A new perspective on the IoPP MN Member Company Showcase

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The IoPP Member Showcase at Dunwoody Technical Institute in Minneapolis was held on March 26th. This was my 3rd time attending. As a newbie to IoPP MN a few years ago, I signed up as an exhibitor not knowing what to expect. After going to this event as both an exhibitor and as an attendee, I’m still impressed by the warm, welcoming atmosphere. I haven’t exhibited at many tradeshows and this was perfect to start off with. The IoPP Member Showcase is a unique mini-tradeshow experience in that you walk around as a group to visit each table and listen to the exhibitor talk about their company in more detail. It’s definitely not as overwhelming as a larger tradeshow – not to mention it gives you an excuse to go to dinner at Benihana’s afterwards for more conversation and networking.

There were many innovative ideas for tradeshow promotion this year. One company gave out calendars with a $100 bill inside. Another booth had unique promotional materials that related to their business, such as the twist tie dispenser manufacturer that gave out mini dispensers. Another exhibitor, a tradeshow display company, showed a sample of their impressive back-lighted fabric display panel, which made the graphics really stand out. This company also offers modular displays that can be used in many different configurations for different size booths for those companies that do several shows a year. They even offer set-up and tear-down services for those that need an easy solution or are under a time crunch.

Here’s my takeaway from the show: there are always new and innovative ways to promote your business or save you time when getting ready for a tradeshow. If you need help with any tradeshow graphics or promotion ideas, reach out to me for an initial consult. I am available to help!

Get more bang for your tradeshow bucks!

I love it when I’m able to actually see the finished product in use! I attended MinnPack/MD&M in Minneapolis this past year and was able to see my work in action. I helped Mechatronic Solutions create promotional emails before the show along with an eight foot display for their booth. This was their first time exhibiting at MinnPack, so there was a lot of foot traffic to their booth. They came away with several new prospects, so I'd call that a success!

I did some perusing of the exhibit hall while I was there, I was curious to see what others were doing for tradeshow promotion. Since it was Halloween that day, there were many exhibitors with bowls of candy sitting out. However, one booth stood out because they were giving away bananas. Did that tie in with their business? No. But they stood out by having a giveaway that no one else was doing. This simple idea can draw people to your booth and start a conversation.

If you need help coming up with ideas for your next tradeshow... let's talk. I can help you cover all the bases.

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What is a Brand Guide – and why you should have one...

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What is a Brand Guide?

Your brand guidelines are a set of rules on how to use your brand’s visual elements. These rules will include when to use a logo, how to space the logo, fonts and colors as well as the look of your photography. You can even include company history, values and mission statement.

Here are 3 reasons to consider creating a Brand or Style Guide for your business:

1. Consistency

Every time a prospect visits your website, sees your business card, or receives a brochure from your company, they make a decision about your business: Is this company reliable? Are they professional? Having this in place helps you keep everything consistent, which shows them you care about the details.

2. Guidelines

You know your brand’s identity inside and out, but a new employee or vendor may not. Having a brand guide in place can save you time and money by not having to communicate this information over and over to different vendors.

3. Value

When a brand’s identity is cohesive, it increases the brand’s perceived value. By creating a guide, you make it easier to maintain the quality and integrity of your brand's image.

If you need help creating a brand guide but don't know where to start, I would love to help you through the process!

Contact me to see samples of Brand Guides I've created for other companies & get started on yours, today!

What is an infographic – and why they work!

Infographics: An effective marketing tool to tell your story and increase sales

According to an article in Forbes magazine, infographics are growing in popularity as an important tool in your marketing efforts.  What is an infographic? It is a visual representation of data – and an effective way to differentiate your business from your competitors.  According to the study, 3 out of 4 marketers rely on visuals in their social media messaging and 60% of businesses are already using this as a marketing and sales tool. Why is this so effective? Visuals are known to improve learning and retention by 400%.    (Link to original article  here .)  Any company with a story to tell or a product to promote can tell it better with a well-designed infographic. If you would like to try out this new trend, I would love to help out!     Best, Jennifer Leonardson   Principal & Designer    Oxyjen Design, Inc.

According to an article in Forbes magazine, infographics are growing in popularity as an important tool in your marketing efforts.

