Insane Design Inspiration

At Imagine Promotional Group, we too feel strongly about the importance of packaging. This article by Caitlin Jordan highlights what to think about when considering a custom package. Although some of these designs may be over the top when thinking about your next marketing campaign, it’s these “insanely creative designs” that will surely get your creative juices going.

Caitlin mentions “Packaging, when done correctly and creatively, is ultimately what sells your product. It draws attention, sends a message, and makes consumers feel a certain way. Packaging can be powerful.” Be sure to think about packaging when designing your next marketing campaign.

50 insanely creative and stunning packaging designs

Think about your most recent purchase.

Why did you purchase that specific brand? Was it an impulse buy or something you genuinely needed?

Now that you’re thinking about it, odds are, you bought it because it was interesting. Yes, you may have needed shampoo, but did you need that specific brand? The one with the sleek, expensive looking bottle? No, but you bought it because you thought it would make you feel fancy, even if it’s the same product as what’s in the discount bin.

This is the purpose of packaging. Packaging, when done correctly and creatively, is ultimately what sells your product. It draws attention, sends a message, and makes consumers feel a certain way.

Knowing how to make your product stand out amongst all the others on the shelves can be hard, so take a look at these 50 awesome packaging examples and tips to draw inspiration and learn how to make your packaging appeal to the masses.

01. Use Patterns



Use patterns to step up a simple take on packaging. This tool packaging is simple in structure, yet gets taken up a notch with the interesting striping on the background. The color scheme give it a quality, all-American feel, and the tools speak for themselves.

02. Consider All Available Space



When creating a package, utilize every inch that you can. This box uses a pretty floral pattern on the interior. Instead of leaving the inside untouched, the pattern makes the box feel more upscale, which, in turn, makes the product inside seem more upscale.

03. Don’t Be Afraid of Simplicity



Sometimes simplicity is key, and that holds true in this packaging. The earth toned, recycled material gives off an earthy feel, which is solidified with the feather illustration. The bright pops of color on the labels lend to the design nicely, bringing a bit more of a modern twist to the package.

04. Think About the Experience



Consider the actions a person will go through while interacting with your product. In this case, the product is luxury slippers. Since they’re a luxury item, they come inside a nice dust ruffle, which is then placed inside the box. The purchaser would open the box, see another package nestled inside, and then discover the slippers. The simple act of layering the package adds the luxury aspect, and makes it easier for purchasers to rationalize spending the few extra dollars for the experience.

05. Complement the Product


Behance/Marie Zieger/moodley brand identity

Make sure your design complements the product that’s inside. This packaging looks simple and natural, just like what’s inside. You can see all the parts and pieces that you’re getting before you purchase it, so it gives off the impression of transparency and being proud of what you’re selling.

06. Be Playful


Behance/Tried&True Design

If you have the opportunity to be playful with your packaging, take it. This packaging is incredibly playful, yet still simple. The illustration interacts with the product but still lets it shine through. The colors relate to the berries, and the act of the character eating the berries indicates their quality.

07. Be Bold


Behance/Futura —

Using multiple colors and shapes in an interesting pattern is a great way to stand out. This tequila packaging utilizes these things, and has a very unique look. It looks fun and playful, and promises a good time if you choose it.

08. Break the Mold


Behance/Maude Paquette-Boulva

If you have a product that a lot of other people produce as well, try to be innovative in how you display it. This honey package took a step in the opposite direction of the typical glass or plastic jar, and is a container made of beeswax. What’s even better, once you’ve used up all the product, you can flip the container over and reveal a wick on the bottom. You then burn down the package, making it completely waste free.

09. Consider the Process


Behance/Priscila Grassi/Jorge Galán

If you’re product is something you believe to be gift worthy, display it that way. This limoncello was created to be a gift, and appropriately packaged. The white paper protects the glass bottle inside the tall cylinder. When you open the cylinder, you’re able to tear the paper away from the bottle, which is reminiscent of opening regular wrapped gifts.

