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The One Piece of Art Your Business Needs

June 23, 2017 Written by Joellen Reichenbach 

As a business owner, there are some key resources that you need to keep in your tool box as you build your business. We all know that we need a good accountant, attorney and banker. But what most people don’t think about is the camera-ready artwork of your company's logo.

Camera-Ready Logos Make Professional First Impressions

When you print your logo on business cards or on a pen do you feel like you should get your eyes checked because it seems fuzzy or it’s “just not right”? If so, you likely have a situation where you’re using a version of your logo graphic that is not what we call ‘camera-ready’. 

Your logo is your brand identity. It’s the first representation of you seen by your potential clients. So you’d better be sure it’s exactly what you want to portray. It needs to be legible and memorable.

You spent a lot of time and money working with a graphic designer to create your logo. Every time you use it – no matter how you use it - it should be crystal clear. So what do you need to have to make sure that happens?

Why You Need Multiple Versions of Your Logo

Your marketing takes many different forms and your logo will be used many ways in the course of doing business. Sometimes you’ll want your logo all by itself, sometimes you’ll want your logo with your tagline, sometimes you’ll need it with your tagline and phone number & website, and sometimes, you’ll just need your logo with your tagline and website.

In addition to all of these potential combinations, you may need your logo in black & white for some uses, and in full color for others. This means you’ll need your camera-ready logo designed in full color, spot colors, and black & white.

Each logo version is used for different marketing applications. You should reflect on how many ways you’ll use your logo. Will you have pens or mugs made? Will you need a brochure? Will you use billboards or car wraps? For each application, we’ll need your logo graphics file – but due to certain imprinting processes, your promotional products vendor may need your logo supplied in a different color format.

Style Sheets Clear Up Confusion

A style sheet is an important part of your logo toolbox. This information sheet provides your company with a comprehensive list of all of your logo’s elements from colors to typography.  It allows you to know your exact corporate colors, and your brand’s typeface so you can ensure that every document that leaves your office is in sync with your brand.

Style sheets are also an important tool for your vendors. When working with a promotional products company, you’ll be asked what font your company name and tagline uses. You’ll also be asked which Pantone colors are in your logo. (That’s the PMS number.) If you don’t know, anyone trying imprint a promotional product will not be able to help you easily.

What Type of Graphics Files Do You Need for High Quality Printing?

Most people know about .jpeg graphics files. What you need to know is that a .jpeg format is not camera-ready artwork. A .jpeg is just an image of your logo which can be used on websites and social media applications. It is simply a picture of your logo. But a .jpeg file can't be altered or adjusted to create camera-ready artwork. This also applies to .tiff .gif .png files as well.

You will need the following art files (in full color vs. one color). It is extremely important to ask your graphic designer for the following files:

  • You will need what are called .eps files. These .eps files need to have all fonts converted to outline and saved down to a CS5 or lower. You personally won't be able to open this file unless you have the Illustrator or InDesign artwork software but your promotional products vendor and print vendors will be able to open them. It is critical that you don’t delete them!
  • Along with the .eps files, you should ask your graphic designer for .PDF files so you can view what should be in each .eps file.

A Quick Tip on Saving Your Logo Files

Be sure to keep your artwork file titles the same so you know what each file contains. For example:

  •    selectsalesFullColorLogo.eps

selectsalesFullColorLogo.PDF

selectsalesFullColorLogo.jpeg

  •    selectsalesoOneColorLogo.eps

selectsalesOneColorLogo.PDF

selectsalesOneColorLogo.jpeg

Storing Your Valuable Camera-Ready Artwork

Your camera-ready artwork files are part of your corporate tool box. You need to keep these .eps files in a safe place. It’s critical for your future marketing applications. It is always best to have them saved in multiple locations just to be safe.

I always suggest keeping them on a CD, a flash drive, on an external drive, and in cloud storage in addition your computer’s My Documents file. It would be a smart idea to keep an additional copy of your logo files with your corporate documents. You can never go wrong with burning a CD and placing it in a plastic sleeve inside your three-ring corporate binder.

 Having your own files allows you to be able to move forward with your marketing materials without waiting for your graphic designer to get back to you. I have had situations where a client’s graphic designer either moved away with no forwarding information or went out of business, so be sure to maintain your corporate artwork files in-house. 

Your financial investment into your corporate branding can provide an outstanding return if you know exactly where your .eps, .PDF, and .jpeg electronic files are every time you need them during the implementation of your marketing plans. Just as you use your accountant during the tax season, your attorney during your legal issues, and your banker when you need a loan, your artwork files are another key partner you need to run a successful business.

