Safety First

Jun 11

Structured Programs Help Meet Safety Goals Every responsible company understands that workplace safety should be a top priority. However, sometimes ensuring the health and well-being of employees...

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7 Ways to Instantly Make Your Website More User-Friendly

May 03

With more and more people preferring to conduct business exclusively online, a user-friendly website isn’t just desirable, it’s required if you want to be successful. These seven tips will...

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How to Work Smarter, Not Harder

Mar 28

Do you ever find that no matter how hard you're working, you're not getting the results you want? You put in the long hours at the office, you answer every email, you skip lunch, and yet you're still ...

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Branding 101: What Makes a Brand Powerful

Feb 20

A powerful brand is more than just a great logo and a mission statement (although those certainly lay the groundwork for any brand.) We live in a time where competition rises up on every corner, and t...

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4 Ways to Improve Communication

Jan 08

Have you ever had this conversation before? Them: "How are you?" You: "Yes." Or have you ever been in a meeting and realized you zoned out halfway through? Or how about when you’re at the mo...

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Ways to Cultivate Customer Excitement

Dec 11, 2018

Making Loyalty Programs Work For You Here’s the good news…Loyalty programs are big business getters. But they can be even bigger when you use really cool promotional products that ar...

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16 Ways Color Affects Your Branding and Marketing

Dec 04, 2018

Substantial research shows why color matters in branding and how it plays an important role in how we experience marketing. These 16 facts give you a glimpse into how you can use color to your advanta...

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Measure Success

Nov 13, 2018

The most successful promotions have these features: Harmonized appearance of marketing materials. Focus on brand recognition and increasing brand loyality. An end goal, one that is achievable...

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5 Fail-Proof Ideas for Your Business Instagram

Oct 29, 2018

What generates over 95 million photos and videos each day, 4.2 billion likes daily and has 700 million active users? You guessed it – Instagram. This photo and video sharing social platform have...

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25 Surprising Facts About Promotional Products

Oct 08, 2018

You don’t have to work in the field of promotional products to notice the impact they can have on any organization’s marketing efforts. As the most effective medium of advertising across a...

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Advice for Getting the Most Out of a Business Trip

Sep 23, 2018

Traveling for business can be a hectic experience if you approach your upcoming trip without any preparation. As with everything else in the world, there is an art to getting the most out of business ...

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4 Steps to #Winning Social Media

Sep 02, 2018

Social media is one of the fastest growing and ever-changing media platforms in existence. What began as an online community for the younger generations, now encompasses billions of people across the ...

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3 Things Every Busy Professional Needs

Aug 05, 2018

If there’s one thing we never have enough of, it’s time. We haven’t quite figured out a way to freeze time yet, but we have found ways to save it. If you’re a busy professional...

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9 Useful Apps for Sales & Marketing Professionals

Jul 29, 2018

Your phone’s ringing off the hook. You’ve got three meetings back to back. Emails are piling up in your inbox. And when you have a moment to book your next business trip, you wonder how yo...

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How Wellness Programs Make Businesses Healthier

Jun 08, 2018

The infographic says it all. Wellness programs work, by improving employee engagement, morale, and of course, health. When properly executed, the company benefits with increased productivity and r...

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Promotional Products Work (23 fun facts)

May 22, 2018

23 fun facts about effective advertising Last week, Promotional Products Association International (PPAI) held a national awareness campaign called Promotional Products Work Week. Activities and me...

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Insurance Costs Are Out of Control

Aug 12, 2017

Last month we wrote about how promotions can actually reduce insurance costs. We learned about the five ways promotional products can help to drive such programs — promoting, maintaining int...

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Isn’t It Time For You To Get in Touch?

Nov 10, 2016

We’re entering the gifting season. Business gifts serve multiple purposes. Of course they are one way to say “thank you” to customers and clients. But they are also a useful bran...

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What Made-in-America Really Means

Oct 12, 2016

We hear a lot about “Made in America” these days. Election season has done nothing to slow down the interest in the subject, but honestly, it’s a topic that never goes away. Acco...

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Go Paperless, Save Trees — NOT SO FAST

Sep 15, 2016

We've been hearing about a paperless world for a couple of decades now. Actually, the first predictions for a paperless office were made in 1975. When the personal computer was invented in the 80&...

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A Safety Program Primer

Aug 09, 2016

How much do injuries or illness cost your company? It’s a question worth asking. According to the Occupational Safety & Health Administration’s estimate, employers collectively pay...

