Why You Should Shop Small This Saturday

Thanksgiving is almost here, and shoppers all over the country are already looking ahead to all of the sweet deals they’re going to get on Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Sandwiched between those two shopping holidays, though, is another important day that doesn’t get nearly as much attention.

Every year on the Saturday after Thanksgiving, Americans all over the country celebrate Small Business Saturday. On Black Friday, shoppers flock to the big box stores to take advantage of the huge sales and crazy deals. On Cyber Monday, tech geeks sit glued to their computers waiting for the biggest discounts. On Small Business Saturday, shoppers hit the streets to support all of the locally-owned mom and pop shops that are the lifeblood of the American economy.

At rushIMPRINT, our business is helping small businesses grow and promote themselves. We know better than anyone how important it is to support local, independent businesses. That’s why we’re encouraging everyone to not only participate in Small Business Saturday this year, but to make every Saturday a Small Business Saturday.

We all know that the big box chains offer the best values. The volume of business they do makes it nearly impossible for their smaller competitors to compete with them in terms of pure pricing. Here’s the thing, though: those giant retail chains didn’t start off as giant retail chains. As hard as it may be to imagine, Walmart used to be just another store in Arkansas. At one point, McDonald’s was someone’s local burger joint.

By supporting a local shop or eatery, you might be helping to build the next Walmart or McDonald’s. You could be helping a local business owner realize their dream of expanding into the next big thing. Your purchase could help fund an expansion that leads to more manufacturing, more business, and more jobs right here in the United States.

Just as importantly, supporting any local business supports your local economy as a whole. The local businesses you patronize are paying taxes right in your home community and they’re hiring your neighbors and friends to work there. In turn, those employees spend their paychecks at other businesses in your area. It creates economic momentum that can help propel your town or city into real prosperity. Shopping at a local business or eating at your local restaurant might seem like a small thing, but it can make a huge impact in literally hundreds of lives, including your own.

So make sure that, this Saturday, you go out and spend some of that Holiday shopping money to support local businesses. But don’t stop there. Make supporting small businesses a year-round affair. You might find some incredible shops and restaurants you never would have known about. Even more importantly, you’ll be helping create jobs in your area and promote regional economic growth. Best of all, you’ll feel the satisfaction of helping someone who’s working hard to carve out a place in the world just like you. In the end, isn’t that what every holiday should be out?

Is There a ‘Best Color’ for Conversions?


Your art department has been working hard shaping out that new logo, and now they’re presenting you with several color options. You step back and consider your choices. Like any executive, you know that even the smallest decisions can affect your profitability. But is there a method to determining if one pigment may more positively impact your bottom line than another? And to that end, what about the colors of the CTA buttons on your email blasts and landing pages? How critical is it that they are the perfect shade? One may surmise that if it’s important to get the colors right in these areas, it then stands to reason that this theme of color influence must also apply to all aspects of your design.

Countless opinions on color palette preference are floating around the internet, and while this post is yet another among them, the intent is to help reinforce, with supplemental research, the important role color can play in your marketing.

To put it plainly, using color strategically may help you make more money.

Sorry. There’s No One-Color Fix-All for Your Problems.

Pump the brakes. If you’re reading this in the hopes that I’ll reveal the secret, revenue-increasing Pantone color, then you’re setting yourself up for disappointment. There are however, ways to integrate color that, when combined with the right audience, industry, messaging, and contrast, can benefit your marketing efforts. It’s just going to take some work. More work than some wanted to put in just a few years back.

For a time, a nasty trend was infecting the e-commerce community with misinformation. It proposed that all marketers need to do is employ a Big Orange Button (BOB) to their emails, landing pages, checkouts, and pretty much anywhere else they wanted a user to take action. Like citrus to the scurvy that is poor click-through rates, the bright, enticing nature of the BOB was purportedly the only cure every marketer needed.

Big Orange Button

As alluring a proposition as the BOB was, this literal “easy button” was just too good to be true.

Unfortunately for the lazy and lethargic among us, to really boost conversions with your design, more effort needs to be put into audience research. The good news is that many researchers and A/B testers have since put in such leg work to at least get you started.

