Category Archives: Small Business Marketing Tips

Customized Beach Balls Will Help “Inflate” Your Marketing Results

16" Beach BallWork a sunny and fun marketing angle with customized summertime beach balls from National Pen

Promotional marketing tools are an important component to any marketing manager’s toolkit – so why invest in customized beach balls this time of year? And, how can these entertaining gifts help you to increase sales and customer loyalty? For obvious reasons, this time of year draws a distinct connection to outdoor activities like picnics in the park and days at the beach. The late spring and early summer season is perfect for getting out and moving around at parks, playgrounds, sporting events and more.

Beach balls make tremendous marketing tools, no matter how you categorize your industry or business line, and they are perfect for your upcoming, warm-weather marketing campaign. Think about a local baseball team’s summer afternoon game – a beach ball playfully dancing among the spectators. Or, consider your own family outing to the beach and the resulting good times that are had when your custom beach ball is swatted around on the sand. There are so many venues that are perfect for having fun with a beach ball, and a customized unit from National Pen will help you market your business while the recipients are simply having fun.

The concept is simple – your brand name, logo, company title, or contact information will be prominently displayed on the beach ball for all to see. This means that your company information will be front of mind while others are simply having fun with your custom beach ball. This positive correlation between good times and your business will help reinforce the notion that you are the right organization to partner with. And, since summer get-togethers are often social events, you’ll find that your beach ball will make the rounds among several guests. This also contributes to better brand recognition and enhanced market awareness for your company.

When it comes to building and sustaining client loyalty, customized promotional gifts like beach balls, coolers, caps, and other summertime focused gifts will keep your business relationships engaged with your brand throughout the busy summer season. Beach balls also make great gifts for your employees and can be brought and used at company picnics, summer group outings, or simply sent back to your team as a thank you for their continual hard work.

The possibilities are endless, but the time to strike is now. Custom beach balls are well-suited to the spring and summer months, so consider ordering promotional beach balls today – you’ll surely see a lift in your business!

National Small Business Week 2014 – May 12th – 16th

Small Business WeekIn honor of National Small Business Week – help drive additional focus towards your small business by revamping your promotional marketing plan

In 1963, the Small Business Administration (SBA) began officially recognizing the incredibly powerful role that small businesses play in our economy by launching a National Small Business Week campaign. Often held during the spring, this week is dedicated to the entrepreneurs, leaders, and dreamers that so often comprise the ranks of small businesses in America.

According to the SBA: “Activities will include forums and panels discussing trends in small business, business innovation, financing, growth, matchmaking events, as well as networking opportunities and award ceremonies.”

Small businesses in the US provide 120 million jobs. That’s according to a recent Forbes article that highlights the importance of small businesses to the domestic economy. The SBA reports that between ’09 and ’11, small businesses were responsible for 67% of the new jobs added to the market. And, small businesses currently make up more than 99.7% of all employers in the US. More than half a million new small businesses are created each month in the US, and the method in which these businesses are starting is changing, too. In 2013 alone, more than $2.7-billion was raised for new business ventures via crowdfunding sites like Kickstarter!

While many small business owners find that there simply isn’t enough time in the day to think about things like National Small Business Week, this may be the perfect opportunity for business owners to truly reflect on the difference they’re making in the lives of their employees, customers, and stakeholders.

Over the past 51 years, the SBA has chosen one week out of the year to showcase incredible businesses – so why not use this as the impetus to solidify your marketing approach? With promotional products from National Pen, you’ll be able to increase your brand awareness, strengthen your market share, and create positive, lasting experiences for your clients, prospects, and business relationships. Just three years after the SBA began recognizing National Small Business Week, National Pen was officially created!

Choose from numerous marketing options, including customizable pens. Pens are available with your choice of logo or company imprint – perfect for supporting your marketing efforts during and after this small business focused timeframe. Choose from discounted ball point pens all the way up to more luxurious desk sets. Various promotional office supplies, drinkware, home and automotive gifts, stationery, bags, and more are available to reinforce your marketing activities and help you win more business. During National Small Business Week 2014, partner with National Pen to help you grow your business and gain market share. Your customers and employees will thank you!

