Embrace your inner geek. It will bump up your brand identity.
Getting geeky may be the solution to amp up your B2b marketing. It worked BIG TIME for Portland.
Promotional Products are a great way to better your brand image but often promo swag gets a bad rap.
In fact, some of today’s less informed business to business marketers are of the opinion that the use of promo swag for marketing is an idea that is past its prime. I happen to strongly disagree.
In my expert opinion, it is not the idea or the effectiveness of using promotional swag to build your brand but there are 2 distinct problems with the current way promo is sold that affect their impact and usefulness in promoting your brand.
I cover the reasons for this problem and the possible solutions in the following article.
The first is the average mind-set and challenges of the local promotional products person (oh boy…here comes the hate mail).
They are just not focused on what is trending and on point.
The average promo distributor has access to over 20,000 promo ideas, most of which have been around for decades and are a little tired and done to death. As well, the average age of the local ad specialty distributor is closing in on 58. This is a stat according to the Ad Specialty Institute (ASI), the promotional product industries guiding light.
This age is fine (58), I will be this age one day and some of our best friends are that age. The trouble is not being 58 the trouble comes with a willingness on the part of most 58 year olds and older to find, embrace, understand and sell new trending ideas. It is just not in the average 58-year olds DNA.
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“Most new trends come to life from somewhere in our world’s youth culture!”
Without going into a ton of speculation on my part as to why a 58 year old does or does not embrace or search out new ideas I can firmly say that given decades of observation on my own generation and those who came before that 58 year olds simply do not look for new trends and embrace new ideas as readily as a Millennial!
So, why are you looking to a 58 year old for new trending ideas?
It is very common for the local ad specialty distributors to only sell and promote ideas that they are familiar with. In fact, common terms used by promo veterans include , “he’s a pen and mug guy” or “I specialize in wearables”. These translate into, “I am only comfortable selling a pen or a mug because I understand that idea!” or “I like to sell clothes with your logo on it..things like t-shirts and golf polo’s”.
My observation. New ideas and trends are almost universally found and promoted by a culture of youth. It has always been this way and I think, it will likely always be this way.
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The second problem with the current promotional product sales paradigm is the idea of being on point and on trend with emerging ideas and products. “It takes a lot of energy and intelligence to spot a trend before it becomes outdated, you got to be quick and nimble”.
The big suppliers in the promo business are NOT quick or nimble and they certainly are not trend spotters.
They are experts at warehousing large quantities of pedestrian goods (pens and mugs). The business model of the big suppliers (the source where distributors buy the swag they sell to you ) is a 30 year old business model and predates by decades the internet.
The big supplier model is to sell to distributors products they make the most money on. These products are almost always long standing “evergreen” products such as 3M pads, pens, mugs, swivel usb’s etc, There is nothing interestng about them (IMO).
New Ideas Don’t Make Sense for Big Suppliers.
Big suppliers don’t embrace new ideaas until they have become established ideas. Simply put they do not need trending ideas as they have the boring swag portion of the market cornered.
New ideas and trending ideas take time to find, cultivate a supply chain and to create a bullet-proof delivery to you from the factory floor to your door.
At Tradeshow 8 we have a small team of trend enthusiasts who spend hours each day combing through Kickstarter, Etsy, YouTube and dozens of other sites and blogs looking to spot the next trend. They are, to say the least, a unique group of peeps.
Once a trend is spotted we then work on sourcing it to be made in one of our factories in China and deliver it with your logo on it all at a price you can afford. We are experts at trends!
“It takes a lot of energy and product intelligence to spot an emerging trend”.
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What’s a Savvy B2b Marketer to Do?
As a friend of mine once told me , “When you want a different outcome, think differently!”
If you are looking to pump up the interest with your next tradeshow, b2b marketing initiative or customer appreciation event and if you want the outcome to improve over previous efforts you need to think a little differently. This means sourcing from someone other than your local “pen and mug guy”.
We would be more than happy to help.
Call- 1- 888-908-6932 or email [email protected]
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