Know Your Audience

It goes without saying that color preference is highly subjective and varies from person to person. However, this isn’t to say that from these varying opinions, scientific inferences can’t be made. One thoroughly conducted color study by Joe Hallock collected data from 232 people in 22 different countries. Men and women across different age groups were surveyed as a representative sample of individuals’ favorite color under varying circumstances. This study determined that many factors like age, gender, memory association, and emotion can each play a role in color preference.

Above is an aggregate of the color preference of all people surveyed. Based on just this instance of color preference, would it be safe to assume that the majority of people prefer the color blue over all other colors? Would this mean that adding a blue CTA or theme to your site, landing page, or email would cause it to perform better than one draped in yellow or orange? If only it were that simple. Below, the preferences are broken down by gender and age group.

So how can this data help you with color selection?

Depending on the customer you’re trying to reach, and the message you’re trying to convey, different colors may perform better in different circumstances. First, you’ll need to get in touch with your customer base.

Know How They Feel…

Astute marketers often divide their audiences into affinity groups – schoolteachers, environmental activists, hunters, soccer moms, etc. These clusters of shopper types each expect their own distinct messaging when they shop. For instance, you wouldn’t send the same email to animal rights advocates that you would send to those whose hobby is taxidermy. This same type of laser targeting can be applied to the color palette used in your marketing.

Suppose you’re trying to promote a business event or fundraiser around Earth Day. When presented with the exact same copy and offer, environmentalists may respond more positively to marketing draped in earth tones rather than those saturated in bright, neon hues. This is because neutral earth tones tend to be associated with a more organic, natural, and peaceful feeling which correlates with the audience you are trying to reach.

And How You Want Your Brand to Be Perceived

Captivating as the chart may be, consumer responses are not as simple to predict as assigning colors to emotions. As Discovery points out, color associations are more closely tied to personal experience and as such, are difficult to apply to a broad feeling. Karen Schloss, a graduate student in psychology at UC Berkeley reported that she “might like purple more than you because [her] sister’s bedroom was purple and [she] had positive experiences there.” Like many things in life, your color preferences are an aggregate of your life experiences.

Context is critical, too. Your site can bombard users with the color yellow, but this does not necessarily mean that it will automatically translate to sunshine and happiness. It all depends on the context. For example, that same joyful and exuberant yellow on one site could translate to “caution!” or radioactivity on another. Just keep in mind the personality you want your messaging to present and build your color palette around that.

Choose the Appropriate Color for Your Industry

Although it may be difficult to directly correlate one-to-one with an emotion, there are some instances where, due to the feeling you want to embody, certain colors are just unable to properly represent your brand. Think of Harley Davidson. What emotions come to mind when you picture their motorcycles and the culture they’ve created? Tough. Rugged. Strong. Cool. Rebellious. Now imagine these sentiments trying to present themselves in pastel pink. It just doesn’t work. You have to make sure the color fits the product. That’s why Harley Davidson uses dark colors like black and steel grey and accents it with a dark orange.

Create Contrast to Guide User Action

Let’s throw it back to the BOB mentioned above. Now I wasn’t trying to say this strategy should be avoided at all costs, because within the correct circumstances, the Big Orange Button may convert better than other colors. But you have to tread carefully with this supposition. It is by no means the be-all and end-all solution. If nothing else, please take away from this post that no one color is better than another for conversions. The reason the BOB would work well when compared against other colors is completely relative to its surroundings. In other words, does it stand out?

Let’s take a look at two examples from RIPT Apparel’s case study:

RIPT Apparel
Original Design

In the original design, the black and white “$10 buy now” option not only blended in with its background, but it also wasn’t designed to provoke a click.

RIPT Apparel
Reworked Design

In the rework, however, RIPT added some button depth to the CTA making it a button and colored it green to instantly draw the user’s eye.

The Result? A 6.3% increase in conversions.

Does this mean green should be your go-to color for CTAs? Of course not! The contrasting color used against a grayscale background in this one example made the CTA pop. Maybe other landing pages or emails have an overwhelmingly green color scheme. In these instances, perhaps an orange or red CTA would be more appropriate. It all depends on what color would grab the user’s attention and guide them to take action.


You will have to test your audience. Tailor your message to the group of shoppers for whom your product or service is best suited. I wish I could offer an easy answer, but if you want those conversions, you are going to have to put in a little work. Hopefully this post can serve as a guide to get you started on the right track. Test out a few things; see what works best for your audience. Then test again. Whether you’re moving the needle in the positive or negative direction, you will be learning valuable information about your audience.

Ready for Trade Show Season?

We’re rapidly coming up on one of the most exciting times of the year for business owners. No, I’m not talking about Black Friday or the Holiday sales rush. I’m talking about trade show season! There’s no better way for a business owner to interact directly with customers, trade notes with peers, and check out what the competition is up to than by visiting a trade show. It’s an advertising platform, a business seminar, and a social event all wrapped up into one.

Possibly the most important benefit of attending trade shows is the ability to interact directly with your customer base. It gives you a chance to understand how they view your products and educate them on what your business does. Even more importantly, it provides an invaluable opportunity to create a personal association with your brand.

custom polo shirts
Men’s Lightweight Knit polo (Model#: TM16218)

The best way to make a solid brand impression is to send your team out on the floor looking sharp with your logo front and center. Draping your employees in our men’s or women’s custom polo shirts is the best way to make a positive first impression. They look great and, thanks to our custom embroidering, they’ll have your business name or logo on the breast. Think of how many eyes will be on your company over the course of a crowded trade show.

Let’s face facts, though. The real reason people attend trade shows is for the swag. Everyone loves free stuff, and having branded merchandise to give away is a brilliant way to generate positive buzz. The only downside to all the free stuff you get at trade shows is having to carry it around all day. That’s why our custom tote bags are perfect as giveaways. It’s an amazing free gift, emblazoned with your name or logo, that will allow visitors to your booth to easily haul around their swag. It will help them out and create some positive mental associations with your company.

custom pens
Pinnacle Corporate Pen (Model#: G-PinnCorporate)

Of course, the whole reason your company is at a trade show is to make deals. Why not offer your customers one of our deluxe custom pens? It’s a tasteful, affordable gift that your customers can use all year round. And obviously, they can use it to write down your contact information or sign all the deals your free gift is going to help you close.

All of that wheeling and dealing, though, can take its toll. When people are out there negotiating, it’s easy to suffer from dry, cracked lips. At your next trade show, pay your customers a little lip service with our branded, flavored, and personalized lip balm. It’ll help keep them protected on the trade show floor and leave a sweet taste in their mouths every time they think of your company.

This year, make sure that you’re ready for trade show season. With a little help from Rush Imprint’s custom branded merchandise, the only thing you’ll have to worry about is a traffic jam at your booth. Get your items today and prepare yourself to dominate trade show season!

Movember: How a Bit of Lip Hair Sparked A Global Movement


Every November, seemingly out of nowhere, a worldwide social movement literally grows from nothing right in front of our eyes. To the uninitiated, it might seem like a bizarre time warp or a supernatural event. Don’t worry, though. You didn’t wake up on the set of a 1970s cop show and you’re not living in the middle of a werewolf outbreak.


I’m speaking, of course, about Movember, the annual event in which men all over the world let their moustaches and beards grow freely in order to raise awareness about prostate cancer and other men’s health issues. What started as a funny idea between a few friends in an Australian pub has become a global fundraising phenomenon that has literally changed the face of men’s health awareness. When you study how the movement grew, it’s easy to take away lessons that you can apply to your own marketing campaigns.

For one thing, the Movember campaign was masterfully targeted. They found a way to combine social activism and charitable giving in a funny, ironic way that made the movement a hit with Millennials. It was a quirky way to bring light to a serious issue and mobilize a particular demographic. Now, your target market may not be millennials, but the lesson still applies. When you’re building a marketing campaign, it’s vital that you understand the people you’re marketing to. If you understand what appeals to your customers and what motivates them, you’ve got a solid foundation for a successful marketing strategy.

Obviously, the name also had a lot to do with Movember’s runaway success. It’s clever, concise, and representative of what the movement is about. Not only that, it presents all of that information in a way that engages people and prompts further questions and discussions. The best marketing campaigns are run exactly the same way. You want to say as much as you can as efficiently as possible while creating discussion around your product or company. Carefully consider all of your marketing materials, from your logo to your website to your advertisements. Are you being as clear and concise as possible? Are you doing everything that you can to create genuine engagement around your campaign?

