A Great Resource for Books on Marketing and Sales

Weve Selected Books Just for You!

We've Selected Books Just for You!

The only difference between your company and mega companies like Sprint, Apple or Burger King is great promotions!  Breaking through that barrier between big and small is more about name recognition and generating a level of comfort between you and your customers.  However, promoting your company and related events in a way that brings in new and repeat business can be a challenge.  Coming up with a constant stream of new ideas leaves a lot of small business planners baffled.  Without the staff and budget of a large corporation, small business owners need all the help they can get to find way to make it all come together.  So we’ve  added a great place to find books, gift cards and gift items to our website.  Our new “books and gifts” area includes real time information and availability, book images, descriptions, reviews, and more.  

We’ve done the searching for you! We’ve located books, magazines, gift cards trade journals, and DVDs that complement your sales and marketing efforts, including books on promotional (or custom printed) items.  Visit us online, make your selection and checkout using Amazon’s secure shopping cart.  You get all the great features you’re used to on Amazon, plus our pre-selection of books. You can also search the entire Amazon selection and create a list of your own.

Our hand picked selection of books will provide ideas for your next campaign, with information on attracting more customers, and getting the word out about your organization! Learn to use promotional items for more than just giveaways.  Get more out of trade shows and exhibits.  Our books cover topic including promotions, selling, and advertising.  We have also selected books on scrapbooking, gift wrapping, selecting gifts, Identifying your target audience and growing your business with promotional items.  

Show those who contribute to your success that you appreciate their contributions with gift items.  Find books for the salesperson, business manager or company owner on your list, or for your own personal reference.  Find tips and strategies used by the smallest mom-and-pop establishments to the most sophisticated product marketers, and everyone in between. 

Select the right items for occasions where an imprinted gift is appropriate for incentives, birthdays, showers, prizes and other business and personal events.  Choose promotional item that will be used and appreciated by those who receive them.  Better yet, generate repeat business by making sure your customers have your contact information when they are ready to utilize your product or service. 

Gift certificates are a great way to go when you’re not sure what to buy.  Gift certificates are redeemable for milions of items.  They ship for free and never expire, available in amounts from $5.00 to $5000.00.  They can be purchased via email, mail or sent with an e-card. 

Choose the e-mail option to send a gift card to the recipient immediately.  Select a gift card, and send it to the recipient in the mail at no extra charge.  Allow 5-7 business days for mail delivery.  To add a special touch that’s fast, attach a gift card to an e-card, and send it immediately or have it sent up to 14 days later.

This bookstore is an excellent resource for small business owners, event planners, marketing managers, and those who are responsible for planning campaigns and gift giving for a company or organization.  Browse our favorites, search your favorites, buy a gift card, magazine or DVD! We’ve done the searching for items that will be a hit for any event! Visit our bookstore soon! and let us know if there are other items you’d like to see on our site. 

Why Promotional Calendars?

Why send a brochure or flyer that will sit in your clients’ file cabinet? Guarantee that you’ll be able to tell customers and prospects who you are, what you do and how to contact you all year long.   Companies that use promotional calendars, whether they’re using wall calendars, pocket planners, calendar cards or magnets know that they are using a highly effective means of communicating with their customers.   

Advertising media like newspapers, magazines and flyers can get your message into the hands of targeted customers.  But these items are usually viewed by the consumer and discarded after the initial or a few subsequent reviews.  When compared to newspapers, magazines, radio/television, direct mail, and internet banner adverting, calendars consistently rate high in terms of cost per contact, permanence, flexibility and competition.

Wall calendars are a great investment because they are practical and appreciated by those who receive them. Once they are hung on the wall, they remain there for the entire year, and have limited competition from other advertising media.  Medical, insurance and legal offices, spas and salons, financial consultants and other service providers are wise to give calendars to clients to help them keep track of appointments for the coming year.  These companies benefit from having their company name, service specialty, slogan and contact information seen all year long. 

Calendars provide an entire year of advertising for pennies per day. For example, a calendar selling for $2.00 would cost about $.17 cents per calendar, per month (the cost of the calendar divided by 12). A calendar costing $4.98 would cost about $.41 cents per calendar, per month and so on. Calendar advertising is an excellent way to promote your business on a budget!  Standard calendars come in a variety of themes that appeal to most major industries and special interests.

They can also be customized with maps, sports schedules or photos of your group with one picture for the entire year or a different picture for each month.  If you’re targeting the financial or school industries, the layout can be customized to accommodate a fiscal or school year format. They can be designed to start on any day that is meaningful to your organization!  Insert custom pages, coupons, tips and other information to stand out from the crowd!   

To summarize, promotional calendars speak directly to your target market, are needed, used and seen on a daily basis.  With calendars that are seen every day, message retention is very high, increasing the likelihood that your company will be contacted when customers are ready to make an initial or repeat purchase. Calendars are not discarded once the initial message is received as with other advertising media. They are placed in high traffic areas, providing visibility to passers by, and are reviewed often in the course of daily planning.  The best thing about calendars is that your message stays in front of customers for an entire year.   

The 2010 promotional calendars are available now in a variety of standard and custom themes and formats.  Order early (prior to April ) to realize early bird savings in addition to savings realized due to quantity discounts.  Delivery on these calendars can be delayed to later in the year to allow for holiday and end of year distribution.  Email us for details.

Eight Things to Consider When Buying Reunion T-Shirts

If you’re planning a reunion (or any event) for the coming year, there are a million decisions to make. One important decision is what you will provide for a keepsake item.  The goal is to make the reunion a fun, relaxed, carefree time, (with high attendance and participation) enjoyed by all. Making keepsake items as meaningful and personal as possible can be a motivator for participation so it’s important to give attendees something that is stylish, functional and affordable.  

Custom printed reunion t-shirts and caps are popular choices for keepsakes because they are all of the above. The Gildan Heavyweight 100% Cotton T-Shirt is an excellent choice for reunions because it is available in a wide range of colors and in sizes for youth, adults and plus sizes! And the pricing listed includes a one color, one location imprint! When ordering for a large group, it’s important to keep costs down while obtaining quality merchandise and planning is the key to success.  

It doesn’t take much imagination to think of issues that can occur when ordering custom t-shirts for a large group. Talk to any reunion planner and they will probably agree that ordering shirts for a large group can be a challenge. I’m sure that if you talked to enough planners, you would hear stories about misspelled names printed on shirts, or ones where planners didn’t order enough shirts to go around.  You could hear even more about planners who waited until the last minute to order, who pulled their hair out trying to find a “fast” printing service with overnight delivery.  

Each group has their own way of selecting and distributing these items to members. The most important message is to plan as early as possible and look at more than one factor (not only price) in selecting shirts for your group.  Here are some tips; especially if you’re new to reunion planning, that might save you both money and headaches.    

  • When looking at t-shirts, first consider your group and your budget. What does your group like, in terms of style, quality, colors, etc? How much can you afford to spend per shirt? Check catalogs and online for shirts that you think will fit your needs.  

When looking at shirts, consider fabric weight, colors and sizes available, delivery charges, quantity discounts, production costs (which includes artwork costs) and the base price.   

  • Fabric weight. The weight provides an indication of the number of ounces per yard of material.  For example, you may see a 5.4 oz. 100% cotton shirt.  That means that the shirt provides 5.4 ounces per yard of fabric and will be a lighter material than a shirt that’s say 6.1 ounces.  The 5.4 oz shirt will be a good quality, middle weight shirt that works well in hotter temperatures. The 6.1 ounce shirt is considered a premium weight shirt and will be more absorbent, while holding more heat. For a cotton shirt, it’s good to make sure that it’s pre-shrunk so that when it’s washed there is minimal shrinkage.  
     
  • Colors and sizes are important in terms of price. Shirts in colors are generally more expensive than white shirts.  Some shirts have mid level pricing for “heathered” colors, like heather gray, ash etc. So if you’re looking for ways to cut costs without sacrificing quality, look at purchasing white (or heathered/neutral) shirts.  In many cases, shirts that are larger in size than an extra large (XL) will cost more per shirt. Tall sizes are also extra in many cases. Also not all shirt styles are available in plus and tall sizes.  

If you need to provide shirts for a wide range of sizes there are some shirt lines that carry “companion” shirts for men, women and children that are available in a range from youth to plus and tall.  Don’t mix brands if possible, choose shirts in the same brand with a wide range of sizes to keep colors consistent.  Look at the available sizes and any additional costs for sizing when choosing your shirt.

  • Delivery time and charges can add tremendously to the cost.  Planning ahead and ordering in plenty of time makes delivery a snap.  Most companies provide expedited shipment that includes overnight and 2 or 3 day delivery… for a hefty fee.  The shorter the delivery time, the more you pay. 

Don’t assume that the minute you hit the send button on your online order, or when you hang up from your phone order, that the delivery clock starts ticking.  For example, if a company says the production time is seven days, don’t assume that you can order seven days before your event and have shirts in hand to distribute. 

