Back to Basics
It has become a standard part of almost everyone's life—wake up, shower, brush your teeth, drink that first cup of coffee, grab your security badge and lanyard, and run out the door. Why do lanyard and badge sales continue to live at the top of the promotional product food chain? According to Kimberly Damp, sales and marketing coordinator for The WOV-IN Group, Jackson, Wis., "Lanyards make sense. [They are] a basic 'one size fits all' item that can serve multiple purposes: security, identification, advertising, promotional reminder, souvenir and home-daily use. Today, lanyards are now seen as a normal everyday apparel accessory."
Now that lanyards are becoming commonplace accessories, those in the business of manufacturing them are starting to get creative. Case in point, Fields Manufacturing, St. Cloud, Minn., has taken the concept of lanyard-as-accessory to a higher level. Recently the company introduced a beaded lanyard that will keep even the most fanatical fashionista feeling stylish. The lanyard features iridescent composite beads, designed as a necklace/lanyard alternative to the standard lanyard fare. Susan Tobias, MAS, senior vice president of sales for Fields Manufacturing, expressed that distributors need to be fearless in presenting new ideas to their clients. "Don't be afraid to offer different suggestions or take the customer to the next level in a lanyard," she said. "There are so many different materials to choose from."
The WOV-IN Group also keeps an old standard fresh by continuing to innovate. "Customers are always looking for the next new trend," Damp explained. "[They] are becoming a fashionable and hip 'apparel-like' accessory." The WOV-IN Group's response to the hunt for a new twist are Logo Lanyards, which feature a new logo pendant that can slide on the lanyard much like a bolo tie with branding.
When it comes to innovation, however, lanyard suppliers aren't the only ones coming up with new ways to sing an old tune—those badges that attach to the lanyard are getting a high-tech face-lift as well. Josh Robbins, vice president of marketing and sales for Imagery Group, Nashville, Tenn., explained how digital print technology is taking off in this arena. "For a long time, the standard for individually personalized badges and plates was a screen printed logo and engraved name," he said. "Now, with the advances in printers and digital technology, the majority of our business is done in full color. It allows a much cheaper production method for companies to use their multicolor logos."