How One Distributor Uses Print and Promo for Healthcare Clients
It’s never too late to learn new things. Maybe you’re a promo distributor who hasn’t ventured into the world of print, or vice versa. Maybe you’re new to the whole industry, and it all feels a little intimidating. (Don't worry, we remember our first trade show, too.)
Trish Arena, senior account manager for Franklin Group USA, Brooklyn, N.Y., remembers when she was new to the industry, so she had no choice but to jump into print and promo with both feet. She’s held onto that feeling of curiosity and the willingness to ask others for help, and it’s served her well in her career. Here, she describes how she’s using print and promo now.
Promo Marketing: What are some ways you’re using print and promotional products together?
Trish Arena: I predominantly work with the health care side of our client book. Promotional items are a great way to drive home a message, your brand and campaigns. It’s a tangible item that, if you order right, the recipient can use multiple times, reinforcing the intent behind it.
The need to secure staffing and show recognition has been challenging for many. We have multiple print applications here with the promo items, packaging and note cards and/or welcome letters. This is a great way to utilize all print aspects. We can even add a badge or lanyard and business card. This idea is limitless to the client’s needs as long as you have a fulfillment team.
PM: How does the combination of print and promo solve customers’ needs?
TA: The print is the “Welcome to the team” or the “Thank you” from the CEO with the intent of making the member feel personally appreciated. The custom box is an experience. We all love to get packages, especially filled with gifts just for you! End of day, that is what the client is needing—the little extra behind the message of “We appreciate you!”
PM: What are some challenges you’ve faced in working with kits like these?
TA: Pricing the kits was painstaking, and finding the right items and putting together the tiers was tough. The key is to know your client, the budgets and types of items they like so you are close within the range to make this viable for them to purchase. ... [The promotion] is all a one-color print option, and I am currently reworking it to be full color as requested by the client. You pivot and rework things. Sometimes you come close but miss the mark. Having an open dialogue and great partnerships with our clients makes all the difference in problem solving.
PM: What advice would you give distributors looking to work on similar projects?
TA: Don’t be intimidated by the unknown or the great idea you don’t know how to bring to life just yet. So many people in this industry have taught me things, so reach out to your suppliers. They are knowledgeable and can usually take your great idea to another level.
PM: Is there anything else you’d like to add?
TA: Marketing campaigns are a great way to secure both sides of the printing business while helping your client. As mentioned previously, I work with mostly health care facilities. I take the time to look over each quarter’s calendar of events in relation to health care. Examples are Nursing Home Week, Doctors’ Day, Social Worker Month, etc. I typically send off the upcoming quarter’s upcoming events, and … we start there.
We then work on a tagline to tie everything together and build off that [for] the print and promotional items that complement this. Being proactive is the best way to get more out of your clients, but also to show them [that] even when you don’t have something in the works, you are thinking about them and their needs. That goes a long way.