Home | ASI Central Home | About | What is RSS?

Sponsored By:
Enter your email for updates:

ASI Promocar – A Night In Los Angeles

Filed under: Uncategorized

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.

Driving a car covered in a riot of multi-colored promo products is tricky enough. Driving it on the infamous LA freeways, which are littered with metal carcasses from vehicular mishaps (along with the occasional flattened coyote) is a whole different experience. Every time someone beeps at me, my first instinct is to respond like the NYC driver I once was and flash the finger. Then I remember I’m driving a company car and people are beeping to say “Fun!” At least that’s what I tell myself.

Once I survived Interstate 5 and U.S. 101, the next hurdle for the ASI Promocar (#ASIpromocar) was winding, twisting Laurel Canyon Boulevard to Lookout Mountain and my eventual destination: a hilltop AirBnB rental high above LA with a view of the Pacific Ocean. Once I started climbing up, up, up I understood why every Californian at the ASI Long beach trade show where the Promocar was on display last week — as part of a year-long PR campaign to “drive” attention to the $21.5 billion #promoproducts industry — shook their heads when I told them it was a 5-speed and said, “You poor thing.”

But the 2002 Mazda Protégé performed like a champ, quivering slinkys and all. Following my stern GPS lady, now nicknamed Milly, I was doing fine, when I could stop gawking at the incredible houses, where I imagined Madonna behind every door. Then, Milly insisted “right on Sunset Plaza Dr.” — which was marked with numerous large signs warning me against entering because “street withdrawn from public use.” I pictured armed guards with earpieces and Uzis rushing the Promocar and yelling “Halt! This is a swag-free zone!”

Thankfully, a beautiful blonde surfer dude came to my rescue, explaining the hoi polloi erected the signs to prevent teenagers from congregating there to enjoy the views and neck. “Are you going to an event at one of the big houses?,” he said, eying the Promocar and I’m sure imagining what kind of wild LA bash would require stress balls and little foam figures. “Just looking for my night’s lodging,” I replied.

Then, he did something I didn’t expect in a million years. Gave me directions and his card and told me if I had any trouble finding the house, or if I needed you anything at all, to call him. “I love your car,” he said. “I’m from San Francisco and we have art cars everywhere. It’s great to see one here.”

I love LA.

–Dawn Marie


ASI Promocar Stops At The Laurel Canyon Country Store

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.

The century-old Laurel Canyon Country Store is a storied landmark where everyone from Joni Mitchell to Mama Cass and Jim Morrison has guzzled coffee and shopped for groceries. It is the epitome of California cool. Naturally, I drove the #ASIpromocar there to check out their promo products – and ogle celebs. Turns out, it’s like a museum for ad specialties: A Kennedy bumper sticker and Fred Astaire dance flyer under glass on the counter. Recyclable bags. And of course, T-shirts.

I got a cappuccino and a bag and took a ton of photos. Oddly, not one person asked for my autograph.

–Dawn Marie


ASIPromocar Makes A Pitstop In Cerritos, CA – A Blessing In Disguise

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.

Sometimes, unexpected detours turn out to be blessings in disguise. After the #ASIpromocar left the Long Beach, CA show, bound for a 2,700 mile cross-country trip back to ASI’s Philadelphia HQ, I decided to do due diligence and check all the fluids. In the darkened hotel parking garage. At 11 pm. After a 14-hour work day. Thinking I was topping off the washer fluid, I mistakenly filled the coolant overflow. Oops.

Luckily, the crew at Browning Mazda in Cerritos, CA were delighted to help, getting me quickly back on the road after a coolant flush. I did have a little fun with them first, saying with a straight face when I pulled in,  “Who do I see about an even trade,  the Promocar for, say, an MX-5? (a $28,000 sports car, as compared to my $3,500 used Protege).

Promo PucksOnce over the shock, serviceman John Cemore waxed enthusiastic (Watch Video) about #promoproducts, testifying to their undisputed value to auto dealers everywhere. Proudly, he showed off 2 logoed hockey pucks he got years ago, which remain front and center on his desk to this day.