10. Use Stylization


Behance/Robinsson Cravents

Don’t feel obligated to make your illustrations or graphics completely realistic. If you can stylize your imagery and use it as a textural element, go for it. This package uses a simple illustration of a head and hair. The hair moves throughout the box, creating a pattern in the background. At first glance, you don’t know what the pattern is making, but as you explore the package, you realize it’s been hair all along.

11. Don’t Limit Yourself


Behance/The6th studio

If your product is best coming in a certain type of package, don’t limit yourself to the basic idea. This soap is best coming in a box, but instead of just a regular box you open at one end, it folds open. The folding action makes it just that much more special and interesting, and makes it something worth saving and using for decorative storage.

12. Be Modern


Behance/Saana Hellsten

Modern, sleek, and simple designs stand out. Use clean lines, simple colors, and sans serif fonts to achieve a modern look. This packaging took a very modern approach, and made it even more modern by making it gender neutral. It doesn’t lean one way or the other, and draws instant attention from viewers who are curious about who the product is for.

13. Use Texture


Behance/Yiannis Ghikas

Instead of only using texture visually, use it physically. People will be physically interacting with your package, so appeal to their sense of touch, not just their sense of sight. This packaging for insect repellent uses texture at the bottom of their bottles. Not only does it help you keep a firm grip, but it adds an interesting sensation to your hands, and visually relates to the dotted imagery on the top area of the bottle.

14. Be Bright


Behance/Mitina Anastasia

If your product is brightly colored, draw inspiration from it. Use accents of the bright colors in your packaging, like this candy packaging. Each candy is a different color, and each bag uses the color of the candy on its sides and in the graphics. The line as a whole feels connected, but they’re just different enough that you can get the gist when a product is different than the next (without having to look at the candy).

15. Tell a Story


Behance/Jonathan Yurek

If you can tell a story with your packaging, you’re doing yourself a huge favor. People love stories, and they love uncovering information they may not otherwise. This packaging for socks tells a unique story. When you pull out the socks, a tuft of cotton is stuck to the top, replicating the smoke stacks that often were found on sock mills in previous years.

16. Stick to Your Roots


The Dieline/Judit Besze

Analyze what your product stands for, and show that in your packaging. This beauty line stands for simple, all natural, and pure ingredients. They display that in their packaging. It is simple, clean, and looks natural. The earth toned box adds a nice flare to the natural aspect as well.

17. Be Creative


The Dieline/Ahhaproject

You can make your packaging cool, but if you can make your actual product cool, you’ve got a real winner. Take this milk soap, for example. It’s just soap made with milk, and could easily have been just another rectangular bar. But instead of doing what was expected, the soap was turned into an ice cream treat, related directly to the milk contained inside.

18. Consider the Interior


The Dieline/Tait Design Co.

The outside of your package should be interesting, but what about the inside, where the product is actually encased? If you have multiple parts and pieces to your product, display them separately. This yoyo packaging has small cut outs for each piece of the yoyo, and they all fit neatly inside. The colors of the product relate to the colors on the box, and it pulls it together nicely.

19. Serve Another Purpose


The Dieline/KOREFE

Being eco-friendly is a great way to get people to love your brand. One way to be eco friendly is to give your product’s packaging another purpose. These bottles seem like normal enough cleaning products at first glance, but when you interact with them you realize they’re not made of flimsy plastic. They’re porcelain bottles, and are intended to be used as vases once the product inside is gone.

20. Play with the Senses


The Dieline/Depot WPF

Try to appeal to every sense a human has in your packaging, if you can. The sense of touch is played up again in this sheet packaging. Small pieces were inserted inside the package before it was vacuum sealed, and it created a 3d, raised effect. It’s interesting not only to the eye, but to the hands as well.

21. Let the Product Speak


The Dieline/Watts Design

If you have a quality product, let it speak for itself. Don’t feel the need to surround it with shiny, obnoxious wrappings if it doesn’t need it. These tights are great quality and look great as well. Instead of hiding them away in a box, they’re front and center, allowing you to see how great they really are.

