Thursday, November 13, 2014

Hasseman Marketing Celebrates 10 Years!


(Coshocton, OH)—“It’s hard to believe it’s been 10 years,” says Kirby and Amy Hasseman, owners of Hasseman Marketing & Communications.

Coshocton based marketing firm and promotional products distributor Hasseman Marketing & Communications opened its doors 10 years ago this month.  In 10 years, although promotional products and video production have always been a part of the mix, Hasseman says the business has really evolved.

“We’ve had to change with the market.  When we started, we had to create a market for video.  Promotional products is still the largest part of our business, but now, we have evolved and are working to help other companies with their social media.  It’s fun to evolve to meet the needs of our customers,” says Hasseman.

Hasseman Marketing is located on Main Street in Coshocton and has 3 full time employees and a sales team of 5.  The mission and tag line of the company is “Delivering Marketing Joy!”

“If we do our jobs right,” says Hasseman, “When the customer opens his box of marketing materials, it’s like a little piece of Christmas morning!”

Hasseman even recently published a book called “Delivering Marketing Joy” in order to help clients do “smart promo.”  This book speaks specifically about the power of promotional products and how business marketers can better utilize them in their marketing message.   Delivering Marketing Joy is available for sale on Amazon in both a paperback and Kindle edition at

And now is a really busy time for Hasseman Marketing, partially because of the holiday season.  Now is a time that many companies purchase imprinted and promotional gifts to give to their employees and customers in order to thank them for their support all year. 

“We love to help clients appreciate their customers and their team,” says owner Amy Hasseman.  “You can never say ‘thank you’ too much.”

Hasseman Marketing is located at 432 Main Street in Coshocton, Ohio.  They can be found online at  In addition, you can follow them on Facebook at and Twitter at .

Sunday, October 5, 2014

8 Steps To Trade Show Success

Tell me…has this ever happened to you?  You (or your boss, or your assistant, or someone) realize there is a trade show coming up.  Then someone in the organization says “We need to get some crap to hand out at this show!”  My guess is you have heard it, or said it.  Don’t be ashamed. 
The problem of course is that if your entire strategy to a trade show is “we need to get some crap,” then your results were probably equally crappy!  So let us show you the way to have an actual plan…and get the most out of your next exhibit!
When it is at all possible, get a list of everyone that has confirmed to come to the show.  Though a lot of trade shows probably have a list of last minute sign ups, they will likely have a great list of attendees that are registered and ready to attend.  They are likely making preparations (and if they are smart) creating a strategy for working the show themselves.  Get that list!  As a matter of fact, I have a couple of clients that will not do a show if the organizers won’t provide a list.  Now that you have it…
Step 1:  Send each attendee an email inviting them to come to your booth! 
Your best bet would be to be as creative as possible.  Try to wet their whistle as to why they need to come and see you.  Do you have a great promotional item?  Do you have a fun theme?  Are you giving free beer?  Whatever.  Let them know that you want them to come and see you, where your booth is located, and why they should look for you!   Depending on how long you have until the show, you might even reach out more than once!
Step 2:  Send a direct mail piece to mirror the email.
Make this direct mail piece match the theme of the booth.  I like this direct mail piece to be either a postcard (so they don’t have to open it to see it) or a personal card.  The more impactful the direct mail piece, the better the attendance at the booth!
At the Trade Show
As a side note, a quick tip for a trade show is to have people who know the product or service and are comfortable selling at the booth.  A lot of the time a company will put warm bodies at the booth that don’t know the sales process.  This detracts from the credibility of the company.  So when you are staffing…don’t just bring anyone!
Step 3:  Have a Theme!
If you want to stand out from the competition in the long rows of Trade Show Masses, think about creating a theme for the show!  This not only gives you ammunition for how to dress and what to hand out, it can help with all of your planning for the event. 
Step 4:  Have a hand out for the masses.
With this you want to have a plan too!  Do you want your handout to drive traffic to the booth?  Do you want it to have a “lasting impact” after the show?  Do you want it to do both?  Or do you want it to stay at the bottom of the trade show bag never to come out again?  It’s up to you…so make sure you actually think out the audience, the item and its impact.  Obviously, your promotional consultant can help you think this through.  If you don’t have one, please let us at Hasseman Marketing know!  We would love to help.
Step 5:  Have a VIP Gift
Sometimes at a trade show a current customer will stop by the booth.  This is a wonderful opportunity to make a big deal about their business and thank them.  You also might have leads that you have a connection or show a real interest in your product or service.  This is a great time to reach below the table and get out a VIP gift. 
You could say “Stan, I really appreciate your business and for taking the time to stop and see me today.  I am not giving this to everyone, but please take this as a small token of my appreciation.” 
Or with a prospect, “Janice I think we are on the same page.  I know you have a lot of folks you want to see today, but I really appreciate you taking the time to talk with me.  I am not giving these to everyone, but please take this and I will follow up with you after the show.”
These VIP gifts would be a nicer gift and you wouldn’t need that many of them.  But you can really increase the impact with those special contacts by making them feel like the VIP’s they are!
After the Show…The Fortune is in the Follow Up!
Step 6:  Follow Up Quickly with Email
This is the bare minimum follow up.  But have a system in place to follow up with everyone that stopped by the booth.  Make sure you thank them for coming and remind them who you are and what you do!  These folks have seen a lot of people during that short period of time, so do your best to remind them of you.  If you remember the conversation it would be great to reference it!  But the sooner you can follow up, the more you portray the sense that you and your company is “on it!”
Step 7:  Follow Up with a Card
This can be a really nice personal touch.  Now I understand, if there are thousands of people then maybe this is not realistic.  If not, then another touch with a direct mail postcard might fit the bill.  But this will be one more way to get across their desk and to remind them of your “awesome-ness.”  The personal card, when appropriate can REALLY make you stand out! 
If the idea of writing, stamping, and sending all of those thank you notes makes you squeamish, you can look into other automated ways of doing it.  At Hasseman Marketing we use a system called Send Out Cards.  It’s perfect for a personal follow up piece like this one.  If you want information on that you can go to and see for yourself!
Step 8:  Follow Up with a Call
Yes that’s right, call them!  After going through this process, this is a great way to make the final personal touch.  It’s time to reel them in!
So that’s the 8 step process to making your Trade Shows more effective.  Depending on how many emails you send in the email steps you will have touched each prospect between 7 and 12 times.  Studies show it takes an average of 7 touches before a prospect buys…so you have done a complete job!
It’s not rocket science, but you need to have a plan in order to get the best results! 

