Secrets of the Simple
There might not be anything more basic than promotions involving badges, or buttons or lanyards for that matter. Place a logo on a piece of plastic, metal or cloth, give it to someone to wear, and you're set. Basic, however, doesn't necessarily mean less of a promotion. There's a reason, after all, that the expression "Going back to the basics" means taking a step back and focusing on what is known to work.
Just because they are basic doesn't mean they are going to work every time because they're simple. Anyone serious about their craft, from athletes and artists to salespeople and journalists, will surely tell you that there are parts of their job considered basic that they still haven't quite mastered. There is science, skill and complexity in well-executed tasks, no matter how straightforward they appear on the surface. With this in mind, below several badge, button and lanyard suppliers give examples of some of the more memorable ways their products have been used, revealing a bit of the complexity behind simple successes.
BADGES: The name game
Millions of these little plastic or metal wonders exist throughout the retail world, and yet figuring out how to use them beyond the standard employee name tag might seem a little difficult. As pointed out by Eric Johnson, MAS, vice president of sales and development for Halls & Company, Brooklyn Park, Minn., and Richard Ouellette, president of Zoogee World Inc., Calais, Maine, a creative way to approach badge promotions involves not avoiding their common use as name tags, but rather embracing it.
Johnson described a promotion where a grocery store wanted to use more than the basic name badge for its employees. The distributor who had been providing the normal badges to the store convinced them to modify the tags to show an employee's total years of service—thus illustrating to both customers and new workers how qualified each staff member would be at answering their questions. "Although every year an employee would need to get a new name badge, they determined that the recognition benefits far outweighed the additional costs," said Johnson. Not only was the distributor able to help the store with its customer service and employee training, it also increased the total size of its yearly reorder a fair bit. And while bigger orders may sound like the way to go with badge promotions, Ouellette described a successful promotion that is an inversion of Johnson's example.