Hot Sauce Company Turns up the Heat at Trade Shows with Message Pens

One of the largest international hot sauce suppliers sells its products through a network of major distributors. The company attends approximately fifteen trade shows annually, focusing on meeting the top distributors and wholesalers in the retail market. The company looks for products with strong name recognition, which reflect a commitment to quality and excellence to give away to prospective distributors at shows. They chose the BIC WideBody Message Pen with six rotating messages in addition to an imprint on the barrel. This allowed the company to communicate a significant amount of information on the pen. 

The company primarily handed out the pens at trade shows frequented by personnel from a distributor base dealing in retail food products. 

As a direct result of handing out Message Pens at trade shows, the hot sauce manufacturer added five significant distributors to their base. These additions resulted in higher sales and the acquisition of large market chains selling their product throughout the country. The company plans to continue using the Message pen as their primary give away at trade

 

Community Bank Cashes In

The Bank of Newport is a small bank branch that serves the southeastern area of New England. They were established in 1819 and have only 12 bank locations, mostly in Rhode Island. Their challenge over the past years has been to secure more local customers to their community bank by recruiting them away from the large bank branches that have permeated the area. The Bank of Newport wanted an economical promotional gift because they do not have the vast budget of their competitors. They also wanted the product to be useful and endearing to the residents of the area, demonstrating to them that they actually care about the community. The bank has always prided itself on their community efforts and help sponsor numerous events throughout the year. The gift was to be given away at the Newport Bank booth at several of these community festivals during the spring/summer months.

The decision was made that Newport needed a product with resale value and that the product had to prove to the patrons of these neighborhood events that Newport cared about them. The mint box  that was chosen contains 20-25 peppermints, is recloseable, and is Advertising Mint/Candy/Gum Box with Signature Peppermintsfully customizable on all 5 sides of the box. The mint box offers more advertising space than most products and is printed with 4-color process printed. A box of mints like this is often purchased in the store for over $1.

The mint box promotion helped to further establish the Bank of Newport as the preeminent bank for the people of southeastern New England. It was distributed at the Newport booths at several sponsored events through the spring and summer. The advertising box was useful and compact enough to be placed in purses and pockets. This way the potential customer would remember the company name and logo days after the event. After the promotion, the Bank of Newport received many compliments on the product and requests for more by the community. More importantly, the bank saw a 10% increase of new customers in the fall. Newport was so happy with the product that they continue to use the promo product team for future promotions.

 

A Different Spin on a Seminar Invitation

A few years back, Jeff Toister, owner of Toister Performance Solutions, decided to put a different spin on things for Customer Service Week. Toister, a nationally acclaimed consultant on customer service and human resources issues, decided to focus on a seminar that would enable attendees who already appreciated the value of good customer service to take it to the next level. In order to generate interest in the offer, Toister decided to forego the traditional printed invitation to the event by mailing out flying discs to a select group of clients and prospects. With an average response rate of 1 - 2% on most direct mail campaigns, Toister was thrilled to report a 14.7% closure rate for RSVP's to the sminar - that fulfilled his attendance goal at the workshop by 100%. An additional 9.8% of recipients were interested, but had a scheduling conflice that day. And these figures don't take into account the number of people who commented to him about the unusual invitation months later - proving that he was staying top-of-mind with those customers/prospects.

Toister credits the concept of his unusual invitation to Rama Beerfas, Chief Solutions Specialist at Lev Promotions. Beerfas created a mailing piece that was fun, informational and unforgettable. The imprint on the disc itself got people's attention; while the printed, die-cut insert in the reverse side gave recipients all the information they needed to sign up for the introductory seminar. And the added bang for the buck came with the fact that, six weeks after the original mailing, Toister reported, "I ran into yet another person at an event last night who said, 'Oh, I really liked the Frisbee. It was sooooo cool.'"

When asked if results like this were typical, Beerfas replied, "Given an accurate focus on the target market, an item that is geared to attract their attention, and good presentation through delivery and packaging, results like this (and even better) are absolutely achievable."