Category Archives: Coupons

60 Days For Small Business Saturday Marketing

If you’ve already worked through the initial planning stages for a successful Small Business Saturday, here’s what you’ll want to accomplish over the next 60 days leading up to the event!

Small Business Saturday (SBS) is one of the most important marketing events for you to leverage over the next few months. After all, you likely already have marketing plans in place for the fall season, winter holidays, and into the new year, but by taking advantage of this retail-driven holiday, you can bring awareness to your brand that simply may not have been there before. More and more people are in the mindset to shop local, so make sure your business is ready with a successful Small Business Saturday marketing plan.

Create Memorable Touchpoints

With any marketing event comes an opportunity for you to flex your creative muscles and engage with your clients in a meaningful and memorable way. If you operate a physical location or retail storefront, create countdown calendars that can be hung in the store and deliver a new message each day. Include small discounts, promotions, or giveaways tied to the countdown. Anything you can do to keep the SBS holiday and your related promotional offerings in mind will pay off down the road. A simple solution is to add some brand swag – a pen, button, or personalized candy wrappers – to their checkout bag.

Use Direct Mail Marketing

To generate buzz and excitement for the upcoming Small Business Saturday holiday, consider creating a direct mail campaign that will target either those in your geographic area and/or those who have a high likelihood to buy. Add a sales incentive to the mailers, create high-quality images that deliver a professional tone, and include coupons or discounts good for SBS. Use whatever asset you design as a flyer, as well, to hang in your window and where allowed on community bulletin boards.

Leverage Social Media

One way to shine a light on the upcoming holiday is by linking SBS to your social media profile and related posts. Start by creating new blogs that tout the value of Small Business Saturday or demonstrate the importance of small businesses to the economy. Twitter and Facebook can also be used to effectively market your business, and you can embed links that will route back to your landing page or promotional site.

Add Value with Cross-Promotion

Now is the time to focus on the cross-promotion part of the equation. Whether that means you’re driving foot traffic into a location near you, or you’re directing clients to a partner’s website or store front, the tighter the networking web the better off you’ll be. A fun idea is to design themed bags with your company’s logo, tagline, or affiliation with what it means to “shop local.” Also, consider hosting an in-store SBS party with other vendors/businesses offering customers home-baked treats and favors for stopping by.

Get Excited

This is your time to shine, so plan events, activities, and promotions that will draw others to your business. Show how excited you are, and don’t be bashful when explaining how your small business helps the local community. You’d be amazed at how much goodwill you can generate when you put a local spin on something. For example, by simply designating 5% of the profits from SBS to a local school or worthy cause, you may drive in significantly greater numbers of shoppers than you ever thought possible. Not to mention getting into the holiday spirit of giving back to the community.

November 26, 2016 represents an incredible opportunity to grow your business and increase awareness of the importance of small business in America. Get creative in your Small Business Saturday marketing approach, leverage social media and traditional media options, offer customized promotional marketing gifts to reward client interest and loyalty, partner with others, and put a plan in place today that you will benefit from later.

8 Tips on How to Take the Perfect Selfie with Selfie Sticks

With the current trending product called the selfie stick, the art of taking a selfie has become even easier. Say goodbye to those half-faced, blurry selfies you never post on Instagram, and hello to your clear, beautiful face as you learn to how to take the perfect selfie.

The selfie stick is great for snapping the perfect shot of you wherever you are. Need a group or family photo, but can’t find anyone to take it? Have no fear, the selfie stick is here! Just stick that arm out, push the button, and watch your photo dreams come to life. No more awkward encounters and handing your phone over to strangers.

All of us struggle with taking a great selfie. Some come out fuzzy and others, just downright ugly! But don’t worry, you aren’t alone. We can get through this together!

Ready to Selfie? Follow these “How To” Tips

1) Selfie not Arm-sie: Hold the phone closer to your face to eliminate the appearance of the “long arm.” There is nothing worse than a perfectly good selfie being ruined because your arm takes up half of the photo.

2) Harness the Power of  the Light: Natural and indirect lighting is most certainly your friend.   Brighten your face to prevent unflattering shadows. If the lighting in your home (or wherever you are) is not ideal, try standing next to a window!

3) Glow Like You Were Meant To: If you are taking a selfie outdoors, make sure the sun is directly behind your head. This will cause a halo-like effect and leave you glowing!

4) Work the Angles: Tilt your head at an angle that works for you. Don’t be afraid to try a few different ones until you find the right one. Take a few test shots, testing out your angle and lighting.

5) Be Bold: If you’re a woman, swipe on your favorite bold lipstick color! This will give a bright focal point to the selfie. Plus, it will highlight your smile.

6) Stage your Selfie! Make sure you have a good, clean background. We have all seen nightmare selfies with a dirty bedroom or even a bathroom in the background. You can also add something interesting to your selfie. It could be your super cool friends, a great outdoor view, or exceptionally delicious food. Get your family involved! Your kids, grandkids or parents will totally think you’re hip!

