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Here at the Farfromboring Learning Center, we share information about marketing, branding and unique strategies for maximizing promotional opportunities. In working with our clients including some of the most successful brands in the world. we've learned that savvy brand managers are eager to learn about best practices that produce uncommon results.
Likewise, many of the sharpest marketing minds in the business regularly share their keys to success with us; and such nuggets of gold are exactly the types of articles that you'll find here in the Learning Center. If you possess some keen marketing insights that you'd like to share with our online community, we'd love to hear from you!


50 shades of your logo?

What do your logo colors say
about your business?

Never invest in any idea you can't illustrate with a crayon. ~Peter Lynch

it's not news that color evokes our senses and emotions. When you see a bright yellow smiley face symbol, naturally it makes you feel happy and content. On the contrary, a black skull and cross bones is sure to bring on feelings of fear and discomfort.

Studies illustrate the direct effect of how various colors arouse different emotional responses. The vibrant infographic below (Courtesy of huffingtonpost.com) highlights how some of the nation's top box stores, chain restaurants and other highly recognized brands put plenty of thought into the colors they incorporate into logos. This Color Emotion Guide caught our attention upon first glance because it features a number of Farfromboring clients. In working with savvy representatives of big brands, we've become attune to the inferences that colors play in all facets of marketing and advertising.



Let's put it to the test by looking at a few well-known logos that are not represented in the Color Emotion Guide.

Dunkin Donuts uses bold orange and hot pink to conjure up a friendly, cheerful and positive energy.
dunkin-donuts-logo-promo-blog
The blue hue Hilton Hotels uses in its logo awakens feelings of dependability and comfort.

The Fresh Market, a gourmet grocery store, manipulates green to correlate their eco- friendly, peaceful and healthy image.

How Savvy Sales Pros will Communicate with Prospects in 2016


Are you communicating to potential customers like a real person or a robot? In 2016, savvy sales and marketing pros will make smart use of technology yet communicate like actual people. It’s more of what you saw in 2015 – only ampliphied. The customer is in charge. They have lots of choices. So the mass market approach is not going to be successful. A recent Gartner for Marketing Leaders survey on the role of marketing in customer experience found that by 2016, 89% of companies expect to compete mostly on the basis of customer experience, versus 36% four years ago. It’s not new – yet research shows the increased importance of the customer experience. In fact, this marketing and research company says customer experience is the top priority. With customers comparison shopping like never before, you need to take differentiation to a whole new level. Today’s customer relationships are built on trust. Does your company communicate in a style which builds confidence? Are you poised to compete with customers’ enhanced expectations during their buying decision journey? The answers to winning over customers include communicating in personal and real ways – and unique promotional products are part of that mix.

handshake Be Connected
Two billion consumers worldwide will have smart phones by 2016. As a global company, here at Far From Boring we keep an eye on how expanded internet access translates to new and effective marketing opportunities – and you should too. Some predictions say mobile will overtake desktop next year. Is your site mobile friendly? Also, consider spending a bigger portion of your marketing budget on social media where you can talk more personally to customers. Show appreciation for your customers with a stylus pen, a pocket-sized instant charger, or a flash drive. These mobile warriors will thank you for the usefulness of these gifts. Plus, as daily essentials, these items keep you top-of-mind. Even tactics which have been around for decades can be updated with today’s technology. For example, consider the refrigerator magnet. If a pizza shop adds a QR (quick response) code to their magnet, busy parents can simply click their iPhone to see the menu and order a large pepperoni to pick up after the soccer game.

Get Personal
Thanks to social media and analytics, you have a lot more data on your customers than ever before. Knowing favorite sports teams, hobbies and buying habits means you can communicate with customers in a way that truly resonates with them. It enables you to personalize your approach and stay relevant. And it offers the ability to turn one sale into a lifetime relationship. Also, a data driven approach means you can target specific segments of customers. Personalized one-to-one marketing is a requirement – not an option - to acquire and retain loyal customers. The stakes are higher because more emotionally connected customers are driving personal online reviews and can blast word-of-mouth referrals to a worldwide audience.

