We’ve all heard the expression “you only get one chance to make a first impression” right? And let’s face it, we’ve all had that “first impression” experience, over and over again actually….whether it was a job interview…ugh! Or first date, even bigger UGH! And there have been some good, some bad, and some, yes, you guessed it, heinous! (You thought I was going to say Ugly, didn’t you?) You know the one’s I’m talking about? The first date with the “nice” guy or girl your friends set you up with…who as it turns out spends way too much time talking about HIS or HER feelings, (that and their cat skizzy)…or the employer who spends 20 grueling minutes interrogating you for the only open position they have, and then he/she asks that impossible question they all seem to ask, describe one of your biggest flaws…and scratch! You blew it….Next….
So where am I going with this? Well, when it comes to retail, I have discovered that first, as well as last impressions are critical. Let’s face it, all of us are inherently visual, we are drawn to what we perceive is attractive….that’s why exhaustive research and expense has gone into case studies, and customer surveys… What color should our packaging be if we sell high carb protein bars? Studies have shown the color green increases a person’s appetite…Also, scent marketing has become hugely popular, because again, studies have shown that scent has a proven impact on buying decisions.
The same can be said of brick and mortar retail stores. A customer, such as me walks into the store, and where do my eyes land? On that visually stunning custom display I see directly in my line of sight. The one with the amazing new and improved 100 SPF sunscreen and the stunning bronzed gods and goddesses wearing next to nothing. Wow, I suddenly want a tube or two, despite the fact that I live in far north Alaska and my body hasn’t seen the light of day in more than a decade! In the cart they go… and I’m off… cruising up and down the aisles, distracted and suddenly I forget the one thing I came here for… By the time I make my way to the register, my shopping cart is loaded with essential as well as non essential items I must have… and take note retailers, here’s your final chance to get my attention before I walk out the door. There it is! Another custom POP counter top display, hair extensions in various colors! So I horde. After all, they’re on sale, a close-out special… Never mind that I’m pushing 80 and have virtually no hair left on my head! With these beauties my grandkids just might invite me out to a club. And so it goes. With all the competing brands out there, you need to grab a customer’s attention. You’ve made a great product, so now what? If you haven’t gotten the hint yet, how can you make your merchandise stand out? In a nutshell, make it appealing! Showcase it with a well thought out custom display. Whether your display is acrylic or more eco friendly like chipboard, your goal is to make me think your product is the one I just can’t live without!
Today’s screed is about offshore and nearshore sourcing, so take heed!
Five decades of business experience can give you a load of wisdom along with a fair amount of scar tissue and I have both. We learn by doing and doing is often characterized by a process of “error…. correct, error… correct”. Nowhere is this truer nor is there an area with more potential pitfalls than the process of trying to save money by direct, offshore sourcing of goods and services.
For Benchmark Displays, manufacturing many of our stock and custom acrylic displays and brochure holders in Mexico and China over the past 30 years has contributed in large measure to our success, while at the same time, teaching us some valuable lessons along the way. In today’s globalized world, every consumer knows that many of the products they purchase are manufactured elsewhere and imported into the U.S. Similarly, purchasing people use the Internet and can either search for, or are deluged with email solicitations from abroad that promise quality products at bargain basement prices. All is not gold that glitters!
Here are some of the challenges we have faced and surmounted in order to consistently deliver sparkling, custom POP plexi displays, as well as counter top and wall mounted promotional literature racks from China and Mexico:
1. Language Differences- Every Shenzhen factory that desires to export has an English speaking staff person to facilitate and communicate with foreign customers and prospects. Her name is really Liang, but you know her as “Heather”. She studied English online or in night school and is about 40-75% fluent for 50% of your online or Skype discussions. But, beyond that peril, you definitely don’t want to use an idiomatic language or English jargon in communicating a job spec or you will find yourself so far up the misunderstood language tree you won’t be able to see the ground. And, finally, don’t even think about using an online, free, translator program unless you are OK with everyone in Guangdong enjoying a good laugh at your expense. We have and use in-house native language speakers for our communication, making sure all hands are on board every time.