7) Avoid mirror selfies: You can often see the phone you’re using and overall they just don’t look that great.  Unless you want to showcase the smudges on your bathroom mirror, it is just not a good idea. Selfie sticks typically eliminate the need for mirror selfies.

8) Finally, a real smile is the best smile! Whether you want to throw a funny face, smirk, or smile into the mix, loosen up and have fun with it!

Now that you have 8 new tips on how to take the perfect selfie. Get on your selfie game and try them out with selfie sticks!

If you wish to purchase custom selfie sticks for you and your friends from National Pen, use coupon code SELFIESTICK at checkout for free shipping and free setup.

National Handwriting Day is “Write” Around the Corner!

As keyboards and touchscreens continue to dominate our daily lives, the handwritten word has become something of an artform

handwriting penFor almost forty years now, National Handwriting Day has been observed on the 23rd of every January – and it was originally created to firmly emphasize the importance of the handwritten word.

Imagine how the world changed in the 1970s, as the introduction of the microprocessor led to the adoption of early compact business computers in the workplace. Computers became a viable office tool in 1977, when the first purpose-built microcomputers came to market. Interestingly enough, this was the first year that we celebrated National Handwriting Day. Every year since 1977, individuals from around the nation have recognized this day as a celebration of all things handwritten.

Why January 23rd?

Ask someone for their “John Hancock” and they’ll likely know that you’re asking for their signature. Hancock is remembered for many achievements, but his stylish and oversized signature on the Declaration of Independence is probably his most famous mark on history. Since his signature is such a memorable mark on this historical document, the founders of National Handwriting Day decided that January 23rd – Hancock’s birthday, would be the ideal day to celebrate all things handwritten.

What’s so important about handwriting?

Though electronic means of communication have improved the speed and accuracy with which we communicate, there is no replacement for the written word when it comes to conveying emotion. You’d never see a husband typing up a Valentine’s card for his lovely spouse, as the care taken in crafting the words on the card is a part of the emotional message. And, there’s a reason why emoticons and other graphic icons have become so popular in electronic communications today – there is a real need to delineate emotion that cannot be extracted from an electronic message. Simply put, handwriting conveys emotion and character in ways that a typed message never could.

What does your handwriting say about you?

On National Handwriting Day, take a moment to analyze your own handwriting. After all, there is a lot that you can learn about yourself by investigating the way you swoop your “e’s,” how large you write your “I’s,” and whether you leave much space between words.

For an in-depth and intriguing look at some of the psychological factors that correlate to an individual’s handwriting sample, view this infographic from National Pen, entitled What Does Your Handwriting Say About You?

Support the handwritten word – and your business!

To effectively promote your business and drive greater awareness of your brand, consider promotional marketing gifts that combine real world utility with an affordable price point. Writing pens make incredibly effective gifts, as they will see frequent use, can be used by virtually anyone, and cost pennies on the dollar for each unit.

On National Handwriting Day, add a batch of customizable writing pens to your marketing toolkit and you’ll shine a spotlight on your brand and drive sales to your organization. To make it even easier, take advantage of National Pen’s promotional offer – 15% on all pens when you use coupon code 15OFFPENS. This National Handwriting Day, take your business to the next level by delivering high quality writing pens at discounted prices – only from National Pen.

Promo Codes Can Help You Save Money – If They’re Current!

promo codesYou need a coupon site that is comprehensive, current, and full of savings!

There is no doubt that the majority of businesses see the need for promotional marketing and giveaway items. These products can be used for enticing new clients, rewarding your existing book of business, or for simply helping to increase your brand’s market penetration. Whether you’re looking to put a “Brand X” pen into the hands of everyone in your industry at the next big tradeshow, or you want to send personalized golf tees to your best corporate clients, promotional marketing items are impactful and valuable to any business line.

One constraint that many marketing managers have is money. But, the next closest resource that is becoming increasingly scarce these days is time! The overall budget must be considered when sales managers and marketing gurus work on their next promotional item purchase. Many purchasers look to online coupon codes and voucher programs to save on their marketing expenses. This is usually accomplished by trolling the Internet in search of random coupon codes on affiliate websites.

Internet searches for coupon codes may be effective in the short term, but it takes significant time, and it may not always result in much money saved. For this reason, it makes sense to utilize coupon codes that are embedded in the website for the company that you are purchasing from. This guarantees the authenticity and the accuracy of the voucher in question. There are several major sites on the Internet today that has scores of coupon codes for a variety of retailers, but many of these are outdated or simply incorrect. This creates a frustrating situation in that productive time is wasted and money isn’t saved. When you consider the salary and time commitment made by those in the marketing field, it makes little sense to aimlessly wander the Web in search of coupon deals.

At National Pen, we’ve organized the coupons you need in an easy to read and user-friendly format when you visit the National Pen coupons page.

