Tag: branding

TOP

Why Your Brand Needs Face Masks to Stay Relevant


For many people, it’s no longer just the phone-wallet-keys check before walking out the door—face masks are now a part of that lineup too. With COVID-19 cases reaching around 3.9 million worldwide, some states, such as New York and Hawaii, now require essential workers and some citizens to wear face coverings when they’re commuting and visiting essential businesses.

Needless to say, the demand for face masks has skyrocketed and it’s nearly impossible to find them in stores or online. As a result, people are putting their DIY skills to the test and fashioning masks out of anything they can find—and for some, wearing a mask has even become a way to express their personal style.

An Opportunity for Businesses
Lele Sadoughi masks with coordinating headbands
Designer Lele Sadoughi creates masks to coordinate well with her stylish headbands.

The rise in demand for face masks has created a lucrative business opportunity for many companies. Even non-medical companies like Disney and fashion brands such as Lele Sadoughi are rolling out limited-edition face masks. Harper’s Bazaar lists 16 Fashion Brands you can shop (retail) to support independent designers, and Forbes reports on brands that have pivoted to join the #millionmaskchallenge. These masks give their customers an opportunity to express their interests and fashion sense through these essential pieces of personal protective gear.

Since face masks are a part of of what we’ll get to know as our new normal, selling them to your customers is one of the best ways to increase revenue and stay relevant during these volatile times. That’s why we’ve rounded up a few of our reusable masks and mask accessories you can customize for your business.

Masks that Make a Statement
Our Colored Canvas Face Masks Shown In Peach, Cornflower and Mint-to-be

This Colored Canvas Face Mask is perfect for fashion and lifestyle brands to customize during the COVID-19 pandemic. It comes in 27 eye-catching colors, which will appeal to consumers looking for a more retro-feel alternative to the generic-looking medical face masks. These masks are made from canvas and only filter large particles, so they’re best for users who only need to wear masks during essential errands and in areas in which they can practice social distancing. You can also imprint these vividly-colored masks with your company’s logo or an uplifting message to make an even stronger brand statement.

Our Full Color Adjustable Face Mask
Our Full Color Adjustable Tripe-Layer Face Mask

Another wonderful option for fashion and lifestyle brands is the Adjustable Triple-Layer Face Mask – the entire surface area of this mask can be customized with full color, so you have the opportunity to get creative with the backdrop of your logo.

For those who have to wear masks for prolonged periods of time, comfort is critical. This mask is has three ear holes which allows this mask to fit nearly all face sizes comfortably. It’s constructed with two layers of polyester and one layer of filtering foam. Another option we’re loving? This full color mask with a step & repeat logo – you can’t go wrong!

Simple Yet Stylish Reusable Masks

If your business targets people who work in more professional environments, such as banks or corporate offices, your customers may be looking for masks that are stylish, but not flashy.

Our 100% Cotton Reusable Face Mask with Adjustable Straps

One of our more traditional-looking masks is the 100% Cotton Reusable Face Mask w/Adjustable Straps. These masks are washable, come in black and grey, and have toggle to adjust the ear loops for comfort and fit.

Another classic option is this USA made 100% cotton mask, which comes in black, navy and red. It’s sold in packages of 25 and can be purchased with or without a logo.

There are so many reusable mask options, some more fashion-forward than others. Still not sure what’s right for your brand? See the full-line here.

Mask Accessories
Our Ear Saver Mask Holder

If you wear a face mask on a daily basis, you know the straps can tug on your ears and make your head hurt after a while. Luckily, there are mask-wearing accessories popping up left and right that are designed to increase comfortability.

This Ear Saver Face Mask Holder will take the weight off the wearer’s ears, and instead distribute it across a small plastic piece that sits on the back of the head. This piece can be customized with your company’s logo and is a great little treasure to send out to your employees and clients.

Mask Buddy Pro Headband with buttons
Our Mask Buddy Pro Headband with Buttons

Another useful option great for both men and women are these Mask Buddy Pro Non-Slip Headbands with buttons. Also made in the USA, the entire headband can be imprinted so branding can be as busy or as understand as you’d like. Too thin for your taste? Here’s a thicker headband option that’s available as well.

Looking to add disposable masks to the mix as well? It’s always a good idea to have them on-hand and they pair well with these accessories.

When your logo is front and center, make sure it's on brand.

All in all, the important thing to remember is that when your logo is front and center, make sure it’s on brand. We are here to help, so don’t hesitate to contact us so that we can walk you through the many options you have for healthcare and branding.