2. Cultural Differences-Mexico, Our experience has been that most of our dear employees are initially more interested in their friends, their family, all religious holidays and what’s up for the weekend than they understand the principles of hourly pay, product quality, productivity, career advancement, on-time delivery and dependability. We patiently trained and recycled countless employees and ultimately re-invented our management style to eventually get the model right. Now, for Benchmark, everything is perfect. For you, on your own, not so much!
3. Time Zone Differences- The right time for you is not necessarily the right time for Maria or Heather, or vice versa. Seems like an easy one to adapt to, that is if you don’t mind getting on the phone or e-mailing with China after 5 PM at your local cocktail hour, when they are stirring their first cup of tea at the office. Or, you can set the alarm and call at 5 AM if you thought of something important and don’t think it’s an imposition calling them just before lights out in the apartment, possibly to their dismay.
Out of blog space for today. More offshore drama to be continued soon…..
The Oscars and Golden Globes aren’t the only awards ceremonies to consider. In fact, when it comes to regular everyday life, there are many opportunities for awards ceremonies that Benchmark Displays can assist you with. No matter what your business or company entails, we have the ability to help you with your awards or specialty requests. With our extensive work with acrylic and Plexiglass, we can create just about anything your heart desires.
Most parents know what it is like to shuttle the kids from one practice to another. Maybe you have a son in football and a daughter in ballet, or you could be a parent with two kids in soccer and another in piano lessons. No matter what activities you have your children involved with, it is almost guaranteed they will end up with an award of some kind or another. Your son may win most valuable player after a successful winning football season. Your daughter could win a most improved award at the end of a dance recital. If you are the leader of any of these groups, we can help provide you with custom awards made out of cut acrylic or Plexiglass that will last a lifetime.
If you happen to be the proprietor of a small insurance company or other type of sales business, it would be safe to imagine you hold sales competitions at many points throughout the year. It’s even plausible that you will offer exciting incentives like a free dinner or weekend vacation. Once that dinner or vacation is over, though, the winners don’t have anything to show for their accomplishment.
This is where Benchmark Displays comes in. You could go the way of a custom cut acrylic award that they can display on their desk, or you could choose to give them a business card entrapment. It would not only display their business information, you could also have it custom engraved with the contest details and their results as something they can show off for years to come. If the contest you choose to run involves a drawing or raffle, we also have the ability to create a custom ballot box as well.
You can let your employees know just how much they mean to you by offering awards or custom business card displays for any achievements they may have throughout their time with your company.
No matter what end of the spectrum your request comes from, whether it is for children’s sports or for an adult’s work achievements, we can work with you to create something that not only showcases their accomplishments, but does so in a stylish way.
Chambers represent the interests of businesses, and advocate on behalf of the business community. How many recognized members do you have in your chamber? As a small business owner, having begun our journey 30 years ago, we share your passion for promoting the creation and development of local businesses.
Benchmark Displays takes pride in its years of experience, creative know-how and quality, custom production. A company with such stellar products and services of course deserved a custom, elegant website to match.
Welcome to the next generation of Benchmark Displays!
One of our main goals in this redesign was to make it easier for you, our customer. With this advanced technology and software, we are happy to share the following improved/added features:
- Improved Navigation: You’re busy and you want to find the answers to your questions fast! We understand. Our site now clearly lists our capabilities and shows custom display examples from our impressive list of clients.
- Cross Browser Compatibility & Mobile Web Application: This techy jargon simply means that you can view our snazzy site from your iPad, iPhone or anywhere it’s convenient for YOU!
- Request a Quote: You need answers and quality custom displays quickly. Our new “Request a Quote” feature will ensure you’re responded to immediately. Of course, we would love to talk to you on the phone, too. We’re here to help!
- Increased Social Media Sharing Options: You have friends, co-workers or clients that need a custom display? Want to share our 25 years of experience in the field, articles or case studies with them? It’s easy. Click away!
- Integrated Newsletter: This allows subscribers (you) to manage their own subscriptions and stay apprised of news in the industry and the latest custom display technology.
