Seen on the Street

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Thank You, Google Person Finder


In a crisis such as yesterday’s Boston Marathon tragedy, people need information about their loved ones—and they need it fast. With Google Person Finder, they have access to this critical information.

Google built the tool after the 2010 Haiti earthquake. People can use it to search for someone or provide information. If no information is available, users can create a new record. They can also subscribe to status updates on a particular person, and if updated, they’ll receive an e-mail with new details.

Google Person Finder

Currently, Google’s Boston Marathon Person Finder is tracking 5,300 individuals. The tool has been used all over the world to reconnect people in post-disaster situations.

What a remarkable advancement since 9/11. We can’t imagine the horror of being there or desperately seeking the whereabouts of a runner or spectator.

Thank you, Google, for helping people track down their friends and loved ones after such a horrific event.

Boston, our hearts are with you.


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Custom T-Shirts Help Share The Love, Spread The Message


We’ve seen custom t-shirts used across the spectrum, from guerilla marketing for a snack food to gym marketing to show work-out results. There’s no denying promotional t-shirts capture attention.

That’s why the Mother’s Milk Bank of North Texas (MMBNT), an organization that provides human milk to premature and critically ill infants, is using logo t-shirts as the centerpiece of its “Peace, Love, Share” campaign.

“Our goal is to initiate questions about sharing excess breast milk with needy babies,” says Simone Summerlin, donor program coordinator.

custom tshirts

MMBNT gives custom shirts to all donors and also sells them for $5 a pop. Since the campaign kicked off last month, the shirts have brought in more than $1,000.

Summerlin is confident they’re spreading the word about MMBNT. “Just wearing my name badge has spurred questions. T-shirts are a whole lot more visible,” she says.

Plus, supporters have been specifically requesting stylish promotional apparel. “We’ve had countless requests from moms, lactation centers and nurses for something they could wear to promote the milk bank,” says Summerlin.

MMBNT uses a variety of promotional products: promotional pens, water bottles, and Life Savers with the message, “Donor milk: a life saver.” The organization even has a powder-pink, wrapped vehicle that transports donations to regional hospitals.

With t-shirts and other promotional items in play, Summerlin hopes that many conversations will be sparked about MMBNT and its life-saving mission.

“Our focus,” she says, “is all about love and sharing: Loving the babies who receive the donations, and sharing about the milk bank with other people.”

Promo know-how tip:

Custom t-shirts turn wearers into walking billboards for your message, so make the most of the opportunity by personalizing the front and back. 


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Can Promotional Products Reflect Your Company’s Brand?


Promotional products aren’t just logo gifts or giveaways to get your business name out there—they can say something about your brand and serve as an extension of your company culture.

The trick is to not think of promotional products as one-size-fits-all giveaways. Promotional items can be fine-tuned for every business and every occasion. With a few custom touches, you can turn any promotional giveaway into a recognizable, powerful expression of your company’s brand.

custom golf towel

Take Playboy, for example. Its iconic Playboy Bunny is one of the world’s most recognized logos, and when the company uses it on promotional items, it’s instant brand recognition.

But Playboy takes its promotional giveaways one step further to fully reflect its brand. Note the black satin stripes on this custom golf towel promoting PlayboyGolf.com. It’s a classy, subtly seductive upgrade (how often do you see satin on a golf towel?) to give the towel a signature Playboy touch.

Playboy is proof that promotional products can mirror a company’s brand. When you capture your company’s personality with your promotional items, you’re sharing a little piece of your company culture with your audience and bringing your brand to life.

Promo know-how tip:

Make your custom products distinctly your own by making small adjustments. You can accent a product or experiment with different logo treatments. Our Promotions Specialists have honed their creativity—see what they can do for you.  


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Promotional Items Help You Get Down To Business


Do your clients visit your office? If so, you should always be prepared with promotional items customized with your company name.

By having a selection of branded office products at the ready, you’re enhancing the client experience. No one wants to have to dig around a bag or desk drawer for an extra pen. If you keep a supply of office promotional items on hand, you’re always ready for a client meeting.

Gerstein Fisher, a New York City-based investment management firm, understands the value of having promotional items always ready for clients. Just look at this smart array of products featuring the firm’s name, logo and tagline.

promotional items

Here’s why we think it’s smart: The firm anticipated what clients might need during a visit, and met those needs with branded products.

There are custom notepads along with some nice promotional pens. Both are must-haves in a meeting. We also appreciated that the firm had promotional coasters on hand. It’s a simple, effective way to keep its name in front of clients and guests.

If your office is a meeting place for clients, take a cue from Gerstein Fisher and provide them with the promotional products they’ll need during their visit.

Promo know-how tip: Display office promotional items in individual offices as well as conference rooms. When your clients sit down to talk business—wherever that may be—they should be greeted with promotional products.


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Partner Up: Why Co-Branding Can Give Your Business The Boost It Needs


Co-branding: You see it everywhere from snack foods (Betty Crocker and Hershey’s) to restaurants (T.G.I. Friday’s and Jack Daniels) to retailers (Nike and Apple).

We happened to see it at the beach—on a custom beach blanket promoting T-Mobile, the wireless communications company, and Activision, the publisher of interactive entertainment software products.

custom beach towel

Companies from many sectors are finding that co-branding is an effective marketing strategy that can help them reach new markets and expand their business. Though it should be entered into wisely, co-branding can create new revenue streams and generate more brand awareness than if you promoted solo.

Think about it like this: Co-branding allows you to introduce your products and services to another company’s loyal customers. It lets you capitalize on another brand’s popularity in order to promote yourself.

Sounds like a pretty sweet marketing opportunity, right?

T-Mobile and Activision think so. They got it exactly right with their promotional giveaway featuring both companies’ logos. It’s an excellent way to cross-promote both brands and get their names in front of a shared core audience.

The great thing about co-branding is that it’s not just for behemoth national brands—it can be super-effective for small businesses, too.

The key is to consider the products or services that could increase the appeal of your offering. Think about the businesses that could complement yours and the companies that do an excellent job serving your target audience. These are the companies that have potential as a possible co-branding partner.

Have you thought about partnering up for a co-branding campaign? We say go for it—it can generate a whole new level of excitement for your company.

Promo know-how tip: Maximize your co-branding initiative by choosing promotional products designed for the appropriate demographic. Our promotions specialists can help you pick the products that will yield the biggest return on your investment.


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Promotional Giveaways With Style Keep Your Message Around Longer


People love to get free stuff—especially when it has a stylish feel to it. When you add your logo to promotional giveaways that are modern and trendy, you’re upping the chances that your customers will actually keep them and use them.

When your giveaways get used, your logo gets seen. It’s that simple.

custom tote bag

Here’s an example of a company that’s doing it right. Random Farms, a non-profit, all-kids theater company in New York, selected these casual-chic promotional totes. The frayed details at the top and along the seams are right on trend with what you’d see in retail.

Also, note the thick strap (it’s perfect for flinging over a shoulder) and the fresh pink shade (a smart color for a target audience of young girls). This promotional bag has a worn-in, trendy appeal to it. It’s no wonder we spotted it at a beach 100 miles away—the recipient found it useful and attractive.

We also love how the logo is big and bold on the bag. Custom tote bags, much like custom t-shirts, are designed to be walking billboards for your company. Random Farms does an excellent job showcasing its logo on the bag’s ample imprint area.

When it comes to promotional giveaways, style matters. A stylish gift has a higher probability of getting used, so always opt for products with panache.

Promo know-how tip: It’s better to spend more on stylish items and get a better return on investment than spend less and have your promotion fall flat.