Tech The Halls

keyboardSome things never change.  Corporate buyers will be asking what’s new and different for the holiday season, and corporate customers will want cool and useful products that make their lives easier.  The easy answer for both is tech!

Tech gadgets remain high on the list of the most well-received gift for Millennials and Gen X customers.  Both groups stand out for their use of technology, supported by research that reveals some 54 percent of Gen X and 56 percent of millennials consider themselves digitally savvy.

So what are the items these tech savvy customers want?  Consider the following options:

  1. Foldable Bluetooth Keyboard:  When you want to travel light and still have the ability to work efficiently.
  2. WiFi Home Smart Plug:  Allows remote access for anything plugged into it; can schedule on/off for devices; and monitors energy used.
  3. Bluetooth Headphones:  Smaller, better sound quality and no cords!
  4. Bluetooth Speaker With Amazon Alexa:  Bluetooth speaker that integrates with Alexa – just tap the speaker to ask Alexa a question.
  5. Bluetooth Tracker:  Find your bag, wallet, phone, keys and more with a small tracking device that attaches, sticks or drops into your personal items.
  6. Leather Tassel Phone Cable:  Because tech accessories can still look cute!

The holidays are just around the corner, and the best tech gifts won’t last forever.  Pick one of the many popular tech items that works for your budget; add your logo; and tech the halls in 2018!

 

Branded Apparel With Attitude

hoodedDon’t expect your target customer audience to get excited about another shirt, hat or fleece that looks just like all the others in their closets.  Appreciative, yes – excited, no.  But with a little extra time and effort, your company can offer a clothing item that showcases your brand creativity and youthful attitude.

  • Fully customized hooded sweatshirts are a perfect cold weather item for young and old, male or female, regardless of industry.
  • Yoga leggings with custom waistband or all-over print are designed with relaxation in mind, and work well for women’s organizations, gyms or yoga studios.
  • All-over print t-shirts and jackets make a bold statement for corporate conferences, team events and trade shows.
  • Custom branded pockets on all types of t-shirts provides a single-location brand statement that pops off the garment.
  • Add subtle creative flair with a custom logo inside collar on 1/4 zip, 1/2 zip or full zip fleece.

Be bold, or remain understated – in either case the difference is clear when a custom branded apparel item stands out from the crowded field of embroidered or screen printed corporate clothing.  Showcase your brand attitude – it’s everything!

Are You Prepared?

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According to the CDC (Center for Disease Control) nearly 50% of U.S. adults do not have the resources or plans in place in the event of an emergency.  44% of Americans don’t have a first aid kit, and 48% don’t have standard emergency supplies like flashlights and basic tools.

At the minimum, the American Red Cross recommends the following basic supplies for emergency preparedness:

  1. Flashlight
  2. Battery-powered or hand-crank radio (NOAA Weather Radio, if possible)
  3. Extra batteries
  4. First aid kit
  5. Multi-purpose tool
  6. Cell phone with chargers
  7. Emergency blanket
  8. Water: one gallon per person, per day (3-day supply for evacuation, 2-week supply for home)
  9. Food: non-perishable, easy-to-prepare items (3-day supply for evacuation, 2-week supply for home).
  10. Medications (7-day supply) and medical items
  11. Sanitation and personal hygiene items
  12. Copies of personal documents (medication list and pertinent medical information, proof of address, deed/lease to home, passports, birth certificates, insurance policies)
  13. Family and emergency contact information
  14. Extra cash
  15. Emergency blanket
  16. Map(s) of the area

As we witness more natural disasters around the country, a first-aid kit, easy-to-carry emergency kit, or even a reliable flashlight are practical gifts that companies can give to any audience, at any time.  It’s a gift that demonstrates your corporate commitment to client and employee safety.  In the coming holiday season, consider the gift of safety!

Brands And The Digitally Inclined

h_70370The goal of branded giveaways is to drive brand recognition and customer interest, but the results are often not what we counted on.  When the choice of gift does not match up with the demographic of the intended audience, the expected impression can fall flat.

When considering the fact that everyone from toddlers to seniors have embraced the digital age – whether intentionally or by necessity – it’s a logical choice to select a promotional product that appeals to our global digital transformation.  And that digital transformation is not just about technology, it’s also about the products that make it easier for customers to access that technology.

  • Activity Tracker:  These staples of the health-conscious crowd are offered in varying price points, with a variety of features from simply counting steps to connecting with friends for friendly fitness challenges.
  • Smart Watch:  There are lots of less expensive alternatives to the Apple watch, and they offer many of the same features like bluetooth capability and cameras.
  • Flash Drive:  Store all of those digital files in one small, portable place without the fear of losing everything in a computer meltdown.
  • Power Bank:  Recharge mobile phones and tablets on the go!
  • Backpack:  Give a backpack with features like built-in power pack and headphone access.

