A Goat Worth Listening To

Long-time client and environmental champion, Quad/Graphics knows how to make it fun to be green!

Their environmental spokesgoat (yes, we said spokesGOAT) and mascot, Gruff, is an advocate of enlightened environmentalism and a natural-born recycler. He sets the example for all of us by recycling everything and education others on the importance of taking better care of our world.

Last month, the youngest children received a stuffed Gruff at their employee holiday Christmas party complete with a hangtag on his ear that included his motto, “Be a Gruff, Recycle Stuff.”

Thanks to Quad/Graphics for your years of business and for letting us help with fun – and earth-friendly – projects like these!

QGgoat

Giving Thanks

With Thanksgiving just hours away, the team took a few minutes to reflect on the blessings in our life and what we’re thankful for. (As you can tell, it’s been a little busy around here!)

  • My husband
  • My job
  • My new home
  • My family
  • My friends
  • This short & much needed vacation
  • Time I will be spending with family & friends
  • The yummy food I’ll be eating
  • Short work weeks (like this one)
  • That special someone who adores me
  • My 2 smart, beautiful and, most importantly, healthy daughters
  • My feisty little dog Zoë – who is my 3rd daughter 🙂
  • I’m thankful to be surrounded by people who love and understand me.
  • Time with my son
  • My awesome co-workers
  • Great clients who are a joy to work with
  • A short work week, because it’s been CRAZY!
  • Thankful I have Sambas on my feet
  • Thankful to have food, water and shelter

Here’s wishing you a wonderful Thanksgiving filled with laughter, relaxation, people you love, and happiness.

SWAG Works

Have you ever watched a commercial and not remember what product it was advertising? Or glanced over a newspaper ad and never notice what it says? And what about radio ads…do you even listen anymore?

Okay, so TV, print and radio are still effective advertising methods, but to make your impression count, it can take thousands – even millions – of dollars. How can you get your name and contact info in the hands of your customers and ensure they’ll remember you? Promotional items.

FUN FACT: Some of the first promotional items were commemorative buttons given out at the inauguration of George Washington in 1789.

Why does that bag or pen or coffee mug with your company logo and website work so well? Because promo items:

  • Engage all the senses: Recipients can hold, see, and interact with the item in a way they can’t with other advertising methods.
  • Are useful: Everyone needs to write, drink, and carry stuff. Everyone.
  • Are appreciated by recipients: You are the answer to, “Why am I always losing my pens?” when you offer them a new one. Or “Awesome! Now I don’t have to buy a new water bottle…you gave me a reusable one!”
  • Are retained by recipients: People keep your stuff. It is reported that 73% of recipients use their promo item at least once a week!
  • Have a low-cost per impression: Ever see TV ad rates? I rest my case.

 

Info sources: Promotional Products Association International and Advertising Specialty Institute

If at first you don’t succeed…

We recently helped the Every Child a Reader organization celebrate Children’s Book Week, the annual celebration of books for young people and the joy of reading. In addition to the numerous nationwide events, the group distributes tote bags (perfect for kids to tote their books!) featuring the original design from the commemorative Book Week poster.

2013 poster by Caldecott winning illustrator, Brian Selznick.

That’s where we come in. We were happy to work with the group to produce their tote bags.

Not to get too geeky on you, but we used a simulated process to produce the bags. The process uses traditional spot colors, yet blends them in a four-color process manner, simulating full-color images and allows us to produce very realistic images and the best look for your design. We wanted to be sure to capture Selznick’s work and the organization wanted a “dreamy” look.

Numerous press check and not-quite-right bags later, we were all happy with the final bag:

It didn’t matter to us how many press checks and how many process-tweaks later, what mattered most was the happy client and happy kids with bags full of books.

At the core of our beliefs is a dedication to quality. If we’re gonna do something, we’re gonna do it right. Every time.

What a toddler can teach us about customer service.

Tyra’s son, Angelo, visits the Promolux office now and then. Watching him interact with the team reminded us that maybe we can learn a thing or two from toddlers about good customer service.

  1. Smile! People can tell on the other end of the phone when you are smiling. Happy is contagious.
  2. Give lots of hugs. Maybe not physical hugs, but remind your customers they are important to you and that you need and appreciate them.
  3. Mine, mine, mine! Toddlers know this concept all too well. Just as they take ownership of their toys, take ownership of your customers’ needs and any problems that may arise.
  4. Why? Be genuinely curious about how your customers are doing, what they need and how satisfied they are with your service/products.
  5. Nobody likes a tantrum. Not moms and not your customers. Keep your cool no matter what the situation.
  6. I want it now! Respond to inquiries, issues and requests promptly.
  7. Snacks and Naps. Everyone is better on a full night’s sleep. Take care of yourself and you will take better care of your customers.

These are a few of my favorite things

Anyone who knows me knows I am a kid at heart. I wear sambas every day to work; I love new toys; and if I didn’t love my job so much, I would play all day!

