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Shrink Your Carbon Footprint with Free UPS Programs

Filed under: Education, Guest Blog, Industry Initiatives, Member Benefits

Whether it’s driving a vehicle, heating your home or turning on a light, your effect on the environment can be measured.  This measurement is called your carbon footprint.  As an industry, what can we do to be environmentally responsible and reduce our carbon footprint?

As you may know, UPS is an ASI affiliate providing members with up to 45% savings on shipments.  There are a few ways UPS is thinking green and you can help by using its Reusable Express Envelopes.  These are made of recycled paper and can also be reused. With these envelopes, the recipient of a package can use the same envelope to ship back to the sender or to another recipient.  Look for the new Reusable Express Envelope in your Register Box from ASI.

UPS has also partnered with Costco to recycle computers and electronic devices.  Costco members log-in online to calculate an estimated value on the goods.  Members print a UPS shipping label and send it to the Costco partner, GreenSight, for free.  Credits can be applied to a future Costco purchase.

UPS environmental highlights include:

–  20,000:  The number of low-emission vehicles in the “green” fleet.

–  126 million:  The number of miles driven by UPS alternative fuel vehicles since 2000.

–  84 million:  Total sheets of paper saved each year using Delivery Information Acquisition Devices (DIADs), the handheld device UPS uses to scan packages.  This saves 7,308 trees a year.

–  124 million:  The number of sheets of paper that could be eliminated annually if UPS customers converted to Paperless Billing. 

Read about other UPS green initiatives here.  Not enrolled in the UPS discount program from ASI?  Visit asicentral.com/ups.

Karyn Coates is Executive Director of Member Benefits.  Email her here.

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Preview of Power Summit at La Costa Resort in CA

Filed under: Education, Guest Blog, Industry Initiatives, News About ASI

We’re blogging from the site of the upcoming ASI Power Summit at the La Costa Resort and Spa in Carlsbad, California.  We’re here to personally inspect every feature available to you come November. The industry’s premier event will be more interactive than ever, with a detailed agenda packed with proven strategies to ramp up your business in any economic environment.

We’re delivering the most informed speakers and the hottest networking activities, including a “speed dating” type event to let you meet as many industry leaders as possible.  This is your summit:  Tell us what topics you want covered by emailing Rich Fairfield, at rfairfield@asicentral.com, or Melinda Ligos, at mligos@asicentral.com.

In addition to the rigorous program, we’re sure you’ll agree ASI picked another great destination.  Watch this short video, and check out these photos of the resort.  

Network at the two PGA Championship 18-hole golf courses, deepen friendships over a heated game of tennis, or swim out the tension in the pools or jaccuzzis.

The 2009 Power Summit is Sunday, November 1 through Tuesday, November 3.  You can reserve your seat now at a special price.  For more information and to register, click here.

From what we’ve seen so far here in California, this is an event you won’t want to miss.  So make plans early to join us, as the Summit sold out the last two years at the Arizona Biltmore Resort and The Breakers Hotel in Palm Beach.

–  Susanne Curry
Senior VP, Marketing

–  Rich Fairfield, Publisher and Senior VP, Counselor, Advantages, Stitches, Successful Promotions, Supplier Global Resource and Wearables Magazines

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Enhancing LogoMall with More Customization

Filed under: ASI Shows, Industry Initiatives, Members, News About ASI, Using Ad Specialties

One resolution I haven’t had any trouble keeping is helping industry companies become stronger and more streamlined throughout 2009 and ASI is delivering. 

That’s why I’m excited to announce the redesign of ASIsecure, the tool that allows users of LogoMall, PromoShop or ASISupplier web sites to customize, design and manage their online presence.  It’ll be available in coming weeks, at a time when LogoMall continues to grow.  In fact, last year alone, the LogoMall network received over 8.4 million visitors.

The new ASIsecure design manager now provides distributors and suppliers with a time-saving way to update their site’s design and content, including featured products, and to pick up client order requests and traffic reports in one place. Users can also export orders, leads and catalog inquiries in batches to an electronic file to eliminate double entry and streamline order processes. 

Also, LogoMall customers who use ProfitMaker will have the ability to export shopping cart orders directly into ProfitMaker, allowing for a more seamless ordering system.  ProfitMaker, from ASI Computer Systems Inc., is advanced business software that provides electronic links between distributors and suppliers.