The main reason that Movember was such a hit, though, is the visibility. It might be easy to tune out tv commercials or advertisements, but it’s hard to ignore your friends and coworkers when they are sporting gloriously luxuriant moustaches. The people behind the Movember movement thought outside the box and found a way to get their message in front of, and even on, your face. That kind of creativity is a huge boon to companies in a crowded marketplace. You have to constantly innovate and find new and creative ways to promote your products and services.

moustache mug and pen

The Sir Ballpoint Sylus and Ceramic Mug (Model #s: 1067-60, 1624-57)

So the next time you walk past a guy who looks like Tom Selleck’s stunt double, think about the strategy behind the Movember movement. Then, think about ways that you can apply those same principles to your own marketing campaigns. In the world of promotional marketing, on-trend products like a moustache pen or moustache mug would align nicely with this theme. Knowing your market, clearly communicating your message, and finding new ways to get that message out can help push your business to the next level.

Update! Have you or your employees taken part in Movember? We’re roughly three weeks in, so it’s likely that many of you are working with a keen lip sweater by now. Which style most closely matches your setup?

moustache styles

How a Little Attention to Detail Can Go a Long Way

How many steps does it take to get from your desk to the door of the office? When you leave your office every evening, exactly how many miles does it take you to drive home? These are simple questions about things that you do dozens of times a month, and chances are that you couldn’t even begin to answer them. While those may seem like trivial examples, the fact is that we are constantly doing things without even thinking about them. Paying a little more attention to yourself, your surroundings, and your activities can yield huge results both in life and in business.

Knowing how many steps it takes you to get from the door of your office to your desk may seem pointless, but think of it another way. What time do you wake up every morning to go to work? A number of factors go into that decision, and among them is how long it’s going to take you to get to your desk. If you knew every detail of your daily journey to work down to the second, you could maximize the amount of sleep you get every day. Over the course of years, it could do wonders for your overall health and happiness.

Knowing exactly how many miles you drive to and from work every day has a much more tangible benefit. Driving takes gas, and gas costs money. Knowing exactly how much gasoline you need for your commute allows you to properly budget and plan ahead for your other expenses. It may not save you thousands, but over months and years, that kind of precise budgeting will produce a significant amount of savings.

“Still”, you might be thinking, “these are hardly earth-shaking bits of information. It’s not like my life or my business really depend on counting steps or constantly checking my odometer.” Take a minute, then, to think about Terms of Service and Usage Agreements. How many times have you visited a website or installed a piece of software or signed up for a mailing list that required agreement with a terms of service? Every one of us routinely scrolls through the legal terms and the disclaimers until we can click the accept button and get on with what we were doing. Think about that for a second. Almost every single day, all of us are signing a never-ending stream of binding legal agreements with absolutely no idea what they contain. Ignoring the stipulations of these Terms of Service agreements could lead to substantial civil and even criminal penalties, but we all continue to scroll through until we can agree.

There’s a reason that Terms of Service agreements are so lengthy and written in such dense language. Legal teams expect you to get lost in the maze and just start skimming, or even to skip reading the entire agreement. This allows them to sneak in statutes and clauses which, under normal circumstances, you would never agree to.

Your business is your livelihood, and no doubt you carefully read every important contract that comes across your desk. Something as simple as breaking a Terms of Service agreement from a company computer, though, could have a devastating financial impact on your business.

Even the smallest things can have enormous consequences, and that’s why it’s important to stress the details and always be mindful of your surroundings, your situation, and your goals. So next time you walk into the office, count the steps to your desk. You might be surprised what you learn from it.

How Employee Appreciation Boosts Both Morale and Business

Employee Appreciation

Here’s a question for you: when it comes to expressing appreciation to the folks who spend somewhere between, say, 50% to 75% of their waking hours helping you build your business (i.e., your employees), what kind of employer, manager, or supervisor are you?

As you undoubtedly know, there is no shortage in the number of articles you can read to learn about the costs associated with unhappy employees. But, let’s be honest, you don’t need to have a bunch of statistics shoved down your throat to realize that, when it comes to understanding that your employees are the backbone of your business, you either get it or you don’t. There is no middle ground, either; your employees know exactly which side of the fence you’re on, and they spend the majority of their on-the-clock time performing accordingly.

