TREVOSE, PA – August 2, 2006 - Advertising Specialty Institute®, the largest media organization serving the $17.8 billion promotional products industry, announced today that Weekend Warrior Promotional Products (asi/356446) is the winner of its Distributors’ Extreme Makeover contest – growing its sales by 105% in one year. 

The contest provided three home-based, promotional products industry distributor firms with the opportunity to compete head-to-head for one year, to see which could increase its sales and profitability the greatest.

ASI provided all three contestants with ESP® Online, the Internet-based research, marketing and client management tool that provides access to 750,000 promotional products from 3,300 suppliers; LogoMall®, a customizable Website for distributors, featuring a shopping engine with 300,000 products; ASItransact, the efficient electronic order management system; and a supply of imprinted ASI catalogs. 

Each company also received consulting services from industry sales and marketing expert, David Blaise, a $1,000 wardrobe makeover from Edwards Garment (asi/51752), and had access to these ASI member benefits:  virtual sample capabilities from Technologo, credit card transaction assistance from Access Group/NPC, digital artwork cleanup services from Affinity Express and credit reports from Experian®.

Following Weekend Warrior, which increased its sales by 105% and increased its profit margin by 25%, were runners-up The Brand Company (asi/145018) and BrandMasters (asi/234692).  The Brand Company, owned by Becky Allan, increased sales by 45%.  BrandMasters, managed by the brother-and-sister team of Jennifer Webb and Ron Marvel, increased sales by 34%. 

“Congratulations to Weekend Warrior Promotional Products and the two runners-up,” said Timothy M. Andrews, president of ASI.  “I’m impressed with Weekend Warrior’s triple-digit percentage increase in sales, and the solid gains posted by runners-up The Brand Company and BrandMasters. This contest demonstrates that ASI’s products and services provide a positive return on investment for promotional products companies, by using the latest technology to increase sales and streamline business processes.” 

“We’d like to thank ASI for access to its business-building tools, and David Blaise, for his advice and guidance,” said Maura Burgess, co-owner of Weekend Warrior Promotional Products.  “The contest has transformed our company dramatically in sales performance, process and approach.  We now even consider ourselves better parents, without sacrificing our professional lives.  I encourage others to consider using the Web-based technology found in ESP Online and ASItransact to transform your company and to increase sales.”

“Using the business tools from ASI, I’ve been able to make in-roads with some major accounts, like microprocessor manufacturing giant, AMD,” said Becky Allan, owner of The Brand Company.  “I'm also working with a national muffler franchise and for a joint event this summer with Dell and BP.  The contest has allowed me to think more strategically, more out-of-the-box and to become more productive.”

“Ron and I came through this contest with many needed changes,” said Jennifer Webb, co-owner of BrandMasters.  “We now have tools from ASI to make our company more than an average distributorship and we have an incredible competitive advantage.  During a recent sales call, Ron had a customer tell him that another distributor in our area had been in and mentioned us.  Seems that with the changes we’ve made, the competition is taking notice.”

“All three contestants performed well in the contest,” said David Blaise, author of the industry success system, Top Secrets of Multi-Million Dollar Producers and partner of Blaise Drake & Company.  “I look forward to seeing how their businesses continue to evolve and grow.  In fact, so far this year, Weekend Warrior Promotional Products is posting sales 157% greater than the first six months last year.” 

All North American ASI distributor member firms qualified to enter the contest and over 1,000 entrants received a 30-day trial of ESP Online, a copy of the audio training program Inside the Mind of a Promotional Products Client, as well as an invitation to an online business-building seminar from ASI.

The final contestants were:

Weekend Warrior Promotions - Maura and Ed Burgess
Maura Sevier-Burgess started Weekend Warrior in 1992 while she was 8 months pregnant with her second child. A marketing professional with a Masters degree in Finance, Maura had grown weary of the "morning fire drill" and wanted to run her own business... read more

Maura & Ed Burgess
Weekend Warrior Promotions

The Brand Company - Becky Allan
Becky grew up a self-described "military brat," and lived overseas and all over the United States.  She graduated from Texas A&M University and took a sales job with Abbott laboratories. Several years later she married her husband Dave and now has 2 children, Tyler (5) and Mason (2). 

She has had 'many great jobs' that gave her experience in both selling and marketing, 'everything from selling wildflower seeds to marketing golf tournaments.' A friend introduced her to the promotional products business... read more

Rebecca Allen
Brand Company

BrandMasters: Jennifer Webb and Ron Marvel (Brother and Sister)
Jennifer previously worked as a dental assistant and like many of ASI's distributor members made a mid-life career change. She firmly believes that age should not deter anyone from their dreams! After leaving the dental field in the year 2000 she started a screen printing and embroidery business... read more

Jennifer Webb & Ron Marvel