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Tips and Tricks of the Trade

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Mad about raising money for MADD Hawaii!

I mean mad in a good kind of way.  Sure, the ultimate goal of most businesses is to make a profit; however some times it feels nice to give back in the process.  As a small business or any business for that matter, it's easy to get caught up in thinking about budgets, sales, quotas and marketing campaigns that will help increase the company's bottom line.   While it's a necessary evil, it can also be very mentally draining at times.  So we decided that we wanted to find a fun way to increase our fan/customer base but at the same time give to a great cause.  I read somewhere that McDonald's ran a promotion on their fan page where they donated $1.00 for every new "like" they received to the Ronald McDonald House.  With this in mind, we decided to create a new "Welcome" landing tab on our Facebook page to encourage people to "LIKE" us by donating $1.00 for every new "LIKE" we receive for the rest of 2011 to MADD Hawaii.  We currently have 105 fans/likes at the time of this posting.  Don't worry, if you're reading this, you're probably already a fan so we'll be sure to donate on your behalf as well because we truly appreciate you for liking us.  :)

Thank you for your continued support!

We chose MADD Hawaii because we wanted to help a local charity first and foremost.  We really believe in their mission of trying to eliminate drunk driving as well as assisting victims of drunk driving accidents.  While other causes of death like cancer and other diseases are often unpreventable, driving drunk IS definitely one that is preventable!  To learn more about MADD Hawaii and the great work they're doing, please click on the link.  Please feel free to spread the word about our promotion and help us help MADD Hawaii eliminate drunk driving!  Thanks for reading.

As an added bonus, we are giving away limited edition "Threads" koozies w/ any purchase when you check-in with Facebook places. 

Thursday, August 18, 2011

What is a QR code?

HOORAY!  You've either managed to scan the QR code from our facebook page or you just clicked on the link.  Or maybe you just got here directly from our main website.  Either way, were glad that you're here!  By now, you've probably seen these black and white UPC looking things all over the place: in magazines, newspapers, realtor signs, business cards, etc. and probably have wondered what they were.  Here's a definition from Wikipedia:

"A QR code (abbreviated from Quick Response code) is a specific matrix barcode (or two-dimensional code) that is machine readable and designed to be read by smartphones. The code consists of black modules arranged in a square pattern on a white background. The information encoded may be text, a URL, or other data.  Common in Japan, where it was created by Toyota subsidiary Denso Wave in 1994, the QR code is one of the most popular types of two-dimensional barcodes. The QR code was designed to allow its contents to be decoded at high speed.  The technology has seen frequent use in Japan and South Korea; the United Kingdom is the seventh-largest national consumer of QR codes."

So that's cool and all but how does that help us as a small businesses?  Interaction, that's how.  QR codes can help your customers interact with your company and your brand with their smartphones.  QR codes aren't only great for leading customers to your website but can also create a lot a buzz around your marketing campaign as it can link to many different calls to action including browsing to a website, bookmarking a website, making a call and sending a text.  A company could post their QR code on facebook saying "Scan the code for special discount" and have it sent via SMS to the customer's phone.  Besides it's cool to scan things just for the heck of it.  We've just added our QR code to all of our marketing material including our business cards, brochures, direct mailers and at random places throughout our shop.  Our QR code sends our current and potential customers to our website to learn more about the products and services that we offer.

If you don't have a scanner on your phone, there are a bunch of free apps at the App Store or Market on Android...just search for QR scanner.

Yes, we are a custom apparel and accessories company; however we are a small business first and foremost like many of you and try to share any useful information we have to help your company thrive as well.  If you've enjoyed this post and want to keep up to date with all our posts on Threads Talk...simply subscribe by entering your email in the box to the right or just check back periodically when you  have a chance.  Now if you've just downloaded a scanner app to your phone, go ahead and scan the QR code above and see where it goes ;). 

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Need a full-color banner? Aiea Copy Center is the place...

As a small business, we are always looking for fellow small businesses that provide excellent products and customer service to support.  Fortunately for us, we've found such a place in Aiea Copy Center.  We needed a 2' x 6' full-colored banner for an ESPN 1420am event that we are sponsoring this Friday, August 12 at the St. Louis Clubhouse next to Da Kitchen.  It's the 2011 Ultimate Sports Trivia Challenge which is open to the public from 5-7pm so come down and have a great time if you can!  Okay, enough with the shameless plug.

I called around to a couple of places to see who could print my banner in time for the event.  I already had the file ready to go but I did realize that it was full-color as we wanted something eye-catching for the event so I was prepared to pay a decent amount.  I called Aiea Copy Center and spoke to Anna who was super helpful and provided me with the information that I needed and told me exactly what I needed to do to have our banner created.

For a 2' x 6' full-color banner with 4 double-sided reinforced grommets, we only ended up paying $48+ tax on a beautiful 13 oz. gloss vinyl.  And the best part was that it was ready in less than 24 hours!  Now that's AWESOME customer service!  So if you are ever in need of full-colored banners, check out Aiea Copy Center, you won't be disappointed.  We'll post up pics of our banner for you to see from the event shortly.

As promised, here's a couple of pics of the finished banner at the event.
the full-color really helped our banner stand out

Sharp and crisp printing...thanks again Aiea Copy Center!

Aiea Copy Center
99-115 Aiea Heights Dr. #208
Aiea, Hawaii 96782
Phone: (808) 486-3819, Fax: (808) 488-8203
Mon - Fri 8 am to 8 pm, Sat 8 am to 4 pm, Sun ClosedWeb: www.aieacopycenter.com email@aieacopycenter.com

Monday, August 1, 2011

August's Promotional Product of the Month: 2GB USB Bracelet

Thumb drives have been around for awhile now but as convenient as it is to have buckets of information in such a small device, it's also very easy to misplace.  Well, fear no more!  This stylish, ultra cool 2GB USB bracelet will make sure that you know exactly where your important information is at all times.  Not only that...it's fashionable too.  Lance Armstrong has his LIVE STRONG yellows wristbands, everyone's wearing those Phiten-improve your circulation bands and Wonder Woman has her awesome bulletproof wrist thingies so you and your clients will fit right in with your data-packed bracelets!

31215 2 GB Bracelet USB 2.0 Flash Drive

Materials: PVC (polyvinyl chloride) plastic
Product Size: 9-7/8"w x 15/16"h x 3/8"d
Product Colors: Black, Green, Orange, Pink, Yellow
Price Includes: 1-color imprint, 1 location
Standard Imprint Method(s):
  • Screen Print: Top, 1"w x 7/16"h, 4 color(s) max
  • Setup fee: $50.00
  • Minimum order: 25 pieces
  • $12.60 each *shipping cost not included
Production Time: 10 Business Days