Create Awareness and Attract More Customers with Special Observances

Holidays and special observances provide excellent opportunities to support your favorite cause and connect with the community.  Sponsoring an event designed to create awareness, even a small observance can start conversations about things that are important to your customers.  Themes can include health, historical events, and current events can lead to positive action and increase your company’s exposure in the community.

For example, the National Women’s History Project‘s 2013 theme for National Women’s History Month is Women Inspiring Innovation Through Imagination: Celebrating Women in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. They are honoring women in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM).

An idea for the month of March, in honor of Women’s History Month, could be to feature women who have excelled in science and technology now and throughout history.  If possible provide information on local women in these fields.  Enhance the celebration by creating an offer for women who sign up for your newsletter (at your brick and mortar facility or website) to receive a free, relevant promotional gift.  The promotional gift should include your logo with a message that includes your theme and contact information.  If customers sign up online, make sure to provide them with a promotional code that they can use to get their free gift.

Another example includes creating awareness regarding health and wellness, which is something that most everyone can relate to.   Even if your company isn’t in the healthcare field, many consumers are concerned about health and fitness.  Health related observances like National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month and National Nutrition Month provide an opportunity to provide general information and encourage customers and potential customers to schedule screenings and regular check ups.  Partnering with health professionals, hospitals and clinics can boost awareness in your community and provide information on resources that are available.

Contact us for items like t-shirts, napkins, balloons, drinkware, pillboxes, first aid kits, candles, stress reducers and more.  Placing your logo on items with an inspiring message shows customers and potential customers that you care about topics that are important to them and the community.  Increased exposure like this, can go a long way to attracting new customers.  Call us for more ideas or to order promotional items for your next campaign.

March Holidays and Observances

The following observances are approaching in March!  Find more observances by taking a look at our Promo Calendar.  It’s constantly updated so check it often.

Great American Cleanup
Irish American Heritage Month
Mental Retardation Awareness Month
Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month
National Nutrition Month
National Professional Social Work Month
National Women’s History Month

Using Promotional Items to Gain More Leads at Trade Shows

Promotional items are a wonderful addition to your trade show exhibit.  They work best when they are combined with other marketing activities to reach your target audience. 
They work to hold your marketing message and keep it front and center in the minds of perspective buyers after the event ends.

Keep in mind that the best promotional items are ones that your prospects can use and see on a daily basis.  For example, items that sit on desks, hang on walls and stick to refrigerators and file cabinets work best.  Items that hold family photos like magnets, picture frames, and clips work well for this.  If you need ideas, we can help!

Trade shows will be in full swing during the spring and summer months. Use these tips to learn more about your customers, have fun and book more appointments.

1.Learn something about your potential customers. Ever had a burning question you always want to know about potential customers? Give away a promotional gift that is imprinted with your company brand in exchange for completing a survey. Make the survey available online for convenience and provide the ability to share the survey with colleagues. Give respondents an email confirmation when they complete the online survey. They can show you the email to receive the promotional gift when they visit your booth.

2. Keep it lighthearted. Make a promotional product part of a game or other fun activity that draws attention to your booth.  Nothing hard,complicated or unsafe, but make it fun and profitable at the same time. For example miniature golf, some form of bingo or trivia that ties into your product or industry.  

3. Make an Appointment. Give out promotional items to each person that schedules a free sales consultation.

4. Create a Sneak Peek. Offer a free sample to each visitor with a promotional item that has information on how to order the full sized product.

Generate Goodwill with an Employee Recognition Program

Employee Recognition

Recognize your team, employees and volunteers that contribute to your success!

Promotional items are commonly used to generate goodwill and trust both inside and outside the organization.  Opportunities, in many instances are missed because the primary focus tends to be on enhanced relationships with customers only.  The focus has to shift to take advantage of opportunities to boost trust and goodwill with employees, suppliers, and others who make major contributions.  How much better could your organization be if you developed and fostered excellent working relationships with both internal and external customers?

