This is the third in a series of posts I’ve created about entrepreneurs. The people in these interviews are not only local business owners but have the truest entrepreneurial spirits I’ve seen. Whether they work for themselves or for someone else, each offers a t least one strong habit, thought or suggestion to help develop a successful business. Their passion is seen in their work and how they operate in the world.
I am slowly finding out that entrepreneurs don’t always advertise all of their businesses. Often, they drop hints about other things they are working on or mention hobbies or interests that also (happen to) generate income. Sometimes it’s a mention of a meeting in their schedule, a change in income or a shift in habits. Such is the case with the next woman I am introducing.
As a creative soul, this entrepreneur makes it happen!
I am always looking for small promotional items to offer prospective clients, so I was fortunate to recently sit next to Amy Dorr, Sales Associate for Identify Advertising. Identify is a company that offers promotional marketing materials. As a small business owner, finding someone in the industry not only saves me time but also makes the process of buying products so much easier. Have you ever ordered products and then couldn’t use them because you ordered the wrong thing, made a mistake on the order or can’t return it? Then you know what I am talking. I can recommend NOT doing that!
Tip for new business owners: When priced correctly and within your budget, promotional materials are a great item to offer employees, managers, teams and potential customers.
What does Identify Advertising offer?
Identify Advertising is an E-catalogue and webstore which strives to be a “one stop source”, offering a variety of promotional product solutions for small, medium and large size businesses.
Quality of Product, Quality of Service
“Imagine/inspire/impress”, is their slogan that emphasizes quality and service.
“Right order, right price and right delivery: We source the branded products you need for events, promotions, campaigns and employee engagement and get it fast, just the way you need it. From trendy gadgets to classic awards and keepsakes, we produce the products you want at a quality you’ll be happy with”.
Adding a special touch
As a sales person, Amy who is well versed in the product lines, offers personalized suggestions for any client looking for products. She also offers product research which can include: quantity of items, color and style options, bulk pricing options and logo design. She helps each client from the beginning of the order to delivery, saving them time, money and hassle.
Tip: Did you know that you can buy promotional products for 3 different groups: employees, customers and prospective customers?
People love free stuff!
So why buy promotional products for your business?
Here are 5 ways promotional items can help your business:
- To have gifts to offer employees.
- To offer something that is different and unique to customers.
- To help make spending cost effective.
- To have something that is free and of value to offer clients and new prospects.
- To help promote your brand by keeping your company top-of-mind.
Research shows that people buy from people that they know, like and trust (I didn’t make that saying up, it’s a common marketing phrase). But it’s important. With so many choices for consumers, businesses have to find ways to continually remind customers they are there, and their product or service is the one they should buy first.
We are so inundated with consumerism in our culture, I think we take this aspect of business building for granted. If you look around your home or office, you’ll probably find some item sitting there staring at you – I have a Chase Bank pen on my kitchen counter, right next to my favorite Starbucks coffee cup. My question to you is, why aren’t your products sitting on the counter top? I find my favorite Etain pens are actually in my bag and on my desk, along with my favorite business postcard. It’s taken a while but with a little practice (and a small budget increase), you can make this form of branding and advertising an easy habit!
Amy used one popular product as an example. A credit card holder. Sounds simple right? But it actually has multiple uses.
Some types of promotional products are often purchased for events such as trade shows and industry fairs. Companies buy badges, carrying cases, shirts, sweat shirts, jackets, back-packs, key chains and pens so while their employees are working at the trade show, they can display the brand with the tools they need. It shows a uniformity amongst the employees, identifies the company’s brand visually, and attracts customers.
Companies use promotional items for other events such as:
Open Houses (people love free stuff to take walk away with)
Holiday parties (an extra special way to support employees)
Partnerships, such as a paid sponsorship (for example: fun run)
Give-aways in the office (another way to keep morale up!)
For a list of other examples and product categories, click here.
Amy suggested a promotional products companies like to buy:
- A great gift for School Open Houses is a cool multi-color highlighter.
- Need a cool gift for a gift bag or give-away? Try a flashlight.
Products are priced from as low as .50 cents to over $100.00 depending on the item and quantity.
In addition to her work with Identify, and in true entrepreneurial spirit, Amy is also a seamstress. Turning her hobby into work means that Amy assists a small mom/pop shop with seamstress services while also managing her family.
And if that’s not enough, she spends some of what’s left with her free time running her own shop on Etsy, called Baby Dear.
To see the items she sells, click here .
As a Business Coach, I am in a unique position to get to learn about people and their businesses. It has been such a pleasure getting to know Amy. She has taught me to never judge a book by its cover, but rather, open it up, read for a while and get an understanding about who the person is before you look to see what they are offering.
At the end of the day, for entrepreneurs, how they spend their time, inside and outside “the office” is often directly related to who they are and what they are about as a person.
If you like this post, please leave a comment below or visit the links posted in this article.
To reach Amy directly:
Thanks for reading!