Monday, February 24, 2014

Incentives West partners with Next Products in the West

PPAI: 255687 - UPIC: NEXTPRO - SAGE: 67367 - ASI: 73871 – Distributor Central: 135015

February, 2014

NEXT Products of Shelbyville, Indiana announced that Mark Shinn, MAS and Mary Bieker of Incentives West has joined their team as their Western States representatives.

NEXT Products, celebrating its 10th Year Anniversary, specializes in decorating items with its full digital color N-Dome ™ process, mouse pads and counter mats, and a wide assortment of drink ware including its Shelby Tumbler ™: molded with rings, made in the USA, and constructed of Tritan ™. NEXT is also excited to offer Gerber ® knives for the first time in 2014. Having experienced 30% growth in 2013, NEXT is excited to have Mark and Mary Jo expand their line.

Mark Shinn, MAS, began servicing Suppliers and Distributors in 2000, after more than 15 years in the industry. He's here to help with new products and ideas visiting accounts, exhibiting at key Regional Shows and Rep Showcases. He can be reached at or 866.601.8958.
Mary Jo Bieker also bring over 20 years experience as a distributor while supporting distributor needs. She can be reached at or 206.498.5820

Additional information may be found at: , and

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Earthday 2013 is April 22nd - No Better time to talk about Eco Apparel and the bluesign® standard

Monday April 22nd, is Earth Day.

The Annual Date is set aside for people all over the Planet to pause and take note of how our individual activities affect our Planet. Here is some background.

14 Years ago, I was charged with building a program for promos to help the Earth Day Network, to help build awareness as a part of their first company store.  At the time, there were very limited options besides some bamboo clothing, and hemp bags.

Today there are hundreds of products that have unique components that are eco friendly.

Boardroom Eco Apparel Boardroom has developed safe, environmentally friendly and socially compliant Supply Chain to deliver a standard in Eco Apparel for Promotional Markets beyond compare.

The bluesign® standard guarantees that along the entire production chain products only contain components and pass through processes that are harmless to people and the environment. At the same time, the principle of maximum resource efficiency leads to a reduced environmental footprint. Investing in the most environmentally sustainable products available will in the future represent an increasingly important investment in long-term consumer confidence. Ecological safety is becoming an ever more critical quality factor worldwide, and is a decisive factor for a company’s or a brand’s image and hence its success.

Companies large and small, from McDonalds, Coca Cola to Hi Tech startups are relying on Boardroom Eco Apparel, to help pronounce their company message, that they want to be quality stewards of our planet through their apparel programs.

For More information, visit.

Now make plans to help out in your community for Earth Day 2013.  There are thousands of projects around the world and over 1 Billion people will be participating this year.

One way you can be a part of this is to go out and share the Eco Boardroom Story with you Clients.  When they choose the Eco Friendly Products they will be playing their part along the way too, all year long.

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Sometimes You Need an Earthquake to Shake your Business Up

They say that sometimes, you need to "Shake Things Up."

On this day, February 28th, 2001, the Greater Puget Sound suffered one of the strongest Earthquakes in recent decades.  A 6.8 in Global Standards is not big, but this one sure shook up many businesses and homes that day.

I myself was starting out on one of my first business Road Trips to our PMANC Regional Showcase in Monterey, CA.  Our Airplane at SeaTac, had just closed the front door, and we thought we were "pushing back."  When we looked out the window, and noticed baggage handlers stumbling and dropping luggage, we then knew we were experiencing "Ground Turbulence."   We were out, luckily, the next day and still had a great event.

Today, is the 4th day of our Industry's weeklong initiative to "Shake things up" and reach out to our Members of Congress and local representatives to inform them on the influence and Power of Promotional Products.  Promotional Products Work Week.

Employing well over 500,000 individuals, in nearly 10,000 companies and contributing nearly $20 Billion to the National Economy through mostly small businesses.  

Washington State alone has over 650 Companies, employing over 6500 people and amounting to over $1.1 Billion to the local economy.  And beyond that, most all of this, is used to promote 10's of thousands of small businesses, and Fortune 500 companies, such as Boeing, Starbucks, Microsoft, Nintendo, Amazon and many more.

Whether people notice closely or not, Promotional Products include the Fan Wear you follow your local Pro, College and High-School Teams with.  The tools you many times use at Team Meetings and Conferences, The Safety Awareness items that keep manufacturing teams safe at work, the Toys your kids love to enjoy with their Happy Meal, and the License Frame on your car that support your Honor Student or University.

