Tag Archives: Calendars

05Nov/18

Holiday Promotional Products & Branded Year-End Gifts

holiday promotional productsIt has come to the time of year known as the ‘holiday season’ and with that, as well as the end of the calendar year, comes a lot of celebration.  Everyone enjoys being appreciated and rewarded for a year of hard work and customer loyalty.  First up on the holiday agenda is Thanksgiving and that reminds us that we have a lot to be thankful for.  Within the business world, we are thankful for our business, thankful for our employees, thankful for our customers, thankful for our friends and partners in our industry.  And, it is exactly that thankful spirit that we want to channel when we order holiday promotional products or year-end promotional products to give as gifts.

While there are promotional products for any budget, this is the time of year to really impress employees and customers with your thankfulness for the previous year and get them excited for the year to come.  Regardless of what holidays you celebrate, there is always something to celebrate this time of year, so we have broken down holiday promotional products into 3 primary categories to help you choose your end-of-year gifts.  The possibilities are endless so if you need help choosing or ordering your business holiday promotional products, Connect the Dots Promotions has the experience and knowledge you need to help you narrow down your choice and get your products ordered in time for the holiday season!

Holiday Promotional Products

Holiday Apparel Promotional Products
Promotional Jacket or Pullover
  • Everyone wants to be warm and cozy during the cold winter months and what better way to stay warm than with a cozy, branded jacket or pullover.  A custom branded jacket or pullover is not only functional and very useful but a great marketing tool because it will share your brand wherever the wearer goes.
Promotional Hat
      • Everyone needs a great hat and with a stylish branded hat, your employee or customer will be happy to represent your brand on their head!
Promotional T-Shirt
      • You can never have too many t-shirts and a branded t-shirt can be a handy promotional product.  You can encourage employees to wear their company shirt to work or company events and you can encourage customers to wear your shirt to your events or as part of a loyalty program.
Holiday Food Promotional Products
Promotional Chocolate, Popcorn, Nuts, Oh My!
      • It is pretty hard to go wrong giving someone a yummy treat! Whether you want to give a promotional food item to employees or customers, there is a myriad of options at a wide array of price points to accommodate any budget.  Food is always a crowd pleaser and they will remember who was so generous while they happily snack the day away!
Holiday Gadget Promotional Products
Promotional Tech
      • Everyone loves technology.  Anyone can always use a (or another!) PopSocket or portable Bluetooth speaker. You can print your brand right on it, a special message, a name or anything else you can think of and give the gift of technology this holiday season.
Promotional Water Bottle/Mug/Tumbler
      • Reusable water bottles, mugs, and tumblers are not only useful but eco-friendly.  They reduce waste and save money so they are already great, but once they are branded with your company logo, they will be even better because they will be a mobile marketing tool!
27Sep/18

8 Fun School Spirit Promotional Products to Show Your School Pride!

Get in the School Spirit with Promotional Products!

We all love to root for our favorite home team, represent our alma mater with pride, or show off our school colors!  Being a part of a school community is fun but the fun can be further enhanced with school spirit promotional items.  Whether you are preparing for ‘back-to-school,’ have a school spirit shop, a big homecoming game, athletic events, academic events, or just want to represent your school with pride every day, there are a wide array of promotional products that will excellently represent your school spirit.