TOP

Pantone’s 2020 Color of the Year: Classic and Cozy for Promos


Each year, Pantone names a “color of the year,” which encapsulates the year’s trends, political state, emerging technology, and more – and this year was quite a year.

With an eye on new beginnings and an end to what, for many, was a crazy year, Pantone’s vice president, Laurie Pressman, said her team honed in on colors that provided a sense of familiarity, reassurance, and hope for the future. And where they landed? Pantone’s 2020 color of the year, 19-4052 Classic Blue.

As a serene, classic tone, this hue is super easy on the eyes and super familiar – the perfect shade to make us feel cozy and soothe any end-of-year uncertainties. And, with that goal in mind, we’ve rounded up some of our faves in this on-trend shade. Go peacefully into the new year with any one of them…

For Your Clients

Block-out any storms that 2020 may bring with this great pattern-changing umbrella. When the umbrella gets wet, blue raindrops appear on the top. Our customers love this item – and with an umbrella, you really can’t go wrong.

Another great option – promote the fact that you’re in the know by introducing Pantone’s 2020 color with a custom candy item (request all blue, to make your statement pop)

For the Earth

In 2019, we saw a huge emphasis on environmentally-friendly practices, sustainability, and the benefits of green living – trends that will surely trickle over into 2020 and hopefully into decades to come.

Reusable straws are perfect for reducing waste and keeping those plastic straws out of our oceans and landfills. Choose from six vibrant colors (our favorite is blue, of course), and tote them along to dinner or on a coffee date in their convenient carrying case.

If you want to take your eco-conscious practices even further, consider these Triple Insulated Wine Tumblers. Drinking wine and saving the world? Yes, PLEASE. Its triple-insulated design keeps any beverage hot for 12 hours and cold for 24, and its spill-resistant lid will ensure no beverage takes a tumble at your next party. Brand yours in the classic blue hue and sit back knowing recipients will be showcasing your company all season.

For the Office

Taking notes and writing task lists at work can be overwhelming – except when you’ve got a peaceful classic blue pen in hand. Give your employees, clients and friends the gift of tranquility this year with this a promotional pen. Extra points for one with a stylus or laser – double the function, double the fun (and increase the chances it will be their favorite).

Emphasize privacy with a webcam cover that fits most desktop computers, laptops, or TVs. Bonus: not only do they protect privacy, they also shield webcams from dust, dirt, and other damaging elements. Many available in a classic blue, they provide the ultimate peace of mind on every level.

On the Go

Let’s face it – if our phones die, we panic. Never run the risk of a dead battery with our powerbanks and chargers. Perfect for commuting, road trips, or even as a back-up during a power outage, this lithium-ion rechargeable power bank will always come to the rescue when your clients need a charge. Its space-conscious design also makes it convenient to take along in a purse, backpack, briefcase, or even your pocket!

So, as 2019 comes to a close and we go from Living Coral to Classic Blue, brand your business in Pantone’s color of the year knowing it will be a great one!

Looking for the perfect gift in the perfect color? Get in touch with our expert team to explore Classic Blue premiums – and more.

Looking for an insiders perspective on unique trends in the promo world? Follow us here.

Interested in keeping up to date on all things ePromos?  Follow us on Facebook, Instagram,Twitter, LinkedIn and Pinterest! 


TOP

Must-Have Promotional Apparel: Elevate Polo Shirts


Face it: at the end of the day, no matter what promotional products or premiums you invest in, there’s one thing that sits above everything else – your team. With the right people projecting the right image and delivering the right message, you’ll get your business front-and-center, driving greater engagement, building better relationships and converting more customers from day one. That’s powerful.The Right Team Is Essential to a companies success

But you know that – you have the right people in the right roles projecting the right image of your brand 24/7. The next step? Ensure that branding hits before they even say a word – that’s where promotional apparel comes in.

Over the next few posts, we’ll unpack what we’re loving and what’s helping our customers take their branding – and their business – to the next level. First up: these must-have custom polo shirts from Elevate.

Upscale Polos for Brands that Can Handle It

Our Elevate Polo ShirtsElevate’s high quality polo shirts are, simply, the real deal. Not only are they designed to maximize your branding and brand recognition, but they’re made with the latest material for polo shirts – a breathable, moisture-wicking polyester that keeps you, your team and anyone else donning a shirt cool and dry.

And, when you are out and about in these promotional polo shirts you’ll never have to worry about the elements. These polo shirts are snag-resistant, tagless and made with built-in UV protection for safety, comfort and style.

Choose from one of five classic colors and, without a doubt, these shirts will become a favorite on the clock and off.