This award is the Delphi (FS-342-AL): 793095. A multi-colored artglass award with polished aluminum and black marble base. * Art charges apply “

Did you know that promoting goodwill can not only boost your organization’s likeability factor and overall image in the community, but it can also translate to earning power?  Surprisingly for some, promoting goodwill in the community affects a company’s reputation and it can be reflected on a company’s balance sheet as an intangible asset.  While the reason for promoting goodwill within your organization should be because it’ the right thing to do, it’s nice to know that there can be a financial benefit as well.   There is no definite formula for success when it comes to fostering good relationships, here are two easy steps you can take that will set you in the right direction.
  1. Be an engaged, active participant in all business relationships. Successful business relationships, like friendships require involvement from both parties.  Make it a habit to establish regular conversations and two way dialog with your employees, not just when you need an additional commitment from them.  Become a great listener and take action on items that need improvement.  Don’t call on colleagues only when you need something.  Engage in goodwill by establishing a  two way dialog with colleagues and contacts by calling, having lunch or sending a card or note just to check in.
  2. Offer positive feedback and compliments to those who deserve them. If your employees exceeded goals and otherwise contributed to your companies success, it’s customary to compliment and reward them on a job well done. Express your gratitude for your employee’s hard work with promotional gifts. A compliment goes a long way in boosting the spirits of others, which can establish a feeling of goodwill in the office and beyond.  Promotional items like apparel, household items, wards and electronics are popular gift items that say thank you for all you do!
  3. Generate goodwill in the community. For example, local elementary and high school sports programs are popular in providing sponsorship opportunities.  The arts are also a popular choice and there are opportunities to sponsor plays, dance groups, art exhibits. as a way to build goodwill.  Look to add local artists’ work to the walls in your facility. Lobby areas can provide excellent backdrop and exposure for local artists.  Health organizations also provide opportunities for sponsor events that lead to improved health.Each time you advertise community events on local bulletin boards, websites and public radio stations, you are building goodwill.  Over time,  customers become your best sales force, because they believe in your  company, not just in your products or services.Include other small businesses to help with your events. Local coffee shops, bakeries and music stores will often send over vendor carts or share event costs in exchange for being added to the advertising.

If you’re looking for custom business gifts and other promotional items, please check our website at www.customtshirtmakers.com or www.gremonmarketing.com. Receive our newsletter for case studies, ideas, product trends, featured items and current promotions. Sign up for our newsletter

Ideas for Christmas Ornament Fundraisers

holiday ornaments

Holiday Fundraisers

Any organization (churches, schools, sports teams, fraternities/sororities, reunion groups, clubs, etc) can run a Christmas Ornament fundraiser.  In fact, it’s something that many groups run on an annual basis. Ornament fundraisers are fun, easy, and profitable for all involved.  Read our ornament fundraising brochure for more information.  Here are the program basics to get you started. Follow these steps to get started!

Design Your Ornament

  • Decide on an imprint for your ornament.  Some ideas include using your logo, team mascot,  a monogram, building, your slogan, holiday message, add your school, business or organization name, team name and/or year.  Some organizations have contests to obtain ideas, and get members involved.
  • If you don’t know where to start on your ornament design, contact us for ideas. We provide free artwork assistance and clip art options for your design. Each ornament has an artwork template that can be used to make designing easy. After your artwork is received, we’ll make a proof of your custom ornament and fax or email it as an attachment for your approval.Custom Chrismas Ornaments

Choose Your Ornament

  • Pick an ornament from our website or use the product special for shatterproof ornaments available in 10 colors. If you don’t see an ornament that you like, send us your requirements and we will find an ornament that meets your needs.

Place Your Order

  • Once the order information and artwork are received, we will fulfill your order, including any reorders. You have several options for submitting your order, including our “no risk” option that allows you lots of flexibility based on your needs. Your organization can purchase ornaments before orders are taken or you can “pre-sell” them collecting money ahead of time based on your needs and your time line.
  • Reorders are easy and ship in one to two weeks, depending on time of the year – it is a good idea to check with us on the current re-order lead time. The holidays are very busy so lead times may be longer. Since we would have all your order and artwork information reordering will be easier.

