Do You Have ID?
Lanyards and badges are taken for granted. Whether for work or school ID, gym memberships or trade show name tags, they're all too often an afterthought for end-buyers. As a distributor, however, badges and lanyards can be the keys to your success. Consistent orders and reorders can make these pieces an attractive part of your product lineup.
Promo Marketing spoke to three suppliers well-versed in badge and lanyard sales: Eric Johnson, MAS, vice president of sales and development for Halls & Company, Brooklyn Park, Minn.; Shane Lemay, national sales manager for PromoVision Palomino, Memphis, Tenn. and Big Badge USA, Lititz, Pa.; and Megan Ludlow, marketing manager, SnugZ USA, Salt Lake City, Utah. Here are their top 10 tips to kick-start your badge and lanyard sales.
1. Give Them What They Want
Eric Johnson: Clients today want a full-color, high-resolution image to better portray their logo and image yet, they want this at an economical price point to fit into their current budget constraints. This has led to an investment in better digital print equipment … the simple sublimated logo generally won't do it for more knowledgeable and demanding end-buyers.
2. Know Who Is Buying
Megan Ludlow: The health care industry, government agencies and schools are all very popular markets. Schools did see a bit of an increase over the years with security getting tighter.
3. Consider Cost
Shane Lemay: Because of cost, vinyl holders with paper inserts seem to be the most common badge option. However, lanyards are still custom printed more often than not and mostly with a simple one-color silkscreen.
4. Timing Is Everything
EJ: For badges that are personalized the whole year is relatively stable. For nonpersonalized badges fall is typically the busier time when companies are hiring seasonal staff for the holidays.
5. Put The Product In Their Hands
ML: Definitely show samples. Give them something they can feel and that shows the quality and color.
6. Know The Product's Strengths
ML: They are a necessity for so many markets. Many businesses require identification be worn at work. Trade show attendees and exhibitors all have name badges and that is a market that has been steady.
SL: The versatility of the lanyards is amazing, from giveaways to identification, they are everywhere. The need for people to be identified has not been lost or forgotten.
7. Keep It Fun
EJ: We have noticed that full-color badges and tags are best-sellers. The combination of a fun-looking badge and a cool lanyard are more accepted by younger workers in the marketplace.
ML: UV technology is big right now. We have been printing lanyards with inks that change color in sunlight. They have been very popular this summer for concerts and golf tournaments.
8. Sell Solutions, Not Products
SL: Solution selling is pretty simple, but really it requires doing your homework on the issues your buyer faces. Then contact a supplier who can help you find that solution. Anybody can buy a cheap lanyard and holder, but can they buy the right solution?
9. Be Prepared to Be A Hero
EJ: Make yourself the expert that the end-buyer will depend on for this product line. Many times badges and lanyards are last minute afterthoughts. So many of these orders are at the end of the budget list and have a short time frame to be delivered. Have your resources in place to handle this and be ready. They are going to be a little more work, but it is like an annuity, the ongoing repeat orders are much easier.
10. Help Clients Understand the Meaning of "You Get What You Pay For"
SL: Most people tend to think cheap, but they find out cheap is expensive. Basically if you buy cheap, you will be buying often, which will cost more in the end.