From the Huffington Post – 11 Work-From-Home Hacks for Newbies

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11 Productivity Work-From-Home Hacks for Newbies

  In the best of times, it's hard to turn off distractions and focus while working remotely. It's even harder now as we navigate daily information briefings, our kids schedules, work that is evolving and less than ideal new work spaces at home. Covid-19 has created the ultimate work distraction and it's real.This is one of the best checklists we've seen. I have worked remotely on and off for many years these are all actionable ideas that can help you focus on work and compartmentalize the constant stream of Covid-19 information.

11 Productivity Work-From-Home Hacks for Newbies

    Visit BP Home Base for other content to help you with the unique challenges of Working-From-Home during Covid-19.  

8 Work From Home Tips from NPR

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NPR 8 Tips  Work-From-Home Checklist

Working from home may be new to you and feel like a forced experiment in chaos at work. We think these NPR tips are a good list and actionable for anyone today. We hope you are able to use some of this to help you feel more productive, during these unprecedented times. NPR 8 Tips  Work-From-Home Checklist         Visit BP Home Base for other content to help you with the unique challenges of Working-From-Home during Covid-19.

Always a good idea to spread the love to customers. Valentines Day 2020

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February 14, 2020

We think it's always a great idea to spread the love to our customers and prospects.

We went pink today for fun and to use Valentines Day to share the appreciation we feel every day.

  These are some of the things that make our clients special and why we like to celebrate Valentines Day by sharing the love and appreciation for you.
  • You are genuinely devoted to delivering the American Dream of home ownership to new home buyers. You understand that thriving  and creating memories in a new home, is the goal.
  • You understand that freedom is something all consumers value. You find ways to give freedom and choice in the new home buying experience. We hope your clients appreciate that you have this insight about them!
  • You demonstrate new home buyer empathy. You really want to find a way to experience what your prospects are experiencing and feel what they feel so you can help them create the home they are dreaming of.
  • You love the final presentation of keys and a welcome home WOW that is memorable. This final welcome to their new home is a cause for celebration, and you relish the chance to make it special.
  • You manage it all with professional and personal grace. We know you are people with full lives professionally and at home. You are parents, wives, husbands, volunteers, friends, athletes, sisters and brothers. We love that we have the opportunity to support your work life.
Thank you for your business and for always being willing to engage with us. We appreciate you! xoxo Happy Valentine's Day from the team at Builder Promotions!  

Our Sourcing Manager’s Favorites

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I'm sharing our Fall Creative Newsletter in our Blog. There are some fun ideas here. Enjoy!

Welcome to our Fall Creative Newsletter. 

Anna, our amazing Sourcing Manager, recently shopped the market, and we thought you'd like to see some of her favorite creative ideas. We've linked to information in our factory websites to help you see all your options in one simple link. Please remember that the products you see when you click our "learn more" buttons are all available with your preferred BP pricing, and our complimentary creative supportContact us directly to get your creative project started. We can't wait to help you!

Creative drink ware designs with imprinted lids.

We LOVE the creative design options for these beautiful stainless water bottles that include a lid imprint. I recently stood in a line of 20 people to fill my water bottle at an airport water station. Everyone had a pretty bottle, but none were this creative (really). Check out the link to see all the drink ware you can customize with this design option. Want us to design and budget one for you? Connect with us at info@builderpromotions.com or call us to talk it over at 800-388-3565.

Riding the Adult Coloring Book Wave?

We are loving these wonderful and hugely popular Creative Spark journals which  provide graphic coloring pages along with journal pages to jot down creative inspirations. We think they are an inventive branding tool to emphasize the creative process homeowners participate in when they work with your design teams to design the home of their dreams. Click the learn more link below to see three size options and all the details.This consumer product trend remains strong and no one is using these in the New Home Builder space (yet).

Rise of the "Design Center Journal"

Anna loves this contemporary and luxurious perfect bound journal. It's built with a rich, velvety Crush felt that is laminated to our strong paperboard to create a notebook that’s both eye-catching and lush. Upgrade to an over-sized blind debossed imprint to add dynamic texture – even on the spine! This is where our Sourcing team shines, so be sure to connect to let us help you build & budget an extraordinary design center journal to create a memorable experience for your new home customers.  

Portable power bank cleverly packaged as a "Power Bar".

These portable power banks are creatively packaged in power bar packaging. With so many of these portable power banks on the market, we think this is a really inventive way to have fun and differentiate your brand for a product that is still at the top of the list for consumer tech favorites.

