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A simple question all marketing executives should be asking themselves prior to each campaign, is simply, what is the smartest and most cost effective advertising medium to help me reach my goal? Once you're comfortable with the answer you can work out the finer details. The promotional products industry has consistently claimed, their medium, custom printed marketing products, is the answer. This of course is dependent on the audience you're trying to reach. If your product needs to engage the masses, like toilet paper, beer, bananas or any other generic item, then there's no question promotional products are NOT the answer, as the cost per item, or cost per impression (the criteria the advertising industry uses when gauging effectiveness) is excessive. On the flipside, if you're trying to reach a smaller targeted audience, then serious consideration should be given to promotional products. These smaller targeted audiences have much clearer common interests, which allows a marketer to zero in on what's important to them, and can therefore align their advertising to match. Compelling new evidence from ASI (The Advertising Specialty Institute) does indeed back this up. In a recent survey conducted from July through September 2012, close to 5,000 consumers in 12 cities (Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver, New York, Chicago, Miami, Los Angeles, Seattle, Dallas, Philadelphia, London and Paris) were polled. Each respondent was asked an extensive set of questions to determine both the popularity and effectiveness of the promotional products they had received. The overall results were very positive with the final conclusion espousing that...

A / Most recipients of Promotonal Products keep them.

B/ Most recipients of Promotional Products remember the business name of the company that sent them.

C/ Most said they are MORE LIKELY to do business with them.

We, of course, take this a step further, believing that sending your message via environmentally friendly promotional products increases the power of your message. Your recipients will take comfort in the fact you've made a responsible corporate choice!

Otherwise, see below for a catchy video related to the survey and the link at the bottom for the full detailed report.

2012 Promotional Products Study on Product Popularity and Effectiveness

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If you’re looking for a water bottle that is BPA-free and good to the planet, but doesn’t give your water that metallic taste, the perfect solution is close at hand. Glass water bottles are the hottest craze to hit the hydration scene and the growing assortment of sizes, styles, and colors are making it easy to trade in your plastic, stainless steel or aluminum bottles for ones that actually leave your water tasting like water.

Whether you bring your bottle to yoga class, play hard-core sports or just tote your bottle in and out of the car, there is bound to be a glass water bottle to fit your lifestyle. Some of the most beautifully designed bottles have screw-top lids with wide mouths for easy filling, drinking, and cleaning. Other glass bottles for water come with flip-top spouts or straws that are especially handy for situations where potential spills are a no-no. The options are abundant and most are available in an assortment of bright colors, making a wonderful choice for small children and Moms on the go.

If you’re worried about breaking your glass water bottle, you’ll be happy to know that there are silicone sleeve bottles that completely encase the bottle, helping to protect it from cracking or bursting into pieces if dropped. The sleeves themselves are also available in a variety of vibrant colors and have the added benefit of keeping your hands from freezing when water is ice cold.

Glass is also one of the planets most recycled materials so your bottle is bound to be reincarnated into another product long after you’ve disposed of it. Furthermore, they’re dishwasher safe… wash them time and again without any wear and tear or potential for melting parts.

Newer styles like these frosted glass water bottles are both stylish and unique.

But one of the clear advantages of glass, is just that, it’s “clear.” You can easily check water levels, something that is a bit of a chore when dealing with plastic, stainless steel and aluminum. These slim and modern glass bottles can also double as distinctive desktop vases for fresh flowers or stuff them with candy, fruit, spices, nuts, you name it!

Whatever your taste, need, and budget, there is probably a glass water bottle that will make your transition from traditional bottle to glass exciting and fun. More

Take a look around you and you’ll notice that cotton is the main ingredient in most of the clothes that we wear and in the furniture and bedding that decorates our homes. Cotton has been called “The Fabric of Our Lives,” and its use as a relatively inexpensive material for jeans, t-shirts, and jackets has been ingrained in the lives of people all over the globe for centuries.  In addition to being used as a primary material in the clothing industry, a large percentage of the approximately 9 trillion pounds of cotton produced annually in the United States ends up in the food that we put in our bodies, via cottonseed oil. Yes, the same pesticide loving cotton we put on our bodies, we’re just as happy to put in our bodies through various brands of potato chips, peanut butter, salad dressings, mayonnaise & more.  Feel free to Google “harmful cottonseed oil” for more eye opening details.


