Ennis Completes Two Acquisitions Counselor Top 40 supplier Ennis (asi/52493) announced last week that it has completed two company acquisitions. On September 30, Ennis closed on its agreement to acquire the assets of Folder Express from Wright Printing Company of Omaha, NE. Read Article
While financial terms of the deal were not released, Ennis said that the Folder Express business generated approximately $20 million in sales during the most recent calendar year and will continue to operate under the Folder Express and other brand names.
"We are very pleased to have closed this transaction,” said Keith Walters, president and CEO of Ennis Inc. “Expanding our folder operations makes us one of the largest producers of this product in the market and gives us another state in which we operate. These products are sold through our normal sales channel of independent distributors. Overall we feel very excited to bring the Folder Express line to our distributor channel."
In a separate transaction, Cenveo Inc. announced that it has completed the previously announced sale of its Custom Envelope Group to Ennis. Financial terms of the deal were not released. The Custom Envelope Group was comprised of the Wisco brand of envelopes, produced in Tullahoma, TN, and the National Imprint Company, operating out of Claysburg, PA. Ennis said that the business generated about $40 million in sales during its most recent calendar year.
Ennis, which is also the parent company of industry wearables supplier Alstyle Apparel (asi/34817), currently ranks as the industry’s fifth-largest supplier, after reporting to Counselor that it recorded North American ad specialty sales of $235.3 million in 2012.
Digital Ad Spending Poised To Rise
Advertising’s future is looking increasingly pixilated. A new survey from Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business reveals that both B2B and B2C product and service companies plan to increase investment in digital advertising spending over the next 12 months. Read Article
Overall, B2C firms project an 11.1% jump in spending, while B2B companies estimate a 9.9% hike, the survey found.
The dollars that companies invest in the social media sub-segment of digital advertising is poised to increase over the next 12 months, according to Duke. In August, for example, social media ads accounted for 6.6% of marketers’ budgets. Within the next year, that share will climb to 9.1%, and in five years it will hit 15.8% of budget spend, according to forecasts from the survey.
This August, the B2B service industry reported the highest percentage of marketing budget going to social ads. Still, over the next 12 months, B2C service and products firms will spend a greater percentage of their budgets on social. Despite the rising investment, businesses are still uncertain about how effective social is in building business. Nearly half of marketers in the Duke survey said they hadn’t been able to show the impact of social marketing their business.
The Joe Show: Breast Cancer Awareness Promos
In this episode of The Joe Show, Managing Editor Joe Haley shows off some new items that are perfect for breast cancer awareness promotions this month. Looking for a unique pin to hand out at events? Read Article
How about some bags that would appeal to any charity drive participants? Watch The Joe Show for new product and promotional ideas.
Counselor How-To: Develop A Succession Plan
If you're content to wait until retirement to create a family business succession plan, Sally Stolen Grossman feels you're making a big mistake. "I think it's never too early to start." Read Article
Succession planning is just so important," says Grossman, co-editor of the Business Succession Planning Answer Book. "I see far too many owners who wait until the last minute, and it's much harder to do the planning then."
But succession planning doesn't have to be a headache. Grossman believes choosing an in-family successor among competing children is probably the most difficult decision that entrepreneurs will face. "Assuming that you have family that might be interested in the business, you have to do some soul-searching about what the job involves and whether your kids have the skills and the desire," she says.
During the succession planning process, Grossman advises business owners to determine specific expectations so everyone knows what they're getting into.
"It's very difficult to completely remove the emotion from the process, and I think that's because, by definition, it's a family business," Grossman says. "When you talk about business, you may talk about it at the Thanksgiving dinner table. But there are some things you can do to minimize the emotion. One is to set some ground rules."
To get more tips on creating a succession plan for a family business, click here to read the full online article.
SnugZ’s Mackay Running For Mayor
Brandon Mackay, president of supplier firm SnugZ USA (asi/88060), is making a run at public office, vying to become the mayor of Saratoga Springs, UT. Mackay has never sought public office before, but decided to join the ballot as he was looking for a new manufacturing site for SnugZ. “I was out pitching our plans for a new building and I got no response at all from the mayor of Saratoga Springs, in my own backyard,” Mackay said. “I heard crickets and I was just scratching my head.”
The focus of Mackay’s campaign is jobs – he believes under his leadership Saratoga Springs would be able to provide more of them. “The growth trends out here are astronomical,” Mackay said, “so it’s my goal to create more long-term, legacy job opportunities for our community. We have 20,000 people in Saratoga Springs and most have to travel to work.”
Mackay calls himself “a long shot” to win, but that hasn’t stopped him from going door-to-door to campaign. He’s also sent out mailers and used ad specialties, including banners and yard signs, to promote his message. Mackay says if he is elected, his mayoral responsibilities would not interfere with running SnugZ. “The whole experience has been eye-opening,” Mackay said. “It’s been fun.”
The mayoral election in Saratoga Springs will be held on November 5.
Counselor Product Close-Up: T-Shirts Counselor Product Close-Up, a new monthly video series from Counselor magazine, will provide insights and strategies into specific product categories in the ad specialty market. In focus this month: T-shirts, the top-selling promotional item in the United States.
