Imagine Promotional Group

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25 Insane (but true!) Facts About Promotional Products

If you’re in the business of promotional products, you know the impact they can have on an organization’s marketing efforts.  But do you know these fun facts about promotional products?

  1. Eight in 10 consumers own between one and 10 promotional products.
  2. Fifty-three percent of these people use a promotional product at least once a week.
  3. Six in 10 of them keep promotional products for up to two years.
  4. Only one in five people will trash an unwanted promotional product.
  5. Before receiving a promotional product, 55 percent of people had done business with the advertiser.  After receiving a promotional product, 85 percent of people did business with the advertiser.
  6. With nearly six thousand impressions, bags generate more impressions than any other promotional product in the U.S.
  7. Thirty-one percent of U.S. consumers own a promotional bag.
  8. At one-tenth of a cent, bags tie with writing instruments for the lowest cost per impression of any promotional product in the U.S.
  9. The first known promotional products – commemorative buttons – trace back to 1789 when George Washington was elected president.
  10. Fifty-three percent of the time, promotional products create a more favorable impression of the advertiser.
  11. Forty-eight percent of consumers would like to receive promotional products more often.
  12. Consumers hang on to promotional products for an average of 6.6 months.
  13. Sixty-nine percent of consumers would pick up a promotional product if they deemed it useful.
  14. Sixty-three percent of consumers pass along the promotional products they no longer wish to keep.
  15. Eighty-nine percent of consumers can recall the advertiser of a promotional product they’d received in the last two years.
  16. Ninety-one percent of consumers have at least one promotional product in their kitchen, 74 percent have at least one in their workspace, 55 percent have at least one in their bedroom.
  17. Seventy-seven percent of consumers say a promotional product’s usefulness is the number-one reason to keep it, with health and safety products, computer products and writing instruments ranked as the most useful.
  18. The top five buyers of promotional products are clients in education, finance, not-for-profit, healthcare, and construction.
  19. Wearables are the top product category, followed by writing instruments, bags, calendars and drinkware.
  20. The first promotional product tradeshow was held in 1914 – there were 32 exhibitors.
  21. Women are more likely to have bags, writing instruments and calendars, whereas men are more likely to own shirts and caps.
  22. Ownership of logoed outerwear is highest in the Midwest, with 15 percent of people owning an item.
  23. Logoed mugs in particular are more effective advertising than radio and television spots; 57 percent of people were able to recall the advertiser on a mug, versus 32 percent of radio and 28 percent of T.V.
  24. Adding a promotional product to the media mix increases the effectiveness of other media by up to 44 percent.
  25. Promotional products draw as many as 500 percent more referrals from satisfied customers than an appeal letter alone

Open For Business

That’s what local residents and business owners want you to know as Sonoma and Napa counties slowly rebuild after the recent wildfires. Damage to the area was devastating with thousands of homes and businesses destroyed and numerous lives lost.   Although unknown at this point in time, the size of the economic impact will be devastating.

At a recent gathering of business owners in the area, dubbed Impact Project: REBUILD, a couple of key points were worth repeating:

Recovery will be a LONG and arduous path while many residents and local businesses determine the best route forward. This will be a MARATHON. Now more than ever, Sonoma and Napa counties need you to come visit. If you’re planning a trip, don’t cancel. If you want to plan even a short day trip or a weekend getaway make your destination Sonoma and Napa Counties.  Return to the region.

It was mentioned by a representative from the Sonoma County Wine Growers Association that media coverage of the fires left the impression that many wineries have been devastated. While some wineries were hit hard, they represent only 4% of the wineries located in both Napa and Sonoma counties. Also important to note is that the extreme heat wave that brought 115 heat  over Labor Day weekend made for an early and robust harvest.  There is no smoke taint. There will be no increase in the price of wine. Spread the word.

Your volunteer efforts matter. The stress on local non-profit resources is critical. With most of the funding and volunteer time being directed towards fire relief, OTHER local non profits have seen significant stress on their resources. Your favorite non profit organization could use your help. Click here for more information about where specifically you can help.

Be a good neighbor. Fill the voids for those impacted by the fires. Pick up neighbor kids from school and after school activities. Deliver food. Help out with the every day activities. We’re all in this together.

And it goes without saying, shop local.

Fall/Winter is an especially great time to visit Sonoma and Napa counties where you’ll experience award winning wines, craft brews, Fall foliage, concerts, festivals, spa treatments, tours and more.  Activities in both counties are numerous.

