Archive for the Opinions & Comments Category

Trump Knows A Thing Or Two About getting His Message Heard

Posted in Memory Hook Ideas, Opinions & Comments on January 30, 2017 by Richard

Love him or loath him, but you have to admit that Trump knows a thing or two about getting his message heard, and his primary vehicle seems to be the social media platform Twitter. Twitter – the ‘marmite’ of all the social media platforms, has come of age. Often decried for only giving you 140 characters to put your message across, Twitter is the medium of choice for the president of the USA. His choice – his words – and he’s certainly causing a stir in the global news with his messages.

Getting Your Message Heard The Trump Way

Getting Your Message Heard The Trump Way

But what can we learn from this, and why is it that some businesses use social media, and others don’t? This is a question that applies to both sides of the marketplace – b2b and b2c. Some businesses embrace the medium, whereas others don’t. Given that ALL businesses need to ‘reach’ and be heard by their respective markets, one has to assume that for those of you who aren’t, you must have impressive (alternative) solutions? Perhaps you have a telemarketing team? Physical samples being mailed out? Maybe a warehouse full of brochures that you regularly mail? Then of course there’s the trade shows, e-shots and maybe even an account manager or two at your disposal?

To be a success in any market, you have to stay engaged with your client base, staying in touch and keeping them informed, but with such a huge market to reach, how do you give your ‘message’ the best possible chance of reaching the maximum number of clients? These ‘touches’ are often referred to as ‘touchpoints’. According to Wikipedia, a touchpoint can be defined as: any way a consumer can interact with a business, whether it be person-to-person, through a website, an app or any form of communication. When consumers come in contact with these touchpoints it gives them the opportunity to compare their prior perceptions of the business and form an opinion thus influencing the decision-making process. Touchpoints are ways for a brand to reach out to its’ target market.

It’s a widely held belief in marketing circles that it takes SEVEN touch points before a prospect will engage with you. So, if all you do is an annual mail-out of your company brochure, then sit back and wait, it’ll take seven years!!! Seriously, this is where social media can truly come into play, so, should you commence social media-ing?

It’s all about TWO things:
1: Is your audience there?
2: Will you commit to doing it?

Is your audience there?
We all know there’s millions of people on social media, so doesn’t that confirm your audience is there? Well, yes and no. It’s all in the ‘your’ word I guess. If you consider all of the various social media platforms that are trending right now, they all have a different audience composition. Some are fun, some serious, some appeal to a younger market, some older, some are visual, some are wordy, etc etc. 1st things first, assess/analyse your own business and identify your perfect audience. Then do your research of the various social media platforms. You don’t need to be on all of them, just those that are right for your business.

Will you commit to doing it?
Let me be clear – social media isn’t easy. I think of social media as the Ikea of available options. You go to the store as it seems to be a one-stop-shop for solutions. It’s cheap. But, you have to wheel the monstrously heavy item to the till, then to your car (how will it fit), get it home and up the stairs, then you have to follow weird instructions to construct it. If you’re lucky you build it properly 1st time!! Maybe it wasn’t as cheap as you thought. Social Media can feel like this. It will take time and effort and will almost certainly fail if dabbled with.

“The reason social media is so difficult for most companies is that it’s a process, NOT an event” – Seth Godin

I’ve seen plenty of social media profiles where businesses have put their logo up, a few words about their business, and then posted a few things. Then the trail goes cold. NOTHING shouts out louder that yours is a company totally NOT interested in social media than this kind of half-hearted attempt. So, please, please, please – assess this before you leap in.

Oh, and by the way, I’d really like it if you followed me on Follow me on Twitter!!!!

Customer Care

Posted in Opinions & Comments, Promotional Gifts with tags , , , , , on July 27, 2016 by Richard

The world or Promotional Gifts is a busy one – full of quotes to clients, or prospective/new clients, looking for a price on all manner of corporate give-aways.

Getting to grips with how much an item is, is influenced by several factors: How many do you want, how many colours do you want me to print onto them, how many positions do you want me to print, and how quickly do you need them? Clients often don’t know the answers, they’re just checking ‘what if’s’, so we do our best, we quote, we check you’ve received the quote, the client asks for a sample, we send a sample, then we check they’ve received the sample, then we re-quote, then we check you’ve received everything, and then – it all goes quiet!!! Nothing – SILENCE.

