Saturday, May 27, 2017

Four Retail Trends to Steal

There is a reason that promotional and retail share similar trends; consumers are always looking for "what's new". Often what is new is not so much the product. Instead it is the product's appearance, properties or function. For example, silicone wristbands have been around for years; did you know they now have some offering a protective property to the individual wearing them? Yes! Insect repellent bands.

When you are seeking a way to connect with your target market consider how your brand story fits into their life. If you are a pediatrician who wants to warn parents about issues that might arise with insect bites in toddlers, an inexpensive way to connect would be insect repellent wristbands. Does your demographic use their car to go camping? See how easily a promotion ties into your target audience?

Color- Bright colors including yellows, oranges and reds are perfect colors for summertime accessories such as beach mat, mesh totes or these brand new insect repellent wristbands

Patterns- Flora and fauna are bold patterns for apparel, beach towels are perfect for seasonal businesses. If you are a local pool, beach shuttle service, florist or garden shop, strong floral patterns aren't just trendy, they offer you a way to connect with your target market in a useful way that also share your brand message.  The more you can connect with a brand using one of your consumer's 5 senses, the more the message will be retained.

Brands- Popular brands are utilizing colorful embroidery designs on shoes, purses, and other accessories.

Tourist- the “touristy” look is an up and coming trend that includes, tropical, Latin and African inspired apparel and accessories maybe at point of purchase you use a counter mat  
to share a promotion to win items for your ideal summer tourist destination.

Fidget Spinners- These are a new item that are perfect for reducing stress and boredom. Self-soothing and encourages focus. Perfect for all ages!

Where would you like your brand to travel this summer? We put your brand front and center which produces results!

Friday, May 26, 2017

We've Got This in The Bag!

Promotional Partners strives to bring you innovative ideas! How do we do it? By staying up on industry trends and partnering with suppliers that share a similar goal for innovation!

One of our "go to" suppliers for bags, American Ad Bag is known for providing custom printing paper and plastic bags and their responsive service. They were also the first promotional company that introduced non-woven polypropylene products; you know those "grocery store totes" as most of our clients refer to the product. The trendsetting company is now offering a line of Washable Paper Bags!
There are currently 3 different styles and sizes of these new bags to meet your specific use and need. How are they washable? They are composed of a Kraft paper fabric, yet they feel like leather and are hardy enough to be washed.

Additionally they are Eco-friendly with the option of full-color, edge-to-edge printing; even in low quantities. There is only a three-week turnaround time if you need customization.

How would you use a washable bag as part of your next marketing campaign? 

Maybe you are a stylist who creates "wash and wear" easy care hair styling?

Perhaps you are a company that seeks to reduce your carbon imprint- using a bag that is made from paper, recyclable offers a way to tell that part of your story to your consumer base; share with your imprint. After all, bags have one of the largest imprint areas.

In the financial industry, this bag could be positioned as a way for paper to "bag more" . A "Washington" and a "Jackson" weigh the same as a single bill, but properly managed can bring different financial rewards.  Don't wash your hands of your future, partner with Company ABC to a stronger return on your paper!

How would you use this time of product?
Need some ways to tie into an upcoming date? Check out our calendar for ideas.

Friday, May 19, 2017

Ten Ways to Keep Your Business Secure

Ten Ways to Keep Your Business Secure

Here are 10 steps that can help protect and prevent employee, client, and other confidential information from fraudulent activity.

1.    Security: Certain confidential information needs to be preserved by any business. The era of cyber hacking is unavoidable if there is no security. Hackers won’t be able to steal information if it isn’t there to begin with, so if there is no reason to collect certain information, don’t do it!
2.      Access to Data: Not all employee’s need access to confidential information. Being able to limit access to this, will reduce the risk of disclosing data.
3.      Secure Passwords and Authentication: This is a free to low cost method of protecting information. Employees should use strong passwords and defend against programs that can thoroughly guess passwords, by locking people out after several unsuccessful attempts.
4.      Protect Personal Information During Communication: When sending information elsewhere, you may want to consider encryption. This essentially encoding a message in a way that only authorized personnel can access it.
5.      Monitor your Network: The use of firewalls can divide your network and limit access between computers on your network and the internet. This can reduce the outcome if a hacker passes preliminary defenses.
6.      Secure Remote Access to Network: If employees, clients, or service providers have remote access to your network, you can protect your system by backing up the entry points. Ensure the security standards remain high if an employee is working from home etc.
7.      Employ Sound Security Practices: When developing or introducing new products that are internet-connected, making sure the manufacturers also practice safe security from the start.
8.      Service Providers Should Execute Security Measures: Keep an eye out for service providers to make sure they are living up to your security expectations listed in your contracts and make sure they are meeting the requirements.
9.      Keep Security Updated: Address vulnerabilities on a regular basis and update software as needed.
10.  Secure paper, Physical Media, and Devices: Continue with high security standards for devices, flash drives and regular paper. Even though cyber hacking is the most common, some hackers will try the old-fashioned way. In this case, locking filing cabinets, using a shredder and organization can help keep data secure.

Fair, Lesley. “Raise Your Defenses.” PPAI Magazine. Pg. 62-63.

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Lessons From The Leadership Gene

Articles related to success and leadership are abundant; perhaps because of our individual fascination with what traits are required to become a strong leader.  Equally abundant are articles about whether your environment or your genetics will define your future. Personally I've always enjoyed the back stories related to how individuals defy expected outcomes. Imagination and innovation create both interesting people and interesting stories. I've known a variety of leaders over the past 53 years; introverts & extroverts, "book smart" and "real world smart" concluding that personality, education and failure don't put individuals in a box; instead we build our own walls. 

Borrowing from Promotional Consultant Today blog, complied by Cassandra Johnson, I found myself agreeing with the 4 traits outlined for strong leadership.

Since the Human Genome Project completed sequencing human DNA in 2003, the world has been awash in new learning's about how the body works. A more recent collaboration between teams from The University of Chicago, Copenhagen Business School, SAS and NYU—dubbed The CEO Genome Project—didn't look at actual DNA, but crunched detailed information on more than 2,000 leaders across a variety of industries.

The learning's may not have been nearly as extensive as the original genome project, but the findings from the CEO project yielded fascinating insights into leadership. Ross Kelly recently recapped a selection of the findings from the CEO Genome Project in a Chief Executive online story.

Introverts vs Extroverts. According to the research, just over half of the leaders who exceeded investor expectations were introverts. Kelly noted that extroverts are be more likely to impress in job interviews, but those interview performances had no bearing on actual results.

Elite Education. The survey found that only seven percent of the top leaders went to an elite university while eight percent had no college degree at all. The magazine added the footnote that if the study had focused just on the Fortune 100, the percentage of CEOs from elite universities would have been higher.

Failure. Nearly all top leaders had made at least one major mistake in the past, while 45 percent had in the past gone through a major career blowup that either ended their job or lost the company a large sum of money.

Executive Traits. The research concluded with what it found to be the four most important traits for senior leaders to possess: 

1. Making fast decisions with conviction
2. Reaching out to stakeholders and bringing them on board
3. Being highly adaptable to change
4. Producing reliable and predictable results 

Source: Ross Kelly is a London-based business journalist. He has been a staff correspondent or editor at The Wall Street Journal, Yahoo Finance and the Australian Associated Press