Furthermore, cotton comprises 50% of the planet’s fiber needs.  The majority of it is grown with harmful pesticides and fertilizers that have been linked with conditions like reproductive disorders, compromised immune systems, and birth defects.  These toxins are often detected in groundwater due to tainted water run-off from agricultural areas.


In fact, The World Health Organization reports that 25% of the insecticides used worldwide are sprayed on cotton crops. Some of these chemicals are named as the deadliest on the planet.  Does this statistic make you think twice before putting on that t-shirt first thing in the morning? An outfit of pants and a top can contain up to 1 pound of pesticides that have direct contact with the skin.  I think you’ll agree, this is not the healthiest of scenarios for personal  or planetary wellbeing.


It is estimated that it takes 1/3 of a pound of fertilizer to grow a standard cotton shirt.  These synthetic fertilizers increase N20 emissions, which are 300 times more harmful to the planet than greenhouse gases. In addition, conventional cotton is one of the largest water users in modern-day agriculture.  Put these stats together with the fact that cotton clothing is manufactured in factories all over the world, and these factories utilize enormous amounts of energy and produce millions of tons of waste; well  we’ve got ourselves a problem.


Solutions are out there to combat this disturbing situation.  One involves greater numbers of manufacturers producing goods made with sustainable and environmentally responsible materials. Organic cotton clothing and recycled PET t-shirt producers are two that come to mind, and on the right track!  Equally, the consumer will have to play their part, purchasing eco-friendly or organic garments that are often softer and more luxurious than their conventional counterpart.  Certified organic cotton is grown with natural fertilizers and without chemical pesticides, resulting in a cleaner and safer environment for those who live near farms, and for the farmers themselves.  Buying organic and Fair Trade clothing equates to better working conditions, wages, and health for those who grow and harvest the crops.  The simple choice to spend money on an organic cotton t-shirt over its virgin counterpart  is a vote with your dollars, and a vote for clothing that looks good, feels great, and takes care to protect the Earth’s valuable resources.
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What if there was a simple way to protect the health of the planet, and look great while doing it?  A revolution is taking place in the apparel industry that is merging social awareness and style, environmental responsibility and comfort, and innovation and practicality.  Some of the biggest names in sports, fashion, and outdoor wear are embracing a technology that makes it possible to recycle plastic bottles and bottle caps into attractive fleece jackets, recycled shirts, vests, pants, and more.

The use of recycled PET (polyethylene terephthalate) to make clothing is a concept that is not new.  Some of the leading garment manufacturers of our times have been creating warm, durable, and weather resistant attire from post-consumer materials for decades.   And momentum is building as some leaders in the industry are choosing to approach their business goals knowing that consumers and manufacturers need to be mindful of how the products we purchase affect our quality of life and our environment.  Today, many consumers welcome the opportunity to buy items that balance the personal needs of quality and appearance with the needs of a delicate planet.

Coats, hats, and blankets made from PET are soft, lightweight, and breathable. They can keep you warm in the winter and cool in the summer.  PET is often blended with other materials like wool, organic cotton, and hemp to create clothing that looks and feels as luxurious as traditional high-end pieces.  Industry leaders are creating fabrics from second quality materials and worn out garments to make board shorts and tote bags.  In the most recent World Cup, Nike sponsored teams from the US, Brazil, and Australia wore jerseys made from recycled PET.  Nike claims that their jerseys utilized 30% less energy to produce than standard jerseys, and kept eight plastic bottles per jersey out of landfills. Additionally Anvil, one of our key suppliers, offers a good selection of blank recycled clothing from PET, which can be custom printed with your corporate logo.