Promote Your Fundraiser

  • You can start pre-selling the ornaments based on the artwork and proof or we can provCustom Christmas Ornamentside samples that you can display on order taking days. So when your ornaments are delivered, you may have already sold them all! Contact us for our “no risk” option that may be a good fit for your needs.
  • We have many resources available to promote your fundraiser, including our fundraising guide, flyers, order forms, banners, and samples that can be displayed on order taking days.
  • Ornaments make great holiday gifts for family members and friends and we have a number of ornament types to choose from.

If you’re looking for custom business gifts and other promotional items, please check our website at www.customtshirtmakers.com or www.gremonmarketing.com. Receive our newsletter for case studies, ideas, product trends, featured items and current promotions. Sign up for our newsletter

6 Tips for Buying Holiday Business Gifts

During the approaching holiday season, you may be thinking of what to give employees, customers and

Holiday Business Gifts

Business Gifts That Make the Mark

associates for business gifts. To make the most of your budget you need gifts that are meaningful, and items that will be used and appreciated.  Here are some steps that will help you pick the best gifts this season.

1. Focus on the recipient. A good place to start when thinking of any gift is to think of the person or group receiving the gift.  What do they like, how do they spend their time, what will make their lives easier?

2. What is the reason you’re giving the gift? Are you celebrating an occasion, holiday or milestone? Is the gift for appreciation, to generate goodwill,  business building, or to promote awareness?

3. Do your homework. We (business owners) agonize over the perfect gift because many times we don’t have in depth knowledge of our customers, employees etc.  We focus on cost alone when picking a gift, which in many cases causes us to miss the boat entirely.

We guess about what is appropriate and we wonder why our efforts are not giving us the results we want. We don’t typically know where these important people (customers, prospects and customers) hang out or what will make their lives easier.  If you’re not sure where your customers spend their time, and what’s important to them, you may be missing an opportunity to reach them in a meaningful way and give them gifts that will make them appreciate the experience they had with your organization.

Since it may be hard to obtain this information directly from customers, it’s a good idea to look at studies conducted by industry groups and even government studies.  We can use this information to make some general assumptions that may help in deciding on the message and placement of the message to make the most of our holiday advertising.

4. Choose items and messages that will fit the places that matter most to the recipients. Incorporate a holiday greeting or message on products that will be used in the places that matter and make the most sense to your customers.  For example a restaurant with a family friendly atmosphere, great specials, and an excellent menu might use a household item like a mug or other drinkware item in holiday packaging as a holiday gift item for loyal customers.  They might include some coupons or a business card magnet that highlights their contact information, their website, free home delivery and specials.  For business marketing, they may want to place their menu, specials and/or contact information on a business themed wall calendar that is distributed it to local businesses for use in the office.  The office environment would be interested in their box lunch catering services for meetings and free delivery during lunch time.

Some products are strictly for the business market and others are great in both business and home markets.

5. Determine which environment is most relevant to the recipient of the gift.  Where is your customer most likely to receive and focus on your message?   So another action step would be to look at your product and message to determine which environment would be the best fit; the home environment, the leisure and sports environment, or the work environment. If your budget allows, all three might be a good fit with a different message for each.

6. Determine the overall cost of the item.  With promotional items you can’t just look at the cost of the item itself.  There are other charges to consider, like set up charges, shipping charges, run charges if your imprint has more than one color, quantity discounts and more. We will make sure to go over these charges with you and provide an overall price in our quote, once we have determined your needs.  Also think of the intangible costs associated with giving holiday gifts this season in terms of goodwill, repeat business, brand recognition and more. When you look at it from that perspective it’s well worth your time to use this form of marketing.