You see, we humans are actually pretty simple creatures when it comes to work. In a nutshell, we want to:

    • be compensated fairly for the time we spend away from our families, friends, and the other aspects of our lives that give us pleasure outside of work.
    • feel like our efforts are truly valued and that we are contributing to something that matters.
    • have a little fun along the way.
  • It’s not rocket science, people. If you employ anyone, a significant part of your job should – no, must – revolve around making sure those in your employ understand how much you appreciate what they do for you. And, although you should be taking action on that front all year long, there is no better time to do so than on special days or during the holidays.

    It’s Valentine’s Day? Why not surprise your employees with some unexpected (workplace-appropriate, of course) affection in the form of a small token of your appreciation? For example, give folks the option to knock off a few hours early to go get ready for a special evening with a loved one. Who wouldn’t dig something like that? Nobody, that’s who.

    Say it’s the end of the year holiday season. Perhaps a little extra appreciation is in order to celebrate a successful year, so you decide to really splurge on the holiday party. Or, maybe you go a different route by telling your employees how much you plan to spend on the party, and you let them decide what to do with the money. Still want to have a party? Great! Want awesome new office chairs instead? Done! Want to make charitable contributions to deserving organizations? Fantastic!

    Simple things like time off, free food, public recognition, and cold hard cash can obviously go a long way when it comes to showing your employees how much you value their efforts. One more approach you should certainly consider, though, is adding a personalized touch.

    Think about it; most employers refer to their employees as members of their families. Well, if you truly view them that way, then you must know at least a bit about what makes them tick on a personal level, right? For example, you know that Mary in Finance is an avid golfer because you vividly remember the time she beat the pants off of you at a company outing. So, why not show Mary how much you appreciate her being a part of your family by giving her a super rad golf umbrella that has been custom printed with the picture they snapped of you openly weeping into your beer after that outing? Okay, that might be a bit much, but you get the point. You will also get Mary’s attention with such a personalized show of your appreciation, and she’ll thank you for it by continuing to do amazing work.

    Holiday Gifts for Every Client Type

    Holiday Gifts

    The Holiday Season is a time to reflect on the things that are most important to us and show gratitude for the things that we have. Obviously, that means spending quality time with friends and family, exchanging gifts and enjoying some old-fashioned holiday cheer. For business owners, though, it means taking stock of what has made your business a success and showing appreciation to the clients who’ve helped you along the way. Client appreciation is one of the most overlooked aspects of running a thriving business. By giving gifts to your clients you are not only showing them that you value their continued business, you are building a stronger relationship that often leads to even more business in the future.

    There are as many different ways to express appreciation for your clients and customers as there are different kinds of clients. What’s right for one client might be totally wrong for another. Luckily for you, we offer a huge variety of custom branded merchandise so that you can find the right way to show your gratitude.

    No one ever outgrows their sweet tooth. That’s why we offer a full line of fine gift baskets that will delight anyone. Filled with delicious cookies, decadent chocolates, and a host of other luxury edibles, these gift baskets are a delicious way to say thanks to your clients. Best of all, they’ll be seeing your company logo every time they open the box. Trust us, they’ll be opening the box a lot.

    Of course, food isn’t the only way to let your clients know how important they are. If there’s one thing that every office has in common, it’s a need for office supplies. From calendars and Post-It Notes to stress balls and business card holders, we offer a full range of branded office supplies that are perfect for client appreciation. Not only is it a gift that keeps on giving, it keeps your logo in front of their eyes all year round.

    Then again, this is a fast-paced new business world, and maybe your clients are more on-the-go types. With online retail booming and more and more business being done over the internet, custom branded technology is a great way to interface with your more tech-savvy clients. Whether it’s a USB stick, a phone case, a charger, or a pair of headphones, branded technology is a great way to carry your client relationships into the future. You’ll help them stay on the move, and they’ll be carrying your logo around everywhere they go.

    No matter who your clients are or what their unique needs might be, we have the perfect gift to help you show your appreciation and forge stronger ties going forward. It’s a simple, cost-effective way to maintain positive business relationships while keeping your brand front-and-center in your client’s attention. It’s a little something for everyone, and isn’t that what the Holiday Season is all about?

    ‘Tis Better (for Businesses, Too!) to Give Than Receive

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    Holiday Gifts

    The Holiday Season is right around the corner. All over the country, people are dusting off their boxes of decorations, digging those Elvis CDs out of their collection, and preparing for the biggest shopping season of the year. For retail businesses, the entire year’s success or failure may depend on the next few months. Positioning your business to capitalize on the Holiday spending boom is essential in a highly competitive marketplace.

