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ASI Promocar – Promotional Products Everywhere!

Filed under: Fun

Guest blogger Dawn Marie is ASI’s PR manager and creator and driver of the ASI Promocar, part of a year-long PR campaign to drive attention to the promo products industry.

Looking for promotional products when you’re on the road is like looking for Waldo. At first, you might have trouble seeing them. Then, you see them everywhere:

The toiletries at the Hyatt Regency in Long Beach, CA, where the ASI Promocar (#ASIpromocar) was on display before setting off on its cross-country PR tour. The snazzy red sunglasses worn by a woman lunching at Argentine Grill in North Hollywood, who said she got them from her school, University of Redlands, and loved them so much she wore them every day (watch video).

The big bowl of giveaway matches at Boa restaurant in Santa Monica. The coffee mug at the Laurel Canyon house where I’m staying. Even the big bold “Cali” T-shirt sported by the MC of the hip hop group entertaining the crowd at Santa Monica Pier.

I still haven’t seen Waldo, but I sure am seeing strong evidence supporting Advantages magazine’s recent research report that sales of promotional products in California grew 7% from 2013 to 2014, for a total of $1.7 billion.

Swag on, dude.

–Dawn Marie

Ad Specialty Companies Take ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

Filed under: Fun

The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge — an international viral video campaign that’s raising awareness about Lou Gehrig’s Disease — has taken the globe by storm and is lighting up social media (if you’ve yet to hear of it, where have you been?!). The ad specialty industry is right there doing it’s part to raise awareness and funds, and to have a little fun in the process. Check out some videos and images from some of our industry friends, and if you have any please send to Counselor Senior Editor Dave Vagnoni at dvagnoni@asicentral.com. Enjoy!

Not to be outdone, Farfromboring takes the Ice Bucket Challenge … in a big way! See the video here.

HandStands PROMO, in Salt Lake City, UT, has accepted the challenge by Mark Freed. See the video here.

Steve Levschuk, owner of Talbot Marketing in Canada, takes the ALS challenge. See the video here.

The BIC Graphic manufacturing team in Clearwater, FL lines up for the challenge.

Wendell August’s Will Knecht accepts the challenge, then nominates his entire staff. See the video here.

And the Wendell August team responds! See the video here.

Barry Lipsett, Charles River Apparel President & CEO, taking the Ice Bucket Challenge. See the video here.

Dave Regan, Vice President of Sales and Marketing at The Vernon Company, who happened to be visiting Hub Pen that day, accepts the challenge.

Hub Pen’s President Joseph Fleming gets doused.

Pop! Promos President Sterling WIlson getting drenched by two members of our sales team, Francis Rodenbaugh and Katie Swinburn. See the video here.

Mark Freed of Genumark challenges the whole promo products industry! See the video here.

Rosalie Marcus, The Promo Biz Coach, took the challenge in honor of her brother who lost his battle with ALS. See the video here.

Promo Products On Display At Punk Rock Flea Market

Filed under: Fun, General

Punk Rock Flea MarketBy Corrie Purvis and Rachel Abraham, ASI Interns

With over 500 vendors displaying all kinds of unique and interesting items, the Punk Rock Flea Market kicked off its annual event this past weekend in downtown Philadelphia. Everything from instruments, apparel and baked goods to jewelry and artwork were on display, which gave many artists and businesses a chance to get some serious exposure.

‘Adorned by Aisha’ owner and designer, Aisha Loeks, has been setting up shop at the flea market for two years. Her company sells vintage-inspired jewelry.

“My jewelry line is inspired by the vintage looks favored by my beloved, and stylish, grandmother. When she passed away I inherited all of her jewelry,” said Loeks. “I loved how beautiful and masterfully crafted each piece was. I felt like this kind of thoughtfulness and quality was lacking in today’s accessories. So many things are made fast and cheap now. So I took some of her pieces and cast them, making a mold from each and then poured resin into the mold to make a new piece that was cast from a vintage piece.”

The flea market gives Aisha a chance to talk to customers about her designs and answer any questions they may have. “They are really great about getting the word out there and they have been around for a while now so they have a great following,” says Loeks.

