Tariffs? What Tariffs?

TOD40D_Blue_5723Since July, tariffs have been imposed on nearly half of the Chinese goods imported to the US.  Those tariffs – which is essentially a tax on an imported good – can either be absorbed by the importer or passed on to the buyer through price increases.

For the most part, the impact of these tariffs on the promotional products industry won’t be felt until 2019, but why wait?   There are many high-quality options for USA-made promotional products, and none of them will be subject to tariffs.

  • Drinkware:  Cups, mugs, and tumblers are all available in various colors and shapes to help keep your customer hydrated.
  • Tote Bags, Aprons, Tablecloths:  Create a custom bag with one-of-a-kind features; trade show table covering with enhanced graphics; or colorful apron for staff or customer gift.
  • Socks:  Exploding in popularity and available with low minimums and endless customization options.
  • Plastics:  Bag tags, cell phone holders, ice scrapers and clipboards are a few of the many plastic promotional items that remain popular giveaways at an affordable price.
  • Paper Products:  Notepads, calendars, sticky notes and journals are all made in the USA and are among the most popular giveaways for home, travel and office.
  • Leather Goods:  From key tags to high-end luggage, every customer appreciates the quality of genuine leather and the appeal of American craftsmanship.
  • Caps and Hats:  Many US manufacturers offer ball caps and knit beanies, which are especially good for inventory programs that want a unique product but can’t afford long lead times.
  • T-Shirts:  Short sleeve and long sleeve tees have been made in the USA for many years, but with the increased attention on this category, there are more choices and better price points.

There are many reasons, other than avoiding tariffs, to consider buying USA-made goods for your next promotion.  Those reasons include supporting American jobs, reducing carbon footprint, and endorsing the superior human rights environment of the American worker.  When you add it all up, a USA-made product with your corporate logo sends the right message to your customer without blowing the department budget.


When It Comes To Branded Headwear, Think Beyond Twill

cable beanieWhile cotton and twill baseball caps have always been the “go to” choice when considering a hat for a branded giveaway, there are other styles and materials that should  be looked at when the cold weather hits.

Hats, as a category, enable advertisers to place their logo or marketing message in an ideal position for maximum exposure.  So why not take advantage of that exposure on hat styles that appeal to all ages and demographics?  There are fabrics that offer performance features like extra warmth or moisture wicking; and there are styles that appeal specifically to certain audiences, such as hunters, women, youth markets, golfers and sports enthusiasts.  A few examples:

  • Wool cable knit beanies come in a variety of styles from standard knit skull cap to those that offer ear flaps and pom poms.  They appeal to the youth market, outdoor enthusiasts and those who work outside.
  • Viscose wool herringbone newsboy caps are fashionable hats that never went out of style.  They can be seen on young professionals, corporate executives and youthful city dwellers.
  • Corduroy comes back every year in engineers caps, military caps and modified baseball caps.  These work best with the under-30 crowd, but depending on the cut and style, fashionable consumers of all ages would wear this comfy alternative.
  • Straw hats are available in classic men’s and ladies sun hats, fedoras, visors and cowboy hats.  For summer promotions, this is a popular choice with all age groups.
  • Microfiber caps offer breathability in the hot weather, and some styles are available with SPF ratings for sun protection.  Golfers and sports enthusiasts appreciate this popular cap choice in place of the many other twill caps they most certainly already own.

Depending on your audience and where the hat will be worn, thinking beyond the standard twill ball cap can set your brand apart from all the other companies that give away logo headwear.  Ask for choices – you’ll be surprised at the all the ways that branded hats can fit the bill!