    But wait, you might be thinking. Aren’t the Holidays supposed to be about togetherness and community? Isn’t it better to give than to receive? Sure, we’re all in business to make a living, but isn’t this time of year about more than just making money?

    Believe it or not, the generosity that makes the Holiday season so special can also be a boon to your business during the year’s busiest shopping season. Through promotional giveaways, your company can fully embrace the Holiday spirit and spread good cheer all around while also attracting new customers and driving profitability.

    Let’s face it, everyone loves getting something for free. By giving something away to your valued customers, you are associating your brand with a positive experience in their mind and creating valuable brand equity that it’s hard to put a price tag on. Whenever a customer hears your company’s name, they will think of the free gift they got. That sort of positive brand association is extremely difficult to come by and even harder to erode.

    Promotional giveaways are also one of the most effective ways to draw in new customers and expand your customer base. Everyone has heard of the old bait and switch, where you advertise one product at an extremely low price in hopes of getting customers in the door to purchase other items. Why not just offer a free gift instead? The cost of giving away a small item is inconsequential compared to the potential profit from attracting a new demographic to your business.

    Most importantly, promotional giveaways are a surefire way to position your business ahead of the competition. If a consumer is given a choice between two options, and one comes with a free gift, that is not a tough decision to make. The marketplace is extremely crowded, and the token gesture of a free giveaway helps your business differentiate itself.

    Some of the most successful businesses in the world have been employing this tactic for years. Look at the sales increase McDonald’s enjoys every time they introduce their Monopoly game. Popular clothing line Anthropologie has created a cottage industry in collecting the small, hand-crafted gift card holders they use every Holiday season. Cosmetics companies have long driven sales by offering free gifts with purchase.

    By embracing the Holiday spirit, you can make your customers happy, increase your profitability, and make the world a better place for everyone. Customers love promotional giveaways and businesses love new customers, so it’s a match made in Heaven. This year, why not try spreading a little goodwill? You might just find your halls decked with a lot of new customers.

    Why Promotional Products Should Be on Your Thanksgiving Menu

    Thanksgiving Menu

    Every November, families around the country take a long weekend to get together, enjoy a huge feast, watch some football, and enjoy some quality time while they take stock of the things that are most important. This Thanksgiving, when you’re counting your blessings, don’t forget to express sincere gratitude to your employees and clients. Without their hard work, dedication, loyalty, and faith, none of us would be able to succeed as business owners.

    Oven MittWhen it comes to Thanksgiving festivities, the food is the main event. All those turkeys and cranberry sauces and casseroles don’t just magically appear, though. They take a lot of long, hard work in the kitchen. Why not show your appreciation for your clients and employees by making things a little easier for them this year? With our custom cutting boards and oven mitts, you can help make culinary dreams come true. Best of all, your logo will be a great reminder of how much you value your relationships.

    Custom Wine StopperWhat is a big dinner, though, without some drinks to go with it? Is there anything better than sitting around a table with the ones you love, raising a glass to celebrate all of the good things in your life? To help promote the safe consumption of some holiday spirits, we offer beautiful, custom wine glasses and wine sets. It’s a great way to spread some Thanksgiving cheer and make sure that your logo is front and center every time your clients and employees crack open a new bottle or propose another toast.

    Corporate Gift BasketsThere are some people, of course, who feel like dinner is just the warm-up act for some delicious, decadent dessert. Now, when you think of Thanksgiving desserts, you probably think pumpkin pie. Let’s face it, though, if pumpkin pie was that good, we’d eat it all year long. With one of our gourmet gift baskets, your customers can cap off the Holiday meal with a treat that’s in-season all year round. We also offer delicious coffee, tea, and hot cocoa selections to put the perfect finishing touch on any Thanksgiving dinner.

    The most important thing to remember at Thanksgiving time is to be grateful for your health, your success, your friends, and your family. And yes, that includes the members with four legs, too. Don’t let Spot or Rover miss out on the spirit of the season. Our furry friends bring happiness to our families every day. With our personalized dog treats you can show your pets how much you love them in a way that they’re guaranteed to appreciate.