Loeks also uses a lot of social media to market her business, keep in touch with fans, post updates, and announce sales and special events, and she can be found on many social networks including Facebook.

Another artist, Dylan Tierney, was featured at the event. Her company Dylan Burns Wood Pyrography & Custom Wood Work has been in business since February. “I like wood-burning band logos, TV pop culture and cute kitschy stuff,” said Tierney. “I started to make some key hooks too, so it’s a functioning piece of art. All my pieces have hangers on the back ready to hang also. If you want anything custom let me know.”

She uses social media as well. Her Tumblr gets linked from Instagram and her products are sold on Etsy.

Dylan thinks showcasing her art at the flea market is a really great opportunity. “I have gotten such a good response. People ask for custom orders and say I should try this or that to get my name out there. At the flea markets people can see and feel the wood burning. I try to take angled pictures to post online but you really get to see the detail in person,” says Tierney.

Another artist, Ukiah Carbone-Gambon, relied solely on the Flea Market for exposure. “I’ve been having a bit of trouble tech-wise setting up my website,” he said, handing over a business card. His print work features funny quotes and sayings, and can be found on notepads, stationery and simple wall displays.

Overall, the Punk Rock Flea Market was a great chance to encounter artists in the local Philly art scene. It was an event that was great for all ages and brought a lot of people out. While there were some clearly professional artists, there were also many vendors simply selling their old “junk” – items that could easily feature a promotional logo or design.

See a full gallery of photos on our Facebook page.

Sales Tip of the Week – Don’t Check E-mail In The Morning

Filed under: Sales Tip

Sales Tip - EmailIs e-mail evil? According to the sales pros over at Advantages magazine, it can be, especially in the morning when you should be focusing on your top priorities of the day. Check out this new sales tip and let us know what you think – do you agree? Post comments here.

DON’T check e-mail in the morning. It might seem counterintuitive, but doing so can be problematic for several reasons. “E-mail sucks you into all sorts of things that aren’t crucial — you open your inbox, see 50 new messages and boom an hour is gone,” says Jill Konrath, a sales expert and the author of SNAP Selling. “You’re responding to what other people say, reading an article someone sent, or looking at LinkedIn because one of your connections got a new job.” Instead of letting these new messages dictate how his or her day begins, a sales rep should dedicate their first hours in the morning to what they deem to be their highest priorities. This gives the salesperson a greater say in how the day unfolds and what gets done.

Sales Tip of the Week – Good, Better, Best

Filed under: Sales Tip

Good, better, best

In a weekly blog post, we’ll be featuring some valuable tips from Advantages magazine on how to improve your selling. This week’s tip: The “Good, Better, Best” approach:

Use the “Good, Better, Best” approach when presenting promotional product solutions. For example, if you’re presenting shirts you might choose a basic version (lighter fabric weight, few style details but very cost conscious); a moderate option (mid-weight with quality perks such as double-needle stitching) and a high-end choice (luxury fabric such as microfiber or heavier cotton, plus fashion details such as trim or special buttons/closures).

Top 20 Sales Reps In The Promotional Products Industry

Filed under: General

For as long as I can remember, Advantages magazine always used its first magazine of the year to celebrate the best sales reps in the industry. This time around, they did it a little differently. From Advantages:

We asked top distributor and supplier companies to nominate their top-selling reps and have ranked them by sales volume.  While their individual numbers are confidential, combined, these 20 go-getters are responsible for about $157 million in sales.

That’s a lot of dough! Read all about it — including best sales rep traits — in this month’s issue of Advantages magazine. And in the meantime, here is the list of the 20 reps, as well as their member type, company and ASI number. Enjoy!

