Promotional Product Marketing Blog

Learn the best ways to market your brand with the use of promotional marketing products. Our blog gives you the best tips on ordering the right marketing merchandise to increase brand awareness within your target market. From creative marketing ideas to case studies of how others have used promotional items to promote their brand, we give you clear direction in aligning your promotional product campaign with your overall business goals.

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Snack-Worthy Promos: Why Now?


Looking for a fresh way to stay connected during this period of distancing? Take this unique opportunity to brighten the monotony of days at home for your customers, clients, and employees with a fun snack experience. Show consumers you’re thinking of them with the perfect gift: something delicious.

As the country begins the long process of opening back up, many individuals will continue to shelter in place to varying degrees. A quality treat brings extra fun and novelty right to someone’s front door, giving you a way to reach people’s hearts through their stomach—and keep your name fresh in their minds.

Send a Branded Gift Basket

For loyal customers and members of your team, consider creating a snack gift basket that’s as special as they are. If you prefer preassembled selections, we have a wide assortment of gift baskets, from cookies and chocolate to savory snacks that can make an extended time at home a little more enjoyable.

For example, you can send an assortment of three coffee-flavored treats in a box that’s printed with your full-color logo and brand name. And though these peppermint bark treats are especially popular during the winter holidays, they’re delicious enough to be welcome any day of the year.

Looking for something more themed? For the taco lovers on your list, check out this gift set with assorted taco seasonings and an attractive branded apron in a fun canvas tote bag that ensures recipients are ready for the next #TacoTuesday.

Snacks and Something Extra

Some gift baskets also include additional gifts to help you express a little extra appreciation.

For example, this gift set includes over a pound of four deliciously sweet gourmet treats, including: chocolate-covered almonds: creamy caramels with dark chocolate sprinkled with sea salt: buttery almond toffee and fresh roasted mixed nuts. And the box becomes a treasured keepsake, with space for a special photo.

Or, if your recipients prefer something a little more savory, this gift set includes a half-pound of mild Wisconsin cheddar cheese and a 5-ounce package of beef summer sausage. These mouthwatering treats also include a bamboo cutting board with your fire branded logo and a cheese knife. This set is perfect for anyone who’s flexing their muscles in the kitchen with their extra time at home.

Create Some Family Fun

For families at home with kids, this time is both an unexpected gift and a sudden challenge. A snack box can bring joy and levity to a difficult time, helping families create new memories or de-stress over the weekend after balancing a fraught week of telework and distance learning.

Send everyone into the backyard for a makeshift camp experience with an Artisan S’mores and Campfire Mugs Gift Set. It includes just about everything a family might need to make ten delicious s’mores treats, right down to the matches, as well as two 12-ounce MiiR camp mugs, all packaged in an eco-friendly craft gift box. Added bonus: MiiR gives 3% of revenue to trackable giving projects, so every MiiR product purchased through us comes with a Give Code that allows you to experience the story behind your purchase. They’ve also just gone “Climate Neutral” which never urts. Add in a few plush blankets in a classic plaid pattern to increase the camping-at-home factor during chilly spring nights and you are golden!

Or you can encourage the entire gang to get together for a family movie night with this Gourmet Popcorn Gift Set. Recipients can enjoy a variety of three kinds of popcorn and assorted seasonings, as well as the thoughtful inclusion of a popper bowl for an easy, convenient treat.

And don’t forget the family pet. This gift bag comes stuffed with four ounces of dog treats for four-legged friends. It’s a small but thoughtful addition that’ll make your recipients smile.

Delight Them with Personalized Snacks

No matter what the interests or preferences your target market might have, you can find or create a thoughtful gift bag/set that will delight recipients and ensure they’ll remember your name. Not convinced? Check out the Five Reasons Gourmet Food Gifts Win Year Round. Then get in touch today to choose the perfect promo snack gift to send.


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Why Brands Are Customizing Plush


Plush animals have a way of wrangling their way into your heart—and never leaving. Let’s all take a moment to reflect on that childhood teddy bear (okay, maybe yours was a dog, an elephant, a koala, etc.) that safeguarded you from bad dreams and hurt feelings by simply being the most adorable, lovable, squishy friend you could ever have. Plush animals provide comfort; something we could all use right about now. In this piece, we’ll discuss why customized plush animals make a terrific promotional gift from your brand—for kids aged zero to 100.

