thing is you are handing out quality items with your logo & company name......items that represent who you are.  Good luck!
Ronni Sherman

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Water Bottles As Versatile Promotional Custom Products

Water bottles are the perfect customized promotional item for any business in any industry since they are so adaptable. They travel......wherever someone carries them, they are carrying your logo & message. And people take them everywhere......they gym, the store, the park, the beach, sporting events or in the car while doing errands. Look around you & no matter where you are, you'll see someone with a water bottle.

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 on the floor of a car.  Not so--that water bottle is as out of date as a console TV.  They've come a long way in the last few years.

They're now available in various sizes, shapes, colors & materials. They're generally brilliant colored transparent hard plastic bottles 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.

Colors for these bottles are vibrant & they can go along with your brand color & logo. There's a large imprint area that allows space for your logo, company name & message.

Do these look like the old-fashioned bottles?

stainless steel water bottle

clear triangular shaped water bottle

6-sided bright colored Triton water bottle

Due to the various sizes & materials used, water bottles are one of the most versatile of all advertising specialties. 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 during a heavy work-out. While a pediatrician or toy manufacturer will probably hand out smaller brightly colored plastic bottles that would attract children. A company sponsoring a local soccer team may forego their colors on a water bottle & give the players & their families bottles in the team colors--one side showing the team name & the other, the sponsor's information.

Most companies either focus on other promotional events or run their own where they can give away water bottles as useful promotional imprinted products that will make their logos visible. These events can include anything & everything: grand openings, golf tournaments, team sponsorships, marathons, office functions & charity & political fund-raisers. They also make great thank you & customer appreciation gifts. One of my customers who's a car dealership leaves one in the car cup holder every time a car is brought in for servicing.

Look at this unique spin on the traditional water bottle. These are collapsible. They inflate when filled & return to a flat shape when empty. These can be stored anywhere--in a car console, sport or duffel bag, backpack or a pocket. Think how handy they are for traveling.

When you want your company to be noticed & stand out in a crowd, think about water bottles as your next promotional custom product.  Good luck!

Ronni Sherman