Give Consumers What They Want & Foster School Loyalty with Promotional Products

School spirit promotional products never go out of style.  And, even if there are extras you can always give them away as a gesture of goodwill or reward for an achievement, or you could sell them in your school spirit shop! PPAI points out that smart young consumers (high school and college students, for example) are eager to be on trend while representing their school spirit during their school years and as alumni as well, “With more than 20 million students roaming U.S. college campuses this fall, building brand loyalty among them seems as easy as a course in underwater basketweaving. But the tastes and opinions of these savvy young consumers are as diverse as their backgrounds, so campaigns need to be thoughtful, targeted and on trend…Tote bags and backpacks, including inexpensive drawstring bags, are popular as well, she says. “Totes are used to carry stuff at events; backpacks are given out at orientation to carry books and laptops; drawstring bags are used to advertise events.” Rounding out the top three for Larick’s clients are portable drinkware options. “Disposable water bottles are being banned on many campuses we work with,” she says. “Students often carry water bottles and thermal coffee mugs around campus.” School spirit continues to live on for many alumni, particularly those who participated in campus organizations such as sports teams, fraternities and sororities.”  Custom school spirit promotional products will show off your school pride in style, provide traveling marketing opportunities for more people to learn about your school, serve many helpful purposes, and ultimately – they are a lot of fun!  

8 Fun School Spirit Promotional Products
  1. Drawstring Bag
      • Every kid can use a drawstring bag to tote their gym clothes, shoes, books, or other items!
  1. Cups or Tumblers
      • Everyone in the family will love having a custom school spirit cup or tumbler!
  1. Sports Ball
      • Whether you opt to customize a football, basketball, soccer ball, baseball or volleyball – custom school balls are great gifts! Give them to school athletic team members, students or families!
  1. Pens & Pencils
      • Pens and pencils are necessary school writing tools. They are also some of the most inexpensive promotional products! These budget-friendly school spirit promotional products are a great choice!
  1. Notebooks
      • Jot down class notes in style or just have a handy notebook at the ready with a custom logo notebook.
  1. Lanyards
      • Most schools today require student ID cards or badge.  A custom logo lanyard is not only spreading school spirit but a helpful accessory to promote school security!
  1. Hats
      • Hats are a staple in the promotional product industry, and for good reason – everybody loves a great hat!  It is the easiest and most convenient way to represent your favorite school while also keeping the sun out of your eyes!
  1. Stadium Seats or Cushions
      • Cheering on your school team can sometimes last hours but that doesn’t mean you have to be uncomfortable!  Sit on a customized school spirit stadium seat or cushion!

Connect the Dots Can Customize Your School Spirit Promotional Products!

At Connect the Dots Promotions, we recently had the opportunity to work with Scottsdale Christian Academy on their school spirit promotional products and we can’t wait to see them in action at their 2018 Homecoming football game! Go team go!

06Aug/18

The 4th Quarter Is Coming- Time To Start Planning for Holiday Employee & Client Gifts

It’s Never Too Early to Plan Your 4th Quarter Employee & Client Promotional Product Gifts

4th Quarter MarketingIt may only be August but the 4th Quarter is almost here and that means it is time to start planning ahead!  Any companies give out gifts to their employees and clients during the 4th Quarter, often for the holidays, but as year-end gifts as well.  You might be thinking that it is way too early to be thinking about holiday and end-of-year gifts but if you start planning now it will make your marketing more effective and be more cost efficient as well.

Plan Ahead Maximizes Your Marketing Efforts

Planning ahead will not only give you peace of mind (though this should not be underestimated!), it will maximize your marketing efforts.  First, every single business will be ordering holiday and end-of-year promotional products during the 4th Quarter and that means it will take longer to fulfill those orders. Don’t get stuck at the last minute paying more for a promotional product that is not ideal for your business or marketing goals just because you are in a rush.  Plan and order your holiday promotional products in advance and you will have the exact promotional products you want when you need them.

Planning Ahead Maximizes Your Marketing Budget

4th Quarter MarketingAdditionally, by anticipating the type of promotional product(s) you would like to customize for employees or clients, you will have the ability to budget accordingly.  By planning ahead you do not have to worry about paying rush order fees or a supplier being unable to fulfill your order.  By the time the 4th Quarter rolls around, your annual budget may have shifted and you may either have more or less in your budget than you anticipated at the beginning of the year.  With enough advance, you can adjust and plan ahead to maximize any marketing budget.

