TREVOSE, PA – May 24, 2006 – Advertising Specialty Institute®, the largest media organization serving the promotional products industry, announced today it will be providing virtual sampling services for the 23,000 users of ESP Online and will also make it available for buyers on nearly 7,000 LogoMall Websites.
Virtual sampling technology allows clients to see their logo on a picture of a promotional product. It helps distributors and suppliers increase sales and speeds up the approval cycle for clients. Distributors can use virtual sampling as a distinct competitive advantage and can create a more professional image by sending virtual samples in a presentation or in an email to a client.
All ESP Online users will have access to Technologo EOD (Enabled on Demand), allowing them to build a virtual sample of any product with an image in the products database. Users can make the sample in either the product detail section or by using the CenterStage™ Presentation Builder.
Distributors will be able to integrate the Enabled on Demand service into their LogoMall Websites, allowing buyers of promotional products to use virtual sampling to envision their logos on products they are purchasing. This technology will provide buyers with a more dynamic, interactive and professional shopping experience on LogoMall Websites.
“ESP Online and LogoMall Websites are the industry’s best research and marketing tools,” said Timothy M. Andrews, president of ASI. “Adding virtual sampling to these products is a breakthrough development. Distributors will impress their clients with the ability to create compelling presentations in ESP Online, suppliers will benefit when distributors are able to customize and sell suppliers’ products at the point-of-sale, and clients’ expectations will be exceeded with the ability to build a virtual sample online.”
Alex Landa, CEO and founder of Technologo, commented “We are pleased to provide the highest-quality virtual sampling tools available in the promotional products industry. We started offering this technology in 2001 and have watched its popularity grow quickly, because users find it so productive for their business operations. This next step will further entrench virtual samples into the mainstream of the industry. I am sure that Technologo’s clients and users will benefit greatly from this development.”
ASI members already using virtual sampling tools are sharing their positive experiences.
“A client of ours was hosting a casino-themed event, and asked us to find products with a tie-in,” said Ed Burgess, co-owner of Weekend Warrior Promotional Products (asi/356446). “Using ESP Online, we saved an image of a poker chip. Then, using Technologo, we were able to upload our saved image, add the client’s logo and text, and then email a virtual sample. We were able to speak immediately with him about the sale. Integrating this feature directly into ASI products will provide an amazingly powerful tool.”
“As a supplier, we’re giving our distributors the tools to make their sales jobs easier,” said Theresa Land, sales manager for Pacific Handy Cutter, Inc. (asi/75650). “They build a virtual sample in minutes, and set up personalized presentation materials for their clients. We’re being rewarded with their orders.”
“Being able to use virtual sampling right inside ESP Online will be very valuable for us,” said Wayne Martin, director of strategic sales support and vendor relations for American Solutions for Business (asi/120075). “The technology allows us to respond to our clients more efficiently and to spend less time on proofing our orders, leaving us more time for selling and making us look more professional.”
ASI supplier member firms and ASI distributor member firms will be enjoying the enhanced exposure for their products and increased sales leads, as they are able to show clients a visual representation of the products that target their specific needs and that work best with their logos.
Virtual sampling will be available free in late summer 2006 for primary users of ESP Online. A special Supplier Images Bundle, including All Catalogs Electronically (ACE), will be provided to franchisees and secondary users for $99. Distributors can integrate virtual sampling into LogoMall Websites now for $9.99 per month.
To view a demo providing an overview of virtual sampling technology, visit www.asicentral.com/virtualsamples. To subscribe to virtual sampling services for LogoMall email [email protected]. For more information about virtual sampling in ESP Online, visit www.asicentral.com/technologo, or call 800-546-1350.
Advertising Specialty Institute is the largest media organization serving the promotional products industry, with a membership of 22,000 distributor firms (sellers) and supplier firms (manufacturers) of promotional products. Supplier firms use ASI print and electronic resources to market products to more than 19,000 ASI distributor firms. Distributor firms use ASI print and electronic resources, which contain more than 750,000 promotional products, to locate supplier firms and to market services to buyers. ASI provides catalogs, informational directories, newsletters, magazines, websites and databases, and offers interactive e-commerce, marketing and selling tools. Visit www.asicentral.com.