Why Your Brand Should Use Promotional Plush Animals 

Plush Animals Are Universally Loved

There aren’t many promotional gifts that work for all ages as well as plush animals do. A child will be delighted; an adult will appreciate the customization of it (team/company logo/colors that make it mean more)—and hey, they can always pass it on to a child in their life. But, don’t assume adults won’t keep a plush for themselves—84% of men and 77% of women own at least one stuffed animal. And since all plush products are CPSIA compliant for children ages 0 and up, you can rest assured whomever will be doing the snuggling won’t have to worry.

Plush Animals Are High Quality

A plush animal is a higher quality gift, especially when you consider price points. You can find many at only a few dollars apiece, yet they’re wonderfully durable. They can’t break and are easy and cost-effective to mail. Frankly, it’s pretty darn hard to break one, like this high quality knit plush teddy bear. Additionally, plush animals are long-lasting. People may keep them for years and they’re as cute on day one as on day 1,000.

Plush Animals Prominently Display Your Logo

When looking for an item that clearly displays your logo, plush animals are the way to go. For starters, if an animal is part of your brand, it’s wonderfully complementary (and potentially a literal symbol of your industry); for example, a dairy company opting for a plush cow. Some of our most popular choices include:

Further, your brand/logo can be customized on any number of accessories on the plush animal, like a tiny cap, t-shirt, bandana, and more. You can also fully customize the colors used to match your brand’s artwork.

Fun fact

 “Teddy Bear” was named after President Theodore Roosevelt. During a hunt he came across a defenseless black bear. He refused to kill the animal. The story was heard by a toy maker who decided to make a stuffed bear and call it “Teddy Bear”. An extra fun fact is that Roosevelt didn’t like being called Teddy at all.

Uses for Promotional Plush Animals

Plush animals are a fun way to (literally) show your brand’s softer side. They’re perfect for any number of celebrations and events. A few ideas below…

Holidays

Gifting a customized plush animal as a holiday gift is a playful touch for clients and employees alike. In particular, Valentine’s Day and Christmas are especially good holidays to gift a plush animal as they are more tender celebrations. To really spruce up your holiday gift and leave a lasting impression, consider pairing a plush animal with some custom chocolates—a totally sweet pair.

Trade Shows

A custom plush will stand out at a trade show as a unique giveaway, which is what all brands seek at these events. Another bonus of gifting plush animals at trade shows is they typically require some level of travel for participants, meaning parents have to leave their kids for a few days. Gift a plush toy that they can bring home to their children (and serve as a reminder of your brand). Even for adults without kids, plush animals can be a thoughtful gift. They’ve been linked as a stress reducer when traveling. In fact, 1 in 4 men are said to travel with a stuffed animal.

Corporate Gifts

Looking to spread some internal brand love and spirit? Consider gifting a plush animal as a corporate gift to employees. This could be to welcome new hires, commemorate a certain number of years with the company, or to celebrate the team hitting a landmark number, like all-time-high year-end sales. A cute plush animal is a great way to boast morale, not to mention to spruce up any workspace.

Charities and Tournaments

If your brand is involved in any sort of friendly competition or tournament, often to raise money for a charity or other good cause, consider having plush animals made to commemorate the fun day. This is an especially great gift if the event is family-friendly, as you’ll have a gift that will appeal to all ages. Throughout the year it will serve as a reminder of the fun day. If it’s an annual event, the plush animal can change each year to become a collectible for employees. If it’s a bigger event, consider including a plush animal in any gift or sponsored prize basket.

Hospitals

Should your business find itself working in a hospital or other medical setting, consider gifting plush animals. They can be wonderfully uplifting gifts for children in the hospital, who need comfort and some joy more than ever. A cute plush animal is the perfect gift—and it’s also practical and appropriate in a hospital setting. Check out these cuddlers, which are plush animals with a soft blanket attached. Not only are they adorable, but they will help keep patients warm and cozy in cold hospital rooms.