As I prepared to leave, the entire crew gathered round for photos, saying  “This is good stuff. Wow. Gotta show this to the grandkids. It’s certainly different. Love this.”

The best part? Their reassurance that despite its 190,000 miles, the #ASIpromocar is ready to rock the open road. Stay tuned…

–Dawn Marie


Prepared for the Future – An Intern Reflects On Her Time at ASI

Filed under: Fun, General

Rachel AbrahamBy Rachel Abraham

I have had some time to reflect on the opportunities and accomplishments I have made at ASI. It has been such a rewarding and an invaluable experience. I was not familiar with the promotional products industry at all prior to interning here, but I was eager to learn and expand my writing. I was definitely nervous about starting this new endeavor, but it turned out just fine — better than fine. The guidance, colleagues and assignments made this summer enjoyable.

I never had a full time position as a writer before interning here, but I had taken on a few online internships while working as a cashier after graduating college. It seemed I would never find something truly satisfying, but then came the email notification from ASI. When I first came across the application for the editorial intern position, I knew this is what I needed to get my foot in the door and to get hands on experience in writing. It was the ideal position for me because I majored in print journalism.

The internship included a free week trip to New York City and housing at NYU where I had a fantastic view of Manhattan! I received training from the Dow Jones News Fund in business journalism. It was an intense and exciting week with guest speakers, quizzes on current events and article writing. While in New York I visited news media, such as: the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal and NBC Nightly News. Bonuses included the chance to be a tourist and explore the city by trying different restaurants visiting Times Square, and visiting the September 11th Museum.

I went through mixed emotions my first day at ASI, but I quickly became relaxed by the way I was treated. Michele Bell and the other members of the Editorial department helped me get acclimated to the new work environment. Sara Lavenduski, my fellow colleague and a former Editorial intern, was always available to help if I had any questions and gave me some great pointers. I have written for ASI’s award winning magazines and have had to meet deadlines. For example, I contributed to Trend Alerts for Wearables. I also profiled designers and their fashion and covered Fall/Winter trends for Stitches that I just saw in the newest publication. Check it out!

There have also been many perks. It did not hurt that there was an on-site Starbucks that helped with those afternoon cravings. But aside from that, I have had the chance to assist with fashion photo shoots, and see the behind the scenes of how models prep. It was fascinating to see the collaborative effort that was made to create those outstanding shots. I also attended a Phillies game for Joe Haley’s 20th anniversary at the company and participated in a painting party. We even had a wine and cheese party showcasing our artwork. I can’t forget about decorating an “ArtCar” for three days with different promotional items for the ASI Chicago Show. It is been a great way to spend my summer where I also befriended my fellow interns, Corrie Purvis and Virginia Lucas. I’ll never forget our walking breaks around the building!

The overall experience has been one I could not have expected. I now have another great addition to my resume. I appreciate the knowledge I have gained and the people I have come in contact with. Thanks to ASI, I feel more prepared and confident in my future.


Interning at ASI

Filed under: Fun, General

By Corrie Purvis

Starting a new job is always difficult – new people, new goals, a completely new mindset – but it’s even more daunting to come into an entirely new industry. ASI, however, made this transition manageable, and, in fact, enjoyable. This summer I was able to learn so much about the promotional products industry, while also expanding my writing portfolio. And there was time for some fun as well.

One unique aspect of interning at ASI is the week of training prior to the start of work. Because of Tim Andrews’ connection to Dow Jones, we (Rachel Abraham and I) were able to participate in the Dow Jones News Fund Business Reporting “boot camp” in New York City. There, we met rising business journalists from across the country and learned a thing or two about the fundamentals of writing for a business audience. Our instructor, Will Sutton of Grambling State University (a fairly interesting man), toured us around the bustling Manhattan streets, meeting editors and producers of publications like The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and NBC Nightly News. This week truly engraved the idea into my mind that with hard work, I could also end up here someday.

