Promo Marketing Top 50 Distributors
KLT: It’s long enough ago where I’m having a hard time remembering! Honestly, my daughter was born about a month after I started in the industry so I always think of her when I think about getting started. She’s off to college this year. Time flies.
PM: What are some products or markets that you have found to be particularly strong in this weaker economy?
KLT: We haven’t seen a huge shift in terms of product categories, people are looking for value and items that are useful. In a way, more of a return to the basics.
6. Cintas Corporation
Principal: Dan Barr, vice president, Cintas Promotional Products
PM: What has been your company’s strategy for coping with the recession?
DB: There are five key elements to our strategy for overcoming the challenging market conditions: Get closer to our customers so we can focus on what is most important to them now; creatively collaborate with our suppliers to find exciting new products at lower price points; make sure we have fun and project a positive outlook; aggressively explore new business opportunities; [and] look for new ways to stretch limited budgets further.
PM: What is one of your best memories of starting out in the industry, either as an early success or something more personal?
DB: One of the funniest experiences in my professional career came on my first day in the promotional products industry. I was at the ASI Power Summit and while hobnobbing with the industry’s movers and shakers at the opening cocktail reception, someone asked me the question, “Are you a supplier or a distributor?” I looked at my watch and responded, “I’ve only been in the industry for 15 minutes. Can you ask me an easier question?”
PM: What are some products or markets that you have found to be particularly strong in this market?