A Guide to Choosing the Right Polo Shirts

That said, we know there are a lot of polo shirts out there – and we know you want to choose the best for your business. When reviewing these and other company logo polo shirts, consider:

Material

It’s essential your polo shirts are made with the right material. The Elevate polo shirts, again, are made from high-quality polyester optimal for any climate and any environment. They breathe, they keep moisture and sweat at bay and they ensure wearers are cool and comfortable even when the temperature rises.

Branding

A big piece of any promotional polo shirts is the branding – specifically, whether you’ll embroider or screen print your logo and messaging. When you opt for embroidering this polo shirt, the design will last as long as the shirt does – your logo is stitched in and ready for anything.

Wearability

Material, quality, fit and style – they all play into the wearability of a polo shirt. The goal? Create a shirt that’s one part promotional and one part go-to polo. You want your customers and employees to don your branded apparel, and that requires an eye on the overall look and feel of the end product.

For example, if you’ve got too much branding, your polo might not make it out of the closet beyond the next trade show or two. Too little branding? You’re losing out on a major opportunity to get your business out there. Same with the fit and design. A boxy or flimsy polo might have the right branding, but it’s never making the rounds unless it’s mandatory.

Elevate definitely eliminates that challenge. These polo shirts have an on-trend asymmetrical design, which looks good on everyone and draws attention to your logo. That ensures more people see your name and your branding instantly, cutting through the clutter of busy, noisy events and ensuring you get noticed – but it’s not so over-the-top that shirts feel business-only.

Finding the Perfect Polo Occasion

Granted, these shirts aren’t just for personal or promotional wear. More and more, polos are becoming central to casual and comfort wear – and that’s becoming increasingly common in the workplace. We’ve seen startups walking event floors, mixing, mingling and pitching, with their branding incredibly organic – and incredibly front-and-center.

Casual Fridays at the OfficeWe’ve also seen these shirts become uniforms – day-to-day apparel for physical therapy and wellness centers where staffers need comfort and want to look professional. Same with car dealerships – many have shifted to a more casual, almost disarming look that gives off a truly personal vibe, while still ensuring their logo is highly visible all day long. And, of course, there’s the “Casual Friday” use – more and more businesses ditching jackets, ties and heels on Fridays in favor of jeans and polos.

Why not make their favorite Friday shirts your promotional polo shirts?

Regardless of your brand, your branding and your desired use, Elevate’s polo shirts are one of our very favorite pieces. These shirts no doubt check all the boxes, making them ideal for any business, any event or, simply, any day in the office. Get in touch to learn more, request a sample and get your polo shirts in production now.

Love keeping up with our latest picks? Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Linked In and Pinterest!


TOP

Ideas For Using Pantone’s Color of the Year


After the year we’ve all had, it’s nice to take a break, take a breath and indulge in something a little more mellow. And that’s exactly why we’re loving this year’s Pantone Color of the Year, 16-1546 Living Coral, which the Pantone team describes as “humanizing” with “heartening qualities” that speak to our need for “human interaction and social connection.”

Ideas for Using Pantone's 2019 Color of the YearWe couldn’t agree more. Already we’ve been digging into this calm, cool, playful color – and, we admit, it’s definitely lightened the mood and helped curb some of the holiday chaos.

If you’re looking for that added optimism or, simply, a little respite from the craziness of the year and the season, look no further than Living Coral…

AT HOME

We’re all about a pop of color at home. Whether it’s a coral throw pillow, blanket or, even, an on-trend wall hanging (coral juju hats, anyone?), there are countless options for integrating this warm, friendly color into your space.

And if you want to take things even further? Check out the seven paint matches, all readily available at your local home, DIY or big box store. Add an accent wall, makeover a small space or bathroom or, simply, refinish a piece of furniture and you’ll instantly have a cool new addition to your space that’s fresh, upbeat and totally on trend.

IN YOUR GIFTING

Given how versatile and universal coral is, it’s no surprise some of our favorite gifts come in this dynamic color. Customize a set of Full-Color Ray-Ban Style Sunglasses and opt for any one (or more…) of the 15 colors available, including coral. Looking for something that will be used around the office? Our Full-Color Vibrant Retractable Gel Pens are perfect, available in 12 coral plus 11 other shades.

IN YOUR CLOSET

Teen Vogue: Celebrities Embracing The Color of the YearCoral has long been a popular go-to for fashionistas – and with good cause. Not only is it a rich, beautiful color, but it’s easy to wear, regardless of your style or skin tone. In fact, the Spring 2019 runways were packed with coral hues, including everything from gowns to camisoles to vacation-approved maxi dresses.

And if your budget isn’t runway-ready? Coral has increasingly trickled down to boutiques, department stores and mass retailers – we’re loving this pop of color in everything from cords to cardigans to hats, gloves and scarves.