22. Limit Resources Used


The Dieline/Mapache

Packaging costs you money, plain and simple. If you don’t need an excess of packaging, don’t use it. These music cords are packaged very simply, yet still effectively. The paper wrap is designed beautifully, with bright pops of gold on black, and the colors correlate with the colors of the products.

23. Give a Sneak Peak


The Dieline/Arithmetic

Where food products are concerned, being able to see what it is you’re getting is incredibly important. Who knows what’s lurking in bags and boxes when you can’t see inside? These dog treats have a cut out window so you can see exactly what you’ll be feeding Fido. There won’t be any surprises once you get the product home, and you can tell that it’s quality just by looking at it.

24. Be Luxurious


The Dieline/Aaron-Harper Lee

If there’s one item people shell out tons of their hard earned cash on, it’s liquor. With so many brands out there, don’t you want to make sure yours stands out on the shelf? This liquor pulled out all the stops. It’s enclosed in a unique box, comes with shot glasses, and is an incredibly vibrant yellow and pink. It screams ‘good time’, and could be kept to display to commemorate a weekend well spent.

25. Use Restricted Colors


Creative Bloq/Big Fish

Limit your color palette to create a cohesive look. These rice cakes drew their color palette from the flavor, sea salt and balsamic, so it took on a nautical theme. The shades of blue work great together, and the complement of orange adds a nice pop.

26. Utilize the Product


Creative Bloq/Gürtlerbachmann GmbH

If you can use your product as part of the actual package, do it. These shoes have awesome bird boxes, and instead of leaving the shoes just lay inside the box, the laces are strung through holes, giving the illusion of a worm in the bird’s mouth.

27. Be Trendy


Creative Bloq/Sasha Kischenko

Piggy back off of current trends to make your packaging more current. This beer uses the incredibly popular font not only as it’s branding, but as its namesake. It’s simple, clean, and modern, and looks slightly ‘hipster’.

28. Think Outside the Box


Creative Bloq/Designate

Or in some cases, in it. Break the conventions of what your product is ‘supposed’ to come in. Water typically comes in a plastic bottle. But this water comes in a cardboard box. it’s still just water, but it’s different than anything else on the market, and it’s sure to grab your attention.

29. Use Interesting Imagery


Creative Bloq/Johannes Schulz

Use imagery that is a little out there, something that isn’t expected. Luckily, the name of this vodka is a little out there, and the imagery could be pulled from that. The spine appears to be 3d the way it’s printed on the glass, and it gives an awesome effect.

30. Be Literal


Creative Bloq/Saturday Mfg

If your product is manufactured a certain way, try implementing it into your packaging. These cookies, for example, are baked in an oven. So why not package them in an oven? It’s a playful and approachable take on a standard bakery box, and it feels like a real treat.

31. Make it Relatable


Creative Bloq/Stranger & Stranger

Is there a common idea when it comes to your type of product? Try using it in your packaging to get universal understanding. This liquor bottle doesn’t only have an incredibly detailed label, but it has a funny brown paper over wrap. Everyone knows what it means, and everyone can get a bit of a chuckle out of it.

32. Include a Tactile Aspect


Creative Bloq/J Walter Thompson

If your package is interactive, people will love it. This Smirnoff alcohol features a wrapper on the outside that you have to physically peel off. It also resembles the fruit in which the alcohol is flavored, and makes it feel more natural.

33. Be Weird


Creative Bloq/Naoto Fukasawa

Make people uncomfortable if that’s your style. These juice boxes are very, very strange to look at. The resemblance of the actual fruit is uncanny, and seeing it in juice box shape makes you do a double take. It gives the impression that you’re drinking straight out of the fruit, and makes it seem healthier.

34. Use Humor


Creative Bloq/Poilu

Being a little tongue in cheek with your packaging is fun. If you can make someone smile when they see your product, why wouldn’t you? These paint brushes act as facial hair for the illustrated faces on the sleeves. It’s fun to look at, and definitely stands out against other paint brush brands.