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A Wellness Program Primer

Jul 12, 2016

Sleeping is all in a days’ work at Aetna. The U.S. health insurance giant recently announced it would pay employees to get at least seven hours of sleep each night. Workers use their own dev...

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7 Steps to a Promotional Plan

Jun 12, 2016

Successful promotion campaigns don't happen by chance. To realize goals, promotional products programs must be carefully planned, taking into consideration the audience, budget and, of course, the...

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Business Improvement Through Incentive Programs

Oct 10, 2015

What does a business do when they want to reduce accidents in the workplace? Or when they want to reduce health insurance costs? They create an incentive program. Of course, incentive programs are...

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10 Steps To Design An Effective Incentive Program

Oct 10, 2015

Establish Objectives: Identify three to five goals or objectives that are a) measurable, b) attainable and c) simple to understand and communicate.  Analyze the Audience: The entire workfo...

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Do You Really Hate Advertising?

Jun 10, 2015

A lot of people say they do. When professions are ranked by public perception of honesty and ethics, the bottom positions are held by stockbrokers and members of Congress, but right next to that n...

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Promotional Products Work

May 18, 2015

  This is the week of a nationwide campaign reminding advertisers that promotional products are one of the most effective channels of advertising. What are you waiting for? Make someone's day! ...

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Reducing Insurance Costs Through Promotions

Apr 10, 2015

The annual price tag on occupational injuries and illnesses is a staggering $250 billion, according to a study by the University of California Davis. The National Safety Council states that the av...

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Screen Printing - Not Just For T-shirts

Feb 21, 2015

  Whether in an industrial art class in high school or when ordering custom t-shirts, screen printing is often a person’s first contact with printing other than desktop computer printi...

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Lessons from Product Placement

Feb 10, 2015

Anybody watch the Super Bowl commercials? Anyone NOT watch them? Some were pretty entertaining, others were duds, and at least one backfired. Meanwhile, there was a football game in between all of...

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Dimensional Mailing Gets Big Results

Jan 10, 2015

With the proliferation of email for marketing (yes, including this very newsletter), old fashioned physical mail can have a bigger impact than ever. That is, if it gets attention. Here's an exampl...

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Creative Thinking 101

Nov 12, 2014

This month we bring you a guest column from our friend Michael Crooks. APTCO's approach to promotional marketing has been influenced by Michael's brand of thinking. Forget about the “outside...

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Oh No! Not Another Top 10 list!

Oct 10, 2014

It's that time of year. Once the 4th quarter hits, businesses start thinking about all they have to get done before the year ends. There are client gifts, employee gifts and awards, a couple more ...

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How and Why Do You Use Promotional Products?

Aug 10, 2014

Promotional products are everywhere. From screen printed T-shirts to pens to mugs to key tags, company logos are viewed thousands of times per day. But so what? Branded promotional items are a nea...

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How To Make Your Trade Show Investment Pay Off

Jun 12, 2014

We work with a lot of companies as they prepare to exhibit at a trade show. In addition to the long-time clients that we know well, there are lots of requests that come because Google led someone ...

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American-made Promotional Products Make Sense

May 14, 2014

For most of the past decade, the majority of the most popular promotional products have been coming from China. When you are looking at the big categories, including writing instruments, drinkware, ba...

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Busting some myths about paper

Apr 02, 2014

We hear a lot about the wastefulness of print. Everything seems to be moving to electronic media. But how much of what we hear is true? The facts indicate that paper is taking a bad rap.

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The Truth About Promotional Products

Jan 10, 2014

Let's face it - we're in a new world of marketing. The traditional channels of the Mad Men era have been supplemented by multiple new digital channels. We're bombarded with marketing messages ever...

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Is Everybody Happy?

Dec 10, 2013

Motivation Done Right and Wrong ’Tis the season to be jolly, but for some, it can be difficult when there are so many things to get done in such a short time. Our schedules get packed with ...

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California fails to pass single-use bag ban

Jun 07, 2013

  California could be considered the epicenter of the fight to ban single-use bags from grocery stores and other retailers. More than 75 cities and counties in California, including Malibu, ...

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5 Ways To Promote Fitness

May 27, 2013

by Larry Triplett Did you know that May was Fitness Month? Human Resource Directors probably do. A healthy staff is an important objective for any company. It reduces absenteeism and kee...

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PPAI celebrates Promotional Products Work! Week

Mar 10, 2013

The week just completed - Feb. 25 - Mar 1, 2013, marks the first observance of Promotional Products Work! Week. The global awareness event, sponsored by Promotional Products Association Internatio...

