Imprinting Class: Embroidery

Embroidery A large majority of my blog posts involve me harping on the importance of putting your logos on promotional products. Now, I know that you know what promotional products are (giveaway t-shirts, stress balls, padfolios, koozies, bags, pens, etc.), but what do you know about the actual imprinting processes? This is part one of an informative series about those processes. Today’s lesson: embroidery.

The MacMillan online dictionary defines embroidery as “the activity of decorating cloth with [colored] stitches.” That’s easy enough. A design – in this case your company’s logo – is sewn onto fabric. But how do we get from your logo on paper to having it sewn on a cap?

First the logo must be converted into stitches, a procedure that we call “digitization.” This involves figuring out exactly where which type of embroidery stitch will be used, how letters and symbols will be connected to one another, and logo sizing. It’s an involved process that ultimately determines how much your embroidery will cost.

Once the logo has been digitized, an accurate stitch count is determined. That is, we know exactly how many times the needle will need to pass through a piece of cloth to achieve an embroidered logo. Higher stitch counts are more expensive than lower ones because they require more time on the embroidery machine and they use more thread.

But price is not decided by stitch count alone, the cost of embroidery is very dependent upon quantity. Setting up the machines for each logo is a lot of manual labor, so if you are only sewing your logo onto 6 polos (Gossett Marketing’s minimum order quantity), then the price will be higher than it would be for 500 shirts. Basically, if the cost of the setup is amortized over fewer shirts then the price is higher.

And that’s what it takes to embroider your logo onto fabric! Leave a note in the comments below if you are interested in embroidered promotional products.

Click on this YouTube video to see an embroidery machine in action:

How to Give Effective Promotional Products

Lip Balm I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again: when you give away logoed promotional products, be sure to give away items that your customers will actually use. That way, they will see your company’s logo whenever they utilize the gift you’ve given them, and, better yet, if they have it with them in public, then they will be marketing your company all around town!

If you regularly read Gossett Marketing’s blog, then you know that I always recommend imprinted bags as giveaways. I also tout the virtues of embroidered polo shirts, brand name merchandise, and even water bottles – they are all items that individuals appreciate and put to good use. Some other great promotional marketing products are truly indispensable: consider giving away toiletry items.

It sounds weird to say that you should give away logoed toiletries, but I’m not talking about imprinted nail polish (although that is an option!). The cosmetic products that I like are things like lip balm, packets of sunscreen, and even hand sanitizers. These are unisex items that people actually carry around with them and use in public, so if they have a snazzy imprint on them, then they will catch the eye of those around the user. The latter two items (sunscreen and hand sanitizers) are also frequently shared – I can’t tell you how many times I’ve used a spritz of another person’s sanitizer spray. When that happens, your logo is literally in the hands of another potential customer. You can’t ask for better marketing!

Not only are toiletry products useful promotional marketing tools, but they’re also inexpensive! So the next time you need a fun giveaway that will give your logo exposure time and again, consider one of these fabulous items.

Just for kicks, click on this YouTube video, which shows “beauty tips” from Ursula, the sea witch from Disney’s The Little Mermaid:

Promotional “Real Estate”

Living in South Florida, real estate is always a hot topic.  It’s hot in the promotional marketing business too, but to us the most valuable piece of property is your client’s desktop.  We want your promo piece to get there and to stay there because if that happens, then your customer will see your logo every time he or she sits down at his or her desk.

Tons of items can take up “desktop real estate” – stress relievers, letter openers, and paperweights will all do it.  But for the most impact, I always recommend something fun and unique.  My new favorite: the Ecosphere.  Originally designed by NASA, it is basically an enclosed fish bowl that houses live marine shrimp and never needs feeding or cleaning.  The shrimp tend to last for 2-3 years, but one actually lived for 10!  Your logo can be laser engraved on the Ecosphere, and I can all but guarantee that it is an item that will sit on your client’s desk and get noticed – a great real estate purchase!

Take a look at this YouTube video to see what I’m talking about!

Running Billboard

The Miami Marathon and Half Marathon are coming up. I was an avid runner for years and have done the Half several times. While running is no longer my exercise of choice – I’ll now take The Bar Method over pounding the pavement any day of the week – I do still have a lot of the promotional t-shirts and caps that I received back when it was. Read below and find out just how much free stuff you get when you are a runner! And good luck to all of my friends who are competing in the races!