Friday, September 12, 2014

The Power of the Relationship

If you have been in our industry (Promotional Products) for any amount of time, this has happened to you.  You get contacted by a client or prospect saying "We found this (specific) product online and we wanted to buy it from you."  This can be very exciting because it means two things:

1)  Your competitors marketing has now provided you an opportunity!
2)  Your customer WANTS to do business with you (your relationship withe them matters).

But there is a caveat to this situation as well.  Because your client has randomly found this product (and thereby this supplier) online, you have no way to know what they are like.  Can this supplier meet the customer's date?  Is their imprinting process quality?  Will they keep their promises?  Who knows?  Additionally, by the time the client has called you, they are often very specifically interested in THAT product.  So it's tough to redirect them.  Most customers don't understand that every product online is NOT the same. 

This happened to us VERY recently.  Although we have a specific group of suppliers we try to focus our business with, the customer wanted THAT product.  So we sent the business to this new supplier.  As you might expect (since I have come this far in the story) the new supplier did NOT come through.  We were left on Thursday night, with an angry customer that would not be receiving their "marketing joy" for their Friday event.

That's when one of us suggested that we go to one of our tried and true suppliers (Gold Bond) and see if they had anything similar.  We found they had something "close enough" so we called, emailed and texted them...after hours on Thursday!  (Did we mention the event was the next day)? 

What happened next felt a little bit like a Christmas miracle!

Chase Thompson (VP of Sales at Gold Bond) worked with his internal team (until 10:30pm) to check stock of the item in question, worked to create the screens over night, and arranged for his production team to start on these at 7am the next morning.  Chase directed 3 way calls with the group involved on the project and worked relentlessly to put the details together.  His team worked to produce the order AND then DRIVE the order to the event (5 hours away!) so they would be in the customer's hands on FRIDAY!


No one wants to have to pull a miracle.  But there are lessons to be learned here.

1)  Buyer beware when you work with someone you DON'T have a relationship with...for someone you do.

2)  It is amazing what can happen when you focus your business with only your best suppliers...and leverage that partnership!

Thanks Chase and all the Gold Bond team!  All of us at Hasseman Marketing really do appreciate it!

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Investing In Your Business

Recently, the Hasseman Marketing team went to a regional promotional products show at Put In Bay.  Our local OPPA group created the PAB (Promotions at the Bay) a few years ago.   This is a different kind of show for a few reasons. 

First, it is in Put In Bay!  It's a very fun atmosphere and a more laid back place to do business.  The other big difference is the investment it takes for distributors to attend the show.  There is travel, overnights, ferry tickets, food and more.   All in all, it takes a more dedicated kind of business person to "invest" the money to make this a priority.  At HMC, we are proud to be a consistent participant. 

*Let me be clear that I am NOT talking about our supplier partners here.  They spend money at all of these events and we (at Hasseman Marketing) appreciate that!  But for people on our side of the business, many of these regional shows are free.

I bring this up for two reasons.  First, if the people you are doing business are not investing their time and money to be the very best at what they do, how can they possibly be doing the best work for you?  Just something to consider!

Second, what are YOU doing (in any industry) to make sure you are on top of your game?  What trainings or events do you attend?  How are  you helping your overall industry?  It's something you (should) expect from your suppliers.  Are you doing the same for your customers?

Remember, unless you're the lead dog the view never changes.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Recognition IS KEY For A Successful Business

It's not rocket science, really.  Humans want to be recognized for the value they bring to a project, family or organization.  Whether they are a trusted confidant, customer or employee, a smart leader will take the time to recognize and appreciate the contributions of others.