    So get ready for your long weekend, start dreaming about that once-a-year family feast, and warm up a spot on the couch to watch the games. But take a few seconds out before you do and make a gesture that will help cement your business relationships and ensure another year of results worth being thankful for.

    Traveling for the Holidays? Here’s How to Avoid the Hassles.

    Holiday Travel

    Between extended hotel stays, inclement weather, flight delays, and bumper-to-bumper traffic, traveling for the holidays is hardly a pleasant experience. The juice is worth the squeeze of course, because nothing stirs up the warm and fuzzies quite like spending time with loved ones during the holiday season. There are, however, a few ways to make the travel experience slightly more tolerable. Along with some imprinted travel accessories, hand these useful tips out to your clients and employees. That way, they’ll be sure to know who to thank when the answer to the incessant “Are we there yet?” is a confident “yes.”

    Plan Ahead

    Trip PlanningI know. It’s asking a lot. In addition to pencils, books, and teachers’ dirty looks, most of us were happy to be rid of homework once we were done with school. However, a little research before your trip can go a long way. Consider alternate routes when driving to or from your destination. Perhaps there’s a more scenic, albeit longer course you and the family can take. The traffic will be lighter and you could even plan to stop at a few attractions on the way. It’s like the old adage goes, “The enjoyment is found in the journey, not the destination.”

    Stay Informed

    Roads can close. Flights can be delayed. Some airlines’ carry-on restrictions may differ from others. Being unaware of these inconveniences only exacerbates the problem. Instead, use your now ubiquitous smart phone and download a few apps to help you stay up-to-date with your travel itinerary. What apps? Well, we’re experts on promotional products, not mobile applications, so we suggest heading to PCmag.com for a more in-depth article on 2015 travel apps from people who research these sorts of things for a living.

    Fuel Up

    Whether it’s your car, your electronic devices, or your belly, it’s important to keep it fueled up for the long and often arduous journey ahead.

    The first is obvious. Your car can’t run without gasoline. Make sure you check the fuel gauge often and don’t wait until that little warning light comes before refilling the tank. Give yourself plenty of leeway because there are often many miles between gas stations, especially on long stretches of freeway.

    Tablets, mobile phones, and MP3 players-they’ve become such a necessity on long trips that it makes one wonder how we ever got along without them. In this regard, it would behoove any responsible device owner to keep the batteries in their gadgets topped off. Charging outlets are becoming more prevalent on buses and in airports, but they’re often few and far between, and nearly always occupied. Instead, answer the death throes of any device with a portable power bank. These handy peripherals offer a convenient contingency plan to allow you to stream, text, and Snap to your heart’s content without the fear of your device losing power.

    portable power bank

    And of course, you can’t forget to fuel yourself up. An empty stomach can lead to a distracted, lethargic mind, which is the last thing that should be controlling a vehicle cruising down the freeway. You could miss exits, make wrong turns, or worse. Make sure to pack a few snacks and, if the trip is long enough, stop for a meal. Bracing for a 10 hour flight with multiple layovers? Arrive early so you have time to eat at one of the restaurants inside the airport. As delicious as they are, a pack of peanuts or crackers will not give your body the nutrition it needs to stave off the hangriness.

    Pack Smart

    Checking bags can be a hassle. They have to be weighed and tagged pre-flight, which can occasionally cost extra. Once you arrive at your destination, you need to find the baggage claim, and then wait patiently as yours tumbles clumsily onto the conveyor belt. Finally, your powers of perception are tested as you attempt to distinguish your luggage from all the bags of similar size and color.

    To simplify your luggage identification task, we recommend using personalized luggage tags. They simultaneously provide recognition for both your brand as well as your customer’s baggage.

    Ideally, packing light could let you avoid baggage checks altogether. Consider carrying along only the essentials to make your trip as efficient as possible.

    Know When to Travel

    The Wednesday before thanksgiving is by far the busiest travel day of the year. To avoid a mild panic attack, forgo traveling on this day. Instead, make the drive or flight the morning of Thanksgiving when most people have already arrived at their destination. (The earlier in the morning the better, as far as congestion on the road and in the skies.)


    Even with all the preparation in the world, there is bound to be some unexpected turbulence along the way. Flight delayed? Hotel overbooked? Luggage lost in transport? No worries. You’ll be at your destination before you know it. There’s no problem that good food, great conversation, and wonderful company can’t remedy.