I’m also all about the holidays and the holidays are all about giving. So for the first time, I gave myself a gift, and I must add it is the coolest gift EVER: Beats Studio by Dr. Dre headphones.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I know, they are pretty awesome. They fit great, look cool and sound spectacular.  Best of all – the packaging. They arrived in this awesome box. Opening the box was even more fun, with fabric tabs and Velcro – it was amazing. I was just as excited about the packaging as I was the product inside. I would expect nothing less from Dr. Dre.

 

 

 

 

 

Speaking of packaging…
My parents – who have always been my best Santa – gifted me Apple TV.

 

 

 

 

 

Yeah, also cool. And the packaging: great. If you are an Apple person, you know their packaging just feels and looks good. Slick, clean, minimalist and they are smart enough to always include a little apple sticker so you can decorate whatever you want with their iconic logo.

These were good reminders to me that every detail counts. When you are building and maintaining your brand – everything matters. From the way your receptionist answers the phone to how you talk about yourself to how the packaging looks and feels, it all builds on your brand. Know who you are as a company or organization and make sure everything you do aligns with that.

In the meantime, I’m gonna go geek out a little more.

Special Delivery!

As you know, customer service is paramount to us. We want to ensure our clients get what they want, for a great price, with great quality and WHEN they need it. And always with a smile, of course. That means working with vendors and partners we can count on and trust.

Here’s one of our favorite delivery guys making sure your Promolux order is there on time and in one piece.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Okay, so that’s really Tyra’s little guy all dressed for Halloween, but we like to train ’em young around here.

Love in the workplace? We hope so!

We talk a lot about customer service here at Promolux. We hope it’s what differentiates us from other vendors with whom you could choose to work.

This article points out “seven rules for getting customers to love working with you.” It got us thinking about how much we love working with our customers and hope they feel the same way.

These seven rules can be applied to many types of businesses, industries, and organizations. The rules are so much about how humans want to be treated and respected. Not sold to.

  1. Make building the relationship more important than making the sale.
  2. Create opportunities for the customer to buy, rather than opportunities for you to sell.
  3. Have meaningful conversations and never give a sales pitch.
  4. Be curious about the customer as a person and let the friendship evolve from that.
  5. Don’t try to be a hero who swoops in to solve the customer’s problem.
  6. Believe in your heart that you and your firm are the best at what you do.
  7. Deliver exactly what you promised to deliver, no matter what.

In Good Company

With all the talk around the country about company values, it got me thinking about Promolux. As the founder and CEO, I’m lucky that I get to work where I can help define the values and beliefs of the company. I want to make Promolux a place where people can feel good to come to work; clients can be assured they are valued; and I can be proud to be called owner.

Here are a few of the values that guide our work:

  • Work with clients you believe in.
  • Provide superior customer service.
  • Always be thinking of new, fresh ideas.
  • Provide a great product for a great price.
  •  Work with honesty and integrity.
  • Diversity enriches everyone.

There are also four words that define the philosophy of Promolux. They have guided our work since our inception:

  • Imagine
  • Create
  • Dream
  • Grow

You can learn more about each one here (be sure to click on the icons at the bottom). If you are a client, I hope you have – and continue to – experience this in all we do together.

 

On a personal note, I applaud the strong and public stance of the Jim Henson Company. It takes guts to stand up for what you believe.

 

Be a Hero. And Vote by June 30th. (Please)

Consider these statistics:

  • It is estimated that 160,000 children miss school every day due to fear of attack or intimidation by other students. Source: National Education Association.
  • 90% of 4th through 8th graders report being victims of bullying
  • 87% of students said shootings are motivated by a desire to “get back at those who have hurt them.”
  • According to bullying statistics, 1 out of every 10 students who drops out of school does so because of repeated bullying.
  • Bully victims are between 2 to 9 times more likely to consider suicide than non-victims, according to studies by Yale University.

What’s so heartbreaking about these statistics is that behind every number is a child. A child who is trying to grow up, figure himself out, accept herself for who she is, and just make it through the day.

For quite some time I’ve wanted to do something about this. To support those who are working for bully prevention and intervention, and now I have the chance.

I’d like to launch the Silent Hero project. Silent Hero is my way of raising funds, awareness and support for the anti-bully movement. I’ll do what I know and what I do best: create great merchandise that others can wear to help spread the word. I’ll do it online, in stores, and wherever I can to raise funds and support anti-bully organizations and programs.

 

 

Here’s what you can do to help get this off the ground: VOTE FOR ME. There’s a great program in the works – Mission: Small Business. Chase and Living Social launched this project that will award up to 12 individual grants of $250,000. The program was developed to provide small businesses with capital and innovative marketing resources needed to make a positive impact on their business. And we’d like to make a positive impact on our nation’s kids.

In order to qualify for the grant we need to receive 250 votes on Facebook (one vote per person) by Saturday, June 30th.

How to Vote:

  1. Go to: https://www.missionsmallbusiness.com/
  2. Click on “LOG IN & SUPPORT” button.
  3. Log-in to their Facebook account.
  4. Enter Promolux, click on search.
  5. Click on vote!

This grant would help us launch this thing faster than we could without it. This is a personal passion for me and I ask you to vote and spread the word so others can vote, too.

It’s about every child behind the statistic and every child we can prevent from becoming one.

© 2006–2011 Promolux, Inc.