Production time is the time it takes to print the item, and it’s totally separate from delivery time.  Production time is in working days and does not usually include weekends, holidays and peak times when the printer has more items to print. Once the item is produced (printed), it then leaves the factory via UPS, US Mail, FedEx, etc. for delivery to your location.  Depending on your location and the service you select, it could take up to an additional ten days for your packages to arrive. 

Also, it may take time for the printer to make any changes needed to make your art file camera ready.  Plan to order t-shirts (and other custom printed items) at least 2-3 months before the date of your event.  If in doubt, ask your printer.   

  • Quantity discounts commonly apply for larger orders.  The more items you order, the more you save.  This is the tricky part of ordering t-shirts for a group that most people don’t think about until they are actually ready to order.   

How many size adult small, medium, larges, etc do you order? How many youth small, medium and larges do you order? How many plus and tall sizes do you order? Do you estimate the quantity and sizes and hope for the best or do you survey your group to determine what they want?   

A rule of thumb in ordering for a group is to plan (there’s that word again) in plenty of time to obtain information for decision making.  It’s important to know as far ahead as possible how many people will want t-shirts, how many and what sizes for each person, including any children (teens, youth and infants) that might be participating in your event.  

Sending out surveys or order forms early in the process, will give you hard numbers that make it easier to determine what is needed and allows you to take advantage of quantity discounts.  It also keeps you from being left with a large number of shirts after the reunion is over or worse, not having enough for all attendees. You can order a few extras for any unplanned guests that may show up at the last minute.  But at least you won’t order 200 shirts and be left with 100 or vice versa.   

  • Production costs include the base price of the item (the shirt), the cost to set up equipment, run charges and art charges. 

Set up charges are the costs associated with setting up equipment to print artwork onto your shirts or other items. There is usually a set up charge associated with each color and each location in your imprint.  That’s because as part of the printing process, multiple colored designs have to be separated into four colors (CMYK) Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and Key (Black).  You’re charged for the resources needed to set each of those colors.  This process also has to happen for each location in your imprint.  In selecting a shirt, look at the set up charge for printing your items, the number of locations you want for your imprint and the number of colors in your imprint (up to four) and start adding.  The cost for multiple color, multiple location imprints can add up really fast.   

To save on printing production costs, you might consider having a one color imprint or reduce the colors to fewer than four. You might also consider having your imprint in one location.  

Artwork can be your own design, as simple as your reunion name and date to a complex graphic design, logo, family crest or emblem.  Most printing companies will have stock designs or graphic design services available, from supplying basic lettering to full service design.  If you have an artistic person in your group, solicit their services or have a logo contest and select judges from your group to determine which design to use.  Another option would be to hire your own graphic designer. 

  • Artwork proofs. It’s best to ask for a proof of your imprint before your artwork is finalized (if using a paid professional) and after it is received by your printer, before your shirts go into printing production.  Some companies will provide proofs for free and others will charge a fee. Most firms will fax or email a proof, which shows the layout and wording used in your imprint.  In my opinion proofs are worth every penny you spend for them, because you can make sure that everything is spelled correctly and arranged the way you want.   

With most printing companies, it is your responsibility to make sure the artwork is correct and they won’t be responsible for any misspellings or layout issues after the fact.  Don’t assume that they will offer a proof, but make sure to ask for one. To make sure that your imprint turns out the way you want, have several people from your group to proofread to make sure it’s OK before giving the go ahead for printing the final product.  

  1. T-shirt funding. How are you going to pay for your t-shirts and other reunion keepsake items? One option is to take orders and receive payment before the reunion, in time to place your order.  Upon arrival to the reunion, everyone gets the shirt (probably along with other goodies) in a nice little package with other reunion information like programs, maps, etc. This option provides the best way to determine the correct number of shirts and sizes needed, and it will allow you to take advantage of quantity discounts.  

Another option is to include the shirt pricing in reunion dues for the year. Make the dues enough so that you have enough money about two or three months ahead of the reunion to order shirts.  Everyone that pays the reunion fees or dues gets a shirt.  

You can always use money from fundraisers held throughout the year to pay for the shirts. As a matter of fact, t-shirts, caps, videos of past reunions, cookbooks, key chains, buttons, and other items are excellent fund raising tools.  They can be sold before, during or between reunions to keep cash flowing. Put nostalgic photos from the “good ole days” on items and sell them for a small fee.  The key is in finding items that are low enough in price to purchase so that you will make a profit, and an attractive design that will sell.  

