We All Just Wanna Have Sun

sunglassesSpring and summer weather brings sunshine (finally!), and as we greet the warm rays, everyone will be reaching for their sunglasses.  That inevitable need for stylish eye protection gives every company the opportunity to showcase their brand in a subtle, but effective way.

When appealing to the customer demographics that are unique to your products or services, you have the advantage of many different styles of sunglasses that will resonate with that target market.  Aviator, wayfarer, clubman – even heart shape – are all styles that can be customized in a way that reflects your exclusive corporate spirit.  With a minimum of 500 pieces and production time of 30 days, the frame colors can be Pantone color-matched and the logo decoration can be added to multiple locations on the glasses, including the lens, frame and arms.

Even for smaller quantities and shorter lead times, there are multiple fashion color choices and fun decorating options.  The logo imprint can go on the arms, or for a unique, amusing effect, a see-through, full-color sticker can be applied to the lens.

As the weather gets warmer and the sun gets brighter, advertise a bright idea, sun safety message, or company outing with custom sunglasses.  If the glasses are of a reasonable quality and the design is not clownish, your customers will wear them and your brand message will be delivered.  It’s a great way to get on board with the season!



China Bans Foreign Waste – Time To Get Serious About Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

bottle wasteThe U.S. exports about one-third of its recycling, and nearly half goes to China.  For decades, China has used recyclables from around the world to supply its manufacturing boom.  But it has recently declared that the waste coming from other countries includes too many other non-recyclable materials that are “dirty”, even “hazardous”.  Therefore, in an effort to  develop their country more like a world power rather than the world’s dumping ground, China has instituted strict restrictions on the amount and type of recyclable waste it will accept.

What does that have to do with corporate branding efforts?  In a world that has dwindling  options for all the trash that is created, corporations trying to increase brand awareness while supporting a cleaner planet can win on both fronts.  Distributing logo products that promote less trash, like refillable beverage cups and bottles; reusable acrylic or stainless steel straws; and non-woven grocery totes is both responsible stewardship of our earth and savvy marketing foresight.

Many popular promotional products are available in biodegradable materials that are easy to recycle – balloons, pens, bags, and coffee cups to name a few.  Other products like lunch coolers, drink coasters and reusable sandwich bags promote reducing and reusing rather than relying on throw-away packaging.  These items are an example of how the world of branded merchandise is responding to the need, and the market demand, for more eco-friendly options.

Keeping and using an item with a corporate logo increases brand awareness and improves customer loyalty – the ROI is clear.  Distributing environmentally conscious products helps to reduce waste – the benefit to the planet is clear.  It’s time to get serious – ask about products that protect your brand and the earth at the same time.





The Story Behind The Product

8710cotton_plantWhen considering product choices for corporate branding, the trend is as much about the story behind the product, as the product itself.  Consumers are questioning if they are manufactured in a responsible way, can they be recycled, is it USA made.

From cotton apparel to electronics, whatever brands do to embrace the consumers growing demand for more information on the products they receive, will help build brand loyalty.   It is more important than ever for corporate buyers to consider products that will engage their customers with things to think about and stories that will inspire them.

One of my favorite stories comes from the USA manufacturer of casual cotton clothing, American Apparel.   Founded in 1989, with manufacturing based in Los Angeles, it is one of the few clothing companies exporting USA made goods.  To its credit, it promotes labor policies that excludes use of clothing manufactured in sweatshops, and with the current worldwide attention on the horrors of the Bangladesh clothing factories, this story is one that will resound with every person who receives that branded t-shirt.

Another example of a product supplier with a story worth telling is Gary Line, a manufacturer of plastic molded products such as bike bottles, stadium cups and ice scrapers.  Since the 1960’s, long before recycled products became such an industry trend, they used trimmings and rejects from their molding department to produce recycled products.  Today, using both their own waste and other post-consumer recycled plastics in their USA manufacturing process, Gary Line can offer products that support a cleaner environment and a facility that fosters the call for more USA made merchandise.

These stories, and all the subtle facts behind the other branded products that are distributed to increase brand awareness, could be just the thing that differentiates your t-shirt or bike bottle from the dozens of other logo products every consumer receives.  Your ability to get people thinking about more than just the giveaway, will also make your brand more interesting.  Next time you’re in the market for promotional merchandise, ask about the story behind the product!