ASI’s Counselor Magazine Names 40 Best Places To Work In Promo Products Industry

Ontario-based distributor Brand Blvd chosen No. 1 workplace

TREVOSE, PA – April 3, 2018 – The Advertising Specialty Institute® (ASI) today announced the top 40 best places to work in the promotional products industry, with Counselor® magazine naming Ontario-based distributor Brand Blvd (asi/145124) the industry’s number-one company.

The 2018 Best Places to Work list of top-ranked companies in the $23.6 billion promotional products industry – published annually since 2008 by ASI’s Counselor magazine – is a mix of suppliers and distributors located throughout the U.S. and Canada. The winners were identified as top workplaces through in-depth employee surveys that rated companies in nearly 20 categories, including communication, office culture and work/life balance.

Once again, small companies dominate the list, accounting for 12 of the top 13 firms in overall rankings. There are three companies from Canada, and Washington state has the most Best Places to Work companies with five.

Following nationwide trends, ASI’s surveys found that industry employers are moving away from salary and focusing more on “lifestyle” benefits like flexible hours (especially in metro areas), along with team-building and corporate transparency. In the past, companies could dangle cheap health insurance costs as a perk, but now that those costs are on the upswing, investing in technology, the option to work remotely, mentoring, cross-training and interchangeable job roles are gaining favor as incentives and rewards. Cubicles are out and open spaces are in.

“Achieving a work/life balance is more important to employees than ever, and more and more companies are responding by offering more meaningful perks, along with fun bonuses like Xbox lounges and dog-friendly offices,” said Counselor Editor-in-Chief Dave Vagnoni (@VagnoniASI). “The best cultures are built around people: both great employees and great leaders. They’re built on core values like respect, good communication and the opportunity for personal development.”

1. Brand Blvd – St. Catharines, ON
2. Mac Mannes – Bethesda, MD (asi/259100)
3. ScreenBroidery – Indianapolis, IN (asi/305623)
4. Harper + Scott – New York, NY (asi/220052)
5. Superior Printing & Promotions – Medford, MA (asi/379023)
6. The Next Trend Designs – Mississauga, ON (asi/283375)
7. Walker-Clay Inc. – Hanson, MA (asi/354530)
8. Bright Ideas LLC – Troy, VA (asi/146026)
9. College Hill – Pullman, WA (asi/164578)
10. Printable Promotions – Chicago, IL (asi/299458)

Click here for the complete list of 40 winning companies. Counselor’s Best Places to Work April issue, available in print and online, is devoted to profiles of the winning companies, along with the latest industry employment trends and insightful advice on empowering employees while increasing productivity. The package includes five podcasts with winning companies.

Brand Blvd, of St. Catharines, ON, garnered high scores in every survey metric. The mid-sized distributor employs 25 staffers, plus the company’s owners – Shaun Lichtenberger and Chris Sinclair, who were named Counselor’s 2017 Entrepreneurs of the Year. The average age of a “Brandie” (the company nickname for employees) is 31. The company posted $8.1 million in sales in 2016, and grew by 12% last year.

“It’s all about open communication and being fully transparent, as we’re all on the same team and are striving for the same thing,” said Lichtenberger, age 39. “We all win with that mentality. It’s amazing what can happen when everyone roots for each other.”

In addition, Counselor also named Mac Mannes the number-one Top Small Company, Brand Blvd the number-one Top Mid-sized Company and Oxnard, CA-based Top 40 supplier ETS Express (asi/51197) the number-one Top Large Company in the industry.

For more information on Counselor magazine, contact Dave Vagnoni at [email protected]. To advertise in any of ASI’s three award-winning magazines, contact Matthew Barnes, ASI’s vice president of publishing and media services, at [email protected].

About ASI
The Advertising Specialty Institute (ASI®) serves a network of 23,500 suppliers, distributors and decorators in the $23.6 billion promotional products industry. ASI’s flagship product, the technology platform ESP®, manages the industry’s entire supply and marketing chain. ASI also produces award-winning digital and print content, live events and educational programs that enable companies in 55 countries to be more efficient, productive and profitable. ASI’s Counselor® magazine provides the most authoritative business content in the industry, and the ASI Certification Program features 500+ live and online education courses for over 40,000 professionals. The company, family owned and operated since 1962, is proud to have been consistently ranked among the “Best Places to Work” in Philadelphia and Bucks County, PA. For more info: