It’s easy to understand why people love personalization. There’s just something about seeing your own name on a promotional product or marketing piece that makes you feel special. But there are real psychological factors behind our personalization preference. A study from the University of Texas attributes information overload and desire for control as two key factors. (more…)
Bankers Advertising Articles
The holidays are a time to celebrate your customers, associates, and employees who have contributed to your success. Food gifts draw attention, are affordable, and appeal to all people.
Food gifts are the #1 holiday business gift.
- Make your holiday food gift-giving convenient. Instead of sending an employee to a retail store or spending time on the internet trying to find the right gifts, you can purchase your business gifts from Bankers.
- Keep it fresh! Fresher gifts taste better (and say something nice about the sender). Our gifts are packed to order just before the order is shipped, not made up many months in advance like so many gifts from mail-order and retail giants.
- Promote your company’s brand on your gift! When your recipient opens their gift, the first thing they’ll see is your logo. Your logo or message is included on every gift.
On Monday, Aug. 10, a derecho (essentially an inland hurricane) barreled through the Midwest, leveling some of its worst damage, with sustained 100+ mph winds, as it passed over Eastern Iowa, including Iowa City, where Bankers HQ is located. We were largely spared — some staff were left without power at home, some lost trees, but our office is unscathed. We were lucky enough to keep power and internet service, although many in our city remained without for several days.
Just half an hour North of here, where a few of our suppliers are located, as well as several of our sales partners and customers, the situation is a lot more grim. The entire city of Cedar Rapids lost power. Many are still, two weeks later, without internet, and cell service is spotty. Lines at the few working gas stations were hours long that first week. Sales partners and customers across the state of Iowa have been affected to varying degrees by the wide swathe of the storm.
When friends and neighbors are facing devastation like that, it’s easy to feel helpless. It’s the same feeling we all feel, as a nation, as we trudge through month five of the COVID-19 pandemic. But feeling helpless, while entirely natural, gets us nowhere. I am a member of Delta Gamma sorority from my long-ago college years, and our motto is Do Good. I think of that motto frequently in these times of tragedy upon tragedy. It’s so simple, but it’s our best, and often only, choice. And one powerful way to do good is through promo.
It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Wait, what? Are there holidays happening, too? No, I mean the Pantone Color of the Year announcement! Every year, the color mavens at the New Jersey-based Pantone Color Institute analyze trends and dive deep into art, culture, and lifestyle around the world to arrive at their pronouncement for Color of the Year, a hue that then goes on to spark its own trends and influence a multitude of different industries, including fashion, industrial design, and of course: promo!
Pantone made their 2020 announcement this year early evening of Dec. 4, right around the time when the normally softer sky deepens and darkens to just this shade: PANTONE 19-4052 Classic Blue. The elegant and emotive color of twilight will be everywhere we turn next year, and I for one couldn’t be happier! It’s just a titch lighter than our beloved Bankers blue, but we can forgive that.
In their announcement, Pantone calls the color “timeless and enduring.” Blue certainly has had a host of connotations over the years, from honesty and trust to calm and concentration. A 2012 University of Maryland study showed that 42 percent of men and 29 percent of women chose blue as their favorite color (the highest percentage of any color for both). Studies going as far back as 1941 have shown the same, a 2017 Artsy article claimed, going so far as to call it “the world’s favorite color.”
For Pantone’s part, they see it as both “reassuring” and “thought-provoking,” banking on their Classic Blue to “bring a sense of peace and tranquility to the human spirit.” They believe that it will resonate with “our desire for a dependable and stable foundation on which to build as we cross the threshold into a new era.”
Pantone Color Institute Executive Director Leatrice Eiseman doubles down on these ideas with her ode to Classic Blue: “We are living in a time that requires trust and faith,” the announcement quotes her. “It is this kind of constancy and confidence that is expressed by PANTONE 19-4052 Classic Blue, a solid and dependable blue hue we can always rely on. Imbued with a deep resonance, Classic Blue provides an anchoring foundation. A boundless blue evocative of the vast and infinite evening sky, Classic Blue encourages us to look beyond the obvious to expand our thinking; challenging us to think more deeply, increase our perspective and open the flow of communication.”
That’s a tall call for a color, but Classic Blue seems more than up to the task. And it’s certainly comforting to have both a clear vision and clear skies to look ahead to in 2020. Such a classic color also will be straightforward to find in products, making it easy to integrate into promo marketing programs right away.
And it’s perfect for the season. You can even get a head start on next year and have a “Blue Christmas” in a few weeks!
Sommarøy is attempting to abolish time.
No, that’s not the name of the newest Marvel supervillain. Nor is it the newest trend in anti-aging skin care regimens. Sommarøy is an island off the northern edge of Norway, in the Norwegian Sea, and earlier this month, the town council of the tiny island’s lone village petitioned the country’s government to allow them to be time-free, claiming that, with 69 days of continuous sunshine each year, the island’s 300-some residents got used to going about their lives however they saw fit, and they felt that the structure of time simply got in their way.
Or so it was reported.
In reality, time-free Sommarøy was a tidbit of genuine fake news, cooked up by Innovation Norway, an organization owned by Norway that serves to promote business development for the country. Makes sense when you think about it, doesn’t it? Because while the idea of living without time was a brilliant bit of marketing, it’s a lot less tenable as a way of life.
Time can feel like it’s a weight, a pressure, a bother. But when we get into the weeds of just what life would be like without it — a thought experiment many indulged in when “news” of Sommarøy broke — it turns out to be a lot messier. Time is how we track things. Everything. And, it turns out, tracking things is one of the key elements to success.
A recent Inc. article with the deceptively mundane title “How to Lose Twice As Much Weight, Backed By Science” spun off of a collection of research about logging food. One study, author Jeff Haden claimed, showed that people who tracked what they ate three or more times per day, consistently, were most successful in losing weight. Another, Haden said, measured that success concretely as a loss of almost twice as much for those who kept a food diary over those who did not. And it didn’t matter what they logged or where or how precisely. It only mattered that they did it.
This is due, Haden argued, to the Hawthorne effect. Based on a 1924-32 study at the Western Electric Company’s Hawthorne Works factory complex in Cicero, Illinois, the Hawthorne effect is the impact that the simple fact of being observed can have on a subject. While the original study was carried out to determine whether different lighting or different rest periods could have an effect on worker productivity, what it found was that worker productivity increased, it seemed, simply because they knew they were part of a study.
Physicists know this as the observer effect, and it was being discussed right around the same time as the study at Hawthorne Works, as quantum theory was in its nascent stages. On the smallest scale, just being observed can change the behavior even of the smallest subdivisions of matter.
When we are observed, our behavior changes — even, as the weight loss studies show, when we ourselves are doing the observing. And accurate observation requires consistency and time.
“Those are some fun anecdotes you’ve strung together,” you may be thinking. “But what’s it got to do with me? I’m not moving to Norway or trying to lose weight.”
Well, tracking and consistency are fundamentally important to success, no matter what endeavor you’re pursuing.
In that Inc. article, Haden told a story he recalled about Jerry Seinfeld. The comedian shared, in an old Lifehacker article, that when he was first starting out, he determined that the way to improve was to write a new joke each day. So he got a large wall calendar (we can help you with those!) and put a red X over each day after he’d written his joke.
“Success,” Haden wrote, “is based on staying the course and doing the right things, the right way, over and over.”
This advice is applicable to business as well as personal endeavors. What goals do you have for your business at the moment? Are you pursuing something countable, like outreach to customers? Determine a target number for each day, then log it and track it. Trying to establish a new tradition, like employee recognition? Log and track each time you accomplish the short-term goal. (And if you’re looking for a prospective client gift or recognition award: Yeah, we’ve got that!)
Haden’s conclusion: “Don’t assume knowing automatically leads to doing. Logging leads to doing. And leads to a much greater chance of success — which naturally leads to kick-starting your own ripple effect of improvement.”
Observe yourself. Observe your business. You’ll be amazed by what changes.
Are you buying books? Did you know we offer branded books from all your favorite authors and themes? We can easily add your logo and personal page to any book.
We have access to:
- Every published book
- More than 3 million titles available
- Every Title. Every Author.
- Every Budget, Every Theme
Branded books make great gifts for everyone. If you are looking for a unique gift that appeals to everyone no matter what your demographics are….then think books.
Never Thrown Away
Books are something that people will treasure. They are read, discussed, displayed and shared.
The right book will reinforce your key messages and themes with intelligence and credibility.
More than Just a Logo
Books offer space for dramatic customization. Promo-Pages can feature full color artwork, detailed messaging, photos, contact information and more!
Educational and Entertaining
Books provide an experience that stay with people. They create a lasting bond with your brand. People will remember your company every time they think about the book and the message and feeling they received.
Look to Bankers Advertising for creative ideas to promote your brand or message. We can provide suggestions for every audience, every theme and every budget. We provide novel and notable promotions. From coffee table books, cookbooks, puzzle books, business books, quotation books, children books and leisure – we have access to books.
Coloring allows you to relieve stress and unlock creativity you may have not known you had. As psychologist Antoni Martínez explains: “I recommend it as a relaxation technique. We can use it to enter a more creative, freer state. I recommend it in a quiet environment, even with chill music. Let the color and the lines flow.”
Here are some ways coloring can make you a happier person.
Improve concentration. Our concentration is often incredibly split between work, home, electronics etc. When you sit down and focus on one thing, like coloring, it improves your ability to focus elsewhere.
Release your inner creativity. Adults who color are more likely to approach problems with a clearer mind and find better and faster solutions.