1. Ken Wittenberg, Summit Group (asi/339116)
2. Debby Stillabower, American Solutions for Business (asi/120075)
3. Ian McLearon, Brand Alliance (asi/145177)
4. Christopher, Kuranz CSE (asi/155807)
5. Doug Stotts, HALO Branded Solutions (asi/356000)
6. Lisa Pine, Axis Promotions (asi/128263)
7. Neal Skuro, Boundless Network (asi/143717)
8. Phil Duym, Promo Shop (asi/300446)
9. Dick Huffman, Touchstone (asi/345631)
10. Darren Golden, Proforma (asi/300094)

1. Michael Leone, Hit Promotional Products (asi/61125)
2. Meghan Madl, Norwood & Bic Graphic NA (asi/40480)
3. Anna Firicano, Polyconcept NA
4. Ben Black, Prime Line (asi/79530)
5. Stephanie Sanchez, Staton Corporate & Casual (asi/89380)
6. Shari Garvalia, 3M Promotional Markets (asi/91240)
7. Linda Misirowski, Sweda Co. LLC (asi/90305)
8. Shirley Bennett, Vantage Apparel (asi/93390)
9. Steve Cochran, River’s End Trading Company (asi/82588)
10. Mozelle Brick, Logomark (asi/67866)

Promotional Product Spotlight – 5 Facts About Drinkware

Filed under: Tip of the Day

Promotional DrinkwareWhen you think of branded drinkware, what comes to mind? For many people, the answer might be water bottles and mugs. For me? Beer glasses!

One look inside my cabinets and you’ll see why. Pint glasses from Guinness, Sam Adams, Troegs — who knows, maybe even a Pabst Blue Ribbon (yeah, I just admitted that ) — all own important real estate on my shelves, constantly reminding me which beers I’m partial to.

The Global Advertising Specialty Impressions Study, Version 4, is now live and filled with tons of interesting facts, charts and data about promotional products. Check out the study now, and in the meantime, here are 5 facts about promotional drinkware:

  • Branded drinkware is just as likely to be kept in the office as in the home
  • Consumers under 35 own the most promotional drinkware
  • More women (24%) than men (17%) own branded drinkware
  • Democrats report owning more drinkware than Republicans and Independents
  • 21% of all U.S. consumers own branded drinkware

Promotional Product Spotlight – 5 Facts About T-Shirts

Filed under: Uncategorized

T-Shirt FactsWho doesn’t like free stuff, especially when the free stuff is a wearable?! Of all the promotional products in this industry, T-shirts are by far my favorite.

In my latest blog post, my focus is on this staple wearable and some interesting data our Research team at ASI have uncovered about them in their latest Global Advertising Specialty Impressions Study. For instance, did you know?

  • Of the 12 metro U.S. cities polled, Atlantans (46%) owned the most promotional T’s
  • Consumers age 21-34 are most likely to own a promotional T-shirt (48%)
  • Independents (46%) are more likely to own promotional T’s than Democrats and Republicans
  • Latinos (52%) are more likely than any other racial demographic to own a promotional T
  • Men (45%) own more promo shirts than women (40%)

Don’t miss out on more promotional T-shirt facts, as well as the entire Global Advertising Specialty Impressions Study.

Promotional Product Spotlight – 5 Facts About Pens

Filed under: Uncategorized

Promotional Pen FactsThe Global Advertising Specialty Impressions Study, Version 4, is hot off the press and filled with more interesting facts, charts and data about promotional products than ever before!

In this blog post, I focus on writing instruments and some of the interesting data our Research team at ASI discovered. For instance, did you know?

  • 50% of U.S. consumers own a logoed writing instrument
  • More women than men own promo pens (53% – 47%)
  • Writing instruments are more popular in Australia than in the U.S.
  • Cost-per-impression for pens = 1/10th of a cent
  • Caucasians (56%) own the most branded writing instruments of any race

Don’t miss out on more promotional pen facts, as well as the entire Global Advertising Specialty Impressions Study.

4 Ways to Connect with Customers Through New Media

Filed under: Tip of the Day

Rules of EngagementDid you know: Customers who engage with companies over social media spend 20% to 40% more money with those businesses than other clients?

Yes, it’s a brave new world, folks, and unless you’re out there working the interwebs you’re missing out big time. This month’s Counselor story titled “Rules of Engagement” focuses on how distrubutors can boost their sales by utilizing 4 innovative means to better market to clients. Click here to read the story … and in the meantime, here are the 4 basic tips: (Click the link for more explanation)

  1. Get Your Game On
  2. Video Makes a Marketing Star
  3. Survey Says …
  4. APP-ointment Buying

Next Page »


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