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How NPR tote bags became a thing
The Atlantic
Tote bags are so synonymous with public broadcasting in the United States that they're as much a physical manifestation of NPR as a radio. The humble tote bag is, and has been for much of the network's 44-year existence, a powerful brand extension. In the beginning, tote bags were a simple fundraising incentive — a "thank you" gift for donors who helped support the network. Tote bags have been around since at least the late 1800s, but L.L. Bean is widely credited for having popularized the bag.
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SPPA NEWS


Pearson; Maddox among best Multi-Line Reps
Two SPPA members have made the list of the nation’s top multi-line reps. Barry & Mary Beth Pearson and Jim Maddox were recently selected by PPB Magazine as some of industry’s top reps from 48 total nominations. “With extensive product knowledge and broad networks, they provide a critical connection between suppliers who have products and solutions, and distributors who need them. These energetic professionals typically log at least 25,000 miles a year on the road to serve up promotional solutions, product samples, creative ideas and factory expertise to information-hungry distributors,” says PPB.

Read the complete article.

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Webinar Wednesday is next week
Next week’s Webinar Wednesday’s topic is “Finding Your Voice to Stand Out in a Competitive Marketplace.” There are over 22,000 promotional products distributors selling the same products, to the same target audience, at virtually the same prices. This begs the question, “How does a distributorship differentiate?” In this session, Bill Petrie will share key strategies on how to position your brand in your chosen marketplace to reach new levels of success. Webinar Wednesday is the last Wednesday of each month and is free for SPPA members.

To register and receive your login credentials, click here.

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IMPORTANT SPPA DATES


Date Event Location
May 20 Mobile Promo Lunch Mobile, Alabama
June 17 Shreveport Promo Lunch Shreveport, Louisiana
July 15 Lafayette Promo Lunch Lafayette, Louisiana
Aug. 19 Decatur Promo Lunch Decatur, Alabama
Sept. 9 Louisiana Fall Showcase Baton Rouge, Louisiana
Sept. 10 Mississippi Fall Showcase Jackson, Mississippi
Sept. 11 Alabama Fall Showcase Birmingham, Alabama
Oct. 21 Holiday Showcase Pensacola Beach, Florida


For more information on these SPPA events, go to www.sunbeltppa.org.


INDUSTRY NEWS


Meerkat and Periscope: What are they and how can you use them for marketing?
By Emma Fitzpatrick
Forget writing about how fantastic last Sunday's brunch was (Facebook 2007). No need to microblog about it either (Twitter 2009). A colorful photo with perfectly arranged mimosas and scones is a step in the right direction (Instagram 2012). But now you can officially do better. Share live video of your entire meal (Meerkat and Periscope 2015). The next level of social media has arrived: live social video streaming. See how your business can beat competitors by using these apps for marketing.
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Marketing's visual revolution
PBS MediaShift
Every marketer is responsible for two very simple things: capturing the attention of the buyer and delivering a relevant message which drives them to action. As marketing has evolved and advanced, however, the science of marketing has often overshadowed the art. While there are countless technologies and algorithms silently servicing the marketing department, the real power comes from the hearts and minds of the marketers that bring those tools to life. This is where we must truly look for innovation.
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What will digital marketing success look like?
Forbes
That's the question on many of our minds as we forge through the first quarter of a year that's jam-packed with lofty marketing goals. Although it's nothing new, digital marketing has become a major game changer for both brands and consumers. Now that we are completely accustomed to digital technologies that were once trendy — email, mobile, social, e-commerce, etc. — "digital" has become the norm for traditional marketing.
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Why small businesses are not yet embracing P2P lending and crowdfunding
Forbes
If you read business news, you might think that crowdfunding and peer2peer lending are very popular sources of business financing just by the volume of media coverage that they get. But P2P and crowdfunding platforms are relatively new to the lending space and make up a tiny fraction of business loans. Here, we explain how popular P2P loans and crowdfunding are compared to other sources of financing and why small businesses still haven't warmed up that much to them.
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Why Sheryl Sandberg wants you to make a Facebook video
Inc.
Sheryl Sandberg has seen the future for small businesses, and it is video advertising. That was one key takeaway from the Facebook's chief operating officer during the social media giant's first quarter earnings call for 2015. Currently there are 30 million small business pages on Facebook, Sandberg said. And that number continues to grow every quarter. Facebook also now boasts 2 million active advertisers.
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How to ensure your business avoids 'Mobilegeddon'
By Jessica Taylor
Stop me if you've heard this before: "Your website needs to be mobile-friendly." Companies have heard this mantra for years, but now a tangible penalty is in effect, punishing websites that don't render well on smartphones and tablets. It's being called "Mobilegeddon." As of April 21, if your website isn't mobile-friendly, then you will likely be missing out on a lot of traffic. Why? Google shook up the way their search algorithm ranks websites, placing the ones that are mobile-friendly higher in the search from a smartphone or tablet than those sites that aren't.
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5 marketing tips to help you boost your conversion rate
Forbes
According to Kissmetrics, a second delay in your page response time can result to a whopping 7 percent reduction in your conversion. The figure is quite disturbing, isn't it? Who would have thought that something as seemingly minute as one second can have that much of an impact to your website's conversion? And as you can probably imagine, depending on the type of business that you're running and how high-priced your products are, losing 7 percent of your conversion can mean losing thousands of dollars.
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Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601
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