Custom plush animals are a fun, lighthearted promotional gift for clients and employees alike—and, as mentioned throughout, perfect for folks of all ages. While quarantining during COVID-19, teddy bears were seen as part of the “Teddy Bear Hunt” trend, where kids would mimic the famous storybook by Michael Rosen, “We’re Going on a Bear Hunt” around their neighborhoods.

And If You’re Looking to Give Back

The “Hey Buddy™ Bear” was created in memory of Francis “Fran” Ford, Jr. The Hey Buddy Bear was designed with hearts on its paws and a “Hey Buddy” imprinted t-shirt (which comes in almost every possible color). A portion of the proceeds from the sales of the Hey Buddy Bear go to the Promotional Productions Education Foundation, a scholarship fund available to promotional products employees and their children. 

With tons of different choices and total customization available, ePromos is ready to get to work on your plush animals. Scroll through our website, give us a call or email, or check out our live-chat feature right on our homepage. Our dedicated representatives are ready to walk you through each step of the process to ensure you have a smooth and happy experience ordering your next batch of customized plush animals from ePromos.


 


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The KN95 Mask vs. The 3-PLY Mask


We’re often asked by clients, “What’s the difference between the KN95 mask and the 3-Ply mask”? “How should I know which mask best fits my purpose?” “How can I be sure your masks meet FDA requirements?”

Below you will find a comparison of the two masks, both are produced in a Certified Medical Device Facility and meet all required regulations. We are in constant communication with our factories, and are grateful to have continuous stock replenishment of these masks. If you need the documentation, just ask! Whether you are looking to purchase masks for your employees or clients or solely to make a donation to the frontline, rest assured you made a good decision in trusting us.

For more on face masks, including guidelines from the CDC and recommendations on how to make a mask using a bandana, click here.

We’re always here to answer any questions or concerns. Contact us,  Call us, the Promo Know-How People at any time.

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How to Observe an Especially Meaningful National Nurses Week this Year


The United States has honored those in the nursing profession since the 1950s—and there’s no question this year is particularly significant.

Nurses deserve recognition and thanks for the many positive impacts they bring across every discipline of healthcare. This year, as nurses all over the country put their lives on the line to help care for those who have contracted SARS-CoV-2, the novel coronavirus that causes COVID-19, it makes sense to go beyond our sincere expressed sentiments of gratitude and respect.

Nurses Are Making Deeply Personal Sacrifices

Nursing is a difficult profession under even the best of circumstances. When we’re not facing a global pandemic that renders hundreds of thousands terribly ill and thousands in need of respiratory assistance, nurses still face personal risk to their own health and well-being while they work long hours to care for the sick and dying.

That risk has exploded in severity in recent weeks, as those on the front lines providing medical care for COVID-19 patients are forced to work even longer hours in direct contact with those patients. Moreover, the national shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE) means that nurses and other medical care providers are at greater risk of contracting the virus themselves.

This unique crisis has put nurses in unthinkable positions, with many denying themselves basic needs during their shifts and self-isolating away from their families when not at work. At the same time, they’re continuing to provide patients with attentive care and comfort at times when typical support networks of families and friends cannot be present at a loved one’s bedside. 

It’s against this backdrop that we’re headed into National Nurses Week, which is annually observed from May 6-12. We owe our nurses a great debt of gratitude for their selfless and mission-focused service in the face of a harrowing world health event.

The History of National Nurses Week

National Nurses Week was first recognized by the American Nurses Association’s (ANA) Board of Directors quite recently—in 1990. Although the official designation of “National Nurses Week” is only 30 years old, the concept of a national time of recognition for those in the nursing profession goes back to around 1953. It was during that time President Dwight Eisenhower received a request that proposed designating a day of honor for the profession.

Although Eisenhower’s administration never issued a formal proclamation, the following year a National Nurse Week was observed between October 11-16. The dates were chosen to coincide with the 100th anniversary of Florence Nightingale’s mission, along with 38 other nurses, to provide care for British soldiers injured in the Crimean War.

Other requests for formal Presidential proclamations honoring U.S. nurses were made over the years, culminating in President Reagan’s signature on a proclamation for “National Recognition Day for Nurses” on May 6, 1982. Eight years later, the ANA board expanded the occasion to a week and made May 6-12 the permanent date for the event—ending on Florence Nightingale’s birthday. 