Copy of Do Your Everyday Office Products Have a Marketing Message

August 6, 2012 By Joellen Reichenbach

How many times have you scrambled to find a piece of paper in your office so you can jot down a quick note before you forget it? You grab your favorite pen and – bang! – instant peace of mind. Have you ever noticed how many office products you use each day? Or how many have marketing messages imprinted?

Look around you  it might be the first time you really notice the calendars, pens, sticky pads, mouse pads, staplers, scissors, paperclip holders, notebooks, clocks, coasters, telephone pads, mugs, and even the screen saver on your computer that pops on and off throughout the day. Do you see all of the silent marketing messages that you’re continually absorbing without realizing it?

The sticky pad you used to jot down that quick note was there another message already printed on it? What does it say? Or how about your favorite pen – do you remember where you picked it up? Which company has their logo and phone number on it? These hidden marketing messages are in plain sight even if you don’t see them consciously each day. When you need the services represented by those companies on your desk, who do you suppose you’ll end up calling?

Promotional products are one way to keep your name in front of your contacts or future customers, and everyday office products are a perfect way to start! Office products give you the opportunity to deliver your message every time a potential customer picks up a pen or a mug, or looks at a calendar.

By the way, if that sticky pad you used earlier doesn’t have your company’s name and contact information on it, just give us a call! At Select Sales, we can help you start an idea board for everyday office products that will help you gain market share on your customer’s desks. Remember, promotional products are more than just a pen or sticky pad, they are your companys message in front of your customers all the time.

Have you used promotional products to keep your message in front of potential customers?

When Should You Show Employees Appreciation

March 24, 2017 Written by Joellen Reichenbach 

If you missed National Employee Appreciation Day on March 3
rd, it’s not too late to show your employees how much they mean to you and your company.  Employee awards can be given all year long.

 How Employee Recognition Programs Improve Business

Your employees can take your business to success levels you’ve never dreamed. They can also hurt your company more than you thought possible. An employee appreciation award is a simple way to ensure that your employees feel valued. 

It’s a known fact that when employees feel appreciated they are more likely to behave and make decisions in the best interest of your business and your clients. 

 The results of showing employees appreciation can result in other huge benefits to your company. They can:

  • Improve employee morale
  • Reduce employee turnover
  • Increase teamwork
  • Drive higher productivity from teams and employees
  • Motivate employees
  • Build loyalty
  • Encourage specific habits

 When to Present an Employee Appreciation Award

One question I hear quite frequently is, “I know that employee recognition is a good idea and it can help my business. But when do I give an employee award?”

There are a number of reasons to give out awards. There are the standard milestone-type awards and then there are more creative moments to recognize an employee. Let’s start with the typical occasions:

  • Years of service
  • Top sales revenue creator
  • Peer recognition
  • Employee of the Month
  • Habits you want to promote (such as punctuality)
  • Birthdays or work anniversaries
  • Achievement
  • Attendance
  • Community Service
  • Volunteer 

For more non-traditional occasions, try these. If you’ve ever noticed your employees taking any of the following actions, these might be award level events for your company:

  • Taking on extra shifts or working overtime
  • Working on days off
  • Covering for employees on vacation
  • Adding new procedures that streamline workflow
  • Changing a policy that increases profit margins
  • Taking ownership of projects
  • Organizing company events
  • Uncovering a safety issue and preventing injuries
  • Supporting fellow team members

Once you start looking for actions and events, you’ll find that you can recognize your employees for a job well done easily.

What is the Best Employee Recognition Gift?

This can be a challenge but luckily you’re reading this post (and Select Sales is always available to help you create a perfect employee appreciation award).

Yes, employees always love cash - but that is not the only option!

Try these traditional employee awards:

  • Plaques
  • Lapel Pins
  • Printed Certificates
  • Ribbons
  • Badges
  • Trophies
  • Crystal, Acrylic, Glass or Wood Awards

 Or you can give untraditional awards to show your gratitude to your employees. These gifts can be more functional and can even be targeted to individual employees’ interests!

  • Blankets
  • Folding Chairs
  • Coolers
  • Backpacks
  • Trunk organizers
  • Travel mugs
  • Watches
  • Embroidered Clothing

If you are interested in giving out employee awards but aren’t sure what your next step should be, give us a call!

Did You Know?

Speaking of awards … our company, Select Sales, has been the proud award sponsor for the Freddy Awards http://www.freddyawards.com since 2003. We believe in supporting the growth of our community. The Freddy Awards are awarded for excellence in high school musical theatre in the Lehigh Valley and surrounding areas. The high schools competing for the awards include Northampton, Lehigh and Warren County, NJ. Held each year at the State Theatre in Easton, this year they will be aired live on WFMZ Channel 69 on May 25, 2017. Make sure to tune in!

Fun (& Dirty) Facts about Business Floor Mats

Fun (& Dirty) Facts about Business Floor Mats
February 16, 2107 Written by Joellen Reichenbach 

These facts might just be enough to convince you that you really need a floor mat or two!

 Did you know?

-          91% of shoppers choose a store because of appearance.

-          Floors are the top spot customers look for business cleanliness.

-          Estimated costs of removing one pound of dirt from an office building: $500+

-          One square yard of carpet can accumulate one pound of dirt in 1 week (and 2x that in inclement weather).

-          Vacuum cleaners only pick up 10% of dirt from mats.

-          Dirt & dust cause 9 out of 10 computer system failures.

-          1500 people can remove 42% of your floor’s finish.

-          Average cost of a slip-related injury exceeds $12,000 (and more than 30% of worker injuries are slip-related)

Wondering How to Order a Floor Mat?

We get asked a lot of questions about ordering custom entrance mats. One of the most common questions is:

“I only have one entrance to my business. Is it ok if I just order one custom mat?”

The answer is yes, of course!

 You might be surprised to learn that there are many different styles of mats and you can choose the materials that best fit the look of your business. You can also choose your colors so you reinforce your branding.

 Using floor mats both inside your business and outside provides businesses so many benefits – and free, long-lasting advertising – so your return on investment is very high.

Give us a call to find out how to order your mat. We’ll walk you through the free design process. Ask us about our 100% guarantee with selected manufacturers!

*Statistics provided by Progressive Shopper, International Sanitary Supply Association, 3M, Louisiana Cooperative Extension Service, Georgia State University Test, Wausau Insurance Company, CDI Research

Wipe Your Paws: Business Entrance Mats Promote Your Company

February 3, 2017 By Joellen Reichenbach 

I was at the Post Office buying stamps the other day. At the service counter, a delivery man was rolling out clean, new interior mats with a welcome message. You’d be surprised at the many types of mats a business might use throughout their facility from entrance mats, logo mats, foot scraper mats, interior mats, anti-fatigue mats to anti-slip mats, anti-static and static dissipative mats.

And each one provides an opportunity for you to deliver a message.

Messaging on Mats

Welcome! Wipe your paws.

Whether you’re a dog training center using an entrance doormat to welcome customers to your facility, eliminate any slip and fall issues – and protect the finish on your floors, or a university proudly displaying your logo on interior mats in front of offices, mats are everywhere within a building.

Each one of those floor coverings allows you to speak to your prospects, your customers, and your employees. What can you communicate? Message types can vary:

  • Welcome to your clients
  • Branding space for your name & logo
  • Warning messages on anti-static mats  
  • Safety hints on anti-fatigue mats for employees
  • Special offers for customers

Using custom floor mats, you can keep your workers and customers safe while delivering one more marketing touchpoint.

 What an Entrance Mat Can Do for Your Business

If you’re wondering what the value is of a custom entrance floor mat might be for your business, consider this. A survey done by Progressive Shopper found that 91% of people chose a business because of its appearance. Think about that for a second – 91% of choice is based on good looks!

Just by having an entrance mat you can:

-          Promote your corporate brand

-          Give a great first impression to customers

-          Keep your floors cleaner and protect the finish

-          Help ensure your clients are safe from slip and falls on snowy or rainy days.

Types of Floor Mats

As I mentioned earlier, there are numerous ways to use floor mats throughout your business. But you may not realize how many different types of mats there are. I thought it might be helpful to give you a list of them as well as a little information to help you decide what would best fit your needs.

Entrance Mats: The most common type of mat, this is not only one of the first things your customer sees but also the first line of defense against mud, rain and snow. Your entrance mat will absorb and store pounds of dirt and water for easy removal. It also provides a slip-resistant surface for customers. 

Foot Scraper Mats: This mat can be used either alone outside your business entrance or in tandem with an entrance mat. The foot scraper mat takes the brunt of the mud, sand and heavy soil and allows the entrance mat to take care of any remaining dirt or moisture. Using a foot scraper mat helps protect your floor’s finish.

Interior Mats: This mat can be used anywhere inside your facility to provide any number of functions. You may want to use them for spot control in kitchen or vending machine areas to catch those coffee spills. Around copy machines is another popular area to use an interior mat to ensure that toner isn’t tracked around the office. High traffic areas also benefit from the protection of a floor mat.

Anti-Fatigue Mats: If your employees are required to stand in one place for long periods of time, you may want to consider providing anti-fatigue mats. These mats allow employee leg muscles to function normally and increase blood flow which reduces fatigue.

