So a client comes to you asking for a promotional product, such a coffee cup with their logo on it. You might think it’s as easy as making a call, getting a quote and and ordering. Not so fast Cowboy!

First, it is very unlikely that you will have compettive pricing by just making a call to a promotional products company. There’s a whole structure of the promotional products industry that involves manufacturing (usually out of China), distribution and suppliers. To be involved in this structure so that you have access to wholesale-like pricing and vendors to purchase from, you need to be a part of organizations such as ASI ( and PPAI ( Respectively, these acronyms stand for Advertising Specialty Institute and Promotional Products Association International.

These organizations have certain requirements to be a member. These requirements are typically involve a filled-out application, proof of past promotional products purchases (around 3-5 references) and a yearly fee (around $400).

To be quite honest, that still does not assure the best pricing. Once a part of an organization, it takes time to build enough sales to then ask vendors for discounts.


ProjectCenter is a single-source service company providing marketing and document solutions to small, medium and large-sized businesses in the U.S. area. ProjectCenter is based in Phoenix, Arizona and its services include graphic design, web design, printing, copying, scanning and mailing. For more information, please call (602) 252-6655 or visit


There is one comment for this post.

  1. promotional t shirts on January 2, 2009 9:03 am

    thanks for taking the time to post this I always enjoyed reading your posts

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