Sometimes local businesses and even national chains will buy ad space in programs or on t-shirts in exchange for advertising.  If your reunion group is large enough, it might be worth it to talk to businesses that cater to tourists. They may place an ad with your group and offset some of the cost of printing your shirts. 

These are some ideas for planning and saving money on t-shirts and other custom printed items.  We have a number of quality shirts and other items available online right now.  Use our site, that’s packed with reunion apparel and other promotional items for every need. It’s never too early to start planning and ordering.    

Consider using our planning checklist for keepsake items. Answering the questions on the planning checklist will help you sort through important decisions about your goals, the printed keepsake items, your group and more. 

 

 

 

 

We will be providing a t-shirt organizer soon that will help you organize shirt sizes and production costs.  It will really come in handy when it’s time to place your order.  Call us with questions at 1-800-295-5184 and we’ll be glad to help you find shirts, caps and other custom printed items to fit your needs.

Hospitality Mints in 9 Wedding Layouts




Finding items for your wedding day can be a bit daunting, but here is a simple touch that will add an elegant, flavorful addition to your reception, shower or rehearsal dinner… personalized wedding mints! Order mints online on our website.  Download our Wedding Mints brochure for an easy reference that you can take with you.  Both the online product and brochure work together, providing order options, layouts, type styles and ink colors.

Have the name of the bride and groom, wedding date, with or without graphic printed on individually wrapped mints.  The wrapper is available in a variety of layouts, colors and type styles to match your decor or theme.

They’re commonly used for after dinner mints, bar candy and party favors.  They make ideal fillers for out of town gift bags, gift tins, candy jars, and coffee mugs. They are a personal, unique addition to any gift bag or party decor.

The interlocking hearts package layout is shown (above right), and other layouts are available including “name and date“, “cross with rings“, “floral rings“, “wedding cake“, “monogram“, “wedding bells“, “polka dots“, and “create your own“.  The “create your own” design allows you to use your own photos, graphics and text (shown below).

Your Favorite Photos on Mints

Your Favorite Photos on Custom Mints

A variety of mints, wrapper colors and ink colors are available making a them a unique, personalized package.  Wedding Mints are wrapped in pearlescent film and printed with one color.  But the packaging isn’t the best thing about these mints, they are made fresh daily with the highest quality ingredients, and packed with creamy, melt in your mouth flavor.  They come in a variety of mouth watering flavors including:

  1. Soft Peppermints (reminiscent of an old fashioned peppermint stick, a delightful melt in your mouth treat!)
  2. White Buttermints (a cool, creamy mint blended with buttery richness)
  3. White Gourmet Chocolate Mints (buttermints drenched in luscious dark chocolate, topped with a sweet white candy coating)
  4. Chocolate Mint Creams (a taste tempting combination of ultra rich chocolate and creamy smooth buttermints)
White Buttermints

White Buttermints

Wedding Mints are sold in case quantities of 500 pieces (Chocolate Mint Creams are sold in quantities of 650) and will stay fresh on the shelf for about four months.  Production takes about 12 working days from receipt of the order and for the create your own design, all images, text and graphics.  Take a look at our Wedding Mints brochure for easy order options, typestyles, layout options, ink and wrapper colors.  Contact us for more information.

For more items that can be used for your wedding, read related article Decorate Your Wedding with Custom Printed ItemsVisit us online for more information or call 1-888-838-6563.

Pink Ribbon Hospitality Mints

Need other items for Breast Cancer Awareness Month? Check our website or browse our online KB Best Buys Catalog, a 227 page catalog packed with some of the best deals in the industry!

Bookmark the online catalog or request a free
hard copy for your office so that it will always be at your fingertips! Pricing and quantity discounts are listed with each item.

See something you like? Contact us to place an order or with product questions or Request a quote 

Pink Ribbon Buttermints

Pink Ribbon Buttermints

Promote breast cancer awareness with this tasty treat! Available in several flavors including white buttermints and soft peppermints. Buy them by the case and distribute them to remind women to get regular mammograms and perform regular breast exams. More bulk candy is available online.

Obtain a Quote Online Without Placing an Order

Did you know it’s possible to go through the online checkout process and obtain a quote without placing an order?  You can obtain a quote, and have it emailed to you to determine how shipping, sales taxes and set up costs will affect your pricing.   

Obtain an online quote for any product by selecting a product and product options. Note two price listings available, one that shows the base price “Low as $x.xx” and a quantity discount table, like the one shown in the picture. Choose product options and the base price will change if there are any additional charges.  