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How Are You Going To Print That

Mar 07, 2013

  What are we talking about? There are many different ways to print promotional products. The size, shape, and type of product, as well as the number of colors in the imprint, will suggest the b...

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How Green Is The Internet?

Nov 10, 2012

In the twenty-first century we've seen immense diversification of marketing channels. While direct mail and many other traditional channels continue (see part one of this series), we see more and ...

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How Green Is Your Marketing?

Oct 10, 2012

The twenty-first century has brought increased awareness across all marketing channels of the importance of environmentally responsible practices. In a two-part series, we'll take a look at areas ...

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How to Work With Awareness Campaigns

Sep 11, 2012

Even in a challenging economy, Americans are a generous lot. People organize and rally to help a neighbor, the school systems, or anything needing assistance. Charitable organizations throughout t...

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The True Function of Promotional Products

Aug 14, 2012

As part of a well-planned marketing campaign, nothing can be as effective as the right promotional product, with the right message, distributed in the right manner to the right audience. They have...

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HR Managers Use Promotional Products For Results

Jul 10, 2012

How do human resource professionals motivate employees, boost productivity, and improve customer service? These were some of the questions asked by Promotional Products Association International (...

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Viral marketing wasn't invented by social media

Jun 22, 2012

  A lot of people want you to think so, but viral marketing actually has a much longer history, going way back before web 2.0. Before web 1.0, once know simply as "the internet". Let's start wit...

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How to boost participation in your wellness program

May 29, 2012

Smart businesses are introducing wellness programs for their employees. The benefits go both directions! Healthier employees result in reduced health insurance premiums, due to fewer claims ...

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It Pays To Promote Safety In The Workplace

Mar 13, 2012

If you have any employees, even just one, then chances are, you have to carry Worker's Compensation insurance. If you carry Worker's Comp., you have to pay insurance premiums. The amount you have ...

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Wellness Programs That Really Work

Feb 14, 2012

Rising health-care costs have made wellness programs a good deal for companies that invest in them, and now Uncle Sam has stepped in to make it easier to create and fund them. The new Health Care ...

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Survey Proves Effectiveness of Promotional Products

Nov 15, 2011

How do recipients feel about receiving a promotional product? What purpose do they think the item serves? What actions do they take? These are crucial questions every advertiser should know and un...

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Mentorship Program a Promotional Success

Nov 08, 2011

The State Bar of South Dakota had a problem. The supply of lawyers in rural areas of the state had been dwindling over a period of several years. Law school graduates were more attracted to joinin...

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10 Ways to Boost Booth Traffic

Sep 13, 2011

1. Get your own prospects If you want lots of qualified attendees, it’s essential to create your own audience. You can do this by utilizing house files, prospect lists, direct mail and elec...

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Avoid Random Acts of Marketing

Aug 09, 2011

Avoiding Random Acts of Marketing is a key recommendation of the latest “State of Marketing” report from the Chief Marketing Officer Council, a 6,000 member global association. CMO's p...

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Do You Treat Direct Mail This Way?

Jul 12, 2011

Let's face it. In this age of internet marketing, postal mail suffers from the Rodney Dangerfield complex - it just can't get any respect. When you bring in the daily mail, if you're like most peo...

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Benefits and Pitfalls of Custom Flash Drives

Jun 14, 2011

USB Flash Drives are continuing to grow as a popular medium that is, in many cases, actually replacing print. Many a conference handout has moved from paper booklets to CD's and now, to thumb driv...

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Promotional Products Still Leading Other Media

May 17, 2011

As the economy slowly continues its recovery, marketers are making careful decisions about the best use of marketing budgets. A recent study from the Advertising Specialty Institute compared the e...

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10 Marketing Clichés We Don't Need To Hear Again

Apr 19, 2011

You have to wonder sometimes about what advertisers were thinking! We've compiled a list of some of the most overused and empty phrases from the world of advertising. The way some of these words a...

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Top 5 Tag Lines of All Time

Apr 01, 2011

  A good tag line adds focus and purpose to a brand. It should be short enough to be easy to remember and repeat. It should avoid industry-specific jargon so it's easily understood by everyone. ...

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Marketers Optimism Highest in Two Years

Mar 15, 2011

The results of the February 2011 CMO Survey are in and the news is unequivocally positive. Top marketing executives at U.S. firms are more optimistic about the U.S. economy and their own companies...