It has long been said (on this very blog here and here) that studies show that 69% of customers that leave you will do so because of "perceived indifference."  This is one of those good news/bad news cases.  The bad news is, it's all your fault.  The good news is, you can fix it.  You do the little things (and sometimes big things) that let each of your customers know that you appreciate their business.

Ready?  Go!

But a new study says the same is true for employees!  A study conducted by Healthstream of 100,000 managers and employees revealed that 79% of people who quit their jobs cited “A lack of appreciation is a key reason for leaving.”  Wow.  8 in 10 of your employees and co-workers leave because they simply don't think anyone cares!

So what can you do to fix it?  A lot really. 

The simple things (that are true for your customers) are true for employees.  Just tell them.  Stop by their work station and (sincerely) thank them for their work.  Send them a card.  Call them out in a positive way in front of the team.  Show them appreciation. 

You can also create programs that will recognize them on work anniversaries and birthdays.  The fact is, there is a lot you can do.  Need more ideas?  Let us know! 

But get out there and say "thank you" today.  You will be glad you did!

Friday, August 8, 2014

Image Is Everything

On a recent trip out of the country, I was struck by how each facility we entered was "guarded" by "security."  I use the quotation marks only because these security personnel were armed only with a phone and a clipboard.  I mean no disrespect to security professionals here, but what was really stopping anyone?  Why did we all pay attention to what they said?  Why did we automatically stop and sign their sheet...or tell them where we were going?

In a word...branding.

We stopped because their attire looked the part.  They were dressed in what we deemed as "security" apparel.  (It didn't hurt that they had a clipboard!  Clipboards make everyone look official!).  That appearance was all it took to make us (and everyone who came to the facility) take them seriously.

Consider that the next time you look to outfit your team!  Think about the power of the right appearance.  Do you want your brand to be conservative?  Fun?  Hip?  Experts?  Whatever you want your team to portray, you have the ability to shape when you purchase their "outfits."

Be sure you are sending the message you want your customer to receive!

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

What is Vector Art?

What is Vector Art?

There is often confusion around Art files and what types we can accept.  Terms like Vector Art, Camera Ready, etc... get thrown around.  Most people, unless they are graphic artists, do not understand the differences. So, what is vector art and why does my logo or artwork need to be vector?  Vector art is created using vector illustration software programs, such as Adobe Illustrator, Freehand, and Corel Draw, among others.  The art created with these programs can be blown up in size infinitely without any loss of quality.  (Think of zooming into a picture and it becomes blurry.)

Raster Graphics, such as photographs, and graphics files created in Adobe Photoshop, Paint Shop Pro, and other Raster editing programs, in most cases cannot be used.  Notice how in the example picture that the edges of the art become blurry rigid and not smooth?  With Vector Art you can blow up the image to any size with no loss of quality.

How Can I tell if what I have is Vector?

Vector art is usually created in Adobe Illustrator, and is commonly saved as a particular file type: .ai   Vector art can be saved in other file formats (such as .eps, .svg, or .pdf). But, it is important to remember that just because a file is saved in one of these formats, that does not mean that it is truly vector art. Only art originally created in a vector editing program, such as Adobe Illustrator, is truly vector art.

Also, you can identify vector art by process of elimination. There are some file formats that can only be Raster art, and therefore cannot be Vector art. The most common examples are .jpeg, .png, .bmp, .gif, .psd, .tif. These files cannot be vector art.

Art Charges

There are art charges that are incurred on some orders if Vector art is not able to be provided.  In this case, we must send the provided art off to a designer that can re-create your artwork in a Vector-based program.  If you see an art charge on your bill, this is most likely what has happened.

There are also art charges, sometimes, for layouts and formatting even if you already have the vector file.  For Example:  If you have your logo in Vector format but you want to add specific text under it for a promotion.  The text needs to be added in a Vector Based Program and sized appropriately for the item that it will be imprinted on.  This would incur an art charge too.

Ask your Designer

Keep in mind that if a professional design created your art for you, chances are they may have your artwork saved as vector art, even if they have not sent that file to you. Some designers do not provide their clients with vector art, as they assume that the client will not be able to open the file. So, if you had a professional logo designed for you, but all you have is a JPEG, or something similar, contact your artist, and ask them for vector art.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Warning...Production Times Might Not Be What They Appear!

We get one particular question all the time when it comes to promo.  "How long will it take for me to get my (fill in the blank)?"  It's a great question.  It's one that you should ask...and it's tough to answer.  So many times, the answer is "It depends."

Not what you (or any customer) wants to hear.  But let's discuss why that is...and what you can do to improve it.

The first reason this is tough to answer is that each supplier is different.  Some specialize in low prices.  Some specialize in speedy delivery.  Some specialize in meticulous detail.  That's all good.  But as I have said many times in sales calls, "You can have them:

1) right
2) fast or
3) cheap.

You get to pick 2 out of 3!