If you’re not a web designer you’ll also be happy to learn that ASIsecure doesn’t require you to know HTML coding, and comes with all the support, video tutorials and tips you need to create a more visually exciting online presence – one that clients are sure to notice.

All of these features will provide distributors and suppliers with more time to hone in on selling. 

Click here to learn more about ASIsecure and let me know what you think by posting a comment now or emailing me at tim.andrews@asicentral.com.

Also, check out the earlier posts for four videos of unique products from ASI Orlando, and visit my YouTube channel for more product videos and ideas for your clients from our shows.

If only sticking to the rest of my resolutions was this easy!

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New Order Management System a Hit, Orlando Fashion Show

Filed under: ASI Shows, Education, Industry Initiatives, Using Ad Specialties

People have been responding to news of our multimillion-dollar initiative to create a seamless order management system for the industry, so I wanted to make sure that everyone has an opportunity to learn more about this.

The new system, announced at the ASI Show in Orlando, links distributors, suppliers and industry service providers across ASI’s full product suite and is designed to make you more efficient and save time and money in 2009.  

Click here for the press release with more benefits of the initiative.

Designed based on continuing industry feedback, our effort has been under way for about a year, and in the test phase distributors placed over $10 million in orders with suppliers.  So far, the results have been phenomenal and have provided consistent order structure, content integrity and order delivery.  To learn more, check out the media release here.

Additional elements of the initiative that we demonstrated in Orlando include:

  • ESP Online:  The CenterStage presentation creator now allows end-buyers to order directly from a client presentation, and integrates with the industry standard purchase order.  Also, PromoCafé is a new application that allows the 32,000 users of ESP Online to communicate about orders and a variety of topics using chat rooms and instant messaging. 
  • ProfitMaker:  The 1,000 distributor firms that use ProfitMaker can now pull products and pricing directly from ESP Online into ProfitMaker.  There is also a new method that allows purchase orders to be sent by distributors and accepted into the supplier’s system electronically without rekeying information, making the order process faster and less error-prone.   ProfitMaker also integrates directly with the inventory and order management systems of top apparel suppliers, including SanMar, Alpha Shirt Company, Ash City, Bodek and Rhodes and Broder.   
  • ASI Secure:  LogoMall customers can export their end-buyer orders, leads and catalog requests into ProfitMaker via ASI Secure.  ASI Secure is the system that helps the 10,000 subscribers to LogoMall easily customize their website copy, add products and track site statistics (including number of visitors and page views.)  

The initiative is projected to include the launch of additional key components throughout 2009 and into 2010. 

Also, click here to see the latest trends in corporate and casual apparel for your clients in coverage of our Fashion Show in Orlando.  There are many featured styles from leading apparel companies, including Dunbrooke, Global Traders and Suppliers Inc., Hanes/Outer Banks, Perry Ellis International, Charles River Apparel and Reebok. 

I also have a video from Orlando featuring products you can sell to your clients, including pens made from recycled currency and denim, a knit fleece jacket/sweater, a mini video camcorder, and more.  Click here to watch.

As always, I welcome your input anytime.  Post a comment now or email me at tim.andrews@asicentral.com.  

ASI Show Orlando Posts Strong Attendance | Video

Filed under: ASI Shows, Industry Initiatives, News About ASI

This has been a strong show, with preliminary attendance of about 5,200, equivalent to last year, from more than 2,000 distributor firms.  

Click here to watch a video wrap-up that also features a new notebook made from elephant poo from Spector & Co.  No joke.

In addition to education, networking and entertainment, attendees were energized by a two-hour business and personal coaching session by Tony Robbins, who has worked with the most successful entertainment, sports and business and political leaders in the world. 

The 1,200-seat auditorium was packed and much of the session was spent with distributors and suppliers on their feet interacting with each other and Tony Robbins, as he explained how to capture market share, grow your business and flourish in challenging personal and business times.

There’s no way someone didn’t leave the two hours with Tony Robbins without having a positive outlook on their business and their life as we enter 2009.  Check out the crowd with him in this photo.