Millennials and the Gen Z generation are always looking forward, spending an average of 10 hours day in front of screens, with a short attention span that responds to engaging digital content.  For your next corporate giveaway, consider a gift that keeps these digitally inclined customers aware of your brand while communicating and working in a digital world.

 

Backpacks Give Your Back A Break

backpackAccording to the American Association of Neurological Surgeons, as many as 75-85 percent of Americans will experience back pain at some point in their lives.  Back pain is caused by many different things, but one of the main culprits for adults is our habit of over-stuffing purses, briefcases and tote bags – and those bags are carried on one side, causing muscle imbalances and pain.

On the other hand, backpacks evenly distribute the weight of what we are carrying to work, the gym or through the airport.  Granted, most of us carry far more than we need – and this is something everyone should address by being  more selective about what goes into our bags.  But for everything that we can’t leave behind, backpacks are by far the better choice for reducing back pain.

In regard to style, today’s backpacks are designed to look good while offering features that match your lifestyle.  Lightweight drawstring backpacks are perfect for students and young adults looking for a stylish bag to carry a few essentials.  Structured backpacks with padded interiors for computers and tech accessories; various organizing compartments for files, tickets and wallet; and side pockets for water bottles and smaller essentials are the best travel bags, second only to the rolling suitcase.

In regard to size, smaller is typically better since we are always tempted to fill whatever space we have available.  But regardless of the size, a backpack that sits close to the body is best for reducing discomfort, and choosing a style with a smaller shoulder strap will help minimize the strain on the neck and shoulders.

And, of course, companies looking to increase brand awareness can’t go wrong with giving a bag that carries a logo on the backs of students, outdoor enthusiasts and travelers.  Greater brand visibility and reduced back pain for the recipient – Win-Win!

Branded Blankets Have You Covered

hood blanketStay engaged with important clients or show appreciation to valued employees with the gift of warmth that they will cherish for years to come.  Blankets are offered in a variety of fabric options and style choices that work well for women and men of every age group.

My favorites are always those styles that can go from home to car to picnic on the grass – but that’s just me!  See below for some of the other styles customers are looking for.

  1. Sweatshirt Blanket:  With or without a hood, stay warm at the game or at an outdoor concert.
  2. Cableknit Lambswool Throw:  Knit like a favorite sweater on one side, soft faux lambswool on the other.
  3. Faux Leather Throw:  For an elegant gift, combines faux leather with soft faux fur.
  4. Oversize Light Down Blanket:  Water resistant nylon with faux down, micro fleece lining and removable carry pouch makes this perfect for outdoor activities.
  5. Heathered Fleece Sherpa Blanket:  Combines classic look with the modern style of heathered velour with sherpa backing.
  6. Soft Wool Blanket:  Brushed wool and polyester blend provides softness and durability.

Sweatshirt blankets or cashmere throws – blankets are a useful gift that will remind the recipient of your brand identity and corporate values.  Add a retail-style box for the perfect presentation, and you can be certain the impression will last.

 

 

 

The Last (Plastic) Straw

strawLast year the world population used over 500,000 million straws, 480 billion plastic bottles and one trillion single use plastic bags.  The impact to the oceans and our planet’s health has been devastating.  Over the last few years there has been a resounding public outcry against the use of these types of disposable plastics, and the corporate world is responding.

Hotels and airlines are instituting bans on plastic straws, and cities around the country are doing the same for disposable plastic bags.  Tour companies and cruise lines are joining in the fight, while corporations in every industry with brand marketing budgets are supporting the cause with more eco-conscious giveaways.  And as the following examples demonstrate, it’s not only good for the environment, it’s also good for business.

  • Drinkware – Third Most Influential Promotional Item:  Acrylic, stainless and ceramic drinkware products can easily replace disposable plastic bottles and cups.   As with every corporate giveaway, consider the style of the product to be sure it matches the lifestyle of the recipient.  Ceramic mugs are fine for office workers, but those who spend a lot of time in a car or outdoors need plastic or stainless.
  • Stainless Steel or Copper Straws – 53% Of U.S. Consumers Use Promotional Drinkware:  The same consumers giving up plastic bottles for reusable drinkware are anxious to receive their first truly reusable straw.  Dishwasher friendly and engraved with a company logo and/or personal name, these unique promotional items truly reflect the fast-growing demand for alternatives to plastic straws.
  • Reusable Bags – Create More Impressions Than Any Other Promotional Product:  For grocery shopping, travel, and outdoor excursions, a reusable canvas or non-woven bag, backpack or duffel are smart giveaway choices that are used at home and in the office.  Not just for carrying groceries, sturdy bags of every style increase brand identity and improve brand loyalty.

For corporations that want to appeal to this generation’s sensitivity to the health of our planet, it makes good business sense to promote your brand while encouraging more eco-friendly habits.  Give the corporate gift that keeps on giving!