It used to be t-shirts.
You know, people were always giving you t-shirts. If you work in the media biz and go to even a few conferences, chances are you have a whole bunch of t-shirts you got for free. If you’re The Beat, you long ago stopped taking t-shirts that only come in large, double large and triple large. We can only work out so often, and we’re a little long in the tooth for the t-shirt as a dress with leggings look, especially when the t-shirt has a picture of The Punisher on it.
Recently, everyone started making t-shirts in women’s sizes. So we started taking those. Now we have more t-shirts than we know what to do with or have room for. We own like 6 or 7 black baby doll t-shirts, all with attractive and sporty logos on them. But that is more than we’ll need in a lifetime. So when some one offers us a t-shirt, we just say no. Except once in awhile we do take one, because it’s the only polite thing to do. And even those are stacking up.
At any rate, it seems companies figured out that everyone had enough t-shirts because now they are making tote bags. Tote bags and even satchels. We had a bit of a closet clean up here at SBM this weekend, and were aghast at the number of tote bags we now own. We’re not talking shopping bags, we’re talking sturdy, cloth-handled vinyl totes that are really useful. Some of them are even stylish.
But we just don’t need them.
Now, we do like our Viz bags. Those are super useful. One functions as a gym bag (just enough room for an oversized t-shirt and padlock), one goes back and forth to the office, and one is for…well overflow.
But it didn’t stop there. We probably found 20 tote bags, computer cases, back packs and satchels crammed into the broom closet. (We also found a shopping back with Clive Owen on it that Disney gave away to promote KING ARTHUR. We threw it out.) Some of them are incredibly handy and not shameful for a grown woman to walk around with. But, unless they are in an unusual color or have a LOT of pockets or have a matching make-up bag AND planner…we’re going to have to say no from here on. We are not going to need another tote bag until 2008, at the very soonest.
In the meantime, we’d like to suggest a NEW giveaway for companies, especially comic book companies. We’ve always been partial to the small 5-function utility knife. It comes with tweezers and a toothpick, for crying out loud! And check it out, the t-shirt costs $2.50 to make, the 5-function utility knife barely over a dollar! And they are incredibly useful around the house and for opening packages; trust us, we know. And, we repeat…toothpick! Of course, with all the trouble flying and terrorism and all, maybe carrying around a tote bag full of five-function utility knives is not such a good idea.
Okay, then, can we suggest going back to THE MUG as a promo item? Once again, it costs less than a T-shirt or a tote. And it’s smaller. We even have a collection of vintage promo mugs going back 20 years, when someone gave us our first “You’re a great secretary!” mug. You can’t part with an item like that. We have a nice peg board above the sink — a new mug can easily be added there without causing a storage crisis.
OR, may we suggest “stress relief” promo items. Everyone will get good use from those. Here’s one we like:
“Stress Ball – Construction Cone
Reward “constructive ideas” with this bright orange cone.”
That’s the very meaning of incentive!
If you’re going to go for a high ticket promo piece, check out the computer gear now available to be imprinted with your logo.
Mini-Flash drives and network finders! Come on! People will be lining up.
In conclusion, no more t-shirts or totes. We’re done with those for now. Maybe in a few years it will be okay, but we just don’t need any more for now. We’re full up.
Just to see if anyone is still reading this, we’ll be on vacation in the land of dial-up starting tomorrow and for the rest of the week. Tons of bloggers are taking the week off, and we won’t be going that far, but we’re going to be easing up on the link-blogging and perhaps tackling some weightier subjects with some essays that we’ve long been pondering. There may be some “classic ” material as well. It’s known a “recharging” and it’s badly needed.