Shop new, lower prices on EVERYTHING!

Lower PricingPromotional items can help your company drive bottom line results by putting your logo, corporate image, or brand into the hands of customers and prospects. These items are designed to deliver a clear message that you WANT to continually earn your customer’s loyalty. From pens and stationery, to travel mugs and sports bottles, promotional items can help businesses both new and established earn more market share and increase customer satisfaction.

Most marketing managers understand the benefits of customized promotional giveaway items, but they’re constantly working against a spending budget that limits the amount of promo items they can buy. At National Pen, we’ve just made the job of the marketing manager that much easier – with new, lower prices on EVERYTHING!

Customized pens are a terrific product to give to just about anyone, due to their low price and real-world usefulness. The utility of a pen is undeniable – evidenced by the fact that few people will turn away a custom pen, no matter how many pens they already have in their drawer. And now, with our new, lower pricing on a variety of custom pens, you’ll be able to either distribute a larger number of these enticing giveaway items, or invest in a higher quality of pen – for less money than you’d ever thought possible.

Sports bottles and travel mugs are phenomenal promotional items, as most consumers use either of these on a daily basis. Put your logo or brand name in front of a client or prospect every day, and you’ll see returns on your marketing investment. Now you have the ability to increase your market penetration by being able to purchase more promotional product – with no increase in total, delivered cost!

No matter which cheap promotional item you feel will help drive your business, National Pen has the pricing and product assortment to help support your marketing needs. With a massive inventory of pens, keychain flashlights, stationary items, bags and coolers, office items, and home and auto goods, you’ll find the promo items you need – at a price that can’t be beat! With our new, lower prices on EVERYTHING we sell, your customers will thank you for investing in these high-quality marketing products.

Stay Positive!

October is Positivity Month.  Looking for some ways to stay on top and be more efficient?  Here are some ideas to manage energy and promote positivity:

The Power of a Good Night Sleep.  While days generally consist of long hours at work followed by trying to complete tasks afterwards, many people underestimate just how important sleep plays in the energy that we have.  According to the American Psychological Association, 40% of adults suffer from daytime sleepiness a few days a month, and another 20% suffer a few days a week as a result of their sleep habits.  This reduces energy, well-being, and ultimately causes daily activities to hinder as a result.  By aiming to average at least 8 hours of sleep a night, you will begin to feel better on a daily basis and operate at a higher level.

Develop Daily Plans.  Take time on a daily basis to map out what you need to accomplish.  By staying organized, you will begin to develop efficiency and identify tasks that are necessary for the utilization of your energy.  Think about the hours at work and home that are dedicated to tasks other than those that are necessary (surfing the web, telephone, social media, etc.).  Though we all want a little “me” time here and there, this leads to unproductive habits and drains our energy by not staying on task.  By keeping an organizer, schedule, or list, you can accomplish tasks quicker, save energy, and create more time for yourself to do things you want!

Create Time For You.  Half the battle with staying energetic and positive is that there seems to not be enough “me” time.  Whether work feels overwhelming or life becomes hectic, making sure that you set aside time for yourself is one of the most important aspects towards maintaining health and happiness.  On a weekly basis, find time in which you can perform something brings yourself happiness.  Whether it is catching a football game on television, going to the movies, meeting up with friends or family, and/or performing your favorite activity, find time for such.  By doing so, you will feel more relaxed, refreshed, and ready to take on tasks and goals ahead.

Go For It.  Don’t be afraid and have a “can do” attitude.  One major obstacle to obtaining positivity is the fear of failure.  Set goals that you see yourself being able to reach and go for them.  By holding back, you are only promoting negativity and the possibility of failure.  Whether win, lose, or draw; knowing that you gave it your all will allow you to gain satisfaction, bring about positive energy, and affirm your actions as being successful endeavors.

Surround Yourself With Positive Energy.  Whether it is being around good people, extending a helping hand, or becoming more involved (activities, organizations, etc.), surrounding yourself with positive energy will help promote health, wealth, and happiness.  Positivity and energy are transferable sources that when shared create mutual satisfaction and happiness.  Immersing yourself into actions that promote personal and communal positivity will lead to greater satisfaction and success within your daily lives.

