You’ll Never Guess What Percentage of Customers Buy Because You’re Green

A Third of Your Market May Respond to Your Sustainable Practices

The market has produced an ever-increasing number of sustainability-minded products in the past decade. From electric vehicles, to recyclable packaging, to marketing materials like these, brands have begun to react to the societal pressure to produce products that are less harmful to the environment.

However, did you know that data shows that your consumers might even be willing to pay more for your services than they have in the past if you focus on sustainability? With Earth Day just around the corner on April 22, it might be time to consider kicking off communicating your company’s sustainable business practices to your customers through your marketing products.

In 2017, Unilever released a study that showed that one out of every three consumers are now buying from brands solely based on their social and environmental impact. Think about that for a second. If you’re not properly communicating the efforts your company is making to be more environmentally-friendly, you could be missing out on a third of your target market! Perhaps an even more impactful statistic in this study is that 21% of people say that they would actively choose brands solely if they made their sustainability credentials clearer in their marketing. Simply put, if your brand has done positive things to reduce the impact you make on the environment, consumers are saying that they’d like to know about it!

Marketing products represent an enjoyable, memorable way to communicate these efforts to your clients. We have numerous products, like these stone-bound journals and these seed packet Thank You cards, that could enable you to communicate these efforts to your current and potential customers, potentially sparking a new conversation about the services that your business provides. Remember that the things your company does to make the world a better place, whether it is being involved in your local community or making a positive impact on the environment, matter significantly to your customers. Make sure that they know!

If we can be of any service, please feel free to reach out. Email us at or call 423-364-7343.

Connections Promotional Products

“Your Branded Strategy”

How Do You Know If Your Promotional Products Are Working? – And the Winners Are …

In our blog series last month, we looked at a few proven methods for tracking the value of a promotional product for your business.

We learned that “Engagement = Interaction,” and we received a number of comments on how logoed bags have worked for many of you.

We also learned that “Impressions = Visibility,” and many of you shared how you have used promotional products to engage your customers.

Based on a random drawing of readers who shared their comments last month, I’m pleased to announce the proud winners of a JOLT stainless steel tumbler:




How do you know your promotional items are working?

“We use promotional products a little differently. The products we use are to communicate with our owners and renters. Because we were continually looking for new ways to let our tenants know when we will be inspecting, we have included a magnet in their move-in package with their inspection dates circled. This saves us time and allows us to better serve our tenants.” – Joni Eldredge, Greyhaven Realty Management Company




How have you used logoed bags to reach your customers?

“Allied Eye is expanding our services to include an optical shop. Allied Optional Shop is a shop for our customers to purchase their custom glasses and other optical necessities. We have found a customized brown paper bag that is attractive and earth friendly for our customers to take their glasses home.” – Susan, Allied Optical Shop

We at Connections Promotional Products partner with our customers to creatively use products in their marketing plan.

How Do You Know If Your Promotional Products Are Working?

Over the years I have heard many names for promotional products and many different opinions as to whether promotional products are a waste of time and money. How do you know if your promotional products are working?

During the month of April we will look at proven methods of tracking the value of a promotional product.

Proven Method #1: Engagement = Interaction

ServPro of Chattanooga has the right idea. They found a product that matched what they do, that is fun, and is engaging. The concept is easy … if people want to come to your booth and have fun while there, they are much more likely to want to enter into a conversation. Engagement=interaction. ServPro tied their product to their tagline … ”Like it never even happened”.

How have you engaged your customers using products? Like us on Facebook and share how you have used products to engage your customers. Comment and win … we will draw from comments given on the 15th, 25th and 30th. Winners will receive a JOLT stainless steel tumbler.

nonprofit marketing strategy choices chattanooga

Nonprofit Marketing Case Study: Choices of Chattanooga

We asked Julia Kurschner, marketing director of Choices of Chattanooga, to rate the support she receives in selecting “the right stuff” to attract her target audience, among the many product options available. Here is what she said.

Who Is Choices of Chattanooga?

Choices of Chattanooga exists to educate, support and empower women and men in our community. Since 1985, Choices has been dedicated to providing a safe, confidential place where women and men can receive accurate information, medical services and practical help without judgment or bias.

Julia summed up the mission statement with, “No matter what, we are here for you…”.  Their job is to love people to the best of their ability.

How This Chattanooga Nonprofit Organization Marketed Itself in the Past:

Q:  How have you used promotional products in your marketing plan in the past?

Julia responded that “we didn’t have much before … it was pretty lame”. When she came to Choices, they were ordering the same pens, rack cards and magnets as they had ordered for years.

Q:  How did you order promotional products before using Connections Promotional Products? What was the process like?

We went through a printing company that only had so many products. The selection was very limited, and we had to handle finding products that we wanted without suggestions or input from that company. We just ordered the same thing every year.

Q:  How did that process work – were there any problems or concerns?

There was no one there to advocate for us if there was a problem.

Q:  How much of your time was spent getting promotional products for your events?

If we had a problem with the order, the time spent in getting it corrected could sometimes be hours of wasted time on the phone with no one person to go to. The quality of the product was not an issue.