It improves your motor skills. You’ll be using a lot of hand-eye coordination.
Get rid of negativity. When you color, you focus on what you’re doing and you just sort of naturally release tension and unconscious negativity that you’re carrying around.
RESULT: An overall decrease in your anxiety and stress.
Ben Michaelis, a psychologist, says, “There is a long history of people coloring for mental health reasons. Carl Jung used to try to get his patients to color in mandalas at the turn of the last century, as a way of getting people to focus and allow the subconscious to let go. Now we know it has a lot of other stress-busting qualities as well.”
Having a cruddy day? Get out those crayons and colored pencils and start coloring! Check out our coloring book options here.
As we get closer to Christmas, it has me thinking about good ole Santa Claus. Jolly St. Nick has created one of the most famous and loved brands around the world. No matter your age or where you live, we all can’t wait for Santa to come. I think we can all learn a few things from the big guy, in my opinion he is a master marketer.
Santa has a solid brand, raving fans, is trustworthy and continues to grow his Christmas Empire! He isn’t just for children, every person likes to feel a little Christmas magic. Marketing Secrets from Santa Claus: Recognizable Brand Everyone knows who Santa is. People get excited when they think, hear or see Santa. They know what Santa stands for. Santa’s brand is recognizable all year long from his red suit, belly laugh, snow white beard, shiny black boots and his jolly “Ho, Ho, Ho!”. Santa’s message is known by all. What are you known for?
It’s important that your customers easily recognize you and your brand. Customers need to know what you do and who you are. Who doesn’t think of Santa and smile? He always surprises and delights us. Remember to find that “something extra” and leave your customers smiling.
Be Reliable –
Keep Promises Santa Claus is coming to town. Most of us wake up Christmas morning, year after year, to see what Santa has left for us. Every year, no matter what, Santa doesn’t let us down. It doesn’t matter where we are or what is happening in the world, Santa is there. Now is the time to ask ourselves – how reliable are we? Like expectant children on Christmas morning, our customers have high expectations of us and it’s our job to deliver. Remember – don’t do things halfway. Commit, be reliable and dedicate yourself or step away. Suggestion – make it a habit of asking your customers if they’ve ever been disappointed in your service. What areas can you improve upon, what services or products would they like you to offer?
Build Lists –
Santa’s making a list and checking it twice! He finds out who is naughty and nice. This reminds us that it’s always important to make a list of our clients. Do you have a naughty and nice list? Which clients are easy and fun to work with vs the clients that are difficult and never satisfied? By making a list and fully understanding each client, this will help you know which customers are the most profitable and should be focused on. Santa rewards for good behavior. Maybe you should too.
Sell More Than Your Product –
Santa sells more than just presents. He sells hope, cheer, happiness and the desire to be good. He inspires us all. In your branding efforts, you should be selling more than products. You have a whole bag of presents for your customers. Remember to let your customers know what’s in your big red bag. Most importantly….remember to sell you! Santa’s Team – Elves and 8 Reindeer Santa wouldn’t be Santa without his team. Do you think he would be able to read all those letters, be painstakingly reliable or jolly and bright if he didn’t have a team to help him with all his Christmas responsibilities? Of course not, that is what a great team behind you is all about. Bankers enjoys being part of your team. No one ever built an empire alone…not even Santa. Be sure to use all of the branding resources we have available to help you prosper in the New Year. As we head into the New Year, think about Santa and learn from the best, implement the right tools and strategies and you will soon be creating your own world of magic.
Trade shows and exhibitions provide businesses and organizations with a unique opportunity to see a large number of people, face-to-face in a short amount of time. It allows for personal interaction with their brand and to hear their story. Over the past few years, reports from the Center of Exhibition Industry Research (CEIR) state attendees come to these events intending to buy. They found that 91% of visitors feel that they get more useful buying information by attending a show and that 75% buy as a result of the information gathered at the event.
Get started with a pre-show mailing. A recent study indicates that 76% of attendees plan their booth visits in advance. Don’t forget the promotional item as a gift for stopping by either. Booth traffic can increase up to 30% with a pre-show mailing offering a promotional item as a gift for stopping by.
Your staff at the show is the face of the company and will be the first impression of your brand. It’s important that your team has a brand conscious, professional look and an easily identifiable uniform.
Giveaways, traditionally a sample or a promotional item, are almost expected at trade shows. A relevant, unique and fun item can create a buzz around your customer’s booth.
After the event is where the money is made and, according to the CEIR, 80% of exhibitors do nothing. After investing in attending an event, it would be a tragedy to waste the effort and expense by not following up on the leads and contacts made. As your Bankers consultant to help you create a thank you package or mailer so you can “strike while the iron is hot”.
Remember, your consultant can help you with signage, displays, apparel (uniform), lanyards & badges, totes, giveaways and more. Browse ideas here.
Here’s to a successful Tradeshow Season!