No More Cold Calls, Wow Your Clients With Promotional Products

 

Promotional CoolersIf you have been in sales for even a week, you know about the dreaded gatekeeper. That is the person that screens phone calls and visitors from the management and the “decision makers.” All sales people know that you don’t waste time trying to sell to the secretary or random employees. You have to get to that person who is authorized to make the decision. Now sometimes that might be the secretary or it might be an employee who has been tasked with that duty. You have to ask to find out who makes those decisions, if you don’t already know.

The first answer that you almost always get on a cold cold when asking to speak to that decision maker is, “Do you have an appointment?” or “What is this in regards to?” or “Does he know you?” or some other similar screening question. When you don’t have an appointment or he doesn’t know you, then the standard response is a rejection.

But what if you wooed that gatekeeper from the start by giving him or her a gift? I’m not talking about a cheap pen or a koozie, but a nice gift such as a can cooler or a nice bag? There are thousands of great and useful promotional products to choose for this task. By starting off the conversation with a gift before even introducing yourself, you will be successful much more often in getting through that gatekeeper to that almighty decision maker.

This warming effect of gifts also works with clients as well. I recently met with a client and started off the meeting with handing out gifts to each person in attendance. Those gifts were custom cooler bags printed with the logo of one of our online advertising services, Emerald Coast HUB. The mood instantly changed to a warmer environment and that opened up the client to listen more attentively and respect my advice more. In addition, having some nice promotional gifts with your business logo on them adds a level of professionalism to your company. In the course of everyday business, we run across many different “businesses.” Some of these businesses are one man operations and “fly by night operations.” Professionally printed promotional items help to separate your legitimate business from those just trying to make a quick buck. If you make it a no-brainer for them to discern you from those “shady” businesses, you will instantly get credibility and be more apt to earn that order.

Good luck with your selling and don’t forget to bring plenty of gifts!

Ways to Increase the Effectiveness of Your Postcard Mail Outs

 

Good quality postcards are great for promoting your business. With the Every Door Direct Mail (EDDM) program from USPS, you can mail out postcards to a postal route for only $0.145 each. And, the postcards you can mail are huge, so you get a bigger impact. Will this program bring back direct mail as a mainstay in advertising? Maybe so. However, direct mail is still effective if executed properly. Below are a just a few points to help improve the effectiveness of your next direct mail campaign:

50% off postcards through August 31st

50% off postcards, hang tags, wobblers, and bookmarks and 25% off presentation folders through August 31st, 2012

  1. Have a professional layout. Yes, this means you will have to spend a little money on your postcard design. Don’t have an amateur layout for your postcard. Professional designers understand how to design in order to direct the reader’s eye to your call to action.
  2. Have a call to action. What is it that you want the reader to do? Go to a website, send an email, make a phone call, redeem a coupon for a discount or a free gift, like your Facebook page, visit your store or event? Make sure that it is clear and you will significantly increase the number of conversions.
  3. Create a worthwhile offer. Make sure your offer is worth the time for the readers of your postcard.
  4. Use only high quality card stock and printing for your postcards. Don’t use a printer who uses a flimsy card stock and poor quality printing.
  5. Make good use of colors. Stay true to your branding, but at the same time keep visually appealing colors and take advantage of full color printing.
  6. Use images. People love to see imagery. The eyes naturally gravitate toward nice looking images, so don’t use poor quality clip art. Photos are typically better than clip art.

There’s still time to get your postcards on sale for 50% off the normal price, so call 1-800-773-9472 today before this deal ends on August 31, 2012.

How Important Is Your Company Image?

 

How important is your company image and what portrays your company image?

There are many factors and facets of your business that represent your corporate image.  Even small businesses, such as a sole proprietorship should be concerned with their corporate image.  Having a positive image is critical to compete with your competitors.  Any negativity, poor spelling or poor grammar, old or dated material, incorrect information, amateur logo design, poor quality literature or promotional products could give your company a shady or a “fly by night” image, which is, of course, bad for business.

truck with peeling vinyl lettering on the side

This delivery truck has a section of peeling vinyl letting on it. Now, it's obvious that the word with missing letters is supposed to say "Lessons." However, upon first glance, it reads, "Less Service." What kind of company image does this broadcast?

Here are some of the aspects of a typical business that display your corporate image.