Our new website is built in a powerful content management system called Joomla. The name is a phonetic spelling of the Swahili word "jumla" meaning "all together" or "as a whole". Apropos, as we think that our custom displays are an integral component, completing your marketing campaigns and making your product whole.
I was talking with my sister on the phone the other day, when she interrupted me from her excitement over her recent impulse buy of black, glitter nail polish. She had gone to the store for some soda, when she explained that she saw this new nail polish sign. She’s not terribly familiar with all of the display marketing lingo. Anyway, after some probing, I found out that she was attracted to this new color of polish because of the display.
Custom displays help by providing that “wow” factor. Visuals convey the power of ideas in a way that words alone cannot. The personality of a retail store is not determined by merchandise alone. Custom displays provide the following benefits when properly designed and deployed.
Retail POP displays have a dramatic and significant impact on purchase decisions. Nearly 70% of all purchase decisions are made impulsively, immediately after viewing promotional ads or POP Displays in stores. In order to display items, businesses can use stand-alone displays, counter top displays, hanging signs or posters and even electronic displays.
Effectiveness of Retail POP Displays
Retail POP displays aim to attract the impulse buyers who base their buying decisions on the various promos, display details and offers made by the retailers, dealers or manufacturers. Giant pictures of products, attractive displays about product usage, benefits, promotional gifts accompanying products and any other important information, attract buyers.
Countless manufacturers and retailers are vying for the attention of consumers; therefore, you need to have products designed in attractive colors, designs and cutouts. Additionally, the products need to be displayed to appeal to consumers. Retail POP displays are very useful and should be custom designed and used creatively.
Benefits of Custom POP displays
• Designed to your product needs and specifications.
• Easily Update Product Literature and merchandising with insert panels.
• Allow you to display your product in a unique way.
• Make your product stand out from the competition.
• Increase Brand Awareness
• Increase sales and profits.
Maximize the effectiveness of your retail POP displays and have them designed and manufactured by a professional company. Professional point of purchase display designers will not only understand your requirements but also analyze the customer behavior for particular products. Custom POP displays are designed, keeping in mind the size of the store, the location and the space available for the display.
You can find a wide variety of uniquely designed point of purchase displays made from various materials such as wood, plastic and metal at benchmarkdisplays.com .
It’s great to see what has been happening lately in the on-line world of e-commerce and the pop display market. Benchmark Displays, LLC has recently launched to new e-commerce web sites, TaymarPlasticDisplays.com and DisplaysDirect.net, featuring hundreds of stock displays for retail merchandising. One site is retail and the other is exclusively for wholesale distributors.
I have visited both sites and must tell you, these guys have done a great job. They have incorporated several different ways to search for products. I can’t tell you how many times I have searched for a specific type of display and spent a long time trying to find it and virtually giving up. With their new search features I found what I was looking for in less than a minute and a t a great price. And, right from landing on the site I could see where to begin my search, big and bold.
I really like searching by industry. Several industry types are listed and it is amazing the different types of products that are suggested for use. I bet if you can’t find what you are looking for in your industry and let them know, they help you find it and may even add your industry to the search list.
I had googled a wall mount business card holder and these guys came write-up.
Benchmark Displays’ custom designed brochure holder for Jet Marketing’s “Bring Your Boots” campaign for The Victoria Convention & Visitors Bureau, Victoria, Texas has received another outstanding award from the AAF District 10.
Previously awarded a 2011 Golden Addy for the POP Display, the custom designed “Bring Your Boots” brochure holder went on to District 10 competition on April 15. A unique journey, Fielding Hickey, Jet Marketing and Advertising explained that he had a client who wanted a brochure holder that resembled boots. Hickey had found Benchmark through searches for custom displays and custom acrylic displays.
Julio Tapia, Customer Service Manager, at Benchmark Displays went straight to work on a creative design and adaptation of the brochure holder, a Benchmark staple and product trademark of Benchmark’s Taymar Plastic Displays. Because of Julio’s dedication to customer service and his creative vision, he designed a display and produced a prototype for Jet Marketing and Advertising. Their client loved it!