How This Chattanooga Nonprofit Organization Markets Itself Today:

Q:  How has the process changed since using Connections Promotional Products?

Great, when we have an event and we don’t know what we want or what might work for us, you give us suggestions. This allows me to spend my time on my job instead of spending hours online looking for promotional products and not knowing what will work and what might not.

Q:  How do you use promotional products now?

We use products specifically for campus things, fairs, donor gifts and small groups. We have campus ministries and small talk series on campus where we like to leave group members something that they will use and remember that we are there. We have used products like chap sticks, smart wallets, ear buds and car chargers that have been a big success. These have all been received very well.

Q:  How does the time you spend on ordering products compare since using Connections Promotional Products?

I spend much less time on the product end of the event. We email you about a couple of months in advance with the event, its purpose, target audience and a few other things and set a meeting for us to talk in person. You bring us thoughts and ideas and we choose from there to fit our budget for that event, and we are confident in the quality of the product. We now have someone advocating for us, and there is a face behind the company.

Q:  Why do you think someone should use Connections Promotional Products?

We would recommend you to others without hesitation. You help companies figure out what they need. In our case, we attract more people to our booth or event because we have “the right stuff”. It is much easier to start conversation when people are excited to come by and talk. It makes going to all of these things so much more fun.

A Case Study: Ana Woodworks Custom Cabinetry

Employee uniforms can be a great way to enhance your brand marketing effort. 

Client: Ana Woodworks is a full-service interior design studio specializing creating the perfect space for both residential and commercial settings. Master craftsmen skilled in the art of cabinet making meticulously build each and every kitchen, bath, or custom piece to fit your unique need.  Whether you want cabinetry that looks like an authentic 1890’s estate piece, or just the reassurance of a quality product, Ana Woodworks delivers. Ana Woodworks is also part of Chattanooga’s green building market, which means almost any project can utilize materials that lessens the impact on the environment without compromising quality or durability.

Problem: Seasonal uniforms with Ana Woodworks’ logo did not properly represent the company’s brand, mainly because the local embroidery company never suggested how these seemingly utilitarian items could positively impact the brand.

Carol, the owner of Ana Woodworks, shares this story. “In the past, the seasonal sweatshirts purchased for team members working in the shop carried the Ana Woodworks logo merely as an afterthought. We dealt with the same local embroidery company year after year, which required little thought to get the job done. It wasn’t until someone asked us about the sweatshirts that we realized we may have been missing a great opportunity to connect the sweatshirts with our marketing efforts.”

Solution: Connections Promotional Products explained how with just a little forethought all of the seasonal items worn by Ana Woodworks employees could bring greater awareness to the brand. “Not only do the new shirts and jackets look more professional, but it makes the entire staff look more like a team,” says Carol. “Now, we are thinking about adding logo t-shirts and embroidered polos for installers who regularly interact with our customers.”

“Connections Promotional Products personal and thoughtful attention to our business has helped us to better understand how even employee uniforms can help to enhance our branding. And, the process still takes very little time, thanks to the number of quality options Connections provides.

Recommendation:  “Before Kay Huggins and Connections Promotional Products came along, my main concern was avoiding pushy salespeople who continually showed up unannounced and were only concerned about the sale, but Kay’s professionalism and true concern for the success of Ana Woodworks makes selecting the right logo wear a much more enjoyable process.”

“Connections Promotional Products acts like a business partner by making appointments, respecting our time, providing great options and helping to guide us through the product selection process.”

A Case Study: Frustration Free Promotional Products on the Move

Tired of tracking shipments, worrying about product quality, and hoping that what was ordered was what they received, a local moving company turned to Connections Promotional Products for reliability and accountability.

Client: The local branch of a national, full-service, commercial and residential moving company that also offers packing and storage services.

Problem: Working with the national office to secure promotional items left the local branch frustrated due to the difficult and poorly implemented ordering process, high cost and low quality of the products, and the overall lack of accountability. Items were often not available or shipped late, causing the local branch to miss marketing opportunities, and be stuck with unneeded product.

Solution: Connections Promotional Products (CPP) offered a local, single point of contact that was easy to access.  The local branch is pleased with the wide selection of promotional products as well as the overall quality CPP offers.  The branch can now customize promotional materials for specific events; like the branded travel mirrors used recently for a women’s expo.

CPP also serves as the local branch’s logistics liaison; making sure shipments arrive together and on time, eliminating the worry of tracking down lost shipments. This aspect of  CPP’s service alone saves the company 5-7 hours of frustration and lost productivity for every time a new promotional product is ordered.

A simple phone call to CPP with event details, target audience and budget, is all that is required for CPP to provide a variety of targeted options. The local branch makes the choice, CPP places the order, and the product arrives.  What once took hours now takes minutes, significantly reducing the stress of preparing for upcoming events, all because of the active role CPP takes in the promotional products process.

Recommendation: The local branch of this national moving company happily refers their colleagues to Connections Promotional Products, because the personalized service, local contact and accountability allows them to focus on making their local branch a success.