Monthly Archives: April 2016

Promotional Pens

Choosing a Promotional Pen

It seems simple, choosing a promotional pen. And it can be. But you have LOTS of options.

You should begin your selection with one of three different priorities:

  • quality
  • budget
  • consistency

Quality

When you want a quality pen, you have two broad categories.

Gift Pens

Gift PenThis are typically metal, and start around $3 each and go up to $1763.21 each. Really! I can sell you a pen for $1763.21. Please buy one. 🙂  Here’s the link.

Back to reality. They start around $3 each and go to more than $100 for high-end pens and desk sets. These are nice gifts for top clients and VIPs.

Mid Range Giveaway Pens

These are nice pens but still affordable for quantity giveaways like trade shows. Prices are between $.75 and $3 each.

Budget

When budget is a high priority, there are always budget pens on sale or close out. Some can be as low as $.12 each when you buy high quantities and can wait for overseas production. Otherwise, $.35 each for a quantity of 300 is a good planning point.

The disadvantage is you won’t necessarily find the same pen on sale the next time you buy pens.

Consistency

When you want the same pen all the time, you generally can’t buy based only on price. You can still get a budget pen, but it might not be on sale when you’re ready to restock.

Best Bets for Budget and Consistency

Here are some good options that are usually in stock and meet most budgets.

Dart Style Pen

This style is available from lots of suppliers, so it’s virtually always available for $.45-$.60 each.

Dart Pen Info

Bic Clic Stic

This is a very popular option. They’re made to order by Bic in Clearwater, Florida, so they are always available with over 600 color combinations.

For a basic pen, they are a little pricey at $.78 each (minimum quantity of 300), but it’s Bic quality, and you can often find them on sale. (Recently, they have been on sale for $.57 each.)

Bic Clic Stic Info

Photoshop Before and After

I recently updated a painter’s website to WordPress and did some Photoshopping for the image gallery. So I’m just showing off a little now.

Here are a few images before and after retouching.

Photoshop Retouch, Before and After
I received the image on the left and created the image on the right.
Photography and Retouch, Before and After
I shot this image and adjusted the exposure. Some retouching, and here you go.

See the new website here: ShortBrushStroke.com

And if you need a painter in Pittsburgh, give them a call.

AMP, Mobile, Responsive

AMP – Finally, Mobile Optimized Standards

Yay…I’m celebrating the start and initial spread of Accelerated Mobile Pages (“AMP”) Project.

In October, Google and other industry partners announced it’s support of AMP. It’s been adopted by the likes of BBC and The New York Times and lots of other big players.  It’s a standard for creating faster, compatible sites for mobile devices.

My long-time frustration with much of WordPress (and similar software) is the big file size served to small screens and limited bandwidth devices. Pages are often complicated and sometimes incompatible. It makes viewing slow or difficult.

AMP offers some promise for a swing in the industry, from overly complicated mobile sites, to more usable and faster sites. I wouldn’t try to predict the future of AMP, but I think it’s a worthy step in the right direction. In the meantime, I’m studying up.

AMP is taking off, and I glad it is. I hope this is a milestone in mobile website development.

More Info

Find more info at these sites:

AMP Project

Google Search guidelines for AMP pages

Google Official Blog