35. Don’t Be Afraid to Exaggerate


boredpanda/Lacy Kuhn

Exaggerate your shapes, colors, and illustrations when you can. This cereal brand uses a bear as its character (since it’s honey flavored). Instead of just having a picture of a cute bear, the bear has his mouth wide open, stuffing it full of the delicious cereal inside.

36. Turn it Into Something Else


boredpanda/Soon Mo Kang

Just because your product is one thing doesn’t mean it can’t look like something else, get creative with how your product can look. Instead of being a plain old tea bag, this tea brand turned the bags into ‘tea shirts’, complete with hanger. The hanger keeps the bag upright on the rim of your mug, making it functional and not just for aesthetics.

37. Make it What it is


boredpanda/Igor Mitin

Show what your product is made of in the packaging. This perfume (called Zen) is made with bamboo. Instead of using a bamboo print or illustration, the bottle is turned into bamboo. It becomes a real statement piece, and something someone would like to display.

38. Incorporate Beauty


boredpanda/Natalia Ponomareva

People love beautiful things. Using and buying them make people feel good. Another interesting tea bag, though taken in a different direction, is this bird tea bag. It floats beautifully in your cup, as though it’s flying, and gives off an aura of serenity.

39. Get Ridiculous


Creative Guerrilla Marketing/Scholz & Friends

Be extreme, ludicrous even. These Nike Air shoes aren’t packaged in a box, they’re packaged in – that’s right – a bag of air. It is so literal yet so creative. You have to get your hands on them, and it is incredibly effective.

40. Create Something With the Product


Creative Guerrilla Marketing/Corrine Pant

Use the product to create your imagery, but make sure it relates to what you’re selling. These headphones are used to create music notes. Since the notes aren’t printed on the paper, they’re 3d, and really add something extra to the flat piece of cardstock.

41. Be Risque


Creative Guerrilla Marketing/Dennis Evers

Being a little suggestive with your packaging can attract a different audience than you could have otherwise. This product is just regular bread, but the packaging portrays it as something else. The packaging is actually to promote breast cancer awareness, and it does a great job of attracting attention.

42. Be Morbid


Creative Guerrilla Marketing/Reynolds and Reyner

Shock your consumers. This cigarette packaging is very shocking. It’s rooted in truth because smokers know the risks they take when they choose to light up. While it may not be the best marketing ploy, it certainly draws attention.

43. Push It


Creative Guerrilla Marketing/Raewyn Brandon

Be unorthodox with your packaging. As long as consumers can draw the connection between your product and what it’s packaged in, you haven’t gone too far. This vodka gel is packaged in a tube that resembles caulking. It’s an interesting way to get the product out, and it’s a fun play on industrial gels.

44. Address the Situation


Creative Guerrilla Marketing/Acholz & Friends Berlin GmbH

Try to make a play on why someone would need your product. These earplugs do just that. The cap resembles the volume knob on a stereo, and the motion of taking the cap off ‘turns down’ the volume. The cap really isn’t blocking out the noise, the earplugs are, but it’s a fun twist.

45. Relate it to the Cause


Creative Guerrilla Marketing/BBDO Dusseldorf GmbH

Relate the imagery to your cause. This packaging is for a plant based digestive aid. It takes a stab at meats, and when the pills are popped out, it looks as though they’ve been shot in a shooting range. It goes with the slogan ‘target heavy food’, and gives the impression that it’s powerful.

46. Make it Something it’s Not


Packaging of the World/remark studio

Make your product look like something else – just don’t get too drastic. Canned beer is cheap, but a lot of the time, the packaging isn’t too great. This beer is canned, but appears as though it’s in a special beer glass. The contrast between the lid and the rest of the ‘can’ creates an interesting effect, and makes the beer unique.

47. Use the Product to Your Advantage


From Up North/Kei Meguro

Use the texture, color, or shape of the product to your advantage. This meat packaging uses the actual meat as a design element. The negative space in the animals reveals the actual product underneath, creating a contrast between how it began and how it is now.