In fact, T-shirts represent about 14% of overall distributor revenues in the ad specialty market, totaling sales of more than $2 billion annually. "T-shirts can be the most effective promotional product if executed correctly," said Andrew Verga, assistant marketing manager for Hanes Branded Printwear (asi/59528). "When someone receives a T-shirt that is comfortable, stylish, and well-embellished, it will find a place in their regular rotation, being worn many times per month over the course of several years, generating many thousands of impressions and a fantastic ROI."
While T-shirts appeal to many different end-user sectors, Verga points to the health care market as an up-and-coming target for promotional shirts. "The fastest growing segment we see is health care," he said. "It is an increasingly competitive space, which means promotional spending by health care providers is poised to explode. Most health care organizations are new to the promotional products channel, which means they are truly concerned with ROI and not just getting the cheapest promotional product they can find. Their lack of price-sensitivity makes health care organizations a perfect opportunity to sell high-quality, well-embellished promotional tees."
In this new video, Counselor delves even deeper into the T-shirt product category, exploring why it's a growing segment of the industry, what the latest product trends are, and which markets would be good for distributors to target with T-shirts. Click here to watch the video.
ASI Releases Global Ad Impressions Study
A new survey released by ASI reveals groundbreaking research that proves the value of promotional products. In fact, the latest version of the Global Advertising Specialties Impressions Study shows that as an ad medium, promo items are more effective than television, magazines, and newspapers. Based on thousands of live and online interviews with consumers in key cities in the U.S., Canada, Europe and Australia to gauge their preferences in and use of ad specialties, the results of this project provide the industry with powerful data.
Some highlights from the survey:
They remember. Owners of ad specialties recall the advertiser 86% of the time. Plus, the more interaction end-users have with the items, the higher the recognition of the advertiser. This partly explains why apparel leads the way in advertiser recall.
The client gets more bang for his buck. Logoed bags tie with writing instruments as having the lowest cost-per-impression of any promotional item in the U.S. at one-tenth of a penny.
They don't throw them away. In the U.S., 63% ofrespondents said if they receive a logoed item they don't want, they give it to someone else who can use it. As awareness of recycling in the U.S. has become more prevalent, so has the practice of passing along unwanted products.
Ad specialties make a great impression. More than half the time (53%), they leave a more favorable impression of the advertiser. This trend was seen across all countries. Outerwear leaves the most positive attitude.
When in Rome ... you're more likely to generate new business through ad specialties. While over one-third (36%) of respondents globally said they're more likely to do business with a company that's given them a logoed item, Italians were even more likely to do so – 48%, in fact.
ASI Radio: Business Lessons Revealed
On today’s Tuesday Morning Show, the hosts provided listeners with the best business lessons they’ve learned. Plus, we shared our Favorite Things, debated the phrases that marketers should avoid the most, and discussed how to empower employees.
If you missed the show, a recording is now available at www.asicentral.com/radio. And, don’t forget to join us for our next broadcast – Tuesday, October 15. Log on at 10:30 a.m. ET to listen to the show – and give us a call at (215) 953-4979 to hear your voice on the air.
Vote For The Wearables Top Decorator
Two great decorators remain in the final round of the Wearables Top Decorator competition, and your vote will determine our champion. Click here to vote for your favorite. Hurry – voting ends Friday, October 11.
In The News
Bullet (asi/42424) has announced the launch of its Zeus: Priced to Rule sale, a 25% discount on its Zeus Tote Bag product. The sale is available through October 31. For more information, go to www.bulletline.com.
ERB Safety (asi/51204) announced that it has broken ground on a new 25,000-square-foot manufacturing facility. The addition in Woodstock, GA, will be used to increase the capacity of the current distribution and fulfillment center to meet the company’s growing business needs.
ReturnMoi (asi/82261) has announced that its three-hour same-day rush service is now available for the company’s top-selling product – branded mobile recovery tags. For more information, go to www.returnmoipromo.com.
Rymax Marketing Services announced the launch of its new website (www.rymaxinc.com), which offers new resources for incentive and recognition programs.
Starline (asi/89320) announced that it is now open later during the current holiday season. Its customer service department is now open from 8:30am to 6pm from Monday to Friday, and as of October 14th, the inside sales department will be open 8:30am to 6pm from Monday to Thursday.
THE ASI VIRTUAL TRADE SHOW Wednesday, October 23 • 10 a.m.-3 p.m. ET Register today and plan to attend the ASI Virtual Trade Show for FREE on October 23. From the comfort of your own office, you'll be able to stay up on the most current trends while finding out-of-the box ideas to meet your clients' fourth-quarter needs. Here’s what you’ll find…
VARIETY: From pens and mugs to apparel and gifts — find what your clients are asking for. PERSONAL CONVERSATIONS: Discuss client projects with top suppliers. NEW INITIATIVES: Take part in ASI Education to boost your sales. SNEAK PEEKS: See early arrivals for 2014. RESOURCES: Find the latest catalogs, sales sheets and white papers. NETWORKING: Join your colleagues in the Virtual Lounge.
Find new ways to boost YOUR sales without ever leaving your office, or missing a client’s call, when you attend the ASI Virtual Trade Show on October 23 from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Register today at www.asivirtualtradeshow.com.
The following are the dates and locations for The ASI Show in 2014:
Orlando, January 5-7, 2014
Dallas, February 4-6, 2014
Long Beach, March 25-27, 2014
New York, April 3-4, 2014
Chicago, July 15-17, 2014