Communicate like a Real Person
Customer experience will separate the winners from the losers. “Behind every connected device there is a customer. If you don’t provide personalized, smarter and faster service, somebody else will.” That’s the word from the Salesforce World Tour in Washington D.C. in 2015. Sales professionals need to look beyond technology and find ways to communicate the old fashioned way – as real people. When prospects email your company, reply with your name rather than “from faceless corporation.” Personalized emails have higher conversion rates. When you respond on Twitter, include initials so customers know there’s a real person on the other side of the screen. And at some point in the sales process, pick up the phone and call with a quick answer to show you’re responsive. Another way to provide personalized communication throughout the sales process is with a goodie now and then. Thank clients with a candy jar with customized butter mints or a leather tablet stand embossed with their logo or name. At Far From Boring, we practice what we preach. We listen to your marketing goals to tailor unique strategies for communicating with your customers. Call us today – and talk with a real person!
 


Together promotional products work hand in hand with colors and messaging to set the tone about brand messaging.

promo-stress-ball-baseball     promotional-umbrella-hilton     promo-hat-supermarket
When done right, promotional items and the colors they're adorned with will elicit the emotional response that furthers the desired relationship. In the case of brand launches, there's only one chance to make a first and lasting impression. so every detail carries significant weight!

Mere color, unspoiled by meaning, and unallied with definite form, can speak to the soul in a thousand different ways.
Oscar Wilde



Unique Promotional Gifts - Why pens are an oldie but a goodie


How can such a common promotional product be unique? Research proves pens are the most popular promotional item plus they have one of the highest returns on your marketing dollar thats why.

Take this example from a Far From Boring customer. A Florida law firm purchased logoed pens as a corporate gift and were happy with their results. Yet when one attorney vacationed in Italy, he was astounded to see the broad reach of his companys branding efforts. After enjoying cocktails at a Venice bar, the waiter handed him a tray with the bill and a pen. Guess whose logo he saw on the pen? Yes, this well-traveled pen had somehow flown across the Atlantic and made it full-circle back to the attorney.

promotional pens

This story illustrates what weve learned through research about unique promo products. In the Advertising Specialty Institute (ASI) 2014 Global Advertising Specialties Impressions Study, the organization conducted thousands of in-person interviews with businesspeople and students to find out what items had the most impact. ASI talked with consumers in key cities across North America, Canada, Europe and Australia asking them to rate up to three promotional items they had received in the last year. Writing instruments were the most popular with over half (56%) of consumers in the U.S. saying they were given at least one in the prior year.

Also ASIs cost analysis rated pens the best value. The cost per impression is less than 1/10th of a cent in the United States. The study found the top reason for keeping any promo product is its usefulness which explains the power of the practical pen.

Heres a look at the four reasons behind the popularity of pens:

*Staying Power: Despite the rise in mobile devices, people still need to jot down notes. Does anyone have a pen? is still a frequently asked question. So pens are passed around a lot. In fact, industry estimates are that the average pen travels through nine hands in its lifetime. Technology is not replacing the pen anytime soon. Would Stephen King churn out bestsellers any faster on a computer? Doesnt matter. King prefers paper and a Waterman Fountain pen.

*Pass the Pen: Pens are borrowed and passed around more than other promotional products which greatly increases their long-term exposure. Giving a prospect a pen is an effortless way to break the ice and start a conversation. At trade shows, handing visitors a fun and functional pen increases traffic to your booth. Re-gifting is sometimes frowned on but with pens, its an accepted practice. Pens are a universal item which are easy to share - so they have mobility and no demographic or geographic barriers.

*Worth every Penny: Pens offer one of the lowest cost per views. If you look at a cost analysis of pens and exposure rates, youll find even smaller businesses can afford this high-impact promo product. Its one of the only marketing tools which allows the little guy to achieve as high an ROI as major corporations. ASI calculated the number of impressions a product makes from multiplying how long a consumer keeps the product by how many people come in contact with it. And the answer for pens is an amazing 2,805 impressions in the U.S. So pens are a cost-effective way to increase name recognition and attract new clients.