As a region and as a community we have pulled together in our strength and spirit. Our love and care for one another during these tragic fires has no doubt bound us together. It is this spark, this spirit of love, kindness and optimism that will carry us forward as we rebuild again.  The dedication of our first responders as well as the love and support from our neighbors will never be forgotten. We are #sonomastrong; #napastrong.

Redwood Credit Union (RCU), continues to accept financial donations to assist fire victims and aid relief efforts. 100% of your tax-deductible donations will go directly to support those affected.To donate visit North Bay Fire Relief

Five things to pack for festival fun …

Ah, sweet Summer, you’ve arrived! As warm weather descends upon us there’s seemingly an endless stream of outdoor festival fun including great fairs and festivals in the San Francisco Bay Area.  For those of you looking for fun things to do near our East Coast office in the Raleigh-Durham, NC area click here.

To make the most of your time outdoors make sure to pack these fun festival must haves:

Personal Fan Necklace

Personal Necklace fan.These festival fans are perfect for hands free cooling on-the-go. The fans can be carried in your purse or pocket.  3.25″ W x 20″ H

100 pieces @ $7.09 each



Ottoman CoolerOttoman_Cooler

Run out of chairs at the festival? Who needs a chair when you have the Ottoman Cooler? This 24-can capacity cooler is fully collapsible with a padded lid to sit on, a front panel door for easy access to snacks (no standing up required), cool and dry storage.

10 pieces @ $48 each Continue reading

How to Gain Inspiration in 5 Minutes


Everyone could use a little inspiration now and then. Here are concrete ways to reboot and refresh from author  Yuliya Dyrdyra.

Hanging Light Bulbs

People demand a lot of creativity from promotional products professionals these days. We live in the era of media overload, where viral video marketing and colorful infographics have become accepted means of engaging an audience. As they should, that’s what sets you apart from competition. In fact, more video content is uploaded to the web in one single month than TV has created in three decades! How is that for an information flood? Now, I don’t know about you, but for me to be interested in someone’s marketable ideas, they must be novel and relevant to my life. That way I can meander through the intricate mediums of the worldwide web and choose things that stand out.

This leaves us with a nearly impossible feat of constantly coming up with new and exciting concepts for promo campaigns. And even though we somehow manage to deliver on our creative promises, it is not always a smooth ride to originality. Some refer to this condition as a “mental block,” others prefer the term “apathy”, but ultimately, most people just feel uninspired. As a promotional products distributor, odds are you have stumbled across this issue once or twice in the past. So, how can you regularly perform when you are stuck in a rut?

Reaching that refreshing glimpse of inspiration is not as difficult as it may seem, at times you don’t need more than 5 minutes to get in the mood. Of course, when you are down on your luck and can’t get out of your discouraged head, it may take a few guiding steps to get you into the right mindset. Before diving into the actual practice, take the time to prepare your personal inspiration zone.

Prepare Your Inspiration Zone

Your Inspiration Zone is both a physical and emotional state where you know you can work proactively. It varies from person to person, but basically serves as a safe place for you to tap into your creative reserves. Without further ado – see how easy it is to pick up on your prolific habits!


Learn your creative patterns

If you don’t know the ins and outs of your optimal work conditions, take the time to test and learn what helps you get engaged. Artists, for instance, like working with natural art; some graphic designers I know prefer using a Mac versus a PC; and I tend to go for classical music to accompany my writing method. Ask yourself the following questions to get a feel for your own creative patterns: Continue reading

Building company loyalty

Have you ever started a new job and felt totally underwhelmed? Or has your department ever brought in a new hire or training class that lacked enthusiasm during their orientation and training period?  We have experienced both these situations and it wasn’t because the company or job itself was lame.

Building company loyalty

We’re not here to tell you that cool swag will help you retain millennials longer than the typical 2 year stint. We are here to tell you that lifestyle branding will help your employees self-identify as a member of your team (+ company) more quickly.

Let’s go back to that new hire and say she’s completed her paperwork, introduced to her new co-workers and started her training. After a couple of weeks she has her own desk and is expected to begin working on her own. Pretty normal workplace scenario, right? What if we add an element of surprise and include a nice little welcome package on that desk? Now in week-three of being onboarded, Suzie Employee is excited again. That’s leading with enthusiasm!