48. Be Compact


Yanko Design/Kurt Rampton/BOLTgroup

If you can make something work just as well smaller, try it. The more compact something is, the easier it is to store and transport. These flashdrives are connected together by cardboard. The entire thing is only the size of a credit card, and easily fits into a wallet. If you need to give someone a file, you simply tear off a notch, load it, and hand it off. It’s convenient and reminiscent of those popular pull tab flyers.

49. Go Over the Top


Packaging of the World/Hani Douaji

Push your design as far as you can, you never know what interesting solutions you could come up with. Trident used the shape of their product to create teeth. Rather than just having the simple red lips, they added in funny mustaches and facial hair. It takes a unique idea and pushes it further.

50. Abstract It


Buzzfeed/Preston Grubbs

Take your product and abstract it in your packaging. Rather than having just a regular small box of orange juice, the boxes are abstracted into ‘segments’ of an orange. They’re then wrapped up in a similar material that fresh bags of oranges come in and appear to construct an entire orange.

After seeing the limitless possibilities there are for making awesomely creative packaging, there should be no hesitation to push your product’s package to the max. It can be functional, repurposeful, entertaining, or just outright bizarre, but one thing’s for sure — the more creative and inspiring your packaging is, the more likely the product is to sell.

Great design for
every part of your life

Caitlin Jordan is a graphic designer and copywriter from Columbus, OH. Apart from design and writing, she loves all things beauty. She combines her passion for both in a beauty blog and beauty channel on YouTube.

Fashion, Function and Fit on Trend in the T-Shirt Market

5/22/2018 | Product Feature By Sherry L. Baranek

Who doesn’t love a T-shirt?! Not only are they versatile—with the ability to be dressed up or down—a favorite T-shirt can provide endless hours of comfort to the wearer. Studies show that almost 60 percent of American consumers own a promotional T-shirt—providing ample opportunities to publicize a name, logo, or cause with lasting staying power. This year, premium fabrics with textures are trending in styles such as ringer, football, jersey, and oversized.

Color is a huge trend in the T-shirt market, according to Summer Barry at BELLA+CANVAS. “Customers are looking for unique, retail-inspired colors to help differentiate their brand,” she explains. “Muted colors like mauve, peach, dusty blue, and military green have been very popular. Heather CVC and Triblend fabrications continue to be popular as there is an appetite for subtle dimension.”

Fashion is in the forefront at alphabroder. According to Katie Meenan-McCullough, one of the biggest industry trends over the last few years—in terms of sales percentage and market share growth—has been in the items offered by the company’s more “fashion”-influenced, retail-inspired brands. “We’ve noticed there is a growing demand for fashion and retail type products along with a more contemporary fit. Items that are constructed of combed and ringspun cotton are growing much quicker than many other categories. Whether it’s 100% combed, ringspun cotton for that extra soft shirt or it’s a combed, ringspun cotton/poly blend for some additional breath-ability, the added value these shirts bring to the market has really caught on with the end users.”

Meenan-McCullough continues that the younger demographic has been driving this trend, as they have really embraced the value in these type items. “The college and university market, vacation resorts, fan and spiritwear, concert merch, fundraisers, and giveaways are all areas that have reflected this growing trend.,” she adds.

Another popular T-shirt tend is vintage, retro-inspired styles, S&S Activewear’s Megan Zezzo asserts. “Whether it’s a football tee, old-school jersey, ringer tee/tank, or that favorite oversized garment washed tee, these time-honored silhouettes are having their heyday once again,” she states. “These styles are perfect for a wide variety of audiences—from restaurant and sports bar uniforms and retail items to promotional giveaways to client game day gifts.”

Expanding on these sentiments, Lauren Cocco of Vantage Apparel adds, “Better, premium, and performance T-shirts are popular as customers are looking for quality products with fashion, function, and comfort in mind. Features like soft hand, ample coverage, and surface interest—such as textures or heathers—are key.”

