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29/11/06

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Corporate Christmas Feature Part 2

PROMOTIONAL MERCHANDISE:
The death of the wooden squirrel (except in Bratislava)
A completely useless and charmless ‘wooden squirrel’ as immortalised by comedienne Catherine Tate, was passed around as an unwanted gift among her inimitable characters to be dismissed and cursed by all. Although this made for brilliant comic material perhaps they all had a point.
In an age of climate change, pressure to recycle and rising property prices, useful, valuable and relevant are three concepts that take a more prominent role in our daily vocabulary when discussing products and consumer goods. The promotional marketing industry, whether it be a key ring, a pen or a DVD included with your Sunday newspaper, is worth £20 billion annually and is fuelled by clever ideas. Look at your desk and count how many items on it fall under the promotional merchandise category. The branded folder? The pen from the exhibition you visited or the branded note pad? Promotional merchandise now has a role far beyond the experience to which it is attached. Well chosen, high quality merchandise is retained and acts as a reminder of the product, service, or event it promoted. It is an incentive for future loyalty to the brand. Consumers are also more discerning than ever before, so cheap pens or oversized poorly produced T-shirts simply won’t cut it. Promotional clothing has upped the stakes to compete with fashion trends. Why? The answer is simple: consumers won’t wear something if they’re not going to feel good about wearing it. A stylish peak cap, branded leather wristband or a quality winter fleece are great examples of what consumers will retain and enjoy. The idea behind promotional merchandise is that is has to be useful and reflective of the brand its promoting as well as to act as a positive reminder in future. Otherwise it has failed. How will consumers feel when they pick up the product six months down the line, long after their promotion or event. Will the hand towel which came with expensive perfume still be in good condition? Is that branded corkscrew something that will be kept and used for years to come? The obvious choice is quality and relevance for the end user. Perhaps the ugly wooden squirrel can be used as firewood? But who will remember it then, and what it stood for? The British Promotional Merchandise Association (BPMA), founded in 1965 stands for the promotion of the highest standards of business ethics in the supply of promotional merchandise and services. For more information telephone: 01932 355660 or fax: 01932 355662, email: enquiries@bpma.co.uk of visit: www.bpma.co.uk

