Much to the dismay of Eric Frank, this post is not about the Dave Mathews Band song – The Space Between – where “The wicked lies we tell keep us safe from the pain”. In the world of personalized business gifts, better known as promotional products, there is the space between two major market opposites. Whoa, maybe it is about those “lies we tell’?
The market opposites I am referring to are online commodity promo distributors like 4imprint, Custom Ink, Discount Mugs, or Vistaprint and the handmade maker marketplaces like Etsy, Zazzle, or Big Cartel. In the space between you will find a true grit custom sourcing companion called American Advertising Company.
First, let us discuss the online commodity promo distributor.
This entity is pretty much faceless and requires the least amount of input regarding your marketing strategy. With hundreds of thousands of discounted commodity type promo items uploaded onto a website, buyers are drawn to the low-cost buying convenience. The buyer is only exposed to what is presented to them. Because these marketplaces are driven by price, products are often of lesser quality with very minimal opportunity for customization. They are what we call a ‘means to an end’. Nevermind marketing strategy, I need something with my logo on it, I get something with my logo on it.
The opposite is the handmade maker marketplace.
This is where people get really crafty with their products. Etsy and the like are for artists and makers to sell highly specialized custom products to buyers. Often these products are hand crafted at low quantities because makers do not have the necessary resources to produce more. Think, personalized debossed rustic leather beverage holders for your groomsmen. Great for wedding parties but maybe not so great for company branding. Etsy is to the promotional products industry as YouTube is to the entertainment industry. Both have disrupted the traditional channels leading up to success but require the talented to enter those same channels once the initial success is met. Every year, AAC sees new suppliers emerging at industry tradeshows, who are looking to scale beyond their success on Esty.
In the space between commodity & handmade is American Advertising.
We get to know your brand and set goals for your swag. With access to our network of thousands of manufacturers and decorators, we can show you what you want to see, and we’ll also show you the awesome things you need to see. We give you options and solutions with guidance and support to make the best decision for you, your people, and your budget. Given the two opposites discussed above, it is important to meet us in the middle. In the space between, there is a ton of useful, beautiful, loveable, and best of all customizable promo options for you to discover. Start a project with us today.