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18 Creative Ways to Recognize Employees

Feb 08, 2011

According to a Maritz Research study, employees who participate in creative recognition programs at work are five times more likely to feel valued, 11 times more likely to feel committed and seven...

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Five Secrets of Direct Marketing Nobody Tells You

Jan 11, 2011

1. Data is king The quality of your list will directly correlate to the results of your campaign.  First, it is important to make sure the data is “clean”, ensuring that your pie...

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No Need To Panic Over Lead In Grocery Bags

Nov 26, 2010

Recently, several grocery store chains, including Publix, Sweetbay, Winn-Dixie, Walmart and Target, reported the existence of varying levels of lead in some reusable grocery bags. A firestor...

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It's Hand Sanitizer Season, but did you know…?

Nov 09, 2010

Hand sanitizers have been an effective and popular promotional product for a few years. Our customers have used them to put their names in front of their customers in all kinds of different situat...

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FTC To Regulate Greenwashing

Sep 21, 2010

We're glad to hear this news. As “green” has evolved to mean so much more than a color, a majority of consumers and businesses have taken an interest in environmental responsibility. E...

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7 Answers To Get You Started On Direct Mail

Aug 15, 2010

  Q: How do you get a mail list? A: List brokers are generally considered the most effective sources for vetted mail lists. "Vetted" is a key operative word. There are lots of garba...

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Five Steps to Success with Cause Marketing

Aug 10, 2010

Cause Marketing is becoming increasingly popular as a means for businesses to build a positive reputation while helping out a worthwhile charity. If a company's products and market align well with...

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Three Ways to Improve Your Recognition Program

Jul 13, 2010

If you're evaluating your company's recognition program, the first place to start is by thinking about the goals of the program. It needs to be closely aligned with the company's overall goals. At...

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What's In A Name

Jun 08, 2010

Do you ever wonder where company names come from? Sometimes multi-million dollar consulting contracts are involved, but sometimes it's just a whim! Regardless, they can have a major impact on publ...

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What's up with cotton?

Jun 06, 2010

Two things are up with cotton - sales and prices! Organic cotton emerged as a leader within the cotton segment when a green image is important. Sales of organic cotton increased 35...

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Six Steps to Developing a Promotional Plan

May 29, 2010

Successful promotional campaigns don't happen by chance. To realize goals, promotional products programs must be carefully planned, taking into consideration the audience, budget and, of cou...

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ADVERTISING - Why is it?

Mar 16, 2010

A man wakes up after sleeping under an ADVERTISED blanket, on an ADVERTISED mattress, and pulls off ADVERTISED pajamas, bathes in an ADVERTISED shower, shaves with an ADVERTISED razor, brushes...

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The Three Stages of Trade Show Marketing

Feb 09, 2010

Trade show season has begun again, so many of our clients are looking at their calendars and making plans for an effective approach to this most important component of their annual marketing. That...

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$440 Million in Wasted Printing

Nov 17, 2009

A study by Lexmark and O'Keeffe & Company says that of the nearly $1.3 billion the federal government spends on printing every year, almost one-third--$440 million--is waste. The “2009 G...

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Green Printing Options Grow Even In A Recession

Oct 20, 2009

A recent survey in Print Solutions magazine and Appleton Papers shows surprising growth in eco-friendly printing over the past year. Among the unexpected materials used is chipboard to make presen...

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Seven Best Practices of Recognition Programs

Oct 13, 2009

Developing a comprehensive recognition program is an in-depth process that can have a direct positive effect on employee satisfaction, customer satisfaction, and company profitability. Far from se...

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Oh, No! Don't Say Giveaway!

Jul 14, 2009

We get lots of phone calls from companies looking for products to give to customers, prospects, or even employees in an effort to market themselves. Many of them already have an idea what they wan...

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Reduced Advertising During Recession Negatively Impacts Consumer Perception

Jun 16, 2009

More than 48% of U.S. adults believe that a lack of advertising by a retail store, bank or auto dealership during a recession indicates the business must be struggling. Likewise, a vast majority per...

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Ten Things You May Not Know About Gift Cards

Jun 09, 2009

When is the last time someone gave you a paper gift certificate? Probably a very long time ago! There are lots of good reasons for this. Gift cards are increasing in popularity because they have l...

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The Opportunities a Recession Brings

May 12, 2009

It seems like common sense, if you advertise when everyone else stops marketing… Your message is more likely to be noticed due to fewer ads in the market Your business is more likely to...

