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.

Summer Camp: Keep the fire burning all year long.

Ask anyone who has been to summer camp and – even as adults – they can tell you their camp nickname, their counselors’ names, and can still sing most of the crazy songs. That one week in the summer was filled with enough memories to last a lifetime. And their camp shirt? They probably still have it – tattered, faded and torn – balled up in a corner of their dresser. They’ll still pull it out from time to time and all the great memories come rushing back.

We are fortunate to work with a number of summer camps across the country. The directors and counselors are some of the most dedicated, passionate and fun-loving people we know. That’s why we’re excited to have created camp stores for a few of our clients.

Campers and parents can shop and have access to camp all year long. And camps can raise awareness for their camp in schools, communities and neighborhoods farther than they could reach on their own.

Check ‘em out:

YMCA Camp Copneconic

Camp Kesem

Together with input from camp staff, we can design and produce the apparel of your choosing. We develop the site, the payment processing and fulfill your orders.

Not a camp? We can help you, too! We provide online stores for a number of our customers. Just give us a call!

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.

On the Road Again

Promoluxers Amber and Melissa packed their bags, voted early and cranked up the Ke$ha for a 600-mile round-trip trek to Cedar Rapids, IA. There they spent three days getting trained on our new software upgrade.

The upgrades are going to help our already rock star employees become even more awesome. We’ll be able to receive orders electronically and realize efficiencies for our web stores. As our business grows, it’s important to Tyra to make the upgrades that keep us ahead of the game. The goal: efficiency and automation without error.

The ladies kept the road trip fun, Googling answers to their off-the-wall questions: Why are barns red? What do farmers do in the winter? What are the terms for other elected officials?  They munched on peanut M&Ms while watching the election results come in and they toughed it out in a room with only a space heater to keep them warm.

Our team will go to great lengths – and distances – to do great things for the company and our wonderful customers.

(Couldn’t find a Google answer to why this van is a school bus. Maybe it’s still dressed up for Halloween.)

 

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.

Today’s Tangerine Tango is Tomorrow’s Limealicious Green

Whether you are aware of it happening to you or not, colors evoke a feeling. They make you feel happy or sad; hungry or angry; peaceful or energetic. Color is also trendy, from the pastel, modern and Scandinavian color palette of the 1950’s (Check it out!) to the avocado  green appliances in the 1970’s. And did you know that Tangerine Tango is the color of the year for 2012 (as declared by Pantone)? Read all about it. Those who work in fashion, special events, interior decorating, or graphic design watch and follow these trends.

We work in Pantone colors every day. According to Wikipedia: The Pantone Color Matching System is largely a standardized color reproduction system. By standardizing the colors, different manufacturers in different locations can all refer to the Pantone system to make sure colors match without direct contact with one another.

(We love this picture of the Pantone Color guide in his wheel spokes! Call us color geeks.)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Any logo has specific colors that must be matched in print, on cotton, canvas, etc. We take great care to ensure our clients’ colors are correctly represented on their promo items.

As you plan for the Fall and beyond, think about keeping up with the color trends and putting your customers in what’s hot (of course using colors that complement your logo). Any favorites?

Fall 2012 Color trends (full link here to see men’s and women’s trends):

 

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.

 

Play ball!

Sure, most of us here are big Milwaukee Brewers fans, but we were excited for the opportunity to work with the Staten Island Yankees. The SI Yankees are the Single-A Affiliate of the New York Yankees and affectionately known as the Baby Bombers. Of course we only work with the best: The Yankees are the defending champion of the NY-Penn League having won the title in 2011.

Since we all have a little baseball fever around here, it was fun to work on a few projects for the team. We hope the fans love their giveaways as much as we loved working on them!

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.