Anti-slip Mats: With the average cost of slip & fall injuries topping $12,000 according to Wausau Insurance Company, not to mention lost time and productivity - every business owner wants to ensure safe footing in any slippery area. If your facility has spaces where oil or grease or water create uncertain footing, an anti-slip mat is probably a good choice for you.

Anti-Static and Static Dissipative Mats: Have you ever thought about reducing static electricity around the computers your business relies on? Electro-static discharge can cause computer failure so you may want to consider placing either anti-static mats or static dissipative mats under and around your computer systems – or any sensitive electronics.

Floor mats are easy to clean - either by vacuuming, wiping, washing out, steam cleaning, carpet cleaning or industrial cleaning. As long as you properly maintain your custom mats, you’ll ensure that your investment is long-lasting.


How To Choose a High Impact Holiday Gift for Clients

December 4, 2016 By Joellen Reichenbach
It’s always surprising to me how hard it is for my clients to choose a holiday gift for their customers. Choosing a promotional product gift that creates a lasting impact can be tricky but sometimes all you need to do is change the way you think about your customer.

Think about how your customers choose to interact with you. Do they like to see you in person? Over lunch? Do they prefer email? Phone? Their preferences may hold the clue to the perfect gift. Which of the five senses do they prefer to engage sight, hearing, touch, smell, taste?

Excite their senses with your holiday gift.

When you choose a promotional product gift that stimulates the senses your customers prefer to use, you’ll end up with a holiday gift that creates the lasting impression you’re seeking. Knowing your audience is the key and appealing to the senses creates a joyful holiday reaction.

Go back to the basics.

Think about this. What was the first gift you received? Maybe it was a box of crayons. I bet you still remember to this day the way the lid flipped open, the smell of the crayons, the bright colors. You probably remember how the crayon felt in your hand as you moved it across the paper creating your first masterpiece the one Mom and Dad praised, then hung on the refrigerator. With one box of crayons you accessed a lifetime of memories and engaged four of the five senses touch, sight, smell, hearing.(Im hoping you dont know the taste of a crayon but at Select Sales we dont judge.)

Here are some ideas that will stimulate at least one of your clients’ five senses in order to create a lasting impression.

Sight

A customized picture frame is a good gift for those clients who prefer to see you. When they use it to hold a picture, your frame creates the connection between a special time they want to remember and your service to them.

Other good ideas to engage their vision? Clocks, Awards, Calendars, Sunglasses, Paperweights, Robotic digital alarm clock, Time and temperature items and yes – even Holiday cards.

Smell

Never underestimate the power of scents. You probably have experienced a smell that takes you back in time. Well, it turns out that our brains have a section that holds scent memories connected to past experiences. When thinking about your clients, remember that scents can change behaviors  try a lavender hand lotion for relaxation, an aromatic candle in the office can change the way people react to one another, or a travel mug with a packet of fresh ground coffee can really kickstart their day.

Touch

The sense of touch affects our entire body. It’s not just the handshake you share with your client. Warmth and softness are two winning feelings you can pass along to your clients with a holiday gift. Try a soft organic cotton blanket or a wool embroidered scarf. Or a beach towel – what better way to remain in front of your customers even when they’re on vacation!

Other good ideas to engage their sense of touch? Warm microfleece blankets, Scarf and hat sets, Clothing

Taste

Taste is perhaps the easiest sense to find gifts for (and the most fun). But since it is the easiest gift, keep in mind what happens when the food is gone. What’s left behind with your name on it? How will you stay in front of your clients? If it’s those sweet chocolate covered almonds stuffed inside a penholder, your clients’ taste buds are satisfied and your visual message stays in front of them on their desk for months to come. Dont forget that promotional products which arouse the sense of taste do not always need to be food-oriented there are many beverage items that help you get your message out. Give a water bottle with a diffuser inside so your client can enjoy a fresh taste of raspberry water daily.

Other good ideas to satisfy their taste buds? Chocolate, Jellybeans, Cookies in a custom tin

Sound

Sound-related gifts are a great way for clients to de-stress and tune to their personal needs. And who doesnt want to help their clients relax? Most people have lost sight of simple pleasures like hearing the birds sing in the morning or the giggles of a child on the playground. A desk fountain can bring a touch of nature back indoors for your client. Or give them a custom CD with the relaxing sounds of nature to play in the office. Give your clients an escape – just a few minutes gives them a chance to recharge.

The bottom line? Use as many senses as you can to create your message. Select Sales can help you find the holiday products that will engage your clients’ senses and deliver your message with lasting impact.