GREENVILLE, SC – June 9, 2020 – Since March, promotional products and apparel distributors have had to work new markets and add to their arsenal of services just to survive. Data from ASI Research shows that distributor revenues dropped 4.9% in the 1st quarter alone, before the stay home campaigns were launched and businesses who use promotional products had to close. This was the first year-over-year quarterly decline in more than a decade. The 2nd Quarter is not going to be better where promotional items are concerned. Of course, many distributors are keeping busy, some busier than ever, with sourcing and selling PPE (personal protection equipment). This adjustment is just one example of the changes in the Advertising Specialty industry that will take place.
The “New Normal” is starting and businesses that cater to the promotional products and apparel distributor industry need to create new models to best serve the way these businesses will have to function. New Buying Group, WePromo, has recognized that. Just like promotional product distributors now selling PPE, WePromo has adjusted the buying group model to support the current economic realities of many distributors, making its membership free. Continuing access to discounts from top industry suppliers relies on the distributor growing their business with these suppliers.
Some distributors and suppliers will not survive the current economic conditions. Those who can consolidate their resources and be flexible in new markets will have the best chance. “(This is a) Great idea…. you are a true leader and innovator,” says David Caplan of Caplan Uniforms, one of the first businesses to inquire, hoping to save on his monthly expenses. With no monthly fee involved, WePromo is a service that is easily integrated into a distributor’s business now. Members may belong to other groups and have the choice to join other groups, but they will not need to. Another new member commented “… and you have Personal Protection Equipment! That is how my business is surviving.” WePromo seeks to support the new reality of distributors, bringing in suppliers and items they might not have used or needed in the past.
Businesses will always need promotional items and apparel but how distributors and suppliers can make money providing them will undergo a change. WePromo has also made a second adjustment to the buying group model. Suppliers are invited to join and vetted. “Who needs 10 pen suppliers?” Asks Chris Barrington, WePromo VP of Member Sales. “A distributor needs a budget company and high-end company, both who bring fantastic value and great customer service. And that is what we give them”
Limiting competition within a buying group and naturally consolidating purchases will assist suppliers. By doing this, WePromo hopes to create closer partnerships between distributors and suppliers. As Nolan Parker, National and Strategic Accounts Manager at S&S Activewear, puts it, “By offering a range of high quality products, alongside dedicated customer service from a limited number of suppliers, WePromo will be the conduit for great things between suppliers and promotional products distributors.”
Find out how WePromo can help make “The New Normal” easier to manage. WePomo, a unique approach to buying groups, providing a necessary service for the lowest fee possible – free. More information can be found at www.wepromo.net.