Ellen Tucker, PPAI’s director of business development, recently visited supplier Vault Promotions (PPAI 547406) in Henderson, Tennessee, where she met the company’s leadership and staff and learned more about its facility and operations.

While at Vault Promotions, Tucker (above right) spoke with the company’s owner, Josh Robbins (above left, with co-owner Andy Logan), about the business and how it has established itself in the promotional products market.

Ellen Tucker: What separates Vault Promotions from its competitors?

Josh Robbins: It’s the level of service. I’d put the quality of our product against anything that’s out there, but I tell people all the time that anybody can make a name badge. The product is top notch, but at the end of the day, you can get it anywhere. So, what has to separate us is service. We say that if we’re not the easiest supplier that you’ve ever done business with, we’re not doing our job right.

There are a few steps we’ve taken to provide that level of service. All of the sales tools that help distributors sell, we just include. We don’t charge for set-ups, proofs or spec samples. We also offer our release program, which features custom branded websites that end-users can order their badges from.

Tucker: Can you tell me more about the release program?

Robbins: The biggest pain point for distributors when they’re selling badges is that while it’s cool when they get an order for 100 badges, what happens when a month later the customer hires “Bob” and now they need just one badge?

You can’t charge them enough to do just one piece. The idea behind our release program is that they order their badges in advance. So instead of ordering 100 badges, this company might order 150 and pre-pay for all of that one time. We can print all 150 at one time, so from a production standpoint it keeps their costs down, and we ship them out the first 100 that they need. The other 50 we hold on to with just the logo only, and then we set up a custom website featuring the distributor’s information and logo that the end-user can use to order badges as they need them. We pull the badge from the “badge vault,” put the names on them and send them out.

This way we and the distributor only have to deal with billing and invoicing once. The distributor only has to get involved when the end user chews through the extra 50 pieces. They cut us another purchase order for another 50, we reload the program, and it just goes on and on.

Tucker: What do you see coming in the next couple of years for Vault Promotions?

Robbins: We’re at an interesting point in our growth. We’ve established ourselves and we’ve got six years under our belt. I think we’ve developed trust with the distributors that we do business with, so what we want to do now is grow our offerings to those distributors. We want to take the level of service we offer and expand it to new product lines.