My good friend,Jeff Batson, posted some interesting questions on commonskulast week that got my brain moving. In short, there were four queries Jeff posed as it relates to the promotional products industry and I thought it would be interesting to answer those questions in a blog post in an attempt to spur additional conversation.
Jeff's questions and my answers are below. Please feel free to add your comments in the dialog box as this little experiment in blog posting will only be as robust as the number of people who participate.
How do you define a promotional product, a premium product, fundraising product, print product, and retail product?
Promotional Product – private label merchandise that incorporates or otherwise showcases the logo/brand of a 3rd party client for the purpose of marketing the business of the 3rd party client.
Premium Product – merchandise, generally high-end with recognizable brand names, that may or may not showcase the logo/brand of a 3rd party client for the purposes of marketing the business of the 3rd party client or gift giving.
Fundraising Product – may be either promotional or premium products used to drive donations and/or raise awareness. Generally used in association with nonprofit entities.
Print Product – technically, any product that is printed is a “printed product.” As it pertains to the promotional products industry, a printed product is generally a paper-based product such as a flyer, pamphlet, or booklet.
Retail Product – any product that is chiefly available for purchase through retail stores. These products are not able to be customized with a logo or brand.
As a supplier, to what markets is it appropriate to sell?
To maintain the integrity of the supply chain, suppliers should focus on selling to promotional products distributors. While there is no formalized agreement that prevents suppliers from selling directly to consumers, it is in the best interests of all parties to maintain the supply chain until market conditions or other outside forces dramatically and negatively impact supplier profitability.
As a distributor, to what markets is it appropriate to sell?
It is appropriate for distributors to sell to any market where they feel their promotional merchandise solutions will add value
Define our industry and, if you are a manufacturing supplier, is that definition limiting?
The promotional products industry provides logoed and branded merchandise solutions to organizations of every size and shape, allowing them to effectively deliver their respective marketing messages directly to their target audience.
Again, to really have a meaningful dialog, I would like as much participation as possible. Don’t worry, no one is grading the answers nor is anyone judging. The purpose of this is to foster communication and, as an industry, take some responsibility for how we are viewed.