  • Outdoor Signs – Is your sign cracked, chipped, badly faded, or simply outdated,  such as an old logo?
  • Car Magnets – Vehicle magnets only last for a few years depending on the weather conditions of your area. High heat and coastal areas will typically decrease life span for magnets and they will fade, crack, or start peeling after a few years.
  • Vehicle Lettering – Just like car magnets, vinyl lettering and wraps on vehicles will fade, peel, or bubble over time and should be replaced.
  • Outdoor Banners – Vinyl banners when exposed to the elements will eventually rip and fade.
  • Yard Signs – Yard signs are meant for short-term use and not for long-term use, so when they start to look bad, toss them out and replace them.
  • Business Cards – Don’t go with cheap card stock or a printer who has a poor quality print. Some small time printers don’t print in a high resolution and the print actually pixelates and becomes blurry. Also, the thin, cheap card stock gives your company a cheap look and can create a poor image. Use extra thick card stock and high quality printing. For the biggest impact, take advantage of full-color printing. And by all means, don’t print your cards at home with card stock that you buy from an office supply store. That is the quickest way to deter possible clients.
  • Brochures – Brochures should be a quick showcase of your company or your product/service. Don’t be too wordy or people won’t read them. Don’t use clipart from word processing programs. Make sure you have a professional brochure design. Paying for design fee is a necessary investment to get the most impact from your brochures. Take advantage of full color printing for the best result.
  • Flyers – See comment above for brochures. The same principle applies for flyers.
  • Logo – A logo design is crucial for any business, large or small. Even a one man show should have a logo design that helps identify your firm uniquely. It fosters a professional look and feel and helps create trust with potential clients. This is another area where you have to pay for professional design. Unless you are a graphic designer, the general rule is to avoid designing your own logo. You should, however, let your graphic designers know all about your ideas. Then let the designer use his/her creative juices to create a masterpiece.
  • Promotional Items – If you plan on buying cheap promotional items that don’t work or look bad, DON’T. It’s better to not buy any at all. Cheap and non-useful products do more harm than promotion. A cheap product that doesn’t work or breaks quickly promotes a cheap image of your company. You don’t want your customer’s last impression of you to be when they read your company name on the item as they toss it in the trash. Buy useful, good quality promotional products that customers will keep and use frequently. This will continually remind them of your company, and they will tend to recommend your business to others.
  • Business Forms – Spell check and proof carefully for grammatical errors prior to printing. If forms have an incorrect address, phone number, email, logo, etc., print new forms. Do not just scratch out the incorrect data and write in the correct information. That looks tacky and unprofessional. Remember, you never get a second chance to make a good first impression.
  • Website – You should have a nice, clean web design with updated content. Your website is an extension of your company and promotes you 24/7, either positively or negatively. Make sure every link works as expected, and that customers see you at your best. Like logo, brochure, and flyer design, your web pages are probably another area that, unless you are a registered computer geek, you need to pay an outside professional source to get the best results. This will pay off in the long run.
  • Social Media Pages – Post only appropriate information on your company pages. Monitor them frequently in case you have to remove any inappropriate comments, and update them as often as you can to keep your fans or followers engaged. Let your customers see your personal side (after all, it is social media), but know where to draw the line.
  • Email Correspondence – Double check emails for spelling, typos, and grammatical errors. If you send out an email newsletter, make sure you have a nice looking design that compliments your website, printed literature, business cards, and logo, tying them all together. It’s important to have a uniform look for branding purposes. This adds a level of professionalism to your business that many small to mid-size companies fail to do.
  • Direct Mail Pieces – Use only good quality material with professional layouts. Always check for errors prior to printing.

The list above is by no means meant to be complete, but rather a list of the most common areas where a little effort can reap big rewards in polishing your company image.  Anything that has your business name or logo on it should represent your company in a positive manner that is consistent with your branding, no matter what size your business.  By keeping a professional and consistent image, you will build your business much easier and have a smaller chance of losing potential customers due to a poor first impression.  So now the question is, “What does your company image portray to potential customers, and what are you going to do about it?”

Halloween Trick or Treat Bags for Safety

 

It’s always a great thing when your business can promote both child safety and your company at the same time. It’s easy to do with Halloween trick or treat bags. Many trick or treat bags have safety tips printed on stock designs, or you can print your own safety tips along with your custom logo to help promote Halloween safety to both kids and parents. You can choose from a variety of Halloween bags ranging from white, ivory, or orange plastic to reflective metallic plastic Halloween bags which add even more safety because of the reflectiveness of the bag material.