Honoring the Nurses in Your Community

For over 20 years we have fostered relationships with our manufacturing facilities, ensuring quality and safety are a top priority. We’re grateful to have access to essential healthcare products, and should you decide to purchase any of these for your health organization or for donation purposes, you can find a full list here.

One of the best ways to show your support for frontline nurses this year is by donating to the Coronavirus Response Fund for Nurses. This national effort provides direct financial assistance to nurses, supports the mental health of frontline healthcare workers, and helps ensure nurses have access to the most up-to-date science-based information during the global pandemic. 

If you’re looking for other ways to commemorate National Nurses Week and honor the nurses who have given so much back to your community, consider a crystal award. They’re striking in both appearance and symbolism, and they’re perfect for recognizing performance that goes above and beyond the call of duty.

Laughter and whimsy can be useful medicine during stressful times, too. If you’d like to keep it lighter or maybe even a bit on the silly side, consider our nursing-themed stress balls, screen cleaners, promotional pens, and more. These items serve useful, practical purposes while still bringing a little lighthearted fun to the workday of your favorite nurses and their patients. (We also carry similar items for the doctors in your life.)

Finally, if you’d like to recognize the entire hospital nursing staff, consider a meaningful enamel lapel pin. They’re budget-friendly, visually striking, and personally expressive. As a bonus, they can be worn daily, which helps bolster morale during this trying professional time.

Salute to the Nurses

No matter how you choose to recognize and observe National Nurses Week, we encourage all businesses to let the nurses in their communities know how much they’re valued. Need help choosing the perfect promo gift? Get in touch.


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Keeping Kids Entertained At Home: Promo Gifts Worth Sending


While we’re all adjusting to the many changes in lifestyle that have come with Covid-19, we know families with young children are facing unique challenges. With kids home from school, it can be especially difficult to strike a balance between parenting, supporting distance learning efforts, and working from home.

Kid-friendly gifts are appreciated right now to help families create a work/life balance while quarantined at home. Here are a few ideas that can help keep kids stuck at home occupied.

Crayons and Art Supplies

Drawing and coloring are activities that children of all ages (and many adults, too!) love. We’ve created these coloring sheets for you to enjoy with any of these options. Pair them with a box of crayons for classic fun.

For younger kids, the Crayo-Craze® Six-Color Crayon Wheel offers the advantage of a box of six crayons in one easy-grip wheel! Crayo-Craze is non-toxic and perfect for creative little hands at home, at school, or on the go.

If you prefer to send an entire kit, consider this Spiral Bound Notebook Coloring Book, which includes 25 coloring pages, 25 blank pages for doodles, and 12 colored pencils in their own PVC pouch.

Planting Kits for Hands-on Learning

Parents are looking for hands-on activities more than ever. With spring gearing up in much of the world, what could be more fun and engaging than growing a few plants?

Our Full-Color Grow Your Own Herb Garden comes in three varieties, is packed attractively inside a recycled 6-count egg carton, and features your full-color logo. It’s a great and practical giveaway that will be received well by kids of many ages, and grownups, too!

If you’d rather grow trees than herbs, we also offer a Pine Tree Planter. Kids and adults alike will enjoy the satisfaction of growing their very own pine tree in a biodegradable pot made from spruce wood, until it can be transplanted outside. Choose from four stock label designs.

Puzzles and Fidget Toys

Nothing keeps kids busy indoors quite like creative puzzles! Fortunately, we offer a wide variety of ways you can help fill this need.

This Wooden Poseable Robot Puzzle is a fun fidget toy (and a great conversation piece). Imprint your logo on the chest or face. Constructed of wood and held together with strong elastic bands, it keeps little hands busy and helps stretch young minds while everyone stays safe indoors.

Or how about a Full-Color Jigsaw Puzzle? Ours has 35 pieces and is completely customizable to your brand.

If you want to really think outside the box, consider the Ball of Whacks Creativity Tool This item is more versatile than a puzzle and more fun than a brain teaser. There’s no wrong way to play with it! It consists of 30 magnetic design blocks that can be rearranged into a wide variety of shapes, and it comes with a 96-page illustrated guidebook.

Other Creative Ideas

Consider these other ideas for helping to keep kids entertained and engaged.

This Full-Color Sticker Bookmark is two items in one, and it promotes reading. And who doesn’t love stickers?

