What’s In Your Bag?

Monday September 19, 2011 | Filed under: Industry Initiatives, News About ASI, Research, Using Ad Specialties

Once again our industry is tapping into a growing worldwide trend by capitalizing on the plastic bag bans enacted in states as diverse as Alaska, California and North Carolina, and countries like Italy and India.

According to Counselor’s 2011 State of the Industry report, bags accounted for 9.7% of all revenue from the sale of promo products last year, or $1.7 billion. And searches for bags in ESP rose more than 10% in the last year, with more than 10,000 bags from over 800 different suppliers currently available. 

Click here to read our press release about this growing sales phenomenon, which was picked up by nearly 100 media outlets, including MarketWatch, StreetInsider.com, San Francisco Chronicle online and U.S. Politics Today.

California really seems to be on the cutting edge of this trend. The Los Angeles Times reports that a city councilman favors a bag ban that goes even beyond action already taken in other California cities and counties, calling for stores to stop using plastic and paper bags.

There’s no question recyclable bags help reduce the billions of plastic bags circulating around the globe. It’s estimated that if each bag is used multiple times – at least once a week – four or five reusable bags can replace 520 plastic bags a year.

There’s also no question bags make for terrific marketing vehicles. When compared with other promotional products like pens and caps, bags generate the highest number of ad impressions in a month 1,078 for a single bag – because they’re used repeatedly in and out of the office, and the message they carry is seen by significant numbers of people.

Don’t believe me? Next time you’re at the mall, a grocery store or a college campus, take a look at how many bags – and advertisers – you see. I rest my case.

We spoke to distributor Michelle Altobelli of Altobelli Advantage, Inc., who called bags “a functional, usable, ageless item,” and suggests distributors help clients maximize their potential by tying in a marketing program to make it a really worthwhile promotional investment.

What’s in your bag? Let me know by posting a comment or e-mailing me here. I’m also on Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube.