Sean Norris

Sean Norris

Sean Norris is editor-in-chief for Promo Marketing. Reach him at snorris@napco.com.

'Don't Miss It': How Promo Got Back to Business at Our Virtual Power Meeting Event

The Back to Business Virtual Meeting took our now-classic Power Meeting event format and moved it to a first-class online platform. Leading up to the event, we weren't sure it could fully replicate the Power Meeting experience. Now that it's over, we can safely say it shattered our expectations. Don't believe us? Ask the distributors who were there...

Apple Designed Its Own Specialized Face Mask for Corporate Staff, Store Employees

Apple's latest launch isn't an upgraded operating system or a splashy new iPhone with, like, six cameras this time. It's the Apple Face Mask. The company designed and created the mask in-house and will begin rolling it out to corporate and retail staff. In typical Apple fashion, the mask has a few specialized features...

The 2020 Top 50 Promotional Products Suppliers: Stats and Trends

Last year was another good one for promotional products suppliers. How good, exactly? Our 2020 Top 50 Promotional Products Suppliers totaled $7.5 billion in 2019 sales, up from $6.5 billion in 2018. In 2017, that number was $5.2 billion, meaning our Top 50 suppliers have increased sales by more than $2 billion in just two years...

How One Distributor Turned Three Iconic Cup Brands Into Can't-Miss Branded Merchandise

When it comes to branding, it doesn't get more iconic than the Solo Cup. The secret lies in its simplicity. Sure, nowadays there's an embossed logo on there, but it's pretty much just a plain red cup. And yet, it's instantly recognizable. How do you turn that kind of design perfection into branded merchandise that does justice to the original?...

Boundless Names Bridget Smith New CEO as Henrik Johansson Steps Down

Boundless, the distributor based in Austin, Texas, recently announced that CEO Henrik Johansson has stepped down. Bridget Smith, chief of special operations at Zazzle, Boundless' parent company, will take over as CEO. Smith has worked closely with the Boundless team since managing Zazzle's acquisition of Boundless in 2014...

'If Anything, We're Worse Off': What's Going On With America's PPE Supply Chain? (and How the Market Has Changed in Promo)

After shortages early in the coronavirus pandemic, America’s PPE supply seems to have caught up. But why do so many hospitals and frontline health workers say they still don’t have enough? In this story, we look at the disconnect between supply and demand, plus revisit PPE in the promotional products industry to see how the market has changed and where it might go...

Apparel Orders Tick Back Up (and Other Promotional Products Sales Trends)

Apparel has been battered since the start of the pandemic, with various sources reporting that overall apparel shipments have fallen dramatically compared to 2019. But there are some signs of life. Apparel was the third best performing promotional products category for the June-July period...

These Are the Most Effective Face Mask Types (According to New Study)

There has been little debate among public health professionals that widespread mask use is crucial to slowing the spread of the coronavirus. Where there has been some debate, though, is over the most effective face mask types outside of the approved medical-grade varieties. Which of the many available face coverings protects most against transmission of the virus? We finally have some data...

Reconnect at the Back to Business Virtual Power Meeting (Starts This Week!)

The pandemic has brought in-person interactions, business or otherwise, to a near standstill. Distributors can no longer meet face-to-face with customers. Colleagues can no longer meet up for lunch. There are no trade show networking events. Our scheduled Power Meetings have all been pushed back. Honestly, we miss everyone. And we know everyone misses everyone. So, after months of planning, we decided to take Power Meetings online...

How BAMKO Increased Q2 Revenue by 218%

Superior Group of Companies, parent of Los Angeles-based distributor BAMKO, announced record operating results for the second quarter 2020, including a 73 percent increase in net sales to $159.4 million. BAMKO was largely responsible for that growth, reporting that its Q2 2020 sales increased by 218 percent year over year to $75.5 million. Much of that was PPE, but not all...

Overture Promotions Named to List of 50 Fastest-Growing Women-Owned/Led Companies

Overture Promotions, the distributor based in Waukegan, Ill., was named to the Women Presidents’ Organization’s 50 Fastest-Growing Women-Owned/Led Companies list for 2020. To qualify, companies must have annual sales revenues of at least $500,000. Overture ranked No. 38 on the list with 73.5 percent sales growth from 2017 to 2019...