Do promotional items really work for marketing? Here is the answer (with proof) and how they can help your business

At Lazer Designs, we use promotional items, giveaways and awards that are laser engraved to help grow our business and motivate our team. A unique and useful promotional item is a great way to stand out from the crowd!

This is the start of a series of blog posts where we’ll look at viability of promotional items, and then get into how to choose a winner, effectively use them to grow our businesses and motivate our teams.

Promotional products continue to work. Why? Take a look around you, how many promotional items are near you right now? On my desk (granted I may have more than some people), I count 4, in my bag are 2, at my house are countless…. many of them are promotional pens.

Summary of facts:

• People want them! Useful, colorful items will always be “in”!
• People receiving a promotional item remember the name of the company imprinted on it
• It is more likely that people eventually shop at the company that gave away the promo item
• Consider these stats and then plan your next promo item giveaway!

Want proof? Here are the stats!

promo1According to a 2005 study conducted by Georgia Southern University, recipients of promotional products have a significantly more positive opinion of a business through: more positive overall image, more positive perception of the business, higher likelihood of recommending the business as well as a higher likelihood of patronizing the business.

Cost-per-impression is VERY low, depending on the item and can be MUCH cheaper than traditional advertising when you take into account that the promotional item will be around for potentially YEARS getting repeat impressions from the recipients circle of influence.

Check out this study, with key parts in bold:

promo3A study of business travelers at DFW Airport revealed that 71 percent of business people reported having received a promotional product in the last 12 months. Of that group, 33.7 percent had the item on their person and 76.1 percent could recall the advertiser’s name! 52 percent of that group did business with the advertiser after receiving the promotional product and 52.1 percent reported their impression of the advertiser was more favorable after receiving the item.

Need help determining what is the perfect giveaway or incentive for your company? Call us, we’d love to help come up with a plan!

Next up, things to consider when choosing a promotional item to market your business.

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Hidden Lanyard on Leatherman Wave

Did you know…there is a hidden lanyard hook on the Leatherman Wave?  Learn how to access this little known tool at

The Leatherman Wave is one of Leatherman’s classic, large tools. You may have given a personalized Leatherman Wave as a gift in the past – make sure the recipient knows about this!

leatherman wave

See new Leatherman tools for 2013 here.

Happy lanyard-ing!

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Looking for the best Disc Golf Awards? Personalized bottle openers, with placements lasered!

What do you use for your disc golf tournament awards?

Do you give ribbons or trophies which collect dust and end up in a box? Why not give prizes that are truly USEFUL that the recipients will hold on to for years?

Our customers love customizing bottle openers and carabiner keychains with laser engraving – with placements and the tournament name! Here are a few examples:

We can laser the individual, personalized places on the disc golf awards – we normally charge $0.60 each for this personalizing service, in addition to the price of the item. We can group by color/style as well, whatever your needs are. Click on the links above for some ideas, or check out all our custom shaped bottle openers, carabiner keychains or other custom awards.

What is the best disc golf award you have given out or received? Share in the comment box below!

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Carabiners used to motivate NFC champions

A few years ago, we had the honor of providing carabiners to the Seattle seahawks – check out the story below to see how they used those carabiners to motivate their players to a NFC championship.

Seahawks receive NFC championship rings

….. Most of the players immediately started wearing the rings. A number lined up in a conference room to meet with Jostens representatives about ordering auxiliary pieces for friends and family members.

seahawks carabiners

The Seahawks added one special feature to the rings — a tiny image of a carabiner, an oval metal ring used in mountain climbing.

Before the season, accomplished climber Ed Viesturs gave a motivation speech to the team. Viesturs gave each player a carabiner, and the players received another – either blue or green and inscribed with motivational phrases — after each victory.

“We thought the look of it just came out perfect,” Ruskell said.

[ read full article on espn ]

The item they used was the 3″ Carabiner clip, available here. You can see the image of the rings here.

Go Seahawks!

What creative ways do you use carabiners for motivation?

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Dad with pocket knife saves boy from mountain lion

This is one family that is grateful his dad remembered his pocket knife! Make sure you are prepared with a dependable knife in your pocket, purse, man bag or car. You never know when you will need it.

The boy suffered non-life-threatening injuries — scrapes and puncture wounds to his face, according to park officials.

His father was able to fight off the cat by stabbing it with a pocket knife.

To continue reading, go to Big Bend mountain lion attacks boy, 6, at San Antonio News

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Different Types of Spyderco Edge Grinds Explained – with Photos

A Spyderco knife is as long lasting as it is legendary, as durable as they are versatile.