*Endless Choices: Pens come in numerous styles, colors and price options. Some pens have extras like a stylus, highlighter or light. There are even talking pens and models which come with a bottle cap opener.

At Far From Boring, youll find one of the largest pen selections online. So get your logo seen by more prospects than youd imagined (maybe even some who say Ciao!). With our branding experience and promotional product expertise, well help you choose the best style of pen to fit your marketing goals.




Promotional Products Impression Study


The chart below reveals, writing instruments were the items most commonly cited, as nearly one-half (49%) of promotional product recipients reported getting at least one in the last 12 months. There are also significant differences by country, as revealed on the chart.

Most Popular by Category

Promotional Product Facts
Staying Power

On average, ad specialty items are kept for nearly six months in the U.S., slightly less time than in other countries. Awards are typically held the longest, for about eight months. Writing instruments are held the shortest amount of time, at just over five months. The length of time items have been kept has stayed about the same since the survey has been conducted.

Length of Time Promotional Products are Kept

One of the advantages promotional products have is that just one item can deliver a message for a far longer time period than other forms of advertising. Advertisers can reinforce their brand or a call to action for an average of nearly six months, and even longer on some products such as outerwear or mugs.

Not for the Garbage Not for the Garbage

Are promotional products that recipients decide not to keep destined for the trash? Not likely. In this year's study, 66% of the respondents in the U.S. said that when they receive a logoed item they don't wish to keep, they give it to someone else.
This is up 15 percentage points from 2008, while those indicating they throw the item away dropped nearly in half, to 16%. About 17% say they file the item away and never notice it again.
Promotional products are not simply thrown away. Items are kept because they're useful, or given to someone who can use them. Advertisers' messages often go beyond the initial target.

As awareness of recycling in the U.S. has become more prevalent, so has the desire to pass along unwanted promotional products.

Usefulness is Key

Consumers will be much more likely to keep a promotional product that is useful, according to the survey. About eight in 10 (81%) of product recipients indicated that an item's usefulness is the primary reason to keep it. In addition, 23% of recipients said they kept an item because it's attractive, and 26% say they keep a promotional product simply because it's "enjoyable to have." In particular, items like writing instruments, USB drives and calendars are more frequently kept because they're useful. Items like awards are kept by 61% of recipients because they're "enjoyable to have." 

The practical applications of promotional products should be stressed. If the product isn't useful then a consumer is much less likely to keep it, with the exception of awards and items like calendars and magnets, which are often also kept because they're attractive and/or contain useful information, such as phone numbers or website addresses.

Recipients' Views on Advertisers

For this section, we asked respondents whether they could identify the advertisers on the promotional items they currently owned. The result: Nearly nine in ten (87%) recipients of promotional merchandise can identify the advertiser on the item. This has been consistent since 2008. As the chart below reveals, of all major product categories, outerwear has the highest recognition of all promotional items: 97% of respondents who have logo-ed outerwear can name the advertiser on the items. Wearables as a whole maintain a very high advertiser awareness rate.

Remember the Advertiser

Distributors who have clients looking to get their company or brand�s name in the marketplace have a compelling reason to suggest advertising specialties as a marketing solution: Promotional product recipients clearly remember the advertisers on the items they receive.

Part of the reason why outerwear has a commanding advertiser recall is that consumers receive fewer jackets and other outerwear items than they do other popular promotional items. And in interviews with our on-the-street researchers, it was obvious that businesspeople consider jackets to be expensive, which helps ensure that they�ll keep them and wear them repeatedly. Distributors looking to present clients with an item of high perceived value that has high advertiser recognition might consider outerwear as an option.

Swaying Options

Over one-half (52%) of the time, ad specialties leave a more favorable impression of the advertiser. This trend was seen across all countries.

How Recipients Feel

Outerwear leaves the most positive impression of the advertiser, as nearly three-quarters (73%) of branded outerwear recipients had a more favorable impression of the advertiser. Drink ware and writing instruments deliver the lowest percentage of positive impressions (47% and 42%, respectively).