You’ll see a comprehensive assortment of discounts, special offers, and money-saving promotions. From 20% off specials on customized pens, to free shipping on sports-themed merchandise, you’ll always find a great discount on our appealing and effective promotional merchandise. If you can’t find exactly what you’re looking for on our coupon page, simply connect with us on Facebook and Twitter to receive exclusive money saving offers.

You no longer need to aimlessly search the Internet to find the discounts you need. Visit National Pen today to see just how easy it is to order the customized promotional merchandise you need – at the prices that are engineered to fit your budget.

The Power of Coupons – Distributing :: Part 3

Welcome to part 3 of our coupons series. already discussed offers you may provide and how to print them. Now you.ll need to distribute them. So how do you do that without spending an arm and a leg?

. In person. Place coupons in store or in shopping bags. The problem with this is, with the exception of referral coupons, it can.t help you get new customers.

. Mailing List. You can always mail or email existing customers with coupons. Again though, this will not get you new customers unless you send a referral coupon.

. Door to door. This may be time consuming, but canvassing is mighty effective. Leaving coupons on car windshields, house door steps, etc. is an easy way to bring your message to the masses.

. Mailing Lists. This covers both mailing and email lists. While it costs money, the advantage is that targeted direct mailings are some of the most effective ways to distribute coupons.

. CO-OP Mailings. You know those envelopes you get stuffed with coupons from different businesses? That.s what they did. You share the costs of mailing with other businesses in the group. Get in touch with these groups for a low-cost way to distribute your offer and share the expenses.

. Newspaper. This one also costs money, but you can reach a lot of people. It is a great way to target people in a specific geographical area.

Now you know how to use coupons to boost your get to it!

If you have any tips or questions about coupons, please post them in the comments section.

The Power of Coupons – Printing :: Part 2

Now that decided to use a coupon and what kind of discount to offer, let.s learn about printing options.

. Do it yourself. Printing yourself is easy. You can print off hundreds of your own coupons on your PC or take a trip to the local copy store. It.s easy, but you risk customers making their own coupons, which can suddenly turn 100 coupons into 10,000. This can work positively as viral marketing, but be sure you can handle that sort of discount.

. Have customers print them. This is the easiest and the only free way to print coupons. This method requires online or email distribution. The downsides are the same as printing yourself, people can try to manipulate the coupons or print off too many.

. Pay a professional to publish them. For most small companies, a professional printer is not the best option unless it is included with your distribution method. For example, a distribution group or a newspaper will print your coupons for you.

. Print them on promotional products. An underused method of coupon distribution. These may not be free, but they offer you additional advertising, can.t be manipulated and people will want them .even if they don.t need coupons.

However you print your coupons, don.t forget to add an expiration date, like .offer valid through August 31.. This creates a sense of urgency around the offer, enticing customers to act now and it protects you from discounting longer than intended.

The Power of Coupons – Planning :: Part 1

How many times have you used a coupon at the grocery store for a product you’ve never tried before?

Coupons are a great way to get customers to try your service or product. They can also .woo. your competitor.s customers to give you a try. If you have a new product, service or an overstock, try offering a coupon to draw attention and sales. You can also minimize the impact of a price increase with a coupon -people won.t realize there was a price hike when excited about a coupon.

Different offers work better for some businesses than others. Which type of offer will work best for you?

. BOGO. The always popular .Buy One .Get One.. This is a customer favorite. This offer works best to clear out surpluses or to sell things with huge markups. If your item doesn.t fit into either category, this probably isn.t a good discount for you.

. Freebies. This discount involves giving people something for nothing. You distribute coupons offering a free goodie to anyone who stops by. This coupon works best for grand openings and businesses that heavily rely on foot traffic.

. Percentage off. Offering a percentage off discount lets you control the sale. Larger discounts attract more attention. This can also push people to make larger purchases so they can stock up while the sale is on. 10-20% discounts can bring in a lot of customers.

. A small amount off an item. This is similar to the $.50 off soup coupons you see at grocery stores. With this sort of a coupon, you have to ask yourself, .is this a discount I would take advantage of?. If you are offering too small a discount and your answer is no, either increase the coupon value or don.t bother with it at all. A good coupon drives people to use your products or services, a mediocre one gets tossed.

. Pay only {discount cost}. Rather than showing the money they save, show the price they pay. This can be surprisingly more effective than offering a small discount on a popular item. If the price sounds good, consumers are likely to think the coupon is more valuable than it really is.

. Referrals. Print coupons with blank lines for people to write in their names. Give instructions on the coupon that you will give a small discount to everyone who uses the coupon and that you will give everyone with their name on the coupon (the referrer) a small credit towards future services.

Now that you have a good idea about what kind of discount you.d like to offer, it.s time to decide how to print it. A lot of people skip past this, but it is an important step in creating coupons. Stay tuned.

Image courtesy of drh