So we feel it's the distributor's job to guide the customer to a supplier that can best meet their needs.  That's good for everyone!

The other reason production times can be confusing is the simple understanding of what "production time" really means.  Most of the time, "production time" means how long it will take to produce the item.  This sounds simple enough.  But the actual production does not start until:

1)  The supplier has "good" art.
2)  The proof has been approved.

Often these steps take the longest.  So if it takes 2 weeks to get these steps complete, then a 10 day production time starts.  So the order will take a month.

The final caveat in the delivery of goods has to do with shipping.  Most of the time there will be shipping involved in the delivery of your promotional products.  So where are the good shipping from?  That's a huge factor in cost and in delivery.

So what can you do to help improve delivery?  Simple.

1)  Provide good clean "vector" art.  Most people don't.
2)  Approve your proofs quickly.
3)  Be smart and order early!

That removes the stress from everyone!  Good luck!

Monday, May 19, 2014

Answering Questions about Promo

At Hasseman Marketing, we want to be your resource for Promotional Products...of course.  But we also want to help you become a better, more efficient and smarter buyer of promo.  We want you to better understand the "in's and out's" of our industry.  We think that will allow you to create better promotions that have better results. 

So with that in mind, please give us your questions.  What questions do you have about purchasing promotional products?  We will do our best to answer them!  Let us know!  In order to start us off, we will address questions that we get sometimes.

Here we go:

I ordered 250 mugs at $1 per mug.  How come my order came to $350?

Great question!  No one likes surprises on an invoice.  For those that are new to purchasing promotional products, there are some "additional" charges that you should be aware of with many (but not all) products.  You will want to be aware of these charges and know to ask about them before the purchase so there are no surprises!

Setup Charges:  Often this is fee in addition to the "per piece" price of an item.  This is the charge that it costs to set the run up.  This can run anywhere from $20 to $145 just depending on the item.  There is not always a setup fee, but most of the time there is.  So be sure and understand that!

Shipping:  In addition, you need to get the items to you.  Most of the time your distributor is not printing all of these items in house.  There is no way they could.  There are nearly 1 Million promotional products, so it's tough to stock all of them!  So that being said, there will be freight to get the items to your place of business.  As you know, there are tons of factors on shipping (enough for another blog actually), but just make sure you consider this cost when making your budget. 

Tax:  Yep...we will have to pay Uncle Sam. 

Running charges:  Sometimes additional colors in your logo will incur additional charges.  Hopefully, your promotional partner shares these up front.  But if not, they can really change the cost of your order!

Okay...these are just a few!  Hopefully this helps you understand the cost of your order...and some questions to ask on your next purchase!

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Stop Saying Busy

It is easy to be busy.  As a matter of fact, I have found the "b" word the most overused in the current English language.  When you ask--literally anyone--how they are doing, the answer comes back, "I'm busy."  The ironic thing is, that answer has become the lazy response.  We say it whether we are or we are not, actually busy.  It's like it excuses us from things we don't want to do.  "Sorry, I'm really busy." 

I am guilty of it too.

In our business (and I am sure in yours) it is EASY to be busy.  We hurriedly head from meeting to meeting or from office to office and get to the end of the day and say "Wow, I was busy all day today." 

Great.  But what did you accomplish?

What I have found is that "busy" is an awful measurement for our day and our life.  It means totally different things to different people.  And it doesn't actually measure the accomplishment of anything. 

So two thoughts for the day:

1)  Stop telling people you're busy.  No one cares.  We are all "busy." 

2)  Start judging your day by asking yourself "What did I sell, create, achieve?" 

That's way more important...and probably more interesting too.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Finding Perspective

I always say that I know when I need a "vacation" because little things start to really bug me.  You probably know what I mean.  The things that normally just roll of your back start to suddenly really make you angry.  Silly stuff.

For example, last weekend I went through McDonald's Drive Thru to get my family a surprise breakfast.  It seems everyone had the same idea.  That long line in the drive thru was fine until the person two cars in front of me spent 10 minutes trying to order.  I could hear her saying "I was 5, wait...6 wait...4."

I wanted to scream, "It's McDonalds!  If you have waited in a long line and don't know what you want, you are actually trying to be annoying!"

I know that it's silly to get annoyed or angry about that.  And when those things start to mount up, I tell my wife that I need a "vacation."

The fact is, I think it's more about just finding some perspective.  Vacation really just represents the idea of re-charging and re-gaining goals, drive and perspective.  The good news is, I don't really have to go anywhere to do that.  (Though if someone wants to take me to Hawaii I will go!).

We can find that perspective where ever we are.  We just have to take the time to breath in, breath out, and look for it.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

3 Steps To A Better Frame of Mind

Though I am a positive person, not every day starts with a a smile.  Some days you wake up with a foul dream in your head, a bad taste in your mouth and a harsh thought in your brain.

Some days you feel like you are not going to hit the mark.  Everyone feels like that sometimes.  But there are lots of things that you can (pro-actively) do to get you on the right track.  Here are just three.