All categories of promotional products generate favorable impressions of the advertisers as a whole.

Ad Specialties Generate New Business

When consumers were asked how likely they were to do business with an advertiser they hadn't previously done business with after receiving an item, about 31 percent said they were more likely to do business with them in the future.

Likelyhood of Getting More Business

Some items generate even more goodwill from consumers: For example, about 53 percent of recipients of logo-ed outerwear said they'd be more likely to do business with an advertiser; recipients of USB drives were 43 percent more likely to do business with an advertiser; and bag recipients were 42 percent more likely.

Promotional Products Make an Impression

Most Impressions U.S. Canada Great Britain France

The Cost-Effectiveness of Ad Specialties Cost Effective

Promotional products deliver the same or a better ROI than other forms of media. But when one considers the prohibitive cost of producing radio or television commercials or the cash outlay to buy sufficient Internet advertising, promotional products offer the best value. Promotional products can also be used to more closely target the intended message recipient than mass media. Further, even medium companies can achieve as high an ROI as major corporations by using advertising specialties because even a modest investment delivers superior results.

Advertising specialties occupy a unique space in the advertising and marketing world. Unlike other forms of media, where the advertiser's message is seen as an interruption in what the consumer is trying to do (i.e. watch a TV program or surf the Internet), ad specialties are used by consumers to achieve a goal, like drink coffee, write or wear a shirt. And because the products are kept and used repeatedly, the advertisers are remembered, as is illustrated by the extremely high advertiser recall of most types of items.

In addition, the cost-per-impression is comparable or better than the cost of other forms of media, and even the medium-est marketing budgets can achieve big-budget results using advertising specialties.

Custom Apparel Decoration Locations

Promotions carries thousands of quality apparel items for your company to use as branded give aways, company uniforms or unique client gifts. We provide our clients with several different decorating techniques including screen printing, embroidery, digital full color printing, stain imaging, laser etching, burn out logo technique, laser appliqu', sublimated transfer, patches, heat transfers and many more. There is a perfect apparel decoration method along with the perfect garment for any occasion or event. The chart below shows some of the most popular decoration areas on some popular branded garments like t-shirts, branded polo's, logo-ed sweatshirts, Visors, hats and more.

Decoration Locations

Promotional Products Are The Best Marketing Choice Of All Promotional Bag

There is no shortage of clever advertising and marketing messages these days. If you look around, you are bound to see several each day including, radio, television, billboards, email, banner ads, magazine and newspaper, social media and so on.

Yet the best marketing and most tangable advertising still remains the traditional promotional product. Traditional in that branded products have been around for decades. Best of breed, because gifts with loges on them are useful and appreciated by the recipient. Most of the time these promotional items stay around for a long time and the cost per view becomes incredibly inexpensive.

Why Use Promotional Products?
Want to get your brand noticed? Use promotional products. Want your brand recognized and have people associate with your logo and brand? Promotional items are the way to go. The more people who see and recognize your brand, the more sales and business you will have.

What Is the Best Custom Branded Promotion For Your Company?
This most likely will depend on what type of business you have and what you are trying to say about your company. Budget and audience are also factors when picking the best promotional advertising product. In general, many companies are well suited when they purchase a general promotional product that has a catchy message, picture or logo on it. The more useful your promotional item, the more people will use them and therefore the more eyeballs will see your message. This means you can really dial your message into a geographical area using promo items or have them given away in many locations for larger advertising campaigns.

A well designed and interesting promotional bag like the one we have here can be an amazing eye catching advertisement and even a small budget can be made to promote to many people over and over again. Branded apparel like hats or shirts with logos on them will be worn over and over again making your message a walking billboard. Branded desk accessories like mugs, cell phone holders or desk caddies are an amazing way to remind clients and prospects of your brand and services.

The best part of promotional products is perhaps the diversity of items you can brand and the different ways in which you can distribute them. There are branded advertising products for every budget and every company. A Farfromboring Promo Pro can show you what will work best for all events and occasions.
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