(Editor’s Note: PromoWire by PPAI Media is a running digest of news releases and updates submitted from organizations around the industry. PPAI Media edits these only slightly, including for length, and will consider newsworthy entries from any member organization.)

April 18, 2022

AIA Expands Marketing Team with Appointment of New Vice President of Marketing

APPLETON, Wis. (April 18, 2022)—AIA Corporation (AIA) recently announced the expansion of its Marketing team with the appointment of industry veteran, Stacy Price, as the new VP of Marketing. In this role, Price will lead the Marketing team, overseeing strategy development and execution, brand awareness, public relations, and integrated marketing efforts. She will report to Katrina Willis, SVP of Supplier Relations and Marketing.

Price will focus on helping AIA Owners strengthen their businesses and drive sales through relevant marketing tools, technology, analytics, and education initiatives. She also will support AIA’s Sales and Business Development teams with marketing programs that increase awareness of AIA among like-minded business owners.

With nearly 30 years of marketing experience, Price has served in both leadership and marketing roles at Facilisgroup, Boost Promotional Branding (now part of HALO), and Staples Promotional Products. In these roles, she generated digital marketing campaigns that led to double-digit sales growth, oversaw multiple e-commerce programs for both enterprise and SMB clients alike, and has developed effective corporate branding and messaging to drive sales and business development.

“Marketing plays an integral role in the success of any business, but many small business owners lack the bandwidth or time to execute a successful program,” said Nancy Schmidt, CEO of AIA. “Given Stacy’s extensive industry experience, she understands our distributors’ needs and will continue to advance AIA’s marketing capabilities to keep pace with evolving trends in social media, analytics, customer targeting and engagement, and sales and collateral materials.”

AIA’s Marketing team operates as a full-service, agency model, providing Owners with the support they need to tell their brand story and promote their business. All Owners have access to AIA’s On-Demand Promo Library, which offers email templates, digital flipbooks, custom presentations, supplier sales materials and more, all through the Experience AIA platform. Additionally, Owners can opt-in to receive their preferred level of support to execute and manage their marketing strategy through a tiered service offering, providing everything from custom landing pages, analytics and reporting for social and email campaigns, and individualized marketing project support.

“I look forward to shaping AIA’s marketing to deliver a connected brand experience through digital and traditional channels, as well as coaching and mentoring our high-performing team,” said Price. “I am very impressed by AIA’s leadership team and inspired by their solid, focused, and powerful vision for the company. I’m honored and excited to be a part of the team.”

Price earned a master’s degree in business administration from Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri. She is also certified by the Digital Marketing Institute and American Marketing Association in digital marketing.

HDS Marketing Announces Partnership with the Pittsburgh Steelers

HDS CEO Howard Schwartz announced today that HDS and the Pittsburgh Steelers have agreed to a multi‐year strategic branding partnership.

The top 50 branding agency will provide the Pittsburgh Steelers and their sponsors NFL‐licensed co‐branded promotional merchandise and apparel. As part of the partnership, HDS will work closely with the Steelers to provide event specific merchandise. They will also be working with Steelers sponsors to provide marketing solutions that maximize their branding strategies with the team.

“We look forward to continuing to build an excellent partnership with the six‐time Superbowl Champions and their amazing sponsors,” said Floyd McKain, HDS Manager of Sports Marketing. McKain has been working with the Pittsburgh Steelers and the NFL providing co‐branded licensed merchandise and apparel for over 20 years.

“The Steelers are such an important part of the Pittsburgh community and Western Pennsylvania,” added Schwartz. “Their brand is admired around the world and for HDS to be a part of their marketing efforts makes our entire team very proud.”

HDS is a full‐service marketing company headquartered in Pittsburgh, with offices located in Cleveland, Cincinnati, Kansas City, Phoenix, and Portland, Oregon. They have been providing branded merchandise, corporate apparel, print solutions, fulfillment services, and e‐commerce solutions to their clients for over 30 years.

