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Originally, we had the Greeks and their laurels, but for modern history the personalized awards business is a direct descendant of the trophy shop, which started as a section found in sporting goods stores. Bowling and golf were money-makers, but kids’ activities were a market of perpetual renewal.

Another year is here, and the temptation to just relax for a while after a hectic holiday season is real. After year two of COVID and promises of the light at the end of the tunnel, it’s hard to get up and get going full speed ahead, isn’t it? It’s easier to stay in your comfort zone and just wait out what is yet to come. The problem is, we seem to have fallen into waiting for some outside force to get us moving forward in 2022. Ain’t gonna happen! “If you rest, you rust,” famously said by late actress Helen Hayes. It’s time to turn the automatic pilot off. Stop wishing for better times, and find ways to make better times happen for your business. Start setting goals again…realistic goals, small goals, attainable goals. You can’t change the entire world, and you can’t accomplish everything. But, you can accomplish something. Here are some ideas to get you jump-started with a new, positive focus for 2022.

Each year, the Awards and Personalization Association recognizes the contributions, hard work, and creativity of our industry’s professionals by bestowing Gold Obelisk awards upon outstanding individuals and companies.

Global supply chain disruptions began in 2020, creating bottlenecks throughout the chain. There is no easy global solution, creating a lot of uncertainty around product shipping, stocking, and prices. Experts don’t see the bottlenecks resolving until, at the earliest, mid-2022.

Arlington, TX-based Engraving Concepts, which provides laser cutting, engraving, and metal marking services, is celebrating its 50th year in business. This year also marks 3 decades of the company representing the Epilog Laser brand. Along the way, Engraving Concepts has also added other made-in-America equipment: TYKMA/Electrox, Kern Laser Systems, and Direct Color Systems.

12 IN.

Height of the trophy


Weight of the trophy

The E! People’s Choice Awards trophy undergoes a redesign. Previously a more traditionallooking art glass piece, the new design is meant to honor the E! logo—and it’s trademark exclamation point!—and offer a more abstract, sculptural take on trophies.

Word of mouth will always be a major aspect of any awards and personalization professional’s marketing toolkit, but if the last year has taught us anything, it’s that getting online is no longer negotiable. Retailers who do not communicate with consumers via social media are missing a huge opportunity to build relationships with new customer groups, capture additional sales, and grow brand recognition. But with everything running a shop requires, adding to it all the Tweets, posts, ads, and more can feel like a full-time job—on top of all the other full-time jobs required to run your business! That’s where social media management tools come in.

The holidays are nearly here! No matter how much you love this time of the year, it is hard to deny that there is additional stress in the workplace. Customers need gift items personalized at the last minute. Requests to engrave gifts purchased elsewhere become common. Questions like “Do you gift wrap?” surface more often. And with all of the sales offered by big box and online stores, the customers think nothing of asking you for a discount or better price. Frustrating, isn’t it? But as customer service professionals, we continue to smile and treat each customer with respect.

The National Design Awards program seeks to increase national awareness of the impact of design through education initiatives. It is presented by Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum, which is the Smithsonian Institution’s museum of design.

During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, I developed what I considered to be a brilliant plan to make the shopping experience with our company more enjoyable for our customers. It was a plan to increase sales and grow our customer base. I called it “Plan A” as a joke, never imagining I might need a Plan B or a Plan C.
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Awards and Personalization Association

The Awards and Personalization Association is the organization for retailers and suppliers of personalized and customized items. By providing education, meetings, and access to a vibrant network of professionals, the Awards and Personalization Association is the one place to ensure the growth of your talent, your business, and your professional community.

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Chicago, IL 60631
(Fax) 847.375.6480

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