What is an infographic? It is a visual representation of data – and an effective way to differentiate your business from your competitors.

According to the study, 3 out of 4 marketers rely on visuals in their social media messaging and 60% of businesses are already using this as a marketing and sales tool. Why is this so effective? Visuals are known to improve learning and retention by 400%.


(Link to original article here.)

Any company with a story to tell or a product to promote can tell it better with a well-designed infographic. If you would like to try out this new trend, I would love to help out!



Best,
Jennifer Leonardson

Principal & Designer

Oxyjen Design, Inc.

Why is the potato chip bag always half full?

Have you noticed that potato chip bags are never completely full?

I found out why during a recent IoPP tour of the Mocon Ametek facility in Brooklyn Park. The reason is that potatoes will go rancid if air gets into the bag, so they fill the bag full of nitrogen. This process also helps the product stay intact during shipping.    Mocon does packaging testing for the food & beverage, medical device, pharmaceutical and flexible electronics industries. They ensure that whatever is inside the package will maintain its integrity. This is very important in today's packaging market. We also heard from Dr. Keith Vorst, Director for the Polymer and Food Protection Consortium at Iowa State University. He talked about how pre-made food packaging is not going away any time soon. It is a huge market that many big retailers are getting into.  During this talk, I learned that it is more important than ever for the designer to work with packaging specialists from the beginning to help come up with a solution that is attainable with current technologies. If you have a product that needs specialized packaging, I would love to help out!     Best, Jennifer Leonardson   Principal & Designer    Oxyjen Design, Inc.

I found out why during a recent IoPP tour of the Mocon Ametek facility in Brooklyn Park. The reason is that potatoes will go rancid if air gets into the bag, so they fill the bag full of nitrogen. This process also helps the product stay intact during shipping.

Mocon does packaging testing for the food & beverage, medical device, pharmaceutical and flexible electronics industries. They ensure that whatever is inside the package will maintain its integrity. This is very important in today's packaging market. We also heard from Dr. Keith Vorst, Director for the Polymer and Food Protection Consortium at Iowa State University. He talked about how pre-made food packaging is not going away any time soon. It is a huge market that many big retailers are getting into.

During this talk, I learned that it is more important than ever for the designer to work with packaging specialists from the beginning to help come up with a solution that is attainable with current technologies. If you have a product that needs specialized packaging, I would love to help out!



Best,
Jennifer Leonardson

Principal & Designer

Oxyjen Design, Inc.

How much do you know about recycling?

Did you know that you are supposed to keep the caps on your plastic bottles when you recycle?

I’ve always thought of myself as an informed recycler, but did not know this until I went on a tour of the Waste Management Recycling Facility. If you don’t keep the caps on the bottle, it falls into the wrong section of the recycling line. This is just one of the many things I learned on the tour. The sheer volume of trash was humbling, but it’s good to know that it will not make its way to the landfill.  While I was there, I also learned that Target Corporation is implementing a recycling icon program on all of their private label products so that the consumer can easily see how to recycle each product. This is a great trend in the industry that I think we’ll see more of in the future as other companies follow suit. If this is a trend that you would like to implement, I can help. Or, if you are a manufacturer that needs help with the labeling and packaging of your product, I can help with that, too.    Best, Jennifer Leonardson   Principal & Designer    Oxyjen Design, Inc.

I’ve always thought of myself as an informed recycler, but did not know this until I went on a tour of the Waste Management Recycling Facility. If you don’t keep the caps on the bottle, it falls into the wrong section of the recycling line. This is just one of the many things I learned on the tour. The sheer volume of trash was humbling, but it’s good to know that it will not make its way to the landfill.

While I was there, I also learned that Target Corporation is implementing a recycling icon program on all of their private label products so that the consumer can easily see how to recycle each product. This is a great trend in the industry that I think we’ll see more of in the future as other companies follow suit. If this is a trend that you would like to implement, I can help. Or, if you are a manufacturer that needs help with the labeling and packaging of your product, I can help with that, too.


Best,
Jennifer Leonardson

Principal & Designer

Oxyjen Design, Inc.

Source: http://p0.vresp.com/waIlZf