So finding the right balance – of keeping in touch as opposed to pestering our clients is quite a challenge.

It’s a challenge that we work hard at, and frequently receive compliments about our ‘non pushy’ style – take a look at our ELVIS video, where the RT Promotions team re-worded an Elvis song to show our customers how much we care. You could say – All I needed to know about customer care I learnt from Elvis.

How To Select The Right Promo Gift For Your Business

Posted in Memory Hook Ideas, Opinions & Comments, Promotional Gifts, Trade Shows with tags , , , , , on October 30, 2013 by Richard

It’s a common challenge that many business owners face – shall I go for the low-cost giveaway promotional pen, or the classier ones? Shall I go for those nice corporate coffee mugs I’ve been meaning to purchase, or, maybe those printed mousemats – they’re both items I’ve admired, but which will be most ‘effective’ for me right now?

It’s not easy is it? First of all there’s the budget. Every business, no matter how large or small, has a limit to what they can spend, and like it or not, the budget is usually the first thing that will determine ‘which’ promotional gift you ultimately select. Then there’s the ‘occasion’ they’re intended for. For example, purchasing items for a trade show where you may well be giving away hundred, if not thousands, of items to potential customers is quite a different prospect from purchasing corporate gifts for your pre-determined ‘top customers’ list – you know, those folk who are already engaging with you, and you wanted to give them something by way of a gesture, a ‘thank you’….. they’d be very different promotional items wouldn’t they?

So that’s where my business, RT Promotions, comes in. We do this kind of thing, all day and every day, and we know a thing or two about promo gifts. By talking to a promotional gift expert, you’ll be guided and assisted through the veritable minefield of ‘goodies’. Without our help – if you’re not careful, you could find yourself being attracted to all manner of frivolous items, and it’s our job, to keep you focussed.

We tend to do that by asking you a series of questions. So, aside from the glaringly obvious – what’s your budget, how many items do you need, when do you need them for, and most importantly – how many colours do you want us to print onto the item….. we ask you to keep reminding yourself of the following three questions:

  1. WHO – As in who are you giving them to? Some folk have a sense of humour, others don’t. Some folk will have certain expectations, whilst others will be grateful for anything!! The ‘who’ can make a big difference to how we select the best solution.
  2. HOW – Are you planning to post your promotional gifts? If you are, then the size and weight of the product will be an important factor, not to mention it’s fragility.
  3. FEEL – What do you want the recipient to ‘feel’ when they receive your corporate gift? We can show you things that’ll make them say ‘WOW’, but of course, that’ll often come at a price.

Talk to an expert – there’s nothing better than the feeling we get by helping a client make the right choice for their business.

Time To Re-programme My ‘Word Chip’?

Posted in Opinions & Comments, Trivia on August 7, 2013 by Richard

Have you noticed how folk’s communication skills have dropped? Ooooh – BIG BOLD sweeping statement there!!!

My business, RT Promotions, deals with high levels of incoming email traffic from random folk, who may or may not be genuine, who may or may not be in a position to proceed, and who are sometimes even competitors checking out our pricing policies – and you know what? We NEVER know who’s for real and who isn’t. Of course, there’s little tell tale signs (no, I’m not disclosing them in this post – maybe another?), but the truth is, you simply can’t tell. We call it ‘kissing frogs’ – we simply put on a smiley face, and go kiss them, warts and all, and hope they might turn into a prince/princess.

One of the things I’ve noticed though, is a trend for folk to be ‘curt’ in their email compositions – quite often, a whole sentence, properly constructed, is a woop woop moment – and I simply didn’t understand it. Why are folk so short?

And then, the penny dropped, and I reassessed the incoming traffic, and realised they’re almost all coming from hand held devices. People on the move, things to do, trains/planes to catch, and who are sending enquiries/replies, as best they can, in the short amount of time available to them. So NOT ‘rude’ then – just busy!!!

And there I was thinking I needed to re-programme my built-in ‘word chip’.

Have you seen the same trend?

