We Are the Champions
I'm going to level with all of you. A few years ago, I did not know the first thing about the promotional products industry. I had no idea that it was as big as it is. (My first trip to the PPAI Expo in Vegas was pretty mind-blowing.) I still have trouble explaining the full size and importance to my friends when we talk about what I do. But now, after watching the epic conclusions of multiple sports leagues, like the NBA and NHL seasons over the past few weeks, I think I have a good example of promotional products' importance when people ask.
These teams are playing for promotional products.
When the Villanova Wildcats won the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament, what were they wearing? T-shirts and caps. What did they hoist in the air? A trophy.
When the team paraded through Philadelphia (just a few blocks from our office), fans held posters and signs. Many of these fans, no doubt, have these signs on their walls and desks to always remember that day.
When a team wins the Super Bowl, it gets apparel items and big ol' rings to commemorate the win. Many Super Bowl-winners still wear theirs regularly.
Whichever teams win their respective tournamentswill hoist trophies, put on caps and T-shirts, and wave to fans who are holding signs and sporting apparel.
Even the Olympics, which are right around the corner, are full of them—medals, team jackets, merchandise.
For these athletes, earning these items is the culmination of their entire lives and careers. For these players, these products are just about the most important items they'll ever receive.
I think that's a good way to describe our industry. Companies like to gloat when famous people use their products. The promotional products industry can gloat that champions regularly use, and fight for, its products.
I'll (probably) never carry the Stanley Cup around the ice, but I think it's pretty cool that I get a behind-the-scenes look at how companies in the industry create the magical moments that others live for.