Hurricane Relief Efforts Continue As the industry’s outpouring of support for victims of Hurricanes Charley and Frances continues, Florida residents are nervously eyeing the approach of Hurricane Ivan, which yesterday devastated the island of Grenada and is poised to strike Jamaica tomorrow. The dangerous Category 5 storm is currently tracking similar to Charley, which struck Florida’s west coast less than a month ago, and many homes and businesses are still uninhabitable or without power. According to postings on ASICentral’s Hurricane Update
(www.asicentral.com), at least 40 industry firms have been affected by Charley and Frances, and over the next few days things could worsen if Ivan strikes the U.S. Once again, ASI president Tim Andrews reminds distributors and suppliers in the hardest hit areas that ASI will replace, at no cost, any catalogs, research services or other items that were lost or damaged. Industry firms affected by these storms can post updated information at www.asicentral.com so colleagues and customers can check their status. Just click on “Update Information” under the Hurricane Updates section on the opening page and fill out the corresponding form.
Apprentice 2: Hotlink VP Meets The Donald The second season of The Apprentice opens tonight, with a contestant from our very own promotional products industry, Rob Flanagan, vice president of Dallas sales for Hotlink Inc. (asi/227730). He is one of 18 people competing for their dream job of working for Donald Trump, who each week gives them tasks that test their “intelligence, chutzpah and street smarts.” Last year the show became the breakout hit of the season with Trump’s line, “You’re Fired,” becoming the catch-phrase of the year. The first episode of the second season airs tonight on NBC at 8:30 .
Pharmaceutical Firm Gets Subpoena About Its Promotional Activity The drug company Cephalon Inc. says that it has received a federal subpoena requesting information on its promotional practices going back to 1998. Cephalon joins more than a half dozen major pharmaceutical companies that have faced federal or state inquiries into their marketing recently. This comes at the same time that pharmaceutical companies have been following voluntary guidelines that restrict promotional products to items physicians can use in their offices for patients. Cephalon officials told news organizations that the company was convinced its practices were sound and that it’s cooperating with the federal request.
New PPAI Board Members Announced Four new board members have been elected to the board of Promotional Products Association International (PPAI). New distributor representatives are Paul Miller, MAS, president of Sampson Miller Advertising Inc. (asi/317770), and Margie Price, MAS, president of Premiums Plus Inc. (asi/299012). Supplier members are Stan Breckenridge, MAS, senior vice president of Moderne Glass Co. Inc. (asi/71920), and Darryl Haddox, vice president of sales for Magnet LLC (asi/68520). All will serve four-year terms on the board starting in January. In addition, Mark Fyten, CAS, has been selected to a two-year term as the Regional Association Council’s representative to PPAI’s board.
Another Reason To Think A Concept Through When a client wants to use promotional products as part of a larger marketing program, make sure to ask a few questions before proceeding. Case in point: Miller Brewing Co. recently issued a series of commemorative rock ‘n’ roll cans depicting Elvis Presley, Blondie, Alice Cooper, Bon Jovi, Def Leppard and Willie Nelson as part of a summer promotion with Rolling Stone magazine celebrating the 50th anniversary of rock ‘n’ roll. Almost immediately, people began to question how African American artists could have been completely overlooked, since most agree that artists like Chuck Berry, Little Richard and Ike Turner essentially invented the genre. “Despite our efforts, we did not manage this component of the promotion appropriately,” said a spokesperson for Miller. Now the organization Millions For Reparations (MFR) and others in the African American community have called for a national boycott of the beer-maker.
Correction In Tuesday’s issue of PromoGram, we listed the incorrect city for Superb Case’s new address. The firm has relocated its company headquarters to 1119 Douglas Avenue , North Providence , RI , 02904 , effective immediately.
OF THE WEEK
Calendar Mug from CustomQuest (asi/47954) The patented construction of MultiMug, style CQ 100-MM, is a holder built into the surface of the mug which accommodates exchangeable calendar and message inserts.
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It’s the perfect two-step creative gift that’s ideal for: