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Top 10 Markets for Wearables

Filed under: Education, Wearables

Wearables Sales ForecastAccording to the recently released Wearables Sales Forecast, imprinted apparel is predicted to generate $6.7 billion in revenue in 2014. (That was billion with a ‘b’ just in case you were reading quickly.)

Representing roughly one-third of all sales for the ad specialty industry, I’d say promotional apparel is a pretty big hitter. And it’s only getting bigger.

Looking to score more wearables sales? Don’t miss the features “9 Things You Need to Know” and “Revenue Rev-Up,” and in the meantime here are the Top 10 markets for Wearables:

  1. Education/Schools
  2. Associations/Clubs
  3. Manufacturing
  4. Nonprofits
  5. Health Care
  6. Retail
  7. Restaurants/Travel/Lodging
  8. Other
  9. Technology
  10. Financial

3 Tips for More Quality Leads

Filed under: Tip of the Day, Wearables

In a perfect world, sales reps would get heaps of warm leads from their marketing department, leaving plenty of time to cultivate a sale. Unfortunately, that’s too often the exception and not the rule, and the rep is frequently the one coming up with the leads.

Generate Leads

In this month’s Wearables‘ Business feature, Staff Writer Christopher digs up some great ideas on how sales pros can generate leads quickly and effectively. Looking to get more quality leads? Then this article is for you! In the meantime, here are three quick tips to better leads:

  • Start a blog: According to HubSpot, companies that blog six to eight times per month double their lead volume.
  • Get active in the community: Coaching, volunteering at community clean-up days, helping out at local fundraisers for reputable organizations – all are great ways to broaden your network of contacts and connect with potential customers.
  • Improve your Website: Populate your site with content – videos, blogs, articles – that positions you as a promotional products expert. Frequently update the site and optimize it with relevant keywords to help you rank high in organic searches related to promo products and your locale. – CR

How A T-Shirt May Save A Life - The Story of Haley Bellows

Filed under: Education, General, Wearables

Haley BellowsDuring last week’s college and professional football games I couldn’t help but notice the presence of the color pink. It seemed to be everywhere - on uniforms, penalty flags and even on the logos of some of the teams. With October being Breast Cancer Awareness month, I knew what it all stood for, and I began to count my blessings. As a man in my forties, I have every reason to be thankful that this terrible disease known as cancer has had little effect on my friends and family throughout the years. At least, so far.

Then I read the October cover story of Wearables magazine, and I nearly lost it.

About a young college woman named Haley Bellows who, with the help of her friends and a tight-knit campus community, has taken cancer head-on, this is the kind of story that puts everything into perspective. Having a bad day because you forgot your umbrella and your hair got wet? Read about a normal day in Haley’s life and I guarantee your damp locks won’t seem that bad. The story describes in detail what Bellows went through upon being diagnosed, the joy of going into remission only to be squashed by a relapse, and how one T-shirt with the slogan “Eff Cancer” just might save her life.

This is a great read by C.J. Mittica and I recommend it highly. Kudos to Haley … keep fighting, girl! And Eff Cancer!

See a video of Haley shaving her head as a reminder of how awful cancer is. And here are a few images of Haley and her friends.


T-Shirt Donations Needed For Charity Event

Filed under: Wearables

C.J. MitticaFrom guest blogger C.J. Mittica, editor of Wearables magazine.

Wearables has an upcoming cover story for October about apparel that helps charities and saves lives. In the process of gathering stories, one of its readers reached out for help with his charitable event. Neil Jorge of A Better Copy is hosting an event on September 14th called Comics 4 A Cure. The event uses artwork from professional comic book artists to raise money for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Throughout the year the group uses comic book art therapy for sick and dying children in Florida hospitals. Neil is looking for a supplier to donate 70 black T-shirts for the event.

If you are interested in donating, contact Wearables editor C.J. Mittica at cmittica@asicentral.com.


Pantone’s Color of the Year 2013 - Emerald

Filed under: Wearables

Pantone Color of the Year 2013 - EmeraldI love the color green, and all the shades in between, especially the warmer ones like turquoise and teal. That’s why I was so happy to see that Pantone selected a shade of green — Emerald — as the Pantone Color of the Year for 2013.

How exactly does this affect the promotional products industry? If you deal in apparel, then you know that ASI has its finger on the pulse of fashion trends and our Wearables magazine devotes ink each issue to the hottest hues and how you can use them.

Want to see some cool examples of emerald in action and how to pair it with other hues? Then you don’t want to miss this issue of Wearables Fashion Sense.


