PPB September 2022

We’re creating an event that elevates and educates, and the Association as a whole learned a lot from the Promotional Products Work Expo beta test that wasmade available to a limited audience in the spring. We have created a unique experience that melds what we love about in-person trade shows with the benefits of a virtual environment and maximizes the visibility and value of the distributor and the promotional products industry as a whole. Three Product Pavilions, No Booths Distributors and the clients they invite and host will be able to explore products by type, feature, and use to create opportunities for brainstorming through the platform’s chat feature and to discover new ways to think about their promotional marketing campaigns. Each pavilion will have product categories that are relevant to buyers to help guide their search. With this, there will not be traditional virtual booths at the event, avoiding the need for presenting suppliers to plan for staffing and the concern of direct conversations between buyers and suppliers. There will still be plenty of opportunities for suppliers and distributors to follow up on leads. Read on to learn more. Specialized Product Listings When distributors and their buyers click into a product to look at details, they will have the same view, which will include images, product details, and a description. It will not include pricing information, allowing distributors to fully control that part of the conversation. “Live” Education During the event, educational content will be playing on the platform’sMain Stage, restarting every hour. The focus will be to inspire buyers about all the ways they can use promotional products and to showoff some of the biggest trends in the industry. Topics will include unboxing, sustainability, give-back, retail brands, employee gifts, technology, customization, personalization andmore, all while weaving in product and stories throughout. Between each segment, attendees will get a look at the new face of the Promotional Products Work campaign in the formof short ads that will soon be available for members to utilize in their own marketing. All the while, a closely monitored live chat will ensure the event feels “live” for its viewers, while also protecting buyer data (more on that in amoment). Unique Insights For Distributors And Suppliers One of the benefits of a virtual event is the ability to capture data and provide detailed reporting. As they explore the product pavilions, attendees can viewproducts and “like” their favorites. They can even revisit their favorites to see a comprehensive list at any time. Distributors will receive all of this data for each of their hosted buyers. So, when your customer calls the following week and says, “I saw this tote bag; it was blue and had a white imprint. I need it for my next event,” you can check their product views and get thema virtual or physical sample right away. Suppliers will receive all of this data – with the exception of buyer information – for each of their showcased products as well. So, after the event, they can contact distributors with quotes, information, samples and other sales tools. Data Protection In order to provide useful data, while also protecting buyer information, each hosted buyer will receive a unique IDnumber. This number will be tied to their information in the platformand to their hosting distributor. Distributor reportingwill include both the unique IDnumber and the hosted buyer’s information. Supplier reportingwill include only the unique IDnumber, so all follow-up communicationwill flow through the distributor. There ismore to be done in the coming weeks. As this issue hits your mailbox, we are just under 30 days from the event. We are finalizing product samples for the education segments and getting ready to start filming and hosting demos for distributors and their salespeople daily. Registration is open for distributors to invite their clients, andwe already havemany companies signed up. I hope you and your clients will join us on Sept. 29 for what will be an incredible, event and also just the beginning of the newPromotional ProductsWork, an essential initiative that we believe has universal value for this industry. Davis is the Promotional Products Work manager at PPAI. | SEPTEMBER 2022 | 53 GROW