As you may remember from my last entry, I figured out that colour was missing in the Corporate World. Bland was THE colour of each and every year! Clients needed to know they had many colour choices.
As time progressed and I was in up to my elbows selling, I also made another discovery. Why is everyone always using the same decorating methods?
Surely there must be a way to step it up a few notches using some interesting ways to imprint.
It is fair to say that technology for imprinting wasn’t as advanced as it is today. It seems every year, suppliers showcase the latest and the greatest ways to imprint a logo and the best part? The integrity of the brand is not compromised.
Now that’s a good thing. It tells me suppliers have done their homework, they’re listening.
I digress…I remember an event planner at a communications company once mentioned to me that people think event planning is easy. She said, “they plan a birthday party and think they can plan an event on a massive scale”. Not so! I never forgot that comment. I, for one, never ever thought that. I couldn’t plan an event to save my life.
Red Scarf executes promos and gifts for planners, but we absolutely don’t plan events. The reason I’m mentioning this is that it’s similar in the promo business.
As the years passed and I was selling consistently, dealing with challenging logos, suppliers who broke promises and products that wouldn’t “behave”, I realized how challenging this industry was, and still is.
We have the same type of people in our industry. We call them “trunk slammers”. They bully their way into a client with every trick in the book, they receive an order for a white mug, print a one colour logo on it and think they’ve mastered the industry.
Those of us who are serious about this business do not work that way. I’m sure, seasoned clients recognize these types of salespeople.
Beware of a vision of watches stacked up their sleeve wearing a trench coat. It is not a pretty picture. Truly a “trinkets and trash” salesperson. Unfortunately, they exist and give this industry a negative reputation.
Why am I mentioning this? Because clients who are serious about their promo and gift purchases, deal with serious promotional product and gift suppliers.
There are many stories of clients ordering from an overseas supplier to purchase a large quantity to save a few bucks, but I have never heard of a happy ending.
The overseas supplier’s “yes” to a royal blue was really a turquoise that was not acceptable and monies paid are long gone. It was all wrong! Who was there to guide the order between supplier and client?
Overseas suppliers reach out after 9 pm, when their business day begins. That’s when business, with all the important details, is hammered out. Conversations are still going on until the wee hours of the morning.
There are many valid reasons why promo distributors are important to your vendor marketing roster.
Another point I would like to make is that you can line up 24 distributors in a row and each one will have a different take on what the industry means to them and how they service a client.
We all have our niches and our specific talents. There are distributors that only sell calendars and pens and are tremendously successful. What works for one distributor doesn’t work for another.
We try very hard to find the best products that possess value and most importantly, we do our best in making it easy for clients to view and select products.
We do the shopping for you and we will not ask you to peruse through countless websites, you don’t have time for that.
Furthermore, most clients do not understand specific jargon that only a promotional products distributor would know.
If you have a page of 40 water bottles, which one would you select? Probably the one that is visually appealing but that may be the wrong choice for your needs.
Self serve is great for some things, but this industry requires careful, strategic planning and an experienced hand. Clients deserve to be serviced from start to finish.
With everything on your plate, why would you want to do this by yourself?
Until next week...