New Changes for Wearablesmag.com

Filed under: Wearables, site updates

CJ MitticaGuest blog from Wearables’ Editor C.J. Mittica:

Have you noticed the new changes at Wearablesmag.com? No? Good, that’s sort of the point. Our ASICentral team, under the guidance of team leader and France’s very own Yann Perrin, have instituted a number of subtle changes that have seamlessly improved the browsing experience. Here’s a rundown:

  • Custom Site Search: The pages from Wearablesmag.com were already searchable through Google, but now our website has a search function that allows you to cull through several years of Wearables content. Powered by Google, the search will allow you to sort by most recent date or relevance.
  • Archive Reorganization: Perusing our magazine archives has been made much easier. Issues are sorted by year and month, and pre-digital edition content is broken down by article, all for quick and easy reading.
  • Improved User Experience: I won’t bore you with all the technical details, but we cleaned up the site structure, moved the site to a new server and updated the navigation options. Basically, browsing the site will be faster and easier.

We still love the print medium (call me old fashioned, but that’s how I still read my magazines), but there are plenty of digital options available to our readers. Wearablesmag.com in particular has online exclusives and our latest videos and newsletters. And if you haven’t tried it yet, you should check out the digital edition of the magazine, which can be read on the iPad. (You can find it by searching “Wearables magazine” or “Advertising Specialty Institute” on the Apple App store.) Admittedly, it’s pretty swank.


3 Tips for Blogging Success

Filed under: Tip of the Day, Wearables

Tips for Blogging SuccessAnyone can start a blog these days, but how can you turn yours into a successful one?

Well, a great start would be to know who your audience is and to deliver useful content to them. Or else, what’s the sense, right?

In a recent WearablesBusiness Toolkit” article, well-known industry bloggers like Bobby Lehew (Robyn Promotions) and Mark Graham (Rightsleeve, Inc.) weigh in on how to increase customer loyalty and attract new customers simply by creating and maintaining a valuable blog. Eager to learn more? Then click here! And in the meantime, here are 3 tips for success from prolific blogger Brad White (Boundless Network):

  1. Commit: Writing a blog is not a one-time experience; it is a continuing process. If you don’t have proper time to work on it, don’t do it.
  2. Read blogs: There are some really great blogs out there that can provide good examples.  Don’t copy what they do, but get a feel for how other bloggers approach the craft.
  3. Publicize: Use your existing social media channels to promote the blog, e-mail it to people who would find your content valuable and ask people to share it.

5 Team-Building Tips

Filed under: Tip of the Day, Wearables

Team Building TipsAs a New York sports fan, I know that my teams will never fail because the owners aren’t dishing out tons of dough to high-profile players. The way they perform *as a team* on the fields, rinks and courts determines the success of the team, not the individuals’ performances, which brings me to the subject of today’s blog: Building success through teamwork.

You can have the best people in place, but they have to work well with others in order for success to be achieved. A recent article in Wearables magazine maps out how a communal mentality and team-building exercises can really help achieve your goals as a business, and how to deal with those who don’t play well in the sandbox. Check out this article, “There’s No ‘I’ In Team,” now for more, and in the meantime here are 5 team-building tips.

  1. Clearly communicate the collective goal and the role each employee should play to help the team meet that objective.
  2. Make sure you are engaged and set a positive tone. 
  3. Involve all team members in the decision-making process. This creates more commitment to solutions/plans-of-action from each individual.
  4. Engage in team-building activities and participate together in social events.
  5. Celebrate as a team when goals are achieved and recognize individuals for the roles they played in making the team a success.

Top 12 Apparel Trends for 2013

Filed under: Wearables

Retro ShadesIn this month’s Wearables’ magazine feature story titled “Top Trends for 2013“, there’s a neat little lead-in that goes something like this: “When the future’s coolest trends echo styles of the past, it means there’s no time like the present to sell them.”

Being a lover of old-fashion style and all things retro — I’m currently trying to bring back love for the ’stache by growing one — I enjoyed reading this article and learning about how what’s old is new again. Want to know what wearables are going to be hot in ‘13? Check out this article now!

And in the meantime, here’s a list of the top 12, including the year they were first popular:

  • Peter Pan Collars (first popular: 1905)
  • Retro Colored Frames (first popular: 1950s)
  • Puff Sleeves (first popular: 1980s)
  • Grunge (first popular: 1991)
  • Double Breasted (first popular: 1860s)
  • Statement Hats (first popular: Newsboy, late 19th C; Mesh, 1960s)
  • Long Coats (first popular: 18th C)
  • Portfolios (first popular: The Renaissance)
  • Turtle-Necks (first popular: 15th C)
  • Crew-Neck Sweaters (first popular: 17th C)
  • Oversize Tops (first popular: 1970s)
  • Brown-Strap Watches (first popular: WWI)

5 Tips for Starting Your Own Business

Filed under: Tip of the Day, Wearables

Start Your Own BusinessThinking about going into business for yourself? It’s certainly not an easy endeavor, but when done correctly can be very rewarding. Just ask Michael Neal Kaufman of Wear It’s At (asi/356021). He made the jump in 1983 and hasn’t looked back.

In this month’s “Business of Wearables” feature, Michael offers five tips on how to succeed with your own business. Click here to get all the detail, and in the meantime here are the 5 basic tips.

  • Start where you’re strongest
  • Know when you need help … and when you don’t
  • Form strong partnerships
  • Hone your system
  • Ride the ups and downs

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