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PPAMS recognizes the Best of 2012
PPAMS
Over 90 attendees gathered at the Renaissance Hotel for the inaugural Best of PPAMS Awards. The awards, voted on by the PPAMS membership, were kept secret until the event. Paul Bellantone, CAE, the president and CEO of PPAI gave the keynote address, highlighting new industry statistics on the power of promotional products.

Here are the winners:
Talent Manager of the Year: Courtney Cunningham with Sonic Promos
MVP of the Year: Jason Bradford with B Design
Supplier of the Year: Hit Promotional Products
Supplier Rep of the Year: (tie) Keith Lofton with Pro Towels, Pam Mayberry with Thread FX
Multi-Line Rep of the Year: Vince Bagwell with VB Marketing
Best Supplier Website: Hit Promotional Products
Best Use of Social Media by a Supplier: - Shepenco
Most Innovative Product of 2012: - Elleven Line of Tech Exec Products by Leeds
Distributor of the Year: Geiger
Distributor Account Executive of the Year: - Angela Morris with Geiger
Best Distributor Website: Geiger

Photos from the night are available on Flickr.
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2013 MidSouth PromoShow is a hit in Music City
PPAMS
Packed seminars, new events, a busy show floor, and the famous Nashville nightlife all combined to make the 2013 edition of the PPAMS MidSouth PromoShow a huge hit. "I got more out of this than any other PPAMS show I’ve attended," said distributor Susan Trigg when leaving the show. According to his post on Facebook, Frank Distefano from Knoxville agrees. "Enjoyed the show and the sharing that went on – a lot of knowledge in this group."

David Friedmann, a multi-line rep, was happy with the show saying, "The quality of distributors was outstanding. I had time to talk to them about new products and many of them had specific projects they wanted to talk about!"

In the Gold Bond booth, Jewel Huffman held up a stack of business cards, "These are all new leads!"

This year's show was the result of many changes made by the association in recent months and comments and ideas that have been shared over the past couple of years. "I think everyone knows that we are always listening to new ideas and suggestions on how to improve all of our events," says Ryan Small, the president of PPAMS. "All of the changes you saw at this year's show are the result of suggestions from our members and lots of discussion from our Board over the past couple of years."

Some of the changes to this year's show included:
  • New dates, the show was moved from our historic August date to February.
  • New venue, we moved back to where it all began, the Nashville Convention Center, right in the heart of Music City.
  • The largest group of exhibitors we've had in four years greeted attendees with new catalogs, new products and new ideas for the year.
  • The annual membership meeting was held in conjunction with the show for the first time ever making it more convenient for people already traveling to be at the show.
  • The sold-out Power Lunch, sponsored by Bulova, featured a forum of end-buyers and decision makers from some of the regions biggest buyers of promotional products.
  • The new Promo Genius Café, sponsored by Gold Bond, was a popular place with snacks, drinks and industry experts.


  • See what others are saying about the show and join the discussion on our Facebook group.

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    Promotional Products Work Week: Leverage national exposure to promote your business
    PPAI
    Promotional Products Association International, the not-for-profit association serving more than 432,000 industry professionals — including 10,600 corporate members — who help make up the $17.7 billion promotional products industry, introduced the Promotional Products Work! Week to take place Feb. 25 through March 1.
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    INDUSTRY NEWS


    We're marketers, not soldiers: How combative competition is killing creativity
    Fast Company
    Why do marketers revel in military jargon? Must we really rally troops to deploy conquest ads or fire quick hits of bleeding-edge apps? Is it not ironic that we call customers "targets" and seek to engineer their empathy in "war rooms?" Douglas Van Praet argues that marketers should focus less on conquest and more on unleashing the imagination of creators and customers.
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    In search of buzz: What it is and how to build it
    Entrepreneur
    When it comes to marketing, people always seem to throw around the word "buzz." "Let's build some buzz!" "We have to get some buzz going!" But buzz is vague. And, oftentimes, the pursuit of it can be expensive. With this in mind, here are three concrete ways you can build buzz.
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    3 steps to amplify your business' online marketing
    Forbes
    Search engine optimization has peaked. Google is getting smarter and smarter in only allowing truly authoritative and quality websites to rank high in search results. It's still a useful marketing tactic, but no longer a fad to exploit. Email marketing is and always will be a staple, as will social media. Meanwhile, content marketing is still a relatively fresh frontier.
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    Don't drown in a sea of data
    ClickZ
    Most companies have enough data to fill seven seas. That means the challenge isn't about collecting more data. Instead, you need to understand which parts are the most valuable, and separate them from the deluge of other information. Here are three ways to sail the seas of data.
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    Selling face-to-face is almost obsolete
    Inc.
    The shift away from face-to-face selling is driving many top companies to hire and cultivate people who can become subject-matter experts and communicate with customers with a combination of email, phone, texting, social media and Web conferencing.
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    Online clip art: How to avoid getting sued
    Promo With Purpose Today
    Heidi Thorne from Promo With Purpose Today writes: "I get an inquiry from a new prospect for a promotional products project. Located a suitable product and then asked the prospect to send the artwork for imprinting. My heart sank to the floor ... another online clip art headache to deal with. What was the problem? Actually, it had two problems and one of them could have become a legal issue."
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    Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601
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