Once back in Trevose (almost as glamorous as the Big Apple!), it was time to get started on serious business. The Editorial department at ASI did a wonderful job welcoming us interns, giving us time to adjust to the new environment before giving us a ton of assignments. Over the course of the summer, we had the opportunity to write and do research for all five ASI publications, as well as speak with some of the top names in the industry – I even interviewed a man who helped create costumes for Breaking Bad! We helped put together showcases, best in show spreads, write designer profiles and glued seemingly thousands of items to a yellow Mazda (quite a resume addition).

We were also fortunate enough to assist with a fashion shoot for Stitches and Wearables magazines. As budding fashionistas ourselves, it was exciting to get a behind-the-scenes look at what it takes to put together the stunning images you see in these publications. It also made me realize that modeling is more than just pouting at a camera – those girls were working it!

In all seriousness, ASI is without a doubt one of the best places I have ever worked (at 21 I’ve only worked at so many locations, but regardless). The culture here is relaxed, yet still professional; I can comfortably come to the office and actually enjoy my work. I mean, how many offices host World Cup viewing parties during work hours? The Editorial department took a day to go to a Phillies game, and another day to express our artistic sides at a painting studio. I never in a million years expected to do any of these things as a summer intern, and it’s great to be at a company that genuinely values its employees.

This was definitely not an internship that involved just getting coffee for my superiors (although I did do that once … Michele drinks a lot of coffee!). The amount of experience and exposure I got with writing for this industry is exceptional, and unparalleled. As I head back to school for my final semester, I take with me capacious stacks of writing samples, as well as connections and even friends with whom I hope to stay in contact after my time at ASI comes to a close.

Corrie Purvis with Tim Andrews

ASI CEO and President Tim Andrews with Rachel Abraham (left) and Corrie Purvis.


Corrie Purvis with Tim Andrews

Working on the ASI PromoCar.


Corrie Purvis with Tim Andrews

At a fashion photo shoot.


Get to Know ASI’s Joe Haley

Filed under: Fun, General, Uncategorized

JoeHaley

From Intern to Internet Superstar, Joe Haley Celebrates 20 Years with ASI

You might know him from watching The Joe Show, listening to ASI Radio, or teaching at an ASI Show, but did you know that Joe Haley is celebrating his 20th anniversary with ASI?  Find out how he went from the world’s oldest intern to managing editor.

Q:What is your title and job description?
JH:I am the managing editor for the Editorial Department. I manage three publications; Stitches, Wearables and SGR, where I work with the editors, the designers, and the production team to make sure the magazines come out on time and with no errors.  I shoot editorial videos plus a semiweekly video program, The Joe Show, where I showcase supplier products.  I am also one of the hosts on the ASI Radio Show, among other things.

Q:What do you like about your position?
JH:I like that it is different every day. From day to day and sometimes from hour to hour, it completely changes and there is always something new and different to do.  It’s also a really fun industry and a fun company to work for. They have treated me well over the years.

Q:What was your position when you first started?
JH:I started out at ASI as the world’s oldest intern. I lost my job because of the recession; I had just bought a house and we had a baby on the way.  I kept seeing an advertisement for an Internship with ASI, but I had no idea what ASI or this industry was. I knew I should apply for the position because I was trying to get into journalism, which is what I have my degree in, and I couldn’t get a job in it because I didn’t have any work experience. ASI called me in for an interview and I ended up being late for it because I was up until 6 AM shoveling snow with my landscaping job and then I made a wrong turn getting there. I did end up getting the internship which started in mid-July and they offered me a position shortly thereafter.

Q:How have your job responsibilities change over the years?
JH:At that time we only had three magazines; Counselor, Specialty Selling Today and Imprint. I wrote for all the publications. I was interviewing people, writing articles, and doing research. Over time I worked my way up to higher positions. I always accepted addition work, any time there was an opportunity to do something I would do it. It’s like anything else, if you put in the effort and you work hard, hopefully you get recognized and you get more responsibility. I went from an intern, to assistant editor, to associate editor, to production editor to managing editor … and the rest is history.