On many Spyderco knife models you have a choice of one of the below edge grinds.

spyderedge combo edge
Plain Edge – a sharpened edge with no serrations or teeth, sometimes referred to as a “smooth” edge. SpyderEdge – An edge featuring Spyderco’s two-step serration pattern consisting of one large and two small serrations. This pattern increases the cutting edge’s surface area by up to 24% Combination Edge – A blade with an edge that is partially Plain Edge and partially SpyderEdge (The preferred Edge Style of this author)

Which edge do you prefer, and why? Let us know in the Comments below!

Picked your Edge? Now Personalize your knife, click here to get started!

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Six tips to grow your photography business

'Photographing the photographer' photo (c) 2008, naixn - license: is a great business to be in! I have some friends who are in it, and am always amazed at the memories they can capture.

Here are a few ideas on how to grow your photography business. Share your experiences in the comment section!

  1. Be active on social sites – sites like facebook and flickr are photo rich, great opportunities to show off your amazing shots
  2. Design your website around showing off your photos (use and a good photo business theme)
  3. Setup your business on all the big directories (Google Places, yahoo maps, mapquest, superpages, citcysearch)
  4. Get connected on the wedding websites – for instance
  5. Offer your clients the option to buy their photographs off your laser engraved, customized usb drives – easier to use than a CD, useful for years, plus it has your logo and name on it!
  6. Always follow up with a thank you card or gift and ask for referrals. Ask something specific, like “Do you have any other friends who have just had babies that would like photographs done?”

Good luck!

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What to engrave? Tips, ideas and help on choosing the best custom engraving

So, you have picked the perfect gift to personalize for that special someone.  Now you are sitting in front of your computer, wondering what in the world to laser engrave on the gift!  Personalizing a gift or award can be fun and makes your item stand out, but, it can also be challenging to choose what to say.  Here are few ideas to get you started:

  • Name of recipient
  • Purpose of gift/award (ie. Happy Birthday or For Outstanding Customer Service)
  • Accomplishment (serious or fun, for example, 100 Sites Installed, or Best Office Prankster Award)
  • Date (of the occasion you’re celebrating, or a significant day in the past)
  • Company Logo (Here’s how to send it)
  • Clipart of a hobby, occupation, passion or just something to make the recipient smile (IE, dog, cat, medical symbol, star of life, maltese cross, coffee cup, etc.  Check out our gallery here.)
  • Photo (yes, you can engrave photos on some items!  Click here for some examples and here for information on how to send them to us!)
  • Quote (try sites like Quote Garden for a wide selection on a variety of topics!)
  • Inside joke
  • Sentimental memory

Now that your creative juices are flowing, what would YOU add to this list?  Share below for the benefit of others!

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Are you prepared? [Video]

What are you waiting for?  Order your knife now, and don’t go another day without being prepared.

(Already have a knife?  Great!  Let us know in the comments what you carry and why you are glad you do!)

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Who needs a knife?

Rescue Knife

Rescue Knife in use during a camping trip

“If you haven’t yet discovered the joy of having a quality knife, you owe it to yourself to learn”

When I was 10 years old, my father gave my sister and me our first pocket knives for Christmas. Mine was a two-blade Old Timer knife. Being a bit of a tomboy, I loved that thing. I used it for trimming my toenails and eating apples, as well as very useful things like peeling the bark off sticks. I lost that knife 14 years later at the airport when I forgot to remove it from my back pack. I have only the scar on my thumb from the time I cut myself rather deeply to remember it by.

Knives (especially customized ones) are a wonderful and practical gift for just about anyone old enough to handle one safely. There are a multitude of good knives out there – from a small single blade pocket knife to a hefty, do-it-all Leatherman tool. You are guaranteed to find one for any recipient on your list. Here’s a few ideas:

For the housewife, try a Buck Gent, small and lightweight, but more than able to handle opening envelopes and packages, cutting off tags, and any other task that requires a quick sharp blade.

For the hunter, how about a sturdy knife able to gut your prey as well come in handy around camp as you prepare meals and split kindling?  There’s even camo handles (and pink camo for the gals!).

For an EMT, firefighter, outdoorsman, or police officer, a rescue knife is an ideal gift; whether they are on the job, in the car, camping, or just hanging out at home, these tools come in handy.  With features like flashlights, glass breakers, sharp blades, and/or seat belt cutters, you can’t go wrong!

Ah, groomsmen.  While shot glasses and cuff links are nice, why not gift them with a knife that will last them years and never go out of style?  Personalize the blade or handle and you’ll be the groom-of-the-year. (And while we’re at it, more petite knives make fantastic and unique gifts for the ladies of the wedding party as well!)

Let’s not forget graduates, mothers and fathers, bosses, secretaries, anglers, veterans, pastors, and teachers…the list goes on. And, of course, it just makes the gift that much more special when you personalize it with a name, quote, date, or inside joke.  Who wouldn’t want a customized pocket knife?

In the comment section below, share with us your favorite memory of a knife you used to own or currently use – what makes a good knife to you?

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