PPB Magazine

Ready To Be Acquired?

Ready To Be Acquired?

Starting my professional career as an attorney who advised clients on merger-and-acquisition strategies as well as post-merger integration issues, I was afforded a unique vantage point from which to launch a promotional products distributorship that later would acquire and be acquired. Read More »

A Passion For People

A Passion For People

She started out as a legal secretary and fell into the promotional products industry by chance. Now, 11 years after joining Glenwood, Minnesota-based distributor American Solutions For Business (UPIC: A577956), Sarah Thomas, director of vertical markets/GPO specialist, is still as enthusiastic as her first day on the job, maybe more so. Read More »

Going The Distance

Going The Distance

Preparing to race a triathlon requires concentrated preparation and the ability to juggle three separate but all important disciplines. There’s building a base of fitness to establish endurance, threshold training to push your body to levels you might think is not possible, and getting into the right mindset so that you can train the body to respond to the mind. Read More »

Plant Seeds Of Promotional Success

Plant Seeds Of Promotional Success

Food is fuel, and our nation’s farmers and ranchers continue working to fuel the nation—and in some cases other nations—despite wild weather, wacky economics and global politics. U.S. food consumption in 2013 totaled 635 billion pounds, and 81 percent of that food was produced domestically. The 19 percent of food that is imported either cannot grow in the U.S. or is less expensive to produce overseas, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Read More »

Flip Your Mental Switch To Success

Flip Your Mental Switch To Success

As a 19-year entrepreneur, I can tell you that creating a business that endures is the hardest thing anyone can do. It’s frustrating. It’s lonely. It’s always on you. It’s about making tough decisions. It has moments of great disappointment. And, did I say it’s lonely? If you’re in this position too, it is possible to create something special and work through whatever limitations and self-doubt you might experience in the process. Here are six simple suggestions to help you prepare your mind for business, and prepare your business for success. Read More »

Spread The Message

Spread The Message

Think about where you spend the most time in your home—the kitchen, right? When you have guests over, chances are that everyone congregates around the cheese-and-cracker tray at the kitchen island even though there are perfectly good couches and snacks over in the family room. With the open concept design trend toward big kitchen islands, and Food Network-inspired home chefs cooking meals with ultra-fresh ingredients that need chopping and sautéing, the kitchen is where the action is. Read More »

Shift Your Sales Into Top Gear

Shift Your Sales Into Top Gear

Whether it’s a predictable sales cycle or an economic downturn that stalls revenues, a promotional consultant’s bottom line can often take a hit. In the past decade, many of the nation’s biggest industries—housing, health care and energy among them—have suffered setbacks that effectively choked promotional products sales. Clients in stable industries can fall away, too, leaving consultants wondering how to breathe new life into their accounts. Read on to learn how three distributors maintain momentum when their clients’ business climates and marketing needs encounter business-altering change.

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Service Superheroes

Service Superheroes

If you ask customers about your company’s quality of service it always comes back to the people. Chances are there will be some comments about procedures, systems and policies but ultimately it’s the people who really make your customer service operation shine. PPB set out to find some of the best examples of extraordinary service in the promotional products industry for our annual feature on Service Superheroes. Read on to see this year’s lineup and learn more about how they deliver a remarkable experience. Read More »

Creativity Is Meaningless

Creativity Is Meaningless

Recently, I was speaking in front of a group of approximately 100 promotional products distributors and posed the following prompt: “Raise your hand if you position yourself as ‘creative’ to differentiate yourself from your competitors.” I would like to tell you that I was surprised when about 85 people raised their hands, but I wasn’t. In an effort to be different from the competition, far too many in our industry reach for the easy claim of creativity. Read More »

Duty Reductions

Duty Reductions

The Miscellaneous Tariff Bill (MTB) is legislation providing benefits to importers in the form of temporary duty reductions on qualifying goods. The MTB’s goal is to aid U.S. manufacturers by reducing duties on inputs (raw materials, parts, etc.), thereby cutting domestic production costs and increasing the competitiveness of U.S. manufacturers. Read More »

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