That, though, is just the beginning. Now that Living Color has taken the top spot, it’s only a matter of time before accessories and wardrobe staples will be hitting the shelves in this must-have hue.

Looking for the perfect gift in the perfect color? Get in touch with our expert team to explore coral premiumsand more.


TOP

4 Reasons We’re Loving the Wood Grain Trend–—Especially in These Tumblers


Updated August 29, 2019

It’s been a major trend in furniture and interior design – and, now, the wood tones we’re loving in our homes and offices are extending into another space: drinkware. Our new collection of insulated wood tone tumblers are taking a page from this comfy, cozy and completely chic trend – and we can’t get enough.

Our advice? Dive into this trend now.Wood Grain Tumblers

1. Because it’s a touch of home, wherever you go

Mixed wood tones and wood grains are the interior trend for 2019 – so consider these tumblers a little piece of home whether you’re stuck in the car or stuck in the conference room. Inspired by the organic finishes everyone’s opting for, consider these tumblers your cue to make yourself at home anywhere.

2. Because there’s a richness to this trend

One of the reasons the wood grain trend has gained such momentum is that it has a very natural, very organic richness – and the same goes for this tumbler collection. These tumblers look as sleek and sturdy as they are, without looking busy or over-the-top.

3. Because they project the right image for your brand

While we’re all about branded drinkware, we’ve seen some that are a little too aggressive. If that’s your brand persona, great, but if you’re looking for something more polished, more sophisticated and more established, these wood tone tumblers make sense.

With brands like S’Well® and Corkcicle® pushing their collections to retail – and let’s not forget the iconic Mercedes-Benz® wood grain tumbler – your customers have no doubt been craving one of these cool cups. Getting one from you will solidify their perception of you and your brand.

4. Because they’re high quality insulated pieces of drinkware – and who doesn’t want that?

Beyond the cool factor, these tumblers are high quality, high performance products that keep drinks cold for up to 12 hours and hot for up to eight. Check out the classic 20 ounce Vacuum Insulated Wood Grain Tumbler, the tapered 20 ounce version and the 10 ounce Wine Tumbler, all with this on-trend wood finish. New to the mix? Our 17oz. water bottle.

We’re hearing this is just the beginning of the wood grain trend – and we can’t wait to see what’s next. Get in touch with us, The Promo Know-How People, to learn more and start customizing your tumbler order.

Wood grain is a popular home and furniture trend – and now, with this collection of wood grain drinkware, the hot trend can promote your brand too.

Looking for more of our top picks and best sellers? Click here.  Love keeping up with the latest promo trends? Follow us on FacebookInstagramTwitterLinked In and Pinterest!


TOP

Our Favorite Branding Tips for Small Businesses


When running a small business with low overhead and few resources, branding can be one of the most cost-effective methods in drumming up interest. And in case you were wondering, yes: every business, product and, organization is also its own brand!

See the McDonald's arches, think hamburgerSo what is a brand, anyway? Although there is no clear-cut definition, there are a few characteristics that help define the term. A brand is a name, design, symbol, voice and messaging, or signature feature that individualizes an organization or product from its competitors in the eyes of the customer. Think: McDonald’s golden arches, TOMS Shoes’ ‘One for One’ business model, Apple’s iPhone.

According to LucidPress, consistent presentation of a brand increases revenue by 23% on average. That’s because branding doesn’t just help to set your business apart from the crowd. It also establishes authority, leads to greater transparency, communicates company values, and builds trust among your clientele. Branding is vital for your small business because it helps form lasting relationships with customers who share your ideals and want to associate themselves with your efforts.

If you can successfully develop a brand strategy, you will be able to grow your business and stand out from the crowd. Start by identifying your target audience. What type of individuals are you trying to reach? Defining your target audience will help you achieve your brand goals. Also ask yourself, “What need does my product solve? What are my audience’s buying habits, and how much would they be willing to pay?”

When you can answer those questions, it helps to shape a more effective brand strategy. Continue strengthening your brand by adhering to the following tips and experimenting with new ideas, including those below:

Invest in the Basics

● Naming Your Business – The name of your business is everything, as branding relies heavily on online referrals and word of mouth. Your name should be meaningful and easy to remember. Every word should be intentional – for example, you and your customers should know whether “The” is included in your official title, which characters are upper vs. lowercase, and whether it’s “and” or “&”.

● Designing a Logo – A large portion of your customers might assume your “brand” is one and the same as your logo, but this is not the case. Your “brand” is a combination of image, company behavior and market positioning. All of this determines how the general public perceives you — and your logo is a major part of this.

If redesigning or designing for the first time, choose your color scheme wisely, as color psychology plays an important role in peoples’ buying decisions. It will also dictate much of your marketing collateral and may even influence design choices in your offices or physical location.

● Building a Website – Your website is one of the most powerful tools in your arsenal. In this day and age, you have to have one to be taken seriously. A good website is informative, easy to navigate, and represents who you are as a brand.

Stay Consistent and Persistent with Your Brand Messaging

When it comes to relationship-building, 64% of consumers cite shared values as the primary reason for maintaining relationships with and loyalty to businesses. So how to communicate those values?

Your marketing strategy must include ways that your customers can get to know you. Not just your company name, but your staff, your story; why you got into business in the first place, and what you do differently than “those other guys”.

Beyond your name and logo, what does your brand voice sound like? Is it fun and playful, or professional and straight-forward? Scientific, engaging, inspirational or down-to-earth? Masculine or feminine; young or old – you decide!

an MTV Shopping BagWhichever you choose, be sure the tone is consistent through all channels of communication. That means both in-person and online, if applicable. It means that whoever writes your Website copy should mimic the voice of whoever writes your email copy; and your email copy should sound an awful lot like what’s written on your blog, printed marketing materials, and in-store signage.

The goal is a consistent experience that helps to clarify your brand persona. Work your branding (name, logo/imagery, and brand voice) through all touch-points. In marketing and promotions, all throughout the sales funnel, and even following a purchase. Slip a business card or thank you note in with online orders, and send in-store customers home with their purchase in gift bags custom printed with your logo.

Forge Real Connections with Your Customers

Identify channels that work with your strategic plan so that you can engage with current and potential customers on a more personal level. This may include a code of conduct for greeting and assisting visitors in-store, or setting expectations with customer service when chatting online, via email or phone.

Though social media can be a great asset to establishing and growing your community, know that relationships with customers are built on interaction and activity – not daily posts. Responding to your customers in a professional and friendly manner will make them feel better about your brand. Conversely, it’s important to know how much communication is too much: more than 50% of consumers expect brands to know when the right moments are to reach out with an email, push notification or social media message.

Identify and Appoint Brand Influencers

Do you have a few loyal customers who would be interested in receiving free merchandise in exchange for increasing awareness of your brand in their social circles? People trust peer reviews and view influencer marketing to be more authentic than traditional marketing tactics. There are many benefits to building a community of brand enthusiasts:

1. Appointing brand influencers will help you engage with your customers. Their entire persona revolves around their audience, meaning you’ll gain precious intel into how people think and talk about your business, products/services, and the problems your business helps to solve.
2. Influencers will talk about the brand, interact with their audience, and spread the word about your business offerings.
3. Another reason to appoint brand influencers is their transparency. Finding an influencer who believes in your brand will drive traffic to your site and provide meaningful insights about your product or service.

Track, Measure, and Test Branding Efforts

Measuring your branding efforts is no easy task. However, it’s important to figure out if the tactics involved in your branding strategies are actually working or need tweaking.

Some of the best tools to use for tracking include Google Analytics, customer surveys, and social media metrics. There are a vast variety of different tools you can use to track your business depending on your product or service. Monitoring your branding campaign will help your small business develop future branding strategies.

Give Them Something Pleasantly Unexpected

People (61% of them, in fact) love to be pleasantly surprised by experiences offered by businesses. ‘Surprise-and-Delight’ efforts can be as simple as honoring outdated coupons, like Bed, Bath & Beyond. It could be as novel as anticipating and delivering on a need that the customer didn’t even realize you could service.

Here are a few successful ideas: NYC nail studio Paintbox has a photobooth for taking professional nail pics after getting a manicure. The YMCA provides free childcare services for busy parents. Ulta is known for giving their members incredibly generous birthday gifts each year. Surprises don’t have to be costly, though – a free drink or dessert when out to eat can go a long way towards earning a loyal new patron.
You can easily find a way for your small business to do something pleasantly unexpected, either in-store or online. Start by giving away something small for free at checkout, without promoting it ahead of time… and see where that takes you!

Learn from Your Branding Failures

Whatever you do in your branding campaign, there is no one-size-fits-all formula. Developing a strong brand doesn’t happen overnight. Learn from your mistakes, the mistakes of others, and know when to pivot. Always be testing, tracking, and pushing the envelope, taking calculated risks as needed. Amidst the various tactics and strategies, remember that the key to building a strong brand for your small business is to listen to and serve the customer first.

Call us, the Promo Know-How people and let us guide you in the right direction when marketing your small business.