Or you might go for our Full-Color Assorted Foam Putty, a simple but popular children’s toy that offers creative entertainment and features your full-color imprint on the label.

If you want something classic, a Domino Set in Wooden Box is another great option. A travel set of the classic domino game, it’s neatly packaged in an imprintable wooden box with a sleek sliding cover.

You can deliver any of these items right to the doorstep of your clients, prospects, or employees as a reminder your brand is here during this complex time. Looking for more ideas about staying in touch with consumers during our “new normal”? Let’s talk soon. Call us, the Promo Know-How people.


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Protection During a Global Pandemic: Face Masks for Public Health


As individuals around the world continue to be impacted by the spread of the SARS-CoV-2 novel coronavirus, recommendations about the best ways to stay safe and reduce spread have continued to evolve.

While there was initial controversy over the general public wearing masks in response to coronavirus, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) now recommends that people wear masks or face coverings in public, especially in situations where social distancing rules may not be properly followed or are difficult to enforce.

In fact, many scientists and doctors are now advocating for a nationwide official policy encouraging the use of facial coverings or face masks during public outings.

Protective Face Masks in Response to Coronavirus

There are several types of masks or face coverings to be aware of, each with their own level of availability to the general public. In addition, there’s a lot of information circulating about different mask types, including who should be wearing them and when. Here’s a quick breakdown:

At one end of the spectrum are N95 respirators. N95 respirators are rated to protect the wearer against 95% of very small pathogen particles. These masks are considered PPE (personal protective equipment) for healthcare workers and first responders. They should not be worn by the public as a general rule. There are also now KN95 masks, which the CDC has listed as a suitable alternative to N95’s. They offer 4-layer non-woven construction, including an inner layer of melt-blown fabric which filters bacteria and dust. They are FDA Registered and produced in a Certified Medical Device facility. We are grateful to be able to offer these to you . Standard production time begins as early as May 15th!

Surgical masks, such as 3-Ply masks, are worn by staff in surgery and other open medical procedures. They protect against most large particles but may not protect against microscopic viral particles the way N95 or KN95 masks do. Looking to compare the two? Click here.

One step below surgical masks are cloth masks and face shields that cover the face but aren’t designed to stop the transmission of those tiny viral particles. They may, however, help protect the wearer from larger particles when social distancing fails. These masks, like others, also remind wearers not to touch their faces, another important protective measure.

Finally, you can simply tie a bandana or other similar fabric around your face. This reusable approach isn’t quite as protective as a snug mask, as it leaves the mouth and chin area open. However, many wearers say it offers some protection, which is better than none. Additionally, a bandana covering, like any facial covering, may help remind others to comply with social distancing guidelines and stay six feet away from everyone else.

As doctors and other health care professionals began warning the public and the press about dwindling and disappearing supplies of personal protective equipment, instructions on how to sew face masks (DIY) out of bandanas and other kinds of material have begun circulating online. Businesses, brands, and everyday consumers have set to work determining which fabrics and mask styles offer the best protection for public health.

Guidelines for Face Masks and Coverings from the CDC

The CDC has advised the public that for any cloth facial mask or covering to be effective, it should meet the following criteria:

  • It should fit snugly around the face, while still allowing the wearer to breathe and speak.
  • It should be attached firmly through the use of ties or ear loops to keep the cloth from slipping.
  • It should ideally consist of two or more layers of cloth fabric to improve the mask’s barrier function against viral particles.
  • It should be constructed of cloth that can be properly laundered for hygiene.

These masks should be worn when out in public and then removed carefully upon returning home. If at all possible, wearers should avoid touching their faces while the mask is in use. After removal, users should wash their hands thoroughly.

Face Masks and Other Facial Coverings You Can Deliver to Consumers

If you’d like to do your part to provide masks, face shields or other facial coverings to consumers, you can explore options here. In addition, it can be a good time to send bandanas or other items that can be easily repurposed as a facial covering during this time.

Take advantage of these items while they’re in stock, let your employees, clients, and consumers know you’re thinking of them during this difficult time. Safety for others leads to safety for all and sending face masks, hand sanitizer and other healthcare items can ensure we’re all doing our part to improve public health and flatten the curve.