Do Your Part, Raise Awareness!

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month.  Breast Cancer has touched and afflicted the lives of many, and it is during this month that we all should take time to acknowledge this devastating disease.  Whether you are a fighter, survivor, or somebody that has been touched by the disease, we should all take part in raising awareness to promote hope, further inform those around us, and seek advancement in medicine for a cure.

How can one become involved?  There are many ways this October to become involved in the fight against Breast Cancer.  Whether through charitable acts, joining a fundraiser, or simply donning the pink ribbon to show your support, anyone has the power to raise awareness.  The most important factor in becoming involved with the cause is to show your support with kindness of heart and dedication.  You can find further information about National Breast Cancer Month at the National Breast Cancer Foundation: (http://www.nationalbreastcancer.org/breast-cancer-awareness-month?gclid=CPejhoy71rICFad7QgodgEwAJA).  The website gives in-depth information about what the month entails and highlights possible ways to raise awareness and get involved.

National Pen and Breast Cancer Awareness!  We at National Pen extend our thoughts and respect to all of those who have been touched by this dreaded disease.  During this month, National Pen is dedicated towards informing those who follow us about the importance and significance of spreading awareness.  We are taking a first-hand approach through the products we offer (Breast Cancer Inspired!) and our involvement with those who share in our business activities.  Our Breast Cancer inspired products allow you, your business, consumers, and others to show support through actively raising awareness.  Help combat this disease and raise awareness through our products!

Show Your Support by Promoting Awareness:
http://www.pens.com/October-is-Breast-Cancer-Awareness
http://www.pens.com/site/products/CLX
http://www.pens.com/drinkware/11-oz-ceramic-mug/mug

Also Check Out Pink NFL Pens:
http://www.pens.com/pens-and-writing/nfl-squiggle-pen–low-minimum/nf2

Let us all remember to do our part the rest of this month in raising awareness.  Each day is another step forward, and through our support and recognition we can help raise hope to all!

What’s a QR Code?

Do you know what a QR code is?  If you answered no, you’re not alone.  QR codes have become a popular advertising tool so let’s run through the basics.

What is a QR code?
A Quick Response (QR) code is a type of barcode.  Shaped like a square, the code contains a pattern of black square dots and stores information for users to access when they scan the code using a mobile device. 

Here’s an example of a QR code for an NFL promotion on Pens.com.

How do I read a QR code?
If your smartphone doesn’t already have a QR code reader installed, there are several free QR code readers that you can download. Check out the options in your AppStore or choose from this list.  Hover your reader over the code and you’ll see its contents in a few seconds.

Where can I get a QR code?
A search for “QR Code Generators” online or on your phone will bring up a number of free sites that let you create QR codes.  You can choose to link your QR code to a url, text, phone number, SMS or a vCard.  Once you enter your preferred link, you create a code which you can download, print or email.  It takes less than a minute to create your QR code.

How can I use a QR code to promote my business?
QR codes are a great way to connect your customers with your company, whether it’s to read content on your web site, receive a promotion via text message or to call you without having to dial your number.  Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Include a QR code that links to your email or phone number in your email signature.
  • Post a QR code that links to your company web site on signs outside your business so customers can get information even when you’re not open.  Restaurant owners, this is a great way to post your menu without having to re-print every time you make a change.
  • Add a QR code that links to a customer survey on your invoices to get valuable feedback on how you’re doing.
  • Print codes for special offers or complimentary services on materials you give out at tradeshows.
  • Put a QR code that links to your online bio or LinkedIn profile on the back of your business card.
  • Of course, we can’t forget to mention printing the codes on your promotional products!  National Pen can put a QR code on any of our full color products, but scanning a pen could be a little tricky!  We recommend choosing a flat product like the Full Color Magnet, Spiral Flip Pad or Sticky NotebookCalendars and planners are also good options.

The options for using QR codes are only limited by your creativity!  So give it a try.  If you have ideas to share about how you’re using QR codes, we’d love to hear them.