Winners of iPROMOTEu’s DunkFest 2022 Announced

iPROMOTEu Affiliate from Anchorage Alaska Wins It All, Zing Manufacturing Tops all Industry Suppliers

WAYLAND, MA – With the Kansas Jayhawks winning the NCAA men’s college basketball championship last week, DunkFest 2022 officially came to an end. The overall winner of DunkFest 2022 was Charles Leshan of Bore Tide One Source, an iPROMOTEu Affiliate from Anchorage, Alaska. Charles correctly predicted that Kansas would win the tournament, and his bracket was in the top 99.4 percentile of the more than 17 million brackets completed on ESPN’s Tournament Challenge. iPROMOTEu Office Administrator, Scott Ebbeling, came in close second with a 99.2 percentile bracket. Finishing in third place was long-time iPROMOTEu Affiliate Chris Dowling of Delaware-based Wicked Promotions.

The top supplier bracket was submitted by Rich Corvalan of Zing Manufacturing. Two women finished in the top ten this year. Ashley Araya, iPROMOTEu’s Affiliate Administration Manager, came in 7th place, and Cheryl Hokanson of Brand Boosters, an iPROMOTEu Affiliate from Maryland, came in 10th place. Commemorative trophies will be awarded to the winners.

DunkFest is the annual NCAA men’s college basketball tournament challenge exclusively for the promotional products industry. “This year’s tournament was a lot of fun and generated spirited conversation and competition among more than 170 industry participants,” said Ross Silverstein, President & CEO of iPROMOTEu, the organizer of DunkFest.

DunkFest was started in 2008 as a means to generate enthusiasm, spirit, and friendly competition among those working in the promotional products industry. Participation has grown nicely over the years and, every year, participants eagerly await the DunkFest invitation. Some participants boast of their bracket-picking prowess and proudly post photos of trophies won in the past. DunkFest 2022 was organized and run by iPROMOTEu (www.ipromoteu.com).

MA Senior Olympic Games: Two Massachusetts Companies Step Up For Our Senior Olympians

Leominster, MA: Northeast Promotion & Apparel today announced a new partnership with Charles River Apparel of Sharon, MA, and the Massachusetts Senior Olympic Team. This partnership will supply the MA Senior Olympic Team with Custom Warmups to wear at the upcoming National Senior Games in Ft Lauderdale, Florida.

“This is our first National Games since Covid, and thanks to these two great Massachusetts based companies, our National Team will finally look like true Olympians.” says Davis Cox, President of the MA Senior Olympic Team. “In the past, we showed up at national events as a group of individuals with no team unity, this year, we will represent the commonwealth in style.”

“We signed on as the official apparel provider to the senior games prior to Covid,” says Matt Olivari of Northeast Promotion & Apparel. “I had no idea that they had never had a team warmup set before, so I reached out to Rick Schwartz, Senior Account Executive at Charles River Apparel and they jumped on the idea of teaming up to dress our state team.”

Northeast Promotion & Apparel and Charles River Apparel hope this effort will

  • Build Team Unity
  • Make the Massachusetts Team stand out as a unified force at the games
  • Show the strength of Massachusetts Companies and what we can do together

April 15, 2022

Crystal D Celebrates UMAPP Award Winner

Mike Pooler, account manager at Crystal D, has been named a UMAPP Super Star. He is receiving his award during UMAPP’s annual awards luncheon on April 14.

UMAPP Super Star award winners are nominated by coworkers or customers in the industry. Nominations show how invaluable the individual is and how they go above and beyond in their role. Pooler was nominated by distributor Hillary Feder of Hillary’s LLC for his exemplary service working with her through the eight years he has been with Crystal D.

“I am quite honored and humbled to be nominated, let alone being selected, for what I believe is ‘just doing my job,’” said Pooler. “It’s easy to put in the ‘extra’ effort when you work with individuals like Hillary that work very hard for their clients.”

“Mike truly cares about his customers on a personal and professional level,” said Stephanie Maday, vice president of sales. “He understands and provides the high level of service they need in order to wow their customers. No matter the size of the opportunity, Mike will always go above and beyond for his customers.”