Q:How has ASI changed over the years?
JH:When I first started with ASI we had the old computers where you needed a floppy disk to boot it up and to save your files on.  We didn’t even have the Internet. Later on, each department was allowed to have one computer with the Internet on it, ours was with the editor in chief, and if we wanted to do any type of research we would have to go into her office to use it. I didn’t even have a cubicle when I first started. I had a table outside of a cubicle, and the department’s printer was on the other side of me, so any time someone had to print something they would come over to where I was working.

Q:How would your colleagues describe you?
JH:Loud … no just kidding. I think they would say I have a good sense of humor, that I am dedicated to my job, I’m a team player, and I’m creative.

Q:What is something that people don’t know about you?
JH:I have been coaching soccer since 1989; it’s something that I love to do. In the year 2000, I was named the Intermural Coach of the Year for the state of Pennsylvania. Then I joined the State of the Associates coaching staff where I created a soccer program for our club that the state still uses as a model.

Q:If you could be a promotional product what would you be?
JH:I would be a light up ice cube. Those are a lot of fun.

Q:If your story here were to be made into a movie, who would you want to play you?
JH:My coworker Joan Chaykin always says I remind her of Richard Dreyfuss, so I would say him. I guess anyone who has curly hair and wears glasses.

Fore more, Click Here

– Interview by Lauren Medina


Sales Tip of the Week – Provide Statistics

Filed under: Fun, General, Sales Tip

statisticsWant to show your prospects a reason to expect success from your promotional solutions? Advantages magazine says provide research.

Show compelling case histories that relate to their industry or type of marketing issue. Provide statistics that illustrate the kind of return on investment your prospect can expect from your proposed solution.


Poll Results – Chrome is King

Filed under: Poll Results

Oh my, how far has Internet Explorer fallen?

Just five years ago, IE was by far the predominant browser I used on my desktop. And now, sadly, I hardly use it anymore, at work or at home. But my Internet behaviors aside, I wanted to know from our users which browser they preferred to use from their desktops, so I posed this question on our Facebook page:

Which Internet browser do you use most often on your desktop? Here are their answers in chart form: (Total votes: 65)

Stunning, huh? Of all the answers we received, only 4% said they used the Microsoft product, with Google’s Chrome leading the way with 53% of the votes. But since this was Facebook and your answer was directly attributed to your name, I thought that maybe some people may have been dishonest in their use of IE since, well, it’s not the most trendy thing these days. (Security flaws tend to do that.)

Anyway, I reached out to our users on ASICentral.com via an anonymous poll, and what I found out is this: Chrome is still king … but not by as big a margin. And IE’s not the peon we were led to believe on Facebook. Here are the results from our ASICentral.com poll: (Total votes: 389)

  • Internet Explorer: 78 votes (20%)
  • Chrome: 174 votes (45%)
  • Firefox: 94 votes (24%)
  • Safari: 41 votes (10%)
  • Other: 2 votes (1%)
So what do you think of these results? Post a comment now!
–Doogie Browser

Sales Tip of the Week – Follow Trends

Filed under: Sales Tip, Uncategorized

Next Big ThingYou’re hip, you’re with it, you know all the latest trends … but did you know that it could lead to more sales? Advantages magazine shares some tips on how you can not only find the latest trends, but make them work for you.

Following trends makes for better promotions. Trend alerts are everywhere. Follow blogs. Sign up for RSS feeds from resources related to areas of interest. Subscribe to magazines or newsletters that follow trends within the industries you service. Stay observant on the streets, at the mall and when travelling. Every day you’re presented with clues as to what the next big “thing” will be.


Earth Day 2014 Freebies!

Filed under: Fun, General

Free EVOS milkshake on Earth DayWho doesn’t love freebies? After all, this is the promotional products industry, where giving away free branded stuff is how our clients do business!

And since today is Earth Day, we figured we’d highlight several eco-friendly Earth Day-freebies being offered by some major brands. Here’s a list of some great promotions that include cool giveaways in honor of Mother Earth. So get your green on and enjoy!

Got any you’d like to add? Post a comment now!

« Previous PageNext Page »

 

Home | ASI Central Home | About | What is RSS?