On a larger scale, using PET to make clothing has redirected approximately 3 billion soda bottles from landfills over the past 10 years and has reduced oil consumption of more than 1/2 million barrels.  The amount of petroleum averted from use is enough to power a city the size of Atlanta for a year or fill a 40-gallon gas tank more than 200,000 times.  Recycling plastic into clothes not only cuts down our dependence on oil; it reduces air pollution by lowering emissions from incinerators and alleviating the amount of discards that contaminate our water and land resources.  According to the EPA, plastic accounts for one-fifth of the total volume of waste products that individuals leave behind during the course of day-to-day living.

But the process of turning plastic bottles and caps into fabric is only effective if consumers are willing to spend their money on a product that is made from recycled materials and also meets their expectations in terms of personal expression, use, and price.  The next time you shop for a new outfit, take a closer look at the garment’s source materials.  You may be surprised to find that plastic, which has been refined, chopped down, and spun into fiber strands can be knitted and woven into a beautiful piece that will feel wonderful and stand the test of time. More

So you’ve had your new custom printed stainless steel water bottle for a month now and you’ve just noticed what looks like RUST within licking distance of your lips. OMG! How long has it been there? And how long before they’re rushing me on a gurney to the Operating Room?  You’re finally doing your bit to help the environment, purchasing eco promotional products that are a little less harmful, and this is how you're rewarded!  Not to mention you’ve just bought a thousand of these things, decorated with your company’s logo, and distributed them to suppliers, employees and heaven forbid your prized customers. What to do, what to do?

First of all relax, and take stock of the situation. Stainless steel, while highly resistant to rust, can actually rust. In many cases what you think is rust is a mark, or heat mark, left from the electro-polishing process during manufacturing. There is no harm whatsoever, other than the aesthetic beauty of your bottle has a little added character.

Secondly, determine what grade of stainless steel your bottles are manufactured from. Some are more corrosive than others, although the vast majority sold are food grade and highly resistant to rust. The better bottles are typically an 18/8 grade or 18/10. The 18 being the percentage of chromium, and the 8 and 10 being the percentage of nickel. Some inferior grades substitute manganese for nickel causing them to be more corrosive, and more likely to rust.

Otherwise, regardless of the grade, all of them can rust from time to time depending on how you treat them. The main rust inducing culprits include leaving water in your bottle for prolonged periods without allowing the bottle to dry and leaving acidic beverages or juices in the bottle for extended periods.

Lastly, besides switching to glass water bottles, there are remedies to remove the rust spots but it does take a little time and effort. I’ll save that for another post! More

Still fuzzy about organic cotton? Here’s a BASIC overview (or cheat sheet) to help you understand what the fuss is all about. While a small novel could easily be compiled, this is meant as a quick and dirty synopsis…

We love it here at IMAGEN Green, and not just the durability and softer hand against your skin, but moreso the less detrimental effect it has on both human and environmental health.  More

PICK OF THE MONTH

Vacuum Insulated Bottle

Comparable quality to the leading retail brand, these hugely popular double walled vacuum insulated bottles can be used for both hot and cold beverages. Keeps hot drinks hotter and cold drinks colder for longer, preventing condensation and burnt hands! Pricing below is for our 4... Read more

 

LEAN AND GREEN SPECIALS

Bamboo Utensil Set

What better way to promote healthy cooking than with this 5 piece bamboo utensil gift set. Your logo will be displayed forever more in your recipients kitchen because who really doesn't need more kitchen tools!... Read more



Glass Water Bottles

Classic slim grip 18.5 oz. glass water bottles that double as unique counter containers. BPA free of course, and dishwasher safe. Available with either a silver or optional flip top built in straw... Read more

 

We are promotional product distributors and do not sell to other industry distributors