February 2020
Help Us Welcome Our New 2020 Board Members!
Amy Brockelmeyer (D)
Perfect Promotions
Julie Henschel-Chase (S)
Dennis Oglesby (D)
DataSource, Inc.
PPAMidwest Members.....Are you taking advantage of your Member Benefits? Did you know that you can save hundreds of dollars by accessing the PPAMidwest Member Only Coupon Book?
We have reached our registration limit but if you are interested in attending the tour, please email Tiffany at admin@ppam.org to see if we are able to accommodate you
PPAMidwest News
Tekweld Wins Prestigious ASI Counselor Distributor Choice Award

Hauppauge, NYTekweld's Vice-President of Sales and Marketing, Ray Rodriguez, has announced that Tekweld is the recipient of ASI's 2020 Counselor Distributor Choice Award for the Sunglass Category. The award was presented at the Distributor Choice Award Ceremony held at the 2020 ASI Orlando Show.

Receiving the award presented by ASI President Tim Andrews, Rodriguez, sporting a pair of Tekweld sunglasses, enthusiastically claimed, "Tekweld is incredibly honored to receive this award because it is voted on by distributors themselves and is based on their perception of our customer service, product selection, problem solving and their daily product searches on the ESP database. We have learned over the years what is most important to distributors and their salespeople, and we deliver it on a daily basis. For this year and the predictable future, we're the coolest of the cool when it comes to delivering distributors clients' advertising on sunglasses!" Tekweld has 46 sunglass styles, with 7 new styles introduced in 2020.
Every year, since 2001, Counselor Magazine has presented suppliers awards based solely on popular vote by industry distributors for predetermined product categories. There are 50 product categories in the awards program. Sunglasses, Tekweld's winning category, was introduced to voting in 2015. Tekweld has been a finalist in this category each year since the category was introduced, winning for the first time in 2020. In addition, Tekweld was a finalist in 2020 in these additional categories: blankets, food gifts, health & safety, housewares, key tags & luggage tags, office & desk items and tech accessories.
American Solutions for Business Hosts 5K Run/Walk to Raise $5,100 to United Way
Fort Worth, TX - American Solutions for Business recently held a 5K Run/Walk in conjunction with their national sales conference to benefit the United Way of Fort Worth.

Over 170 individuals donated and 125 participated in walking or running the race on Sunday, February 2nd. In addition, 13 suppliers stepped up as event sponsors to donate product and monetary contribution. These suppliers include: Ennis, Spector & Co., Logo Mats, KTI Promo, Bagworld, BEL Promo, SanMar, Dubow Textile, Showdown Displays, Alexa Springs, Raining Rose, Terry Town and Outdoor Cap.

Participants received a swag bag full of active-inspired promotional products and branded apparel.

“We’re proud to announce that not only did we have even more participants than last year, we greatly increased our donation to the United Way of Fort Worth,” said Dana Zezzo, ASB’s VP of Marketing, Vendor Relations & Events. “We will continue to look for ways to give back a practice that is so engrained in the ASB culture.”
Tekweld Appoints Harrington Central Regional Sales Manager 

Hauppauge, NYAmerTekweld's Vice-President of Sales and Marketing, Ray Rodriguez, has announced the appointment of Regina Harrington to Central Regional Sales Manager. Harrington will report directly to Rodriguez. Her promotion was effective December 9, 2019.

"Regina comes to us with 16 years of promotional sales experience, most recently from an ASI top forty supplier," commented Rodriguez from the floor of the 2020 ASI Orlando Show. "Her established presence, strong communication and relationship building skills and familiarity with promotional products distributors in her covered states of Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, Kentucky and Tennessee gives Tekweld a huge sales advantage in this territory."

"I was incredibly excited to be asked to join the Tekweld family," added Harrington. When asked about her goals at Tekweld, Harrington confidently replied, "I am eager to submerge myself in its culture and spread the positive energy and synergies found within Tekweld to my distributor accounts."

Inside of the industry, Regina was nominated for Ohio Promotional Products
Association's Supplier Representative of the year in 2014-15. Regina graduated from Indiana University with a BA degree in Organizational Communications.
Kozar Named Tekweld Southeast Regional Sales Manager

Hauppauge, NYTekweld's Vice-President of Sales and Marketing, Ray Rodriguez, has announced the appointment of Matt Kozar to Southeast Regional Sales Manager. Kozar reports directly to Rodriguez. His promotion was effective December 2, 2019.

"Matt's previous 5 years of promotional products sales experience in the southeast, previously with an ASI top forty supplier, allows him to hit the ground running for Tekweld," said Rodriguez while formally announcing Kozar's addition at the 2020 ASI Orlando Show. "Matt's proven ability to cultivate strong business relationships, positive attitude, strong work ethic and organizational skills make him a strong asset, not just to Tekweld but also to our distributor accounts he calls on daily." Kozar will be covering the states of Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina.