I started running a couple of years ago.  It’s something that I do a lot; however, I’m usually not particularly fond of it.  What I do enjoy: the free stuff!  When you run in a race, you get tons of goodies!

I recently participated in the ING Miami Half Marathon, and when I went to pick up my race bib I got so much stuff!  I filled my bright orange cinch bag from the University of Miami Health System with a running shirt, a lightweight cap, sports drinks, energy gels, even bandages with a company’s logo!  If I put everything on at once, I’d look like an advertisement for every running product known to mankind, so I just wear one piece at a time and serve as that company’s walking (running) billboard.

If you’d like to see some of my fellow billboards crossing the finish line, watch this YouTube video:

From the Archives: An Example of Effective Social Media

Miami Bike Polo Logo While I keep up with the news because I think it is important to be informed, my favorite stories are always of the quirky, human interest variety. The Miami Herald never lacks for this type of article – probably because we have so many quirky humans living in South Florida!

I just read a piece on their Herald’s website about Miami Bike Polo, a league that was created just a few months ago which really seems to be taking off. Bike polo is just what it sounds like: polo played on a bike instead of a horse. It was invented in 1891 but this is the first time I’ve ever heard of it. It’s probably the first time a lot of people have heard of it, but the Miami league is doing a great job of promoting itself. They have a blog that teaches visitors about the game and talks about events, a good Twitter following, and a nice Facebook fan page. All of this great social media exposure has gotten them attention from WLRN, the Herald, and Deco Drive, a local television show.

As Miami Bike Polo expands, I think they should throw promotional products into their marketing mix. During TV spots, it would be great logo exposure if the interviewee was wearing a polo shirt that featured their logo. And regular participants need bags to carry their mallets and helmets! Exposing their logo to more pairs of eyes would definitely pique the public’s curiosity: I know I would ask someone who was drinking from a Bike Polo water bottle about the sport.

Keep up the good marketing work, Miami Bike Polo. And when you need promotional products, please do not hesitate to contact Gossett Marketing!

Click on this YouTube video to see Miami Bike Polo in action:

Make Them Remember You

Remember Name Button
I received an Amazon Kindle for my birthday and I absolutely love it. It’s compact and light, purchasing books is convenient, and the battery lasts forever – I’ve downloaded and read three entire books and have yet to charge it. I’m a huge fan! My only gripe about the Kindle is that I can never remember the titles of the books that I’m reading or have read on it. I guess it’s because I don’t have to pick up an actual book, which would have the title displayed on both the cover and the spine, so I see the name less frequently. That lack of exposure allows the book’s name to escape me even if I really love what I’m reading.

I’m sure you’re wondering where I’m going with this. Well, here it is… I can’t remember the title of the book that I’m reading while I’m reading it because I do not see it every time I pick up my Kindle – lack of exposure is the problem. So if your customer is not exposed to your company’s name and logo, how will they remember you? Sure, they might have “Accountant” or “A/C Guy” programmed into their phone, but will they be able to refer you business if they don’t have that phone with them? Probably not!

Get your logo out there if you want people to recognize your corporation! Promotional marketing products are an excellent way to do that. If you are an accountant, give out calculators – that’s a no-brainer. I have my appliance repair company’s magnet on my refrigerator so I see their name – Glenn’s – every day. And Gossett Marketing gives out fun logoed items to our customers: bags, hand-shaped, highlighters, you name it! We practice what we preach!

So put your logo on something and give it to your customers. It really helps them remember your name!

Exclusive Promotional Products Drive Demand

Umbrellas Masters

I wrote the post below about The Masters when I ended up watching it last year.  I guess I had blocked it out of my mind because I ended up with my husband’s iPad back in my hand this year – reviwing fun facts from what was probably the same list that I saw back then.  Hopefully you, like me, have forgotten what we learned back in 2013 and you’ll find this post fresh and exciting!  Who knew that you can’t find their promotional marketing items anywhere other than at the tournament?!

If you watched the 2013 Masters, then you know that the final round took place on a rainy Sunday at Augusta National Golf Club. I’m sure that most of the spectators who were there checked the weather before setting foot on the course, but as I watched Adam Scott win in a very close tie-breaker, I couldn’t help but marvel at the number of people in the gallery who were staying dry under golf umbrellas imprinted with The Masters iconic logo.

I was bored of watching golf by the time Scott and Angel Cabrera began the tie-breaker, so I mentioned to my husband the fact that I was sort of surprised that the spectators hadn’t thought to bring their own umbrellas to the tournament, choosing instead to purchase the $45.00 umbrellas. So my husband looked at me like I was crazy, typed something on his iPad, and handed it to me with a list of little-known-facts about The Masters. From the list, I learned that no one can have a cell phone on the course, so there is always a long line at the bank of payphones, that purchasing food there is surprisingly inexpensive, and that Masters-branded products can only be purchased at the tournament.

I was surprised by the fact that one can only buy promotional products with The Masters logo at the event – I know that I can buy a Heat t-shirt or a Dolphins jersey at various stores throughout Miami because, well, the teams like to make extra money! But apparently the money that the golf tournament brings in from its television contract lines the golf club’s coffers quite nicely, so it can afford to keep its promotional products ultra-exclusive. So exclusive, in fact, that you have to enter a lottery to even have the chance to purchase tickets, and only then can you buy a Masters umbrella, t-shirt, or cap! People are proud to have been to such an elite event, so they are willing to shell out $45.00 for an umbrella – it gives them bragging rights when they use it later.

Watch the YouTube video below of Adam Scott’s big Masters win – and check out all of the branded umbrellas in the background.

Sweet Reminder

Peeps Candy
A good friend of mine is an event planner here in Miami. She throws a lot of parties so her vendors often reach out to her in order to stay top of mind. She gets a tons of calls and e-mails, but she told me today about a great piece of direct mail that she recently received. A hotel that she hasn’t utilized in a while sent her a box filled with Peeps Candy and a note that said “We haven’t heard a PEEP from you!” and included their contact information. She admitted that the candy is already all gone, but the box with the hotel’s logo is sitting on her desk and she said that she said that it was a great reminder to look at their venue again. What a fun, seasonally-appropriate way to touch base with a customer!

Direct mail can be very inexpensive and it’s a great way to stay on your customers’ radar. You can be as straightforward or as clever as you want to be (here at Gossett Marketing always encourage creative promotions!). Let us know if you’re considering a direct mail – we will come up with something as sweet as the Peeps campaign!

I wonder what Hitchock would think about this remake of The Birds?  Click on this YouTube video to see what I’m talking about!

Marketing (or anything) Tip: Plan Ahead

plan ahead The team here at Gossett Marketing often jokingly refers to our organization as Gossett Rush Marketing because each week we get a slew of last-minute panicked phone calls from customers who have forgotten to order promotional products for upcoming events. Fortunately, we have great suppliers who are often able to help us with quick turnarounds – our silkscreener once delivered imprinted shirts for us on the same day that we ordered them – but it’s not always possible. We love our customers, even the self-professed “Queen of Rush Orders,” so we are always disappointed when we cannot meet their needs, but there comes a point when I want to shake them and say “you have known about this event for months – give us a heads up!”

Most of the promotional marketing items that we produce are used at events: health fairs, galas, golf tournaments, etc. Some are also used as part of marketing campaigns – for instance, many of the cruise lines send travel agents promo items to boost awareness of their brand. These aren’t the kind of things that just pop up out of nowhere, most require months of planning. I recognize that when someone is planning an event or a marketing campaign, promotional products might not be the first thing on their mind, but they certainly shouldn’t be the last thing either. Rush orders generally cost more, provide limited options, and if there is any mistake in the order, then there is no time to rectify the situation.

The moral of the story is to plan ahead when ordering promotional products – or really when you’re doing anything for your business. Sure, there are unexpected circumstances that will pop up and surprise you now and again, but the vast majority of events/marketing campaigns/general projects are well thought-out and planned, so make sure that their promotional products (and everything else associated with them) are as well.

For more information about planning ahead, check out this YouTube video from John Maxwell, a renowned speaker, author, and leadership expert. Good stuff!

A Video to Make You Happy!

photo from

photo from

It’s rather a dreary day in Miami, and to be perfectly honest with you I showed up to the Gossett Marketing headquarters in quite the grumpy mood. My coworker noticed my lousy attitude and told me that she had something to cheer me up, so she showed me the new Pharrell Williams music video, which is for his song “Happy.” Check it out by clicking on the YouTube video below – I hope it brings a smile to your face like it did mine!


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