Fashion, Fun & Function
Fawbush echoed Traiger's sentiment on being able to provide a custom bag, saying it is important to "offer comparative quality, function and design to many of the well-known retail brands. Norwood has selected a palette of colors that are suitable to corporate customers, mixed with retail trend colors to give our customers options." By mixing the palette of colors, distributors can blend current trends with traditional corporate images.
"The trends in totes are still in function and fashion, but certainly due to the economics of today's world everyone is looking for less-expensive options," said Spellman, noting that distributors usually come to the same bottom-line. "It really all comes down to value. They want the best-looking tote at the least-expensive price."
As with by both Norwood Promotional Products and ACRO, TRG Group offers product lines that walk hand-in-hand with the products that are popular on the retail market. "As primarily a retail company, we are able to coincide our [promotional]?offerings right alongside our retail offerings," Spellman said, adding that while similar in fashion to retail, the designers keep decorating options in mind when creating or updating products.
For totes, the types of decorating options are fairly traditional. Spellman said his company generally sees distributors requesting embroidery or silk-screening, but he noted TRG Group is now offering a heat transfer process which allows for multiple color imprints and more options for the distributor to offer end-buyers.
Spellman offered a suggestion to distributors trying to think outside the box (or bag). "One of the main things I try to educate distributors on is that a tote bag is a great item unto itself, and many times that is the only product the end-user needs, but totes are also a great way to package other items that are being given away."