1.  Read something that inspires you.  When I wake up in the wrong frame of mind, I make sure I don't wallow in the negativity that surrounds us.  I actively seek out some things to read to get me going.

2.  Do some exercise.  Just 20 to 30 minutes of some exercise can and will improve your brain function and your mood.

3.  Keep swinging.  Nothing helps you get in the right frame of mind like taking action.  Sitting and doing nothing will help keep the negativity going.  Figure out the next right that.  Repeat.

Good luck peeps.  Let's make this day a great one!

Thursday, April 3, 2014

The Give First Economy

We have entered into a new phase of business.  It is just the beginning of this phase.  It is what I called the "Give First Economy." 

This is good news if you are the customer.  We know this because we have lived through the "Automation Economy."  This stage was (and in some cases still is) when companies do everything they can to automate everything from the phone systems, to customer service and everything in between.  This phase left the customer frustrated and annoyed much of the time.

This is also good news if you are a company that has always focused on service.  You want to provide a great customer experience all the way through.  This is great news for you because you are already ahead of the curve.

This is bad news for "the automators."  The large companies that are clearly more focused on the customer's dollar than the customer will struggle.  These companies are not only not concerned with the customer's experience, they seem annoyed the customer has an opinion about it at all!

This is happening because of the shift to the "Give First Economy."  Social Media has truly given power back to the Customer.  And it has just begun.  Customers have more information than ever before at their fingertips.  They have more options.  And because of that third group, customers have more cynicism. 

So as a business, we need to (you guessed it) Give First.  We need to provide value to the customer.  We need to show integrity, credibility, honesty, personality. 

Here's the funny thing: this has been brought about by newer technology but this is old fashioned business.  Get back to shaking a customer's hand and looking them in the eye.  Provide THEM a referral before you ask for one.  Share an article that helps them.  Send a thank you or a birthday card.  Be sincere.

Give First.  You will be thrilled with what happens next.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

5 Reasons Why Mark Cuban is Wrong...about SWAG

Let me start this post by saying that I am a fan of Mark Cuban.  I am a sports fan, and by all accounts, he is an aggressive, progressive owner of the Dallas Mavericks.  He is a serial entrepreneur (love that).  And he is great on Shark Tank!  I love that show!

But Mark Cuban is wrong about SWAG. 

Now you might be thinking, "What did Mark Cuban even say about SWAG?"  Good question!  Cuban wrote a post for Entrepreneur magazine where he outlined his 12 Rules for Startups.  I read it and was really surprised by number 10:  Never Buy SWAG.

Cuban's point was that startups should not send people embroidered polos because they are not using their money wisely.  But...wait...what?  Well sure.  It seems like Cuban has run across a few startups that have not used SWAG (or promotional products) wisely.  Obviously you want to be smart.  But throwing out the entire advertising medium is pretty small minded for such a big thinker.

It's like saying "I knew a guy who wrecked a Ferrari, so you should never buy a car."

So here are some reasons why Mark Cuban is wrong about SWAG:

1)  Promo (or SWAG) Creates RECALL:  Studies show that between 80% and 90% of people that receive a promotional product RECALL the company that gave it to them.  When your customer wants to buy, you want them to RECALL your brand.  Promotional products have great success with this!

2)  Promo Creates REACTION:  Other than recall, you want your advertising to create action.  You want your customers or prospects to contact you.  Another study shows that 15% of people who receive a promotional item will actually reach out to that company.  Incidentally, that number is 5 times higher than other media.  Ignore those numbers at your own risk!

3)  Promo is Targeted:  So many businesses (startups too) have a shotgun approach to marketing.  By using promotional products as a part of the mix, your company can reach out and touch exactly the market you want to reach.  More targeting = less waste!

4)  Promo is Cost Effective:  If you choose wisely (very important as Cuban points out) you can expect long term impact from a great promotional campaign.  This long term benefit means you get a lot of "impressions" for a one time advertising buy.  This creates great value for your advertising dollar!

5)  Humans Like Valuable Gifts:  Put simply, the Rule of Reciprocity is real.  If you provide customers and prospects value (or valuable gifts) they feel the need to do business with you.  And if you do this over time, the more inclined they will be to give you business.  I don't tell you this to manipulate.  I tell you this because it's true. 

The fact is, Promo (or SWAG) is a powerful advertising tool that you would be unwise to ignore.  As a matter of fact, I would bet that if you go to a Dallas Mavericks game, you would see Promotional Advertising everywhere!  From the banners, to beer cups, to uniforms of employees, all great brands use promotional products to leverage their business. 

So if it's good enough for the Dallas Mavericks, why shouldn't you use it to promote your business.  Short should.

Want more common sense business tips on Promotional Products?  Check out the new book "Delivering Marketing Joy!"

Tuesday, March 25, 2014



(Coshocton, OH)—Owner of promotional products distributor, Hasseman Marketing, Kirby Hasseman has written a new marketing book called “Delivering Marketing Joy.”  The new book, Hasseman’s third, focuses on how businesses and organizations can use promotional products to grow their business and increase customer loyalty. 