Whatever gift you choose, and whatever environment you choose to focus your marketing efforts this holiday season, remember that promotional items will fit perfectly where other marketing methods may not.  When used effectively, they are the silent salesperson that works and goes into places that you’re not able to. They travel well, displayed on desks, on filing cabinets and walls, on bags, apparel, mugs, and items in every industry, working when you’re not able to, even when you’re fast asleep.

During the upcoming holiday season and throughout the year, the goal should be to get your message into the places where your customers spend their time.  Search our website for holiday gifts and items that will fit into the places where your customers spend their time.

Our Blog Has a Whole New Look!

Sign up or join us on Facebook and Twitter!

We’ve made a few changes on our blog ad we’re excited about the new look and feel.  The goal is to bring together our online media pages in one location.

We’ve added some visual changes that better reflect a new direction toward marketing, versus just selling promotional items. After all marketing is the reason for using promo items in the first place. Right? We incorporated tools from Facebook and Twitter and added a contact tab that can be used to send us a message directly.

Take a look at the Facebook and Twitter feeds on the right side of the page for our current activities.  To further connect, like us to connect on Facebook or follow us on Twitter.  You can also sign up to receive updates by email by entering your address on the top left side of the page.

We start by asking the question, “How are you promoting your company?” If you think that promotional items are not for you, please read the articles, check out our money and time saving deals and case studies to get ideas for your next campaign.  The key is in learning o use them effectively as part of an overall strategy. That’s our goal in writing this blog.

So try us out, and take your marketing from boring to brilliant, make a great first impression and create anticipation for your events.  Give participants, prospects and business associates items that will remind them of the positive experience they had with your organization.  Position your company for success with regular marketing campaigns and events, using promotional apparel and gift items.

Marketing Tip of the Day: Request Feedback

Improve Response Rates with Business Card Magnets

Customers are the lifeblood of any business yet in many cases, their opinion is neglected, and sometimes even feared.  Because of this apprehension, valuable opportunities are lost by avoiding the hard questions like “how can we improve?”.  Feedback can give us a boost of confidence when things go well. When things don’t go so well, it can make us want to run and hide.  However those negative tidbits can be just what the doctor ordered when it comes to boosting your business.  Those hard knocks become pearls of wisdom… the pearls that are needed to make your business essential to customers which often leads to more referrals and increased business.

Where do you rate in terms of facing the issues that arise in your business? Are you avoiding problem areas or are you addressing issues that customers bring to the forefront? How does your business currently obtain feedback from customers? Do you send out surveys, does someone follow up in person or by phone after the sale? Is there an opportunity for customers to be open and frank with their feedback? Is there an incentive for customers who provide feedback? What do you do with the feedback once you receive it?  What actions do you take if for example, if you receive negative feedback or complaints?

All these questions are critical to the success of your business.  If you don’t know what your customers think about the experience they had with your business, you’re operating in the dark with one hand tied behind your back.  You might as well close shop.  If customers are unhappy, many of them won’t complain… they just leave, and never come back. They never refer you to their business associates, family and friends.  As a matter of fact, these are the people they will complain to.

People will support your business not because they think it looks good, but because they know it is good.  If they have problems with your services, customers are the best source of objective advice on how to make things better.  So today’s tip involves having a process (there goes that word again!) in place that allows you to regularly obtain feedback.  Give customers options (anonymously or in person, by phone, hard copy surveys, online surveys, etc) which will increase the likelihood that they will give you feedback.  As an added bonus, including lightweight promotional items (like business card magnets) with surveys that are mailed and/or placing a message with a link to an online survey on a promotional item is a proven way to improve response rates.  Coupons, discounts and other money saving values are great ways to encourage feedback as well.

The goal is to create an environment where feedback is encouraged.  And once your customers have given it to you, let them know how you are going to use it.  They will begin to feel involved in your business, and are more likely to send other people your way.

Like us on Facebook and Twitter and obtain more useful information on marketing your business using creative ideas and promotional items!