Planning Ahead Let’s You Get Creative with Marketing

Also, planning a marketing calendar months in advance can feel like work but it makes it much easier to get creative with marketing.  Why not try giving your 4th Quarter promotional products to clients and employees at Halloween or Thanksgiving, rather than at the end of the year?  Sometimes an unexpected and creative promotional product can make all the difference in terms of impact and brand recognition.  And, you will stand out more from your competitors if you get more creative with your marketing efforts. There are so many ways to use promotional products creatively around fun holidays, as thank you’s, or for any other 4th Quarter event your business has planned.  If you need help planning your 4th Quarter promotional products or are looking for some unique and creative ways to market your brand, Connect the Dots Promotions can help you turn your 4th Quarter marketing into a success!

25Jun/18

High ROI on Promotional Products

What Type of ROI Can Promotional Products Offer?

When choosing marketing and promotional products, it is common to wonder what the ROI (return on investment) will be.  While this is understandable, there is no set formula for what works best in marketing.  It is impossible to predict what a promotional product’s “ROI” will be, particularly because in marketing there are different types of promotional product ROI.  To label a return on investment as only monetary would be significantly simplifying the impact that promotional products can have for your business.

What Exactly Constitutes ‘ROI’?

First, it is important to establish what ROI can mean for your business.  There is obviously monetary ROI – when a promotional product converts to a sale.  But, promotional products can also foster goodwill and enhance and extend your branding efforts.  Think about the marketing real estate of someone’s desk.  If someone sits at their desk every day then that is tremendous opportunity to market your brand if you can take up even a small portion of that real estate.  Calendars, notepads, mousepads, mugs, Bluetooth speakers, pens, and more that sit on everyone’s desks can be custom branded. Each time that person sits down at their desk they will see your logo.  This creates brand recognition/recall, fosters goodwill because they remember that you gave a gift, and may just be the reminder they need when they need your product or service to give you a call.  That is tremendous and diverse ROI!

Diversify Your Definition of ROI to See the True Potential of Promotional Products!

In addition to utilizing someone’s desk real estate, you can strategically use promotional products as creative marketing tools that create brand recognition and help you grow your social media presence.  Branded wearable promotional products are great to hand out at events.  You can encourage people to snap a pic and tag you so that they can win a prize.  Another fun way to increase social media engagement is to encourage people to snap a picture with your logo any time they see it.  For example, if they are out at the bank or a local restaurant and see your branded pen on the counter, they can take a picture of it and tag your social media profile to win a prize.  This enhances the ROI on a relatively small investment in a promotional pen and creates a grassroots marketing movement for your brand.  When discussing branded promotional product ROI, it is important to look at all the different ROI types and potential with any given item so that you can maximize your marketing budget!

11Jan/18

Connect the Dots Is Attending the 2018 PPAI Expo

2018 PPAI Expo: January 15-18, 2018

2018 PPAI ExpoThe PPAI Expo 2018 is this weekend and Karie, Marcie, and Kim could not be more excited to attend this year’s event.  We always love attending this event because it is a great time to learn about the latest and most exciting promotional products, receive industry education, and enjoy a time connecting with other industry professionals.

This year, the PPAI Expo is going all out, “In 2018 The PPAI Expo brought more than 12,000 distributors from more than 4,500 companies together under one roof for the five-day event.The PPAI Expo features more than 1,200 exhibiting companies showcasing more than a quarter million products over 1,000,000 square feet of the Mandalay Bay Convention Center, the fifth largest convention center in the U.S.”

2018 Promotional Products

We will be on the 2018 PPAI Expo floor on Tuesday and Wednesday. If you have heard of a product or marketing tool or are just looking for something in particular, let us know!  We will go “shopping” at the show just for you!

Attending the PPAI Expo 2018 is going to be a great time to see the newest promotional products and marketing tools.  Thousands of suppliers attend the event and bring products they want to highlight or that are a current trend.  There is over one million square feet of trade show exhibit hall and hundreds of products being showcased at the event including new promotional products, green promotional products, incentive promotional products. There is literally every promotional product you could want or need, for every industry! Additionally, there are also a wide array of promotional product price points for any marketing budget.