Ten Unusual Ideas For A Promotional Gift

Posted in ECO Friendly, Opinions & Comments, Promotional Gifts, ROI - Return on Investment, Trivia with tags , , , , , , , , , on June 14, 2013 by Richard

Even though I keep telling my clients to ALWAYS go with ‘effective’ and not fall into the trap of going for something gimmicky – there are occasions when ‘unusual’ may well be the right route. So with that in mind, I thought I’d share with you the ten most unusual ideas for a promotional gift that we have on our website. They’re in no particular order, so for your entertainment, the top ten promotional gift ideas are:

The Hammer Bottle Opener
Crazy isn’t it? Shaped to look just like a real DIY hammer!!

Hammer Shaped Bottle Opener

Hammer Shaped Bottle Opener

The Twig Pen
We love this ECO friendly pen. Every pen’s unique – the wood is, after all, a naturally grown item.

The Twig Pen

The Twig Pen

The Umbrella Hat
Yes, we know it’s not practical, but it does get a lot of attention and makes folk smile – maybe that’s the point?

The Umbrella Hat

The Umbrella Hat

Bride and Groom LogoBugs
We tend to get a ‘marmite’ reaction to these bugs – you either love them or hate them, but they’re certainly memorable. Perfect for use as ‘wedding favours’ or maybe to tell your guests to put the big day in their diary

Bride and Groom LogoBugs

Bride and Groom LogoBugs

USB Characters
These little characters always get a positive reaction. With articulated arms and legs, they look great even when you pull their heads off – that’s how you get access to the USB part to plug into your computer.

Character USB's

Character USB’s

Cow Bells
If you want your event to make a load of NOISE – this could be a good place to start.

Cow Bells

Cow Bells

Fold-Away Flower Vase
These look great when branded, and would be perfect for anyone working in the Hotel and catering industry. Your customers liked the flowers so much, they took the flower pot home with them!!

Fold-Away flower pot

Fold-Away flower pot

Giant Pencil
At 325 mm in length, it’s bigger than your average ruler, and is a genuine working pencil. Perfect for making a BIG impression – but seriously, it would be difficult to put away wouldn’t it?

Giant Pencil

Giant Pencil

Logo Projector Keyring Torch
Don’t you just love it? Projecting your logo in full colour is a little bit special isn’t it?

Logo Projector Keyring Torch

Logo Projector Keyring Torch

Condom Keyring
Well, this is a list of the Ten Most Unusual Ideas for a Promotional Gift!!

Condom Keyring

Condom Keyring

When Was The Last Time You Did Something For The Very First Time?

Posted in Opinions & Comments with tags on May 19, 2013 by Richard

Interesting question that isn’t it? It certainly made me stop in my tracks – engage brain – and give it some serious thought…… how about you?

When was the last time you did something for the first time

When was the last time you did something for the first time

As any regular readers may know, some of my best ‘interactions’ come to me when I’m engaged in some social drinking, and this time’s no different. I was in a bar with some chums, and one of them asked me, straight out, “So, when was the last time you did something for the first time – and I bet it was some time ago” – WOW – this was a question that didn’t have ‘ready made’ answers, it was a question that demanded some thought. Were they right? Was it some time ago?

Now, the question is designed to get you thinking outside of your comfort zone, the point of the exercise, to coin a phrase, must be that:
“If you do what you’ve always done, you’ll get what you’ve always got”

So, how are you doing? Have you done something for the first time recently?

For me, I had had a BIG moment in the very same week that I was asked that question – it was a seriously engaging business challenge I was faced with, that caused me to do something unique. This blog probably isn’t the right place to share that with the world (some business issues are sensitive after all), but I DID share it with my chums in the bar. The interesting thing is that I wasn’t proud of what I had done. I saw it purely as a necessary/commercial decision – a tough one, and one that I hope I never have to make again, but not something to boast about. My chums, on the other hand were most impressed by my actions and thought it showed real character.

Evidence that Promotional Gifts bring a ROI

Posted in Opinions & Comments, Promotional Gifts, ROI - Return on Investment with tags , , , , , on May 3, 2013 by Richard

The newest research from the bpma indicates that Promotional Merchandise delivers results, that’s why big brands have increased their spend on this marketing medium.

The survey was commissioned by the bpma and individual interviews were carried out by an independent research agency to a 1000 respondents, the results of which were published in Spring 2013. Sectors represented in the survey included finance and IT, retail, services, insurance, charity and education.

See – I told you it worked!!!!!

Promotional Product Effectiveness

Promotional Product Effectiveness