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  • Chris Piel

The virus is going to be around awhile. We're all going to need to continue protecting ourselves, our families, our employees, our friends, our clients, our neighbors. There is so much confusing information going around that I thought I would share what I've learned in the last few months about the different Personal Protective Equipment that is being offered.


Staying home is best, social distancing, wash wash wash and then rewash. Wear a mask when out in public, but what kind?


My favorite mask is a two ply cotton style. I work from home, go out only for food, scripts and biking or walking. I maintain the distance. My personal mask is from Etsy - cute with Snoopy and the Peanuts gang on it. I like to think it conveys a positive friendly image to people who see me. It's easy to put over my ears, I can toss it in the washing machine and it dries quickly.


If I worked in an office or in a manufacturing plant, a setting that put me in constant closer proximity to others, I would use a tightly woven cotton three layer style or better yet four ply.


It's not fun, especially with the weather getting hotter but we've come this far....let's keep up the good work. These masks below are made in the USA, 100 % cotton masks and we can customize the masks with your logo or a note of good health to pass on to others.




I see a lot of PPE that comes by my desk, and I don't want to say people are taking advantage of our current situation but I do see overpriced, ill-fitting, one layer, and a lot of simple polyester. Be careful what you get, ask questions, request samples before you leap to buy your company PPE that won't protect everyone as well as you'd like. There are a lot of bad players out there.


Brand on friends and please stay safe







  • Chris Piel

Updated: Jan 3


Budgets are hopefully done and it's tradeshow season.  One of the all time best ways to save money for tradeshow giveaways is to order way in advance of your events.


• There will be time to order in a few samples to see/feel.  Make sure the picture of the promotional product you liked online is really that great in person.


• You get time to see multiple proofs stress free so you don't have to rush decisions. 


• You let your ad agency sleep peacefully. 


• You also get to ship ground, saving TONS of money that could go into more product rather then UPS or FedEx's pocket.


• You get to skip unnecessary rush charges that some manufacturers charge.


• Finally, you shine as a rock star to your boss. Or if you're the boss you can juggle everything else that's on your plate.  It's not easy being cheesy.


Right now the biggest annual promotional show is going on in Vegas.  12,000 attendees and over 1,200 manufacturers exhibiting.  While I have you, we can check out some new random promotional products for 2019 Swag.  When doing giveaways though, I try to keep it for the industry.  I mean people attending CES will appreciate receiving different Swag then people attending the International Food Show.  For now, I'll try to stay low priced, desirable items, high perceived value that won't break the bank.  Maybe will get a smile, the unexpected useful is always fun.


Custom Popsockets got an upgrade, loving the new diamond style.


Or maybe your brand shines with a more natural look.  Picture your logo etched in rosewood or bamboo.


Speaking of natural, we have natural poplar wood coasters

Remember how I said stay in your industry? Stay useful? Fun, get attention?  I love these for shipping companies/trucking companies. Custom coaster pallets.  You'd be right on that "Location Location Location"... the desk!

You know what else may be a good idea?  How about a pet giveaway with your logo?  I know it sounds crazy but people feel so bad when they have to travel and leave their pets.  I know it killed me when I had my boy Desi.  So, maybe a nice treat they can give their loved ones when they get back for some fun time?  If it compliments your logo or tagline - Like @nest for example?  This could work for them as a giveaway.  "Homey" "Family" "love"  Associate your brand with happy.  You're not on their desk but you're in their heart.

A simple dry erase magnetic memo clip can help people keep track of their lives, reminders that gets your brand seen over and over.  Inexpensive, useful and not a tote bag.  "Not that there is anything wrong with that"


Going to one of those notoriously crazy tradeshows with a deep nightlife /early mornings in Vegas?  I'm looking at you CES and PPAI!  We have old school cold compresses that could come in very handy.  Then use later at home mending sore muscles from workouts. You can even put a few goodies inside like aspirin or alka seltzer, mints.  We can brand those too.



For mobile tech giveaways which is unbelievably popular, we add cable management to the mix.  Don't you hate when you unplug your device and the cable falls.  "Get it later..."  Something like one of these could work out and keep you out front.



Pins are back and now with custom presentation cards, Flair for Flair



I'll be back soon with more reports on new swag for 2019 from the show but for now.  You can follow us on IG for daily ideas till next time...Brand on Friends


Updated: Jan 3

The holidays are right around the corner and it's time to start thinking of meaningful gifts to celebrate the people who make your company a success.  I put together some gift ideas for everyone on your list covering a variety of price points.  If you need more ideas to inspire, just reach out. You want to spoil your employees and your clients, here we go~



This mouse pad is multifunction.  It charges wireless compatible tech products but also has a USB port to charge non-wireless products.  Holds pens and acts as a mobile/table stand arriving individually gift boxed.



 This Bluetooth speaker is pretty sweet. Four color imprint on full front location, high def sound with a built in microphone, pairs up to 30 feet away and up to 6 hours of play time.



A corporate gift that is useful, eye catching and socially responsible - This new style bottle has it all. 5% of all sales is donated to the Dopper Foundation, which supports water and sanitation projects worldwide.



Those folks at Kikkerland always have the most fun with their ideas.  Succulents are very trendy right now, they're low maintenance and peaceful to look at.  This concrete planter and pen holder are so cute.  Adding the plant and leaving behind with your favorite gatekeeper for sure will open doors.



You really want to make someone smile?  Nothing beats a hot tubby with bath salts, essential oils, a glowing candle, high quality body butter for a totally zen corporate gift.



Maybe a little more oriented towards the male members of your tribe, a very cool holiday gift combination.  A debossed leather valet tray, leather carabiner keychain and a single pocket wallet in a custom wooden gift box.  Love this!

Check out the detail of the key chain



You can do a gift set or break it down and just give the valet, or the wallet or the leather key tag with your logo.


Oh yeah, a wireless foldable keyboard.  Slim, compact with Bluetooth 3.0 technology giving you that cable-free experience.  This Keyberry piece is compatible with 3 major operating systems.  iOS/Windows/Android.



For your executive multitasker, this padfolio keeps notes in place, holds your smart device in its built in cover stand.  Open the front cover to reveal two file pockets, two business card pockets and a tablet or mobile stand that lays flat when not in use.  The zippered pocket will hold all their essentials.


Last one for this Blog entry but more new ideas to come, promise.


This bag will complement any brand styling, comes in four different colors and has an easy snap flap. Ergonomic padded shoulder straps and looks cool as heck.

Brand on friends.....


© 2020 by Absolute Promotions, Inc.