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Lessons From A Cherry

Apr 14, 2009

Guest Article by Jim Blasingame ©2009 Small Business Network, Inc. It's difficult to imagine a more succulent image than a bowl of cherries. Indeed, if you had to choose one flavor that all ...

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How To Make a Great Year!

Jan 13, 2009

The news is in. No, I'm not referring to the dismal economic news that has everyone holding their breath to find out the next steps to be taken by a governmental rescue plan. I mean the news about...

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Thinking Green Is Here To Stay

Apr 15, 2008

The U.S. Organic Industry continues to expand, reaching $17.8 billion in consumer sales in 2006 - an increase of 21.8% over 2005. Industry experts expect that once the tally is complete, 2007's gr...

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Six Steps To Develop a Promotional Plan

Sep 11, 2007

Successful promotional campaigns don't happen by chance. To realize goals, promotional products programs must be carefully planned, taking into consideration the audience, budget and, of course, t...

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The Most Annoying Buzzwords

Jun 19, 2007

We're halfway through 2007, but we haven't made much progress following the recommendations of the Creative Group. At the end of 2006 they polled 250 marketing and advertising executives to create...

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Are ALL employers out of touch?

May 08, 2007

We hope not! But you have to wonder, after reading a recent study. People are all different, being motivated by different things. Some enjoy non-monetary incentives, such as award merchandise, gif...

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Go Green

Feb 20, 2007

With 70 percent of the Earth covered in water, it's a wonder we don't say “go blue.” But “go green” is how the environmental movement was branded. So take a cue from earth lo...

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8 Tips for More Successful Trade Shows

Feb 13, 2007

Walk around any trade show and you will be able to collect a bag full of trade show promotional items all designed to promote business. Everyone enjoys receiving a gift. Gift giving creates a favo...

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New Study Shows Role of Promo Products

Jan 09, 2007

A new study, just released by the Promotional Products Association International (PPAI), empirically proves that promotional products are an effective ad medium and key to integrated marketing cam...

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Budgeting Tips For A Tradeshow

Dec 19, 2006

On average, tradeshows account for 5% to 20% of an annual marketing budget. To help you get a clear picture of where your marketing dollars are going so you can make wise spending decisions, here'...

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The Six Rules of Corporate Gift Giving

Sep 19, 2006

Knowing a person's dietary restrictions can make all the difference between an appreciated food gift and one that goes to waste. Andrea Nirenberg, president of The Nierenberg Group, a communicatio...

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Promotional Products Help Recovery

Sep 12, 2006

On the weekend of last summer's Formula I U.S. Grand Prix in Indianapolis, tire supplier Michelin North America found that their tires were dangerously incompatible with the newly resurfaced track...

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Casual Dress Forever? Not so fast…

Feb 21, 2006

The dot.com era brought with it a lot of change, including over-priced stocks, get-rich-quick schemes and the end of the corporate tie culture. Remember those first images out of Silicon Valley co...

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7½ Bits of Wisdom for Your Practice of Leadership

Jan 10, 2006

To start off the new year, we depart from our usual format of promotional marketing success stories to bring you a guest column on leadership by Tom Stevens. 7½ Bits of Wisdom for Your Pra...

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I Am The Calendar

Oct 18, 2005

I have two missions: one of utility, one of sentiment. I am the symbol of time, combining the past, present and future. As the clock records the seconds, minutes and hours, I record the days, we...

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Pinpoint or shotgun?

Sep 15, 2005

In a recent case study, a business owner sent personalized pizza cutters in custom-made boxes to a dozen key decision-makers that he wanted to get appointments with. The boxes, which contained the...

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Help for Holiday gift giving

Sep 13, 2005

Choosing that perfect holiday gift for an employee or client is a difficult task.  Here are several points to remember when going through your holiday list. Build a relationship! The holida...

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Lesson in Motivation

Aug 23, 2005

It’s no secret that online training can increase employees’ sales power and effectiveness. However, getting them to participate isn’t always easy. Microsoft discovered incentives...

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Do Tradeshow Promotional Gifts Work?

Aug 09, 2005

You're about to invest a big chunk of your marketing budget on a big tradeshow exhibition. Should you spend even more money on promotional items? Georgia Southern University conducted a study at f...

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Graphic Design Terms Everyone Should Know

Jun 15

It can be hard to communicate with a design team on a project when the designers speak their very own language. That’s why we have a rundown of words you may come across frequently that can save...

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