Promotional Gifts Directory
Company Name Tel: Website/ Email: Description Regions Covered Company Name Tel: Website/ Email: Description Regions Covered Company Name Tel: Website/ Email: Description Regions Covered Company Name Tel: Website/ Email: Description Regions Covered Company Name Tel: Website/ Email: Description Regions Covered Company Name Tel: Website/ Email: Description Regions Covered Company Name Tel: Website/ Email: Description Regions Covered Monk Marketing Partnership Ltd 0845 0700826 www.monkmarketing.com mike@monkmarketing.com Incentive gifts & promotional merchandise. Free catalogue & advice. Est. 1998 Sussex - UK Wide Key Promotions 0114 249 4130 keypromotions@blueyonder.co.uk Stainless Steel Promotional Products for Business South Yorkshire - UK Wide The Branding Warehouse 01494 871230 www.thebrandingwarehouse.com info@thebrandingwarehouse.com Customised Clothing, Corporate Giftware & Promotional Products Suppliers - FREE Newsletter Available. Thames Valley - UK Wide All Personal Gifts 0845 170 7000 www.allpersonalgifts.co.uk sales@allpersonalgifts.co.uk Business/Credit Card Holders, Keyrings, Hip Flasks, Desk Accessories, Clocks & Novelties UK Wide Allwag Promotions Ltd 01245 382600 www.allwag.co.uk sales@allwag.co.uk Order online for FREE Self Stirring mug! Express service available Essex/ London - UK Wide J Greenwood & Associates 0115 9284 346 www.guide-pub.com info@jgreenwoodassoc.co.uk An inspired choice of products for all budgets and requirements Notts/ Derby - UK Wide Redbows Ltd 0845 8386 368 www.redbows.co.uk sales@redbows.co.uk Cost-effective, innovative gifts and confectionary for all occasions. UK, Eire and Europe Pulse Promotions 01206 364888 www.pulsepromotions.net info@pulsepromotions.net Embroidered & Printed Clothing & Gifts, NO Description MINIMUM ORDER, Trade/Charities Welcome Regions Covered UK Company Name Tel: Website/ Email: Mesh Promotional Solutions Ltd 01992 450565 www.meshps.co.uk sales@meshps.co.uk Promotions and Incentives, Corporate Clothing, Description Giveaways, Christmas Gifts & More! Regions Covered Chiltern - UK Wide Company Name Tel: Website/ Email: The Ultimate Promotion Company 020 8950 0050 www.ultimatepromotions.co.uk sales@ultimatepromotions.co.uk We supply original ideas for branded merchandise Description giving maxium exposure Regions Covered Chiltern - UK Wide Company Name Tel: Website/ Email: PromoCan 0845 6120 654 www.promocan.co.uk sales@promocan.co.uk Description CAN.......Your Promotion? See our website for more details! Regions Covered West Sussex - UK Wide Company Name Tel: Website/ Email: TUTBURY CRYSTAL GLASS LTD 0845 1300 103 www.tutburycrystal.co.uk martin@tutburycrystal.co.uk TRADITIONAL AND CONTEMPORARY Description CRYSTALWARE, CAN BE PERSONALISED FOR ANY OCCASION. Regions Covered UK NATIONWIDE Company Name Tel: Website/ Email: Bullions Ltd 01592 783124 www.bullions.co.uk alastair@bullions.co.uk Extensive range of promotional products - FREE Description advice available! Regions Covered Scotland - UK Wide Company Name Tel: Website/ Email: Wentworth Wooden Jigsaws 01666 840033 www.jigsaws.co.uk wentworth@jigsaws.co.uk Manufacturers of laser cut wooden jigsaw puzzles, Description tablemats and coasters. Regions Covered National and International Company Name Tel: Website/ Email: 1St StopDirect.com 01277 811670 www.1ststopdirect.com sales@1ststopdirect.com Promotional and Corporate Supplies fast discounts Description with fast lead-time. Regions Covered Essex - UK Wide Company Name Tel: Website/ Email: Arrow Corporate Promotions 0141 639 4210 www.arrowcorporate.co.uk sales@arrowcorporate.co.uk Full range of competitively priced promotional Description merchandise. Fast, friendly service. Regions Covered Scotland - UK Wide Company Name Tel: Website/ Email: Business Gifts UK Ltd 0845 2602601 www.businessgiftsuk.co.uk enquires@businessgiftsuk.co.uk Description A comprehensive range of promotional goods & advertising gifts - EST: 1985 Regions Covered Wessex - UK Wide Company Name Tel: Website/ Email: Promotional Props & Costumes Ltd 0115 947 4440 www.promotionalpropsandcostumes.co.uk info@promotionalpropsandcostumes.co.uk Description Bespoke promotional costumes for all your marketing campaigns Regions Covered Notts/ Derby - UK Wide Company Name Tel: Website/ Email: Lifestyle International Marketing 01727 838 738 www.lifestylegifts.co.uk andy@lifestylegifts.co.uk Stunning gifts, plain or personalized for all events, Description promotions, and rewards’ Regions Covered Chiltern - UK Wide Company Name Tel: Website/ Email: Happy Play Promotions 01242 252200 www.happy-playpromotions.co.uk rosemary@happy-play.freeserve.co.uk Every kind of promotional item personalised to your Description specific requirements. Regions Covered Bristol & Glouces - UK Wide Company Name Tel: Website/ Email: Flo-Sta Ltd 01303 236 504 www.pukme.com pauls@pukme.com UNIQUE PROMOTIONAL DESKTOP ITEM, JUST LOOK Description AT OUR WEBSITE WWW.PUKME.COM Regions Covered Kent - UK Wide Company Name Tel: Website/ Email:

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December/January 2007 • www.businessnetworkmagazine.com