“I think we are living through a shift in the way that marketing is done,” says Hasseman.  “We have been in a “push” marketing world forever.  Now we are moving into an era of “pull” marketing.  The customer has more power than ever.”

Hasseman argues in his book that though promotional products are a medium that has been around for over 100 years, they are a perfect advertising piece to use in this new era.

“We are entering a “give first” business economy.  Business owners need to provide value first.  Promotional products are perfect for this. “

Hasseman wrote “Delivering Marketing Joy” in order to showcase promotional products as an important piece of any organizations marketing budget.  The book includes chapters on: increasing customer loyalty, trade show success, increasing sales, non-profits and more.  In addition the book also includes many “case studies” from both national suppliers AND distributors in order to showcase how organizations all over the country are using promotional products to impact their business in a positive way!

“The goal was to explain why organizations should be using promo to grow their business,” says Hasseman.  “But it was also important to me to show them how!  In addition, I want both suppliers and distributors to be comfortable sharing this book.”

Some of the companies featured in case studies include: Jetline, Vitronic, Gold Bond, Commonsku, Brand Fuel, Halo, IpromoteU and more. PPAI President Paul Bellantone even agreed to write the forward to the book.

“As an industry we need to work together to educate the public on the power of promo,” says Hasseman.  “Paul has done a great job of reminding us of that!”

Delivering Marketing Joy is available for sale on Amazon in both a paperback and Kindle edition.  You can learn more about Hasseman at 

Hasseman is the owner of Hasseman Marketing & Communications in Coshocton, Ohio.  Hasseman Marketing is a marketing firm specializing in promotional products, video, social media and more.  You can learn more at 

Friday, March 21, 2014

Saying Thank You Enough

I am blessed with an amazing wife.  She and I have a great partnership (I think).  She is energetic, giving, thoughtful and loving (there is a point to this I promise).  She does a ton around the house (in addition to working at our office) to keep things rolling.  One of the things she does in our house is the laundry.  She does it all!

I know, I am lucky.

We were in a meeting the other day, with supplier Kari Morevec, who pointed out that if someone else does the laundry, you can't complain.  It's just nice that they did it!  I smiled at the time because I know that I NEVER complain about the laundry!  I understand how good I have it!

But then something else occurred to me.

It's not enough to not complain.  As is the case with the laundry--and all of the little things that your spouse, kids, team members and peers do for you--we need to APPRECIATE!  It seems like a common sense thing, but we know that it doesn't always happen for us.  And if we are honest with ourselves, we don't always do it either.

Here's the other thing.  Me saying "thanks for doing the laundry" once is not enough.  I need to repeatedly (and sincerely) thank Amy for taking care of me and my family.  When I tell this story about me you are probably saying "of course you should!"

But are you?

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Saying No Is Hard

Anyone who is busy will tell you that they need to "say no more."  We have all been there.  We commit to something and realize once you are in the middle of it, that you don't have time to be everywhere.  This is not unique to me or to you.

I have read MANY books and articles and blogs reminding me of the power of 'no."  One of my favorites rules was, "If the answer is not HELL YES, then it should be no."  The idea, of course, is that if you are not really excited about a project then it will only drain energy and time away from the things that really matter.  A lot of these books even tell you that people asking will really respect and understand when you say "no."

See that's the hard part.  Not really.

Though there are people that will appreciate that you don't want to commit to something you won't follow through with, not all people will feel that way.  They understand that you are busy (that is likely why they are asking you!) but most feel that their project is really important (otherwise they wouldn't be doing it!).  In my experience, they will be disappointed and even (sometimes) annoyed. 

So saying no can be really hard.  But it's worth it.

As I said above, if you say "yes" to everything (and I have totally done this) you end up doing nothing really well.  You are over-stressed and under-delivering.  And here's the other thing, you are not actually enjoying any of it either. 

In a very personal example, I have not gone to all of my daughters' dance competitions this year.  I am not an absent dad, but I don't enjoy these.  However, this week I am going to watch.  And you know what?  I am excited about it!  I am looking forward to the whole activity!  It's amazing how sometimes saying 'no' can enhance the activity of saying 'yes.'

But you already know this!  So let this serve as a quick reminder.  Unless the answer is "Hell Yes," say "No."

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Business/Friend Relationships

Today I had the opportunity to reconnect with two good different times during the day.  On one occasion, my friend and I had lunch and talked "some" business.  In the other instance, we spent quite a while on the phone today catching up and brainstorming business ideas.  Both of these guys are "good" guys...and both are original thinkers.

I love it when I take the time to do that.

Each time I take time out of my "busy" schedule to invest in those kind of business/friend relationships, I get a lot out of it.  I come up with new ideas, challenge old ones, and generally leave the interaction in a good place. 

As I mature (I hope) in my career I seek this sort of opportunity out more and more.  I find that the more I learn, and read and grow, the more I understand how much I have to learn.  So when I get the chance to meet and interact with those I am learning from, I end up better for it.