 

2018 PPAI Expo Education

In addition to looking at thousands of new 2018 promotional products, we will also be receiving education.  Monday will be a day filled with education for Connect the Dots.  There are many opportunities to gain industry knowledge and keynote luncheons with outstanding speakers.  It is always nice to gain additional industry insight from fellow marketing industry professionals.

The popular saying, “What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas” will not be true of our trip to the 2018 PPAI Expo in Vegas. We are excited to bring back everything we learn at the PPAI Expo so that we can continue to provide our clients with the best service and promotional products available in 2018!

01Nov/17

Start Planning Your 2018 Marketing Calendar ASAP!

Have You Started Planning Your 2018 Marketing Calendar?

When it comes to marketing, any business should employ a “long game” strategy.  You do not want to be constantly scrambling at the last minute to market your business or a new product.  That typically results in a lackluster marketing effort and paying a higher price for marketing assistance, materials, and promotional products.  Rather, it is far better to plan as far ahead for your 2018 marketing calendar as possible.  Play the long game because you know what holidays are coming up.  You know what type of business you have and what type of clients you have.  You know when a new product will launch or a big business announcement will be made. So that means you can generally anticipate when you will need to market your brand or distribute promotional products.

Save Money By Planning Ahead for Your 2018 Marketing Calendar

There are many advantages to planning your marketing calendar ahead of time.  For 2018, we recommend that businesses set meetings with their sales reps as soon as possible.  By starting to plan your 2018 marketing calendar now, one big advantage is that you will save money.  When you strategically plan ahead you can buy promotional products in advance and typically save money.  If you buy at the last minute you may pay more for the product and expedited shipping.  Additionally, by planning ahead you’re able to strategically look ahead at how you want to spend your marketing budget.  You may know that a certain time of the year or event will produce more revenue.  By strategically allocating your budget to better promotional products for those times, you will maximize your ROI.

Get More Creative with Promotional Products by Planning Ahead

In addition to saving money by planning ahead, you’ll also be able to be more creative with your promotional products.  Many businesses only use promotional products for trade shows or during the holidays.  And, while that is still good, there are far more creative ways to utilize promotional products. So, by planning your marketing calendar ahead you can anticipate fun or interesting holidays or events.  Get creative with your promotional products to grab your customer’s attention!  Maybe you run a dog boarding facility – you could celebrate National Dog Day (August 26th, 2018) by giving your clients custom dog promotional products to celebrate.  It will show thoughtful anticipation and creativity that will make your clients want to keep using your business.  The fact of the matter is that people like receiving promotional products and they work!  Many people will either use your promotional product (free advertising!) or be able to recall your brand more easily.  Get with your sales rep as soon as possible to begin strategically planning your 2018 marketing calendar and promotional products!

18Oct/17

2018 Promotional Calendars Are An Effective Marketing Tool

2018 Promotional Calendars

If there is one universal promotional product or marketing tool that everyone needs and uses it is a calendar.  Promotional calendars effectively advertise your business and keep your branding in front of current and potential customers throughout the year.  Marketing calendars that have been customized are not just a useful tool. They are also a fun promotional product that reinforces the kind of brand that you are.

Do Promotional Calendars Really Work?

In this paperless, digital era the paper calendar still reigns supreme in the promotional products arena.  Not sure how effective marketing calendars can actually be?  PPAI reports some interesting and exciting statistics about just how effective promotional marketing calendars are, “By all accounts, the advertising or promotional calendar is a very effective advertising vehicle. Based on recall statistics, of those who reported having just one advertising calendar, 75 percent could remember the name of the company advertised and 77 percent could remember the product or service/message advertised. Moreover, 77 percent had done business with the company that gave them the calendar prior to receipt of the complimentary calendar and 78 percent plan to do business with the company again. Sixty‐one percent had a more favorable impression of the advertiser and 49 percent have referred the company who gave then the calendar to somebody else. Recall and reaction of those who had received two or three advertising or promotional calendars was also very encouraging … huge response and referral numbers, huge implications for ROI.”