Choose desired quantity and click the “Add to Cart” button. Once you add the item to your cart, the appropriate quantity discount will apply and display in the cart.  Continue shopping and repeat this process until you have all the items you would like to purchase. 

Click “Checkout”, and enter your customer information and shipping details. Add any additional information you want us to have and indicate whether you accept our Terms and Conditions. At the bottom of the page, using the drop down box displayed, choose the payment method “Quote”. Click Checkout.  Choose your shipping option (ground or expedited) from the UPS drop down menu. Click “Checkout” again to view a page that summarizes the order.  

To receive a copy of the quote via email, click Checkout to send your quote request.  When you send the request, we will receive a copy of the quote and a copy will be sent to the email address provided during checkout.   If you do not want a copy of the quote via email, simply exit the shopping cart.


We hope you found this article helpful, please provide feedback and let us know if there are other topics you would like to see posted. Visit us online and sign up to receive our newsletter. 

The Role of Estimates in the Order Process

Ordering promotional items is different than other common online purchases.  There are shipping estimates, tax estimates, quantity discounts, artwork charges, charges for various options and production (or set up) costs.  We deal with many manufacturers (factories) and they have their own charges for these items.  Because of all the variation, we estimate many of these charges.  The online order is only part of the process.  This article is designed to help you understand these charges and how they relate to your final order. It will also help you understand what to expect when placing and order and navigating through our website.  We use all the information provided during online checkout, as well as information in our knowledge base to create the total order.  Before the order is sent to the factory, you will have a final bill that includes charges for everything and an estimate of the shipping charges. 

Sales taxes are calculated based on fees charged by state and local municipalities. We use the city, state and zip code provided on the order to manually determine the sales tax, after we receive the order.  An estimate is provided during the online checkout process.  

Set up charges are what the manufacturer charges to set up the equipment used to custom print your order.  There is a standard set up charge for each imprint color and each imprint location.  Base pricing and the pricing listed on the quantity discount tables are for a screen printed imprint in one standard color, placed in one location (for example on a t-shirt the imprint can be on the front, back, or sleeve) on the item.  There is a one time set up charge for a one color, one location imprint associated with each product. If you’re not sure about the set up charge for an item, call our office and we will obtain that information for you. 

Each manufacturer has their own set up charges.  Because of the variation in set up charges, we estimate a standard charge of $30.00 for set up on each online order or quote.  However the actual charge may be more or less than our standard charge.   

If there is a difference between the standard $30.00 charge and the actual set up cost charged by the manufacturer, we will adjust the billing and send the customer a notification for approval before processing the order.  

Our online order process can accommodate pricing for orders that have a one color, one location imprint.  If you require more than one imprint color, the set up charge will be applied to each color (up to four colors) and each location for the imprint.  In addition to the set up charge, there are also run charges associated with each additional color and location.  To receive pricing for orders with multiple imprint colors and locations, call or fax our office with your request and we will provide you with a quote.  

Charges for options like larger sizes (plus sizes), engraving, embroidery and other product dependent features can also apply.  Those charges are factored into the final cost and are explained in the product details. These charges are not estimated, but they provide additional variation on the final cost of your order.

Shipping charges are estimated because until your items ship, we don’t know which carrier will be used to deliver your order.  If you order more than one item, you may have multiple carriers. The carrier is determined by the company that imprints your items.  You are billed for shipping once the items are delivered, under a separate cover.  Another benefit of using our online quote is that it’s connected to UPS online, which means you’ll obtain a pretty good idea of how much it will cost to ship your items based on product weight.  If other carriers are used like FedEx or the US Postal Service, the fees could be different. 

Quantity discounts apply to most of our products.  There are discount tables provided with each item that displays how much the items will cost if you purchase a specific quantity.  Basically, the more you buy, the more you save. Once the items are added to your cart, the appropriate quantity discount will be applied and displayed. 

Artwork charges apply if your artwork is not camera ready.  If the factory has to manipulate your artwork in any way, they charge a fee which varies based on the manufacturer.  There is no way to know whether these charges will apply until we receive your order and submit your artwork to the factory.  If they review the artwork and determine that they cannot use the format provided, we will contact you and provide you with the option of making the changes (using your own graphic designer) or we will give you an estimate from the factory for your approval.   

Once we receive your order, we will double check the pricing and make any adjustments to the set up, options, sales tax and shipping charges.  If there are any changes in the amount quoted during checkout, we will contact you before processing your order.

We hope you have found this article useful.  Please provide feedback and let us know if you would like information on other topics related to promotional items.  Visit us online, and sign up for our newsletter for product updates, specials and inspiration for your next promotional campaign!!