So here's to more good, thoughtful, meaningful business/friend relationships!  And thanks Pat and Dana.  Good stuff.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Measuring What Matters

One of the reasons its important to have goals or rules within any organization is so you can measure the level of success.  You measure what matters.  Or as a leader, you show your organization what matters by what you measure.

There is a danger in measuring too many things.  We can certainly do this with technology in business.  We can measure all sorts of metrics!  There is a dazzling array of interesting statistics that we can place onto any marketing campaign, sales process, etc.

I think part of the job of a leader is to measure the right things.  If you don't measure anything, you create chaos (and not one that will last long).  But if you measure everything you will drive everyone (including yourself) crazy.

So the goal is to measure what really matters to you and your organization.  What really matters enough to measure?

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

One Key to Video is Brevity

We do professional video production for companies and have done so for a long time now.  For quite a long time I have preached to companies and organizations that "brevity" was their friend when it comes to video.  Here is a (short) video blog about it!

When I first started doing video, clients would say to me "I want a 30 minute video to tell about my company."  I would say, "No you don't."  The fact is, most organizations create videos that they are interested in watching...not their customer.  We are all guilty of it. 

The thing that has changed is the definition of brevity.  I used to tell customers that they wanted to create a video that was 3 to 7 minutes in length (with 7 really being too long).  But that has even changed.  In this world where everyone can create video (not everyone can create good video, but that's another discussion) there is SO much content out there.  Consumers have tons of options and can jump from video to video without blinking an eye.  And once you've lost them...their gone.

The fact is, many people (myself included) will look to see how long a video is before they even click on it!

So REALLY consider the length of your video.  Brevity is your friend. 

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Change Is Here

Breaking news:  An historical change is upon us.

No it is not the Rise of the Planet of the Apes (wow that movie was bad).  It is a cultural shift in the way business is done.  It is happening now.  And if you are a fan of doing things "the right way" then you should be excited for the future.

The change has been coming for some time.  For years, companies have worked to automate all of their "service" services.  They have consistently tried to cut costs with outsourcing phone centers, one size fits all websites or even getting rid of human contact all together.  We have all experienced it at one time or another.  We have spent endless time on hold coming to the realization that customer service really had nothing to do with the customer at all.  


From a marketing standpoint, the change has been coming as well.  We have lived in an age of "push" marketing forever...since the beginning of time.  But the internet--and social networks--is changing that.  Right now.  Now, more than ever, the customer has a voice.  The customer has clout and power.  

And the customer wants better.  We want better.

So the shift is beginning.  Companies are beginning to understand that they need to humanize.  They need to engage.  They need to provide value.  They need to GIVE before they ask.   

What this means is that this large world is becoming small again.  Each customer needs to be treated as if we are business owners in a small town!  We might see them again in the grocery store.  If we treat them badly, they can tell their friends.  So as businesses we need to re-visit service and marketing.

We need to GIVE first.  We need to work at providing value to our customers so they trust us.  We need to think "small" things first.  

This is an excerpt from the upcoming book, Delivering Marketing Joy!  Coming Soon!

Friday, February 28, 2014

Patience and Persistence

If you read many books or quotes or listen to inspirational stories, you hear about the concept that the hardest part in any project is to "take the first step."  And though I agree that nothing happens until you start a project, I don't think that's always the hardest part.

The reason I say this is because sometimes getting started is fueled with enthusiasm, excitement and even naivity.  You are pumped up about the new idea or goal and you WANT to get things moving in the right direction.

I think sometimes the hardest part of the project is when  you have launched into it with your heart and soul...and results don't happen right away.  (Seth Godin writes a great short book about this called the Dip.  You should read it).

The challenge with this rut (or Dip) is to push into it.  To continue to work through the important activity until the results begin to match with the effort.

Here's the thing:  It will almost always take longer than you think.  But if it's really worth it, you will be glad you show the patience and persistence to see it through.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Fearing Change

Admittedly, I am not a person who generally fears change.  I like it (most of the time).  I joke with my friends that I am one of the few guys that actually moves the furniture without being asked.  I like to see things in a different light.  I like to tweak.  I like to test and keep things fresh. 

But of course the biggest challenge with any organization is proposing change.  It's scary for many people.  If you want to make changes, no matter how good they are, you will get push back.

The thing is, even though I am generally "pro-change" I can still be skeptical of things that are different.  As a leader of an organization, or a leader of a family or department, etc., we need to make sure we are not saying "no" to an idea just because it's change. 

Nothing really good comes without it.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Be Willing To Ask For Help

As an entrepreneur (and pretty independent person in general) I have always wanted to "do it myself."  I have historically wanted to be solely responsible for my own success or failure.  And that is a point.

On the good side, you need to have some of that streak in order to get things started.  You need to be willing to "choose yourself" on a project and not wait for someone else to give you permission.  Business owners need to be willing to take some risks, understanding that they can work hard to push it through.

The challenge with this is sometimes I have been unwilling to seek help when it is right in front of me.  I have not always been willing to take advice.  I have not always been willing to consider that someone else might have a better thought, process, idea, etc. so I have not asked.  And of course that is a mistake.