Customize Your Promotional Calendars

2018 Promotional CalendarsCustom promotional calendars offer a number of marketing benefits.  First of all, they provide big bang for the buck.  They are a relatively inexpensive way to effectively market your brand throughout the year.  Additionally, they reinforce your brand identity and create brand recall.  When customers can recall your brand easily you gain customer loyalty.  And, even if someone is not yet a customer they might become one!  When they go to make a purchase the calendar may just help them remember you and want to buy from or work with your business.

Order Your 2018 Promotional Calendars Now!

2018 promotional calendarsIt is never too soon to order 2018 promotional calendars.  In fact, the sooner that you do, the more customized your calendar can be. Choose from a myriad of calendar style, sizes, and bindings – possibilities are endless.  Additionally, when you order your 2018 promotional calendars don’t forget to include some fun and interesting holidays.  Choose holidays that correlate with your company or enhance a marketing theme for your company.  There are many fun and unique national holidays to highlight. Consider including things like “National Left Hand Day,” “National Bike Month,” “National Golf Month” and more! And, the sooner you order the sooner you can pass it out to existing and potential customers.  If you are interested in learning more about how 2018 promotional calendars can be an effective marketing tool for your business, we encourage you to contact Connect the Dots.  And, if you do, we are more than happy to send you a fun and free National Holiday calendar.

 

02Aug/17

Christmas in August? Start Planning Your Holiday Marketing Campaign Now!

promotional holiday giftsTemperatures are hot outside but did you know that it is already time to be planning ahead for the holidays?  When strategically planned in advance, your marketing campaign will be well-executed and successful.  During the holidays, the mall isn’t the only crowded place.  Every business wants custom branded promotional holiday gifts or logo products at the end of the year.  This rush tends to lead to a lot of panic and rushed decision making. Also, you may potentially experience a delay in getting your items if production times are slow because of volume.  We may be used to instant gratification but if you want great custom holiday promotional products items don’t wait!  To give promotional gifts to employees or customers during the holidays, you need to start planning now.

Think You Don’t Have the Budget for Promotional Holiday Gifts? Think Again!

promotional holiday giftsMany businesses think they don’t have the budget to do a gift during the holidays but that is a misconception.  Investing in promotional holiday gifts and a strong holiday marketing campaign can pay off big for your company, as the U.S. Small Business Administration points out, “According to a 2013 survey by Constant Contact, participating in holiday season marketing is a rewarding venture for small businesses, with 52 percent of respondents reporting that new customers attained during the holidays become repeat, loyal customers…Constant Contact also reports that only 31 percent of small businesses surveyed start planning for the holidays between two and three months in advance. Now this doesn’t mean that these businesses won’t be ready, but it’s more than likely that the campaigns and events that they run will be pretty generic. Without planning, these campaigns won’t take into account what’s worked well in the past (and I don’t mean gut feelings, but real, hard metrics). They also won’t allow much time for originality, no matter how creative you think you are.”  Often, if you plan ahead you are able to secure the best pricing and availability on your promotional holiday gifts.

Strategically Market Your Brand During the Holidays

promotional holiday giftsWhen you plan ahead, you can discuss you can carefully weigh your marketing options.  This will allow you to tailor a marketing campaign and promotional products to your brand and customers. There is more than simply celebrating Christmas, Hanukkah or the Holiday Season in general in December.  Get creative with your marketing and make a memorable impact!  October is Breast Cancer Awareness month so consider ordering promotional products to give to employees or survivors.  Halloween is in October and why not have a little fun with your promotional products?  Also, both Veteran’s Day and Thanksgiving are in November and offer unique opportunities to promote your business. Avoid the headache of having your promotional items delayed or backordered because of the seasonal rush. Maximize your 2017 holiday marketing campaign and start planning for your promotional holiday gifts now!