Halloween bags are great giveaways around the month of October to help promote your business. All parents of trick or treating age kids look for Halloween bags for their kids. You can give these bags away to each of your customers as they checkout from your retail location or you can distribute them out in mass at various events such as fall festivals and Halloween carnivals. Best of all, personalized Halloween bags are inexpensive giveaway items.

Below are a few of the popular and budget-friendly trick or treat bags to choose from.

Metallic Orange Halloween Trick or Treat Bags

$0.70 or less - FREE Setup

$0.70 or less - FREE Setup

Silver Metallic Halloween Bags

$0.70 or less - FREE Setup 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Orange Jack-O-Lantern Trick or Treat Bags with Black Soft Loop Handle

$0.54 or less - FREE Setup

Orange Trick or Treat Bag

$0.50 or less - FREE Setup

Orange Halloween Treat Bags

$0.42 or less - FREE Setup

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yellow Halloween Trick or Treat Bags

$0.56 or less - FREE Setup

Have A Safe Halloween trick or treat bags

$0.52 or less - FREE Setup

Yellow Halloween treat bags

$0.54 or less - FREE Setup

 

 

 

 

 

 

Above are 9 different trick or treat bags that are all listed at a cheap price and include a Black custom logo imprint with a FREE Setup. Order now so you can get your Halloween bags in plenty of time to giveaway before Halloween night. Most businesses that giveaway trick or treat bags find their customers coming back year after year to get their Halloween bags for their kids to trick or treat. This is a great way to get your customers back in your store and it is a great community service at the same time. It’s definitely a win-win situation for both you and your customers. Prepare early and help promote your business and Halloween trick or treating safety! Happy upcoming Halloween!

Related Articles:
Halloween Trick or Treating Safety Tips
10 Ideas For Halloween Trick or Treat Bags
10 Reasons to Buy Halloween Trick or Treat Bags To Market Your Business
Halloween History and Fun Facts
Top 5 Reasons to Buy Custom Halloween Trick or Treat Bags 

Plastic Mini Footballs vs. Vinyl Mini Footballs?

 

Plastic Mini Footballs vs. Vinyl Mini FootballsFootball season is upon us, so the big decision for spirit items is what type of mini football is the best? The fans love to catch mini footballs thrown by the cheerleaders, so this item is a must-purchase spirit item. Whether you buy them out of your general booster club funds or get business sponsors for the footballs, you have to decide which football to buy – Plastic mini footballs or vinyl mini footballs. They both have pros and cons when comparing to the other, so you have to make your choice based on budget, imprint, and the way you are using the footballs. Both are great options for programs ordering large quantities or those with a tight budget. Below are the pros and cons of both types of promotional mini footballs so you can make an informed decision.

Plastic Mini Footballs

  • Smaller than the vinyl mini football – about 6″ in length measuring from one tip around the football to the opposite tip.
  • About 10 cents cheaper than the vinyl mini footballs.
  • Harder than the vinyl mini football.
  • Cheaper to ship than vinyl mini footballs since they are smaller.
  • Plastic mini footballs don’t throw as far or as well as the vinyl mini footballs.
  • Slightly smaller imprint area than the vinyl mini footballs – 2″ W x 1.25″ H.
  • They do have a pebbled surface so detailed imprints may get lost.
  • Never lose shape or air since they are made from molded plastic.

Vinyl Mini Footballs

  • Larger than the plastic mini football – about 7″ in length measuring from one tip around the football to the opposite tip. This varies slightly depending on how much the footballs are inflated.
  • About 10 center more than plastic mini footballs.
  • Softer and less likely to hurt anyone when thrown.
  • More expensive to ship since they are both longer and fatter than the plastic mini footballs.
  • Throw much better and farther since they weigh a little more.
  • Larger imprint area – 2″ W x 1.5″ H.
  • Have a smooth surface on 1 side for better imprinting of smaller details.
  • Vinyl mini footballs will lose air over time, but they can easily be re-inflated with a standard athletic pump and sports ball needle.
  • Have a higher perceived value than plastic mini footballs and therefore, will most likely be kept longer by recipients.

Mini footballs are extremely popular at college, high school, and middle school football games. Both the plastic and vinyl mini footballs are great choices, but sometimes one is more suitable over the other depending on your purpose. Many local businesses are more than willing to pay sponsorship money to have their logo put on the mini footballs, which pays for the footballs and gives the cheerleaders more footballs to throw at games. Throwing out the footballs helps keep the crowd engaged and excited. Everyone loves when they leave the games with a souvenir. Be sure and order mini footballs now for your team before the start of the season to avoid the rush!