The fact is, most good people want to see you do well.  They want to (within reason) help you reach your goals.  And the best part is, they can often be in a position to really help you.

You and I just need to be willing to ask.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

The Chapters of Our Life

I was listening to an audio program of Wayne Dyer recently.  As you may know, Dr. Dyer is a best selling author, speaker, teacher on the Power of Manifesting what you want in your life.  I highly recommend his teachings for those that want to take control of their thoughts...and therefore, their life.

Today he told the story of a seminar where participants were given 5 3 x 5 index cards.  They were told to write the 5 chapters of the "story of their life" on them.  With a small index card you can only be so detailed.  Here is what one person wrote:

Chapter 1:  I am walking down a street.  There is a big hole.  I don't see it.  I fall in the hole.  It's not my fault.  It takes a LONG time to get out.

Chapter 2:  I am walking down the same street.  There is a big hole.  I see it.  I fall in it anyway!  It's not my fault.  It still takes a long time to get out.

Chapter 3:  I am walking down the same street.  There is a big hole.  I see it again!  I fall in it again anway!  It's my fault.  I get out right away.

Chapter 4:  I am walking down the same street.  There is a big hole.  I see it.  I walk around it.

Chapter 5:  I walk down a different street.

This message really struck me today.  We all make mistakes in our lives.  The key (as this illustrates) is to recognize them, take responsibility for them, and then "take a  different street." 

Have a great day!

Saturday, February 22, 2014

What Is Your Choice?

My youngest daughter and I were talking the other morning before school.  She had come downstairs (mostly) ready and had several minutes before we needed to leave.  She was in good spirits and we had started talking about her day.

One topic spun her mind off and she went through some quick mental gymnastics that landed her on being annoyed.  She talked herself into being mad about something that hadn't happened yet!  She went from being in reasonably good spirits to being in a really bad mood in about 20 seconds.  But nothing had changed.

Needless to say I pointed that out.

I think many people go through these mental gymnastics every day.  They wake up in the morning with a clean slate of activities.  But at some point they CHOOSE to be in a bad frame of mind.  Some folks actually actively look for things to piss them off!  It's clear by the things they choose to be angry about!

The thing I find (and I pointed out to my youngest daughter) is that it takes the same amount of energy to try and find good things.  I feel bad for those people who are constantly complaining, whining and bemoaning their state of life.  That seems like a miserable way to live.

But let's be clear.  It's their choice.  What will yours be today?

Friday, February 21, 2014

What Happens After Some Success

I find that anyone that has some gumption, resiliency, and drive handle the tough times pretty well.  These folks are aptly prepared to rally the troops and focus in on the tough task at hand.  As a matter of fact, having that tough goal sometimes makes  it easier to focus on what's important.

The real test is what happens after that tough test has been tackled.  Or...what happens when the first tough task is tackled.  What do they do then?

Sometimes the true test of a person or organization, is what they do just after success.  Will they totally rest?  Throw a party that lasts a month?  Take a long break?

Or do they take a breath and toast the success...and keep on moving to the next goal?

What do you do?

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Consistent Action Produces...

Every once is a while we all find ourselves in a rut.  The frenetic excitement of our busy lives slow down and we look around and wonder why the phone is not ringing.  Why is my bank account low?  Why are we struggling?  Why is this happening to me?

We all have those moments.

I find the best thing to do in those moments is not to focus on the end results.  I don't want to focus on what is "not" happening in my life or my business.  Instead I need to focus on the specific actions I can take to move me toward the result I want. 

The difference?  I focus on actions that only I can control.  When I focus on specific, positive, pro-active action each and every day...the results take care of themselves.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Leading From Fear

The challenge comes to anyone who has ever lead an organization.  When things retract, what do you do?  The natural inclination I think is to look for things to cut, hunker down, and look out for dangers in the market place.  It just makes sense, right?

It does...and it doesn't.

The problem with this mentality is that it is created, I think, from fear.  As a leader you are trying to react to the market place to make sure nothing (more) bad happens.  I get it...and have done it.

But leading from fear creates many (unintended) consequences.  When a leader is operating from a fear mindset I think they are often:

1)  Not looking for bold new ways to grow the business.  As Wayne Dyer says, you cannot create abundance from a scarcity mindset. 

2)  Not looking for ways to innovate within the the organization.

3)  Eliminating innovation when they see it.  Innovation often disguises itself as "change."  And the fearful leader is not interested in change.  The fearful leader wants to maintain.

Of course this not only stifles creativity within the organization, but also drives away those that are the most innovative.  They have no interest in being a part of an organization that stifles them in the first place. Unfortunately, those are the folks that can often make the biggest positive impact in the long term.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014


I thought this would be a good one to share now...or anytime!



THAN failures, than success,



IN A CERTAIN WAY. We cannot change the inevitable.
the only thing we can do is play ON the one
string WE HAVE, and that is our attitude…

I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me
and 90% how I react to it. and so it is with you…
WE ARE in charge of our attitudes.