Now, What your doing to promote your Company,  Brands and Innitiatives?

Promotional Products Work!

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Promotional Product Work - Who Buys? Here are some Examples

Q: Who Buys Promotional Products?
A: The following ranks the top 10 purchasers of promotional products according
to the findings of a study by Louisiana State University and Glenrich Business Studies. Industries
were ranked by distributors according to the volume spent on promotional products by each industry.
1. Education: Schools, Seminars
2. Financial: Banks, Savings & Loan Companies, Credit Unions, Stock Brokers
3. Health Care: Hospitals, Nursing Homes, Clinics
4. Not-for-Profit Organizations
5. Construction: Building Trades, Building Supplies
6. Government: Public Offices, Agencies, Political Candidates
7. Trade, Professional Associations and Civic Clubs
8. Real Estate: Agents, Title Companies, Appraisers
9. Automotive: Manufacturers, Dealers, Parts Suppliers
10. Professional: Doctors, Lawyers, CPAs, Architects, etc
MicroBuff Tab / Re-positionable Cleaner for Smartphones from Handstands

Working Today on a number of Projects, while reaching out to a local University to schedule a presentation to their Marketing Students on the Value of Promotional Products.

All - Terrain Wagon From Seven Sourcing

From Screen Cleaners to All-Terrain Wagons, Custom Sublimated Ladies Polos, Caps for a Golf Tournament, Sanitizers and Wine Cabinets . . .Our Distributor Sales Teams are presenting to their clients, Fine Examples of how Promotional Products Work.

Pocket Hand Sanitizer from Natural Trends

Custom Sublimated and Embroidered Polo from Boardroom Eco Apparel

Custom Cap from Cap America


Monday, February 25, 2013

Promotional Products Work! And here are some stats as to why you can count on them to Deliver ROI!

Enhance Marketing Campaigns
Adding a promotional product to the media mix generated favorable attitudes
toward a print ad in all cases. The use of a promotional product as the
advertising medium alone achieved maximum impact, up to 69% increasing
brand interest and 84% in creating a good impression of the brand.
Positive Impact On Brand Image
Recipients of promotional products have a significantly positive opinion of a
business through:
• Increase in positive overall image
• More positive
perception of the business
• Higher likelihood of recommending the business
•Higher likelihood of patronizing the business
Source: PPAI Study: Promotional Products Impact On Brand/Company Image Conducted by Georgia
Southern University
Gifts That Keep On Giving
58% of respondents keep a promotional product anywhere from one year to
more than four years. Even if the recipient uses the item only once per week,
that’s a minimum of 52 impressions made over the course of a year with the
possibility of more than 208 during a five-year window.
Source: PPAI Study: Effectiveness of Promotional Products As An Advertising Medium

Monday, February 18, 2013

Sanitizer Products highly recommended by CDC to help keep Flu Away

Center For Disease Control advocates Sanitizers

This year's flu season has been especially harsh in the U.S., with senior citizens hospitalized because of influenza at the highest rate since 2008, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). While the flu vaccine is about 62% effective at preventing influenza, CDC officials recommend frequent hand washing or using hand sanitizer to prevent the spread of germs.

According to ASI . . . .Last month, there were 63,000 searches for antibacterial products on ESP, a year-over year increase of 42%.

As institutions, hospitals and companies look to keep their teams healthly, more and more are turning to the Original Sani-Spray from Natural Trends.

 Click Here To Learn More of the "Story of the Original Sani-Pen.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Solid Reasons to Pay your Staff to Use Social Media

This time of year, companies review their year, including their staff duties and staff levels.  More and more, HR Managers and Sr. Managers are deciding: Should we pay our staff to engage in Social Media?

More companies are employing teams to Manage and Engage on Social Media

Ryan Holmes, CEO of Hootsuite says yes, and here are his 3 Reasons Why:

1. It helps you hire better people.

This fosters community among job hunters and staff right from the start,  and highering companies get to know candidates on a more personal level.

2. Social media breaks down old hierarchies in the workplace.  

Social media has also been an equalizer in our companies—closing the gap between management and entry level.  A high percentage new hires are internal referrals, and this is due to the dialogue amoung employees on social.


3. It empowers employees to become brand evangelists.

At the end of the day, your staff are your best brand advocates.

Ryan Holmes, CEO of HootSuite

Do you Employ Staff to assist in your Social Media Mission?

Now may be the time, to get your team Engaged for many of the Solid reasons above.

- Mark