"I am beyond thrilled to be joining the Tekweld team," stated Kozar from his office in Raleigh, NC. "I was drawn to Tekweld based on their fantastic reputation in the industry." He continued, "They grow their business by putting the customer first and quickly adapting to industry changes. I am incredibly excited to bring my sales experience and product knowledge to help bring Tekweld to the next level."

Newly married, Kozar graduated from North Carolina State with a Bachelor of
Science degree in Business Administration. He was the Carolinas Association of Advertising and Marketing Professionals (CAAMP) Supplier Rep of the Year for 2018. Matt was also Field Sales Rep of the year for 2015 and 2016 while working the southeast region for his previous promotional products industry supplier.
Wild Wednesday Webinars - Lunch and Learn at your desk!
“What Order Management & Accounting Software Is Best Suited
for Ad Specialty Distributors Today?”
Wed, February 26, 2020 11:30 AM - 12:30 PM CST

Is there a perfect solution for our industry? What options exist? What should we be paying? Which might be best for the long haul? What functions do these solutions automate? How important is it to use an automated solution? What are the risks in doing so?

These back-office questions are the less-exciting aspects of being a distributor but are critically important to freeing a distributor up to do what they do best: SELL. So, let’s examine some options and how to make an informed decision to figure out what is best for you and your business—so you can get this back-office labor done quickly, correctly, and affordably.

Attendees will learn:
  1. Learning which features should you look for in evaluating a new Order Management and Accounting System
  2. The benefits of QuickBooks
  3. Learning which QuickBooks is best for the Promotional Products Distributor

 1 CAS Credit when you submit your PPAI Pin Number with your survey.
Did You Know that PPAI Online Education offers
live webinars on Wednesdays throughout the year?
Industry News
Promotional Products Education Foundation
Scholarship deadline is March 15, 2020
276,750 Reasons To Apply For A PPEF Scholarship

Do you have a student heading to college this fall? The Promotional Products Education Foundation (PPEF) believes every student deserves to build a better future, regardless of their financial situation. Through its strong fundraising efforts, PPEF will be granting $276,750 in scholarships this year to qualified students.
Since 1989, PPEF has awarded more than $2.1 million in college scholarships to students working in the promotional products industry and students with a parent who is working in the promotional products industry. PPEF provides college scholarships to the promotional products industry that are generously funded by the contributions of companies and individuals within the industry. The deadline for submissions is March 15, 2020, at midnight CT.

7 Tips for Boosting Sales, Reducing Costs, and Saving Time With Email Marketing
Partner Studio Staff  Guest Writer Entrepreneur

How you can create an effective email marketing strategy without breaking the bank..

Running a small business means keeping track of dozens of moving parts and wearing multiple hats. Of the various components that demand attention, acquiring new customers is among the most critical.

Enter email marketing, which remains an integral way to grow your audience and boost sales. Unlike with social media, one important benefit of email marketing is that it enables businesses to own their subscriber and customer data, says Adii Pienaar, VP of commerce product strategy at Campaign Monitor. That's key; When used correctly, this information allows companies to build direct relationships with customers.
Email marketing also provides a customizable platform for targeted messages and prompts. According to a 2019 report from Campaign Monitor, 38 percent of U.S. consumers have taken a monetary action as a direct result of an email.  Read More
PPAI Media
PPB Newslink
Promo Companies Work To Manage Coronavirus Disruption

Authorities continue to wrestle with the coronavirus outbreak which, along with a human toll of more than 73,000 people infected in China, is upending manufacturing, transportation and supply chains worldwide. Many companies in the promotional products industry are taking proactive steps to support their clients, vendors and Chinese partners.

"The situation is evolving in China and around the world," says IMAGEN Brands President Paul Lage, MAS, in a company statement. "One of the questions is, how is this going to impact our business? We have been in contact with our vendors, and they realize there will be some issues. Many of the factories are still not open. We anticipate that many might resume their regular operations in early March. Others may not reopen until April. In the meantime, orders for their products are still coming in, and they are starting to accumulate some significant backlogs. Therefore, this potential disruption may last until early summer until we all get through this issue."

The timing of the coronavirus outbreak has proven to further complicate business operations, coming as it did during the Chinese New Year, when millions of people were traveling to visit family members. Lage adds, "We are fortunate to have inflated our inventory prior to the Chinese New Year. We don't see any issues in the short-term and will be monitoring the situation closely." He says the company will post inventories and any updates about this situation on the website at IMAGENBrands.com.