The demand for T-shirts is as strong as ever. Zezzo of S&S Activewear maintains that the demand for fashion T-shirts has been increasing over the past several years—especially since the pricing has exponentially decreased for ringspun/softer T-shirts.

According to alphabroder’s Meenan-McCullough, the company’s customers continue to see added value for these types of products. “More and more of our customers are asking for something different in addition to the basic items that have been the backbone of our industry for years,” she comments. “Because of the retail influence in our space, our customers are really focusing on what added value they can provide to their customers who are looking for something different with T-shirts.”

More customers are moving away from cheap-carded, open-end promo tees and toward garments people are actually going to wear, Barry at BELLA+CANVAS emphasizes. “It’s becoming more apparent that it’s important to invest in quality when dealing with any promotional items and we have been championing this message.”

To that end, BELLA+CANVAS has introduced two women’s tanks that Barry says have been well-received thanks to the “awesome” price point. “BELLA+CANVAS has always been known for our fashion silhouettes and on-trend women’s styles,” she says. “This year, we launched two new tanks in our Airlume combed and ring-spun jersey—the 6008 Jersey Racerback and 6003 Jersey Muscle Tank.”

Over at alphabroder, tri-blends continue to gain traction as one of the newer categories because of the fashion-influenced theme, Meenan-McCullough notes. “For customers who like to be on trend with the ‘next big thing,’ tri-blends can take the T-shirt up few notches with their extremely soft feel,” she states. “The ringspun cotton/poly/rayon blend, gives the shirt a ‘silkier’ smooth feel.”

Vantage Apparel’s popular items include the Velocity Color-wash, 100 percent cotton T-shirts (Style 0270), which are available in dark grey, Nantucket red, and weathered navy. “These shirts are casual, comfortable, and super cool,” Whitney Robinson notes, “and create an ideal canvas for vintage-inspired logos and throw-back campaigns.”

Distributors wishing to sell T-shirts to their clients should remind them of the long-term value T-shirts have to offer—especially when it comes to higher end tees. “When trying to get a customer to convert to a higher quality good, make sure to remind them that the value they get out of the items has to do with the number of impressions that garment gets,” BELLA+CANVAS’ Barry emphasizes. “Something comfortable and well-fitting that will be worn again and again. On the other hand, cheap carded, open-end tees will be worn once and end up in a drawer.”

Offering tees in combination with another item—such as a cap—is another excellent selling suggestion. Vantage Apparel’s Robinson notes that the combination possibilities are endless and will only serve to enhance brand exposure.

Zezzo at S&S recommends that distributors include a piece of an item they would like to present to the client in an order they placed so they can see what their logo would look like. “Don’t be afraid to try something outside of the box like a lightweight fashion forward or even drop tail slouchy V-neck,” she comments “You never know what could come of it and it shows the client that you’re forward-thinking and invested in helping them elevate their brand.

“If sampling is not an option, utilize an online design software to drop the client’s logo on a unique item (these designers are available on most wholesaler’s websites)” she continues. “Send the client a thank you for their recent order and include the mocked-up image as an idea for them to think of for future orders.”

Distributors should emphasize to clients how T-shirts have an abundance of options, according to Meenan-McCullough at alphabroder. “As the T-shirt market continues to offer new trends, customers continue to have more options to set themselves apart. By having different levels of price point, design, fabric feel, and total value proposition, it allows a more meaningful conversation with end-users, providing the appropriate products that aligns to their budget and brand-awareness.”

“When you think in terms of Cost-Per-Impression (CPI), there isn’t anything that competes in the promotional products industry,” she continues. “If your customer is looking to get their brand out there and reach the most people, think about how often you wear that super soft T-shirt. We all tend to wear our favorite T-shirts again and again and again—to the gym, grocery shopping, out to the mall. Think about how many people are seeing that shirt every time it gets worn and think about how often someone’s favorite shirt gets worn. That shirt is getting a ton of exposure for your brand!”

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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

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