Building the perfect kit

What to put in this excitement-inducing kit? Check out our top 5 lifestyle products for team building. And when we we say lifestyle product, we mean an item that actually gets integrated into that employee’s life vs shoved in a desk drawer.

Patagonia Better SweaterOne. The perfect hoodie, preferably in a retail brand. We love Patagonia for their sustainability mission, plus their Better Sweater is a staple that has perfect appeal for casual office days or weekends at Golden Gate Park.


Alternative Apparel teeTwo. The perfect tee. The tee, along with the hoodie can make up a twenty-something’s entire weekend wardrobe, so don’t mail this one in. Choose a 50/50 or tri-blend material and keep branding subtle and cool. Tall order, huh? Can’t go wrong with this team fav – Alternative Apparel’s cotton/poly blend.


RetapThree. Another vital component is the ubiquitous water bottle, and with so many options it’s tough to choose. We embrace sustainable branding by pairing quality materials with modern simplicity, so this Retap glass bottle is our top choice.


Desk SetFour.
This may seem a little old school, but hear us out: you need a cool desk set. Yes, we said desk set. These color coordinated options have inspired us to spruce up our workspace and will add a splash of fun and color to your welcome kit.

Commuter Journals




Five. Finally, onboard your next training class by making it easy and (dare we say) fun to take notes. These California-made flexible journals are our go-to for arming teammates and clients with ample writing space. Bonus points for the full-color imprinting options that turn a typical journal into a true lifestyle piece.


Thirsty for more ideas or want to see the rest of our list? Click here to start a project or brainstorm about your next branding campaign!



Design by Differentiation

Welcome to our Meet the Maker Series …

At IPG you’ll often hear us say how much we enjoy working with like minded clients in bringing together their branding needs with ethically sourced, lifestyle driven product. In doing so, this provides us with a unique opportunity to be game changers in an industry that is typically known for inexpensive promo items that often times end up in landfill.  In an effort to fight against this uphill battle,  we expend a significant amount of effort in sourcing like minded suppliers who produce quality lifestyle items that are unique to our industry. Continue reading

10 most outrageous items in this year’s Oscar swag bags

What’s in that bag of swag?

As we gear up to watch the 89th Oscars this Sunday February 26th, have you ever wondered what exactly is in the swag bag presented to the host and nominees in the top 5 Oscar categories? Themed “Everyone Wins”, here’s a peek at 10 of the most outrageous items in this year’s Oscar Nominees bags, each valued at more than $200K. The intention behind these bags is that even if a nominee “loses”, they go home a winner.

Although your corporate swag bag may be on a somewhat smaller scale than those provided to the rich and famous, it’s still an opportunity to effectively reach your target audience so they too can go home “a winner”. That begs the question, what should be in a swag bag and what items will make your brand stand apart from the rest? Continue reading

Make it personal

It all comes down to the relationship. With your client, that is.

It’s that extra touch. Establishing a connection. Getting out from behind your desk to chat in person. It’s making the extra effort. That is what your client will remember.

Having the technology to move at lightning speed doesn’t mean we shouldn’t occasionally pause to meet with our clients. That’s when the real magic happens. Continue reading

Starting January 1st it’s illegal to …

January 1st marked the day for new cell phone laws in the state of CA and with that, tougher restrictions are now set in to place for those using electronic devices while driving.

cell-phone-holderWhile drivers are currently required to use hands free technology like voice command or Blue Tooth, new restrictions require that these devices be mounted to a vehicles dashboard, center console or windshield where it cannot impair the drivers’ view or block airbag deployment.

Here’s an easy solution. This universal dashboard phone holder is the perfect hands-free device for safe driving. Made to fit most smartphones and small electronics with its adjustable padded sides, its features include suction cup for dashboard mounting and swivel holder for vertical or horizontal viewing. A great solution to the new restrictions now set in place in the state of California.

As a reminder, it’s still illegal for drivers to send text messages.  Only drivers 18 years and older can use hands free devices. Drivers under 18 cannot.

Need more hands free technology ideas? Contact us at


Trends to Watch in 2017

As we look to the start of 2017, choosing the right promotional products to increase brand loyalty is key.

Trends to watch for in the new year …

cord-cruncherTechnology inspired items will remain at the forefront of popularity. In a technology filled world where connection is key, people will look for value minded time saving tech products that help keep life on track.  Here’s one of our favorites.

Corporations choosing to purchase higher quality branded merchandise will also trend in 2017. The promotional branding industry is Continue reading

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