Jeanne Slack, of JS Promotions, said this:  “The best gift ASI could have given the industry was Tony Robbins.  I noticed a big change in people’s attitudes today as opposed to yesterday’s show – shifting from being focused on a weak fourth quarter to how strong they can perform in 2009.”

Click here for the full press release on our attendance. 

We also broke news today about a time-saving integration for ProfitMaker that pulls products and pricing information directly from ESP Online right into ProfitMaker.  Distributors and suppliers got a chance to road test this integration, along with a new look and feel for the program.

Click here for the full press release on the new and improved ProfitMaker.

Last night, we enjoyed two really exciting events: the ASI Fashion Show, featuring the season’s hottest new looks in casual wear, and the ASI Show Gala Celebration at Universal Studios. In a word, the thrill rides, food and entertainment were outrageous. I met a number of real characters – and not all of them were in costume! I am really sorry this show has come to an end. But we’re geared up and ready for Dallas in February.

Click here for our fashion show photos.

As we leave Orlando, I’m sure many of us will be putting into action the advice given today by business guru Tony Robbins, who inspired us to command peak performance from ourselves and our employees.

As always, I welcome your input. Post a comment on the blog now or email me at tim.andrews@asicentral.com.

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Fashion Show Photos, New Products Videos, ProfitMaker Integrates with ESP

Filed under: ASI Shows, Industry Initiatives, News About ASI, Using Ad Specialties

All good things must come to a close and today is the final day for ASI Show Orlando.  What an incredible three days we’ve had previewing the best the industry has to offer and getting charged up for selling this year.

Last night, we enjoyed two really exciting events: the ASI Fashion Show, featuring the season’s hottest new looks in casual wear, and the ASI Show Gala Celebration at Universal Studios. In a word, the thrill rides, food and entertainment were outrageous. I met a number of real characters – and not all of them were in costume!  

Click here for Sunday’s Fashion Show photos.

Also, click here watch my video of unique promotional products from the show floor, including:

  • Pens made from recycled currency and denim, from Shepenco, asi/86850
  • Knit fleece jacket, with fleece inside and a sweater outside, from Charles River Apparel, asi/44620
  • Mini video camcorder, from Hirsch Gift, asi/61005

I also stopped by Norwood’s booth for more new products for your clients, and click here for a video of some new wine accessories and a solar-powered rotating globe.  And, at Leed’s, the supplier of the year, I discovered a new line of heavy-duty, highly colorful Scripto pens – watch here.

In breaking news, ASI announced that ProfitMaker, a business management system offered by ASI Computer, now provides integration with ESP Online.  The integration electronically links suppliers and distributors and streamlines order flow.

The new time-saving features allow distributors who use ProfitMaker to access ESP Online’s product images and pricing information and to import the information directly into ProfitMaker.  These features are available at no additional cost for ProfitMaker users who are ESP Online subscribers, and a low-cost subscription is available for ProfitMaker users without ESP Online.  

Click here for the full press release with many more new features.

Post a comment on the blog now or email me at tim.andrews@asicentral.com.

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ESP Upgrade and Photos From Distributor Choice Awards

Filed under: ASI Shows, Industry Initiatives, News About ASI

It’s Day 2 of the ASI Show Orlando, featuring non-stop activities and opportunities for distributors and suppliers to network with each other, learn more so they can sell more and position themselves for 2009.

In breaking news, we announced an upgrade to ESP Online that allows suppliers and distributors to network online with peers and communicate more rapidly with customers.

Highlights of the upgrade include:

  • New end-buyer ordering, with an interactive CenterStageTM presentation that allows a customer to place an order for the products shown in the presentation. 
  • PromoCafe, which allows the 32,000 users of ESP Online to communicate with other members of the ESP Online community instantly via chat rooms and instant messages. At launch, this creates the largest online presence of distributors in the world.

For the full press release with many more new features, click here.

The show continued into the night with the Counselor Distributor Choice Awards, which is like the Viewers Choice Awards for our industry. 

Competition for these awards is intense, since balloting from among the 22,000 distributor firms in the ASI network represents what the industry really thinks of suppliers in individual categories.  Also, the nominations lead to the ultimate prize, the Supplier of the Year, which is Leed’s.

Click here for photos and to see the list of winners.

Post a comment now or email me anytime at tim.andrews@asicentral.com.

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