3 in 1, 9.8-foot charging cable in a fun and creative container

Extra long charging cords are a top tech must-have for the connected consumer. We love these because the packaging is unusual for a charging cable and it adds a creative twist to a very pragmatic product used by all consumers daily. Take a look at our Apparel Look Book just published for Fall. There are fresh styles, comfortable fabrics and gorgeous colors to help you design a brand fashion statement that reflects the look and feel of your Sales Center environments and your construction building sites. And keep an eye out for the launch of our Welcome Home Collection as you plan to update and refresh your Welcome Home experience for Q4 and the year ahead. Cheers to Fall! We are tweeting, posting, writing and Linking In. Here’s where you can find and follow us. Twitter: @HomebuilderMktg Instagram: @builderpromotions Facebook: Facebook.com/builderpromotions LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/builderpromotions/

Welcome To Your New Home – New Gifting Solutions for Move-In Day

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When a customer has waited patiently for their new home to be completed, move-in day is a BIG deal. It marks the delivery of a gorgeous and thoughtfully designed product, and it's the final milestone in the new home buyer journey. The transformation of a house into a home begins on move-in day when new home owners begin to make the house their own. It's also the point at which New Home Builders can begin the post-sale relationship that is so important to retaining brand loyal home buyers as their home and lifestyle needs evolve. The welcome home experience is designed to delight and create joy about this important life milestone and to continue to cultivate a bond with the customer. We're excited about our sharing our new collection of Welcome Home Gifting solutions. Every year we create a new collection of Welcome gifts that our clients customize to help create that all important joyful moment when the keys are delivered and a new homeowner moves into the house of their dreams. Welcome to our new collection:  Fall 2019-2020 30+ New Welcome Home gifting solutions Welcome to our total Welcome Home Collection: Current AND New 80+ gifting solutions "Welcome" is about how you make people feel. It's why New Home Builder Marketers (and all Marketers) are talking about customer experiences. Maya Angelou says it well here in the quote below, and this is why the "Welcome" on move-in day can be so very powerful in shaping your future relationship with a customer. How do your customers feel on move-in day? What kinds of experiences are you curating for them?    Thanks for stopping by!  Cheers! Leslie Bridges, Chief Blogger   This blog is sponsored by Builder Promotions, Inc., a complete solution of products that support the entire new home buyer journey. We help power excellent customer experiences. We are tweeting, posting, writing and Linking In. Here’s where you can find and follow us. Twitter: @HomebuilderMktg Instagram: @builderpromotions Facebook: Facebook.com/builderpromotions LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/builderpromotions/

Marketing Events made simple. Presentation-ready is the key.

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It's Fall already and our Gift Set Solutions are a big hit, so we are sharing the Look Books to inspire anyone with Marketing Events in the 4th quarter.   "Presentation ready" is a term that is resonating with everyone. It's the idea that you can eliminate the busy work of packaging brand gift bags during the time-pressed days leading up to customer events. The Gift sets in the style guides below, feature fresh prepackaged brand marketing tools that deliver one stylish customized package, an assortment of themed gifts and a "presentation ready" solution for your Events.   Price points range from $10 - 20 and include professional, lifestyle and consumer trend brand collateral. Our goal is always to combine the creative with the practical so your target audience is using your brand collateral in their daily lives at work, at home or on the go as a small but significant piece of their experience with your brand. Enjoy the content guides below, and look for more "presentation-ready" solutions as in the coming weeks as we launch our 2019-2020 Welcome Home Collection. Thanks for stopping by. Cheers!   Leslie Bridges, Chief Blogger P.S. If you love these gift set solutions, there are more Look Book themes. Just ask me. Happy to help.  leslie@builderpromotions.com  
BPStyleGuide-PicnicCollection-Cover-Web300-2.jpg Picnic Gift Sets Fall Event Gifts made easy. Learn More BPStyleGuide-ThankYou-Cover-Web300-2.jpg Thank You Gift Sets Practice Realtor gratitude. Learn More
BPStyleGuide-FitCollection-Cover-Web300-2.jpg Fitness Gift Sets Home is where we thrive. Fitness gives us freedom to enjoy life. Learn More BPStyleGuide-Wellness-Cover-Web300-2.jpg Wellness Gift Sets Home is about well-being. Pair wellness themed gifts with Openings and Tours. Learn More
 

The “Thursday Lift” – Is Thursday the new Friday?

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Today is Thursday,  and as I drink my coffee and check email I allow myself the joy of anticipating the weekend ahead. Full disclosure, my favorite two days of the week are Saturday and Sunday. I love the weekend! I’m pretty sure I’m not alone in that. I also love my job and I appreciate the fact that I am in a business where I support amazing marketing professionals who are devoted to helping consumers create memories in a new home. What makes me happy about supporting our clients is that in addition to a more than full-time job, most of them are managing a more than full family life at home. They are professional and personal rock stars to us. I genuinely like working for our clients which makes me content with Monday-Friday. But let’s talk about weekends and how the joy of the weekend can infuse our work week and reduce stress. First we have to talk about the latest trend in "sparking joy". I promise this is NOT a blog post about tidying or organizing your home. Stay with me. Everyone knows about “sparking joy” an idea introduced by home tidying and organizing celebrity, Marie Kondo. Marie Kondo has introduced the idea that you can clear physical clutter for a better and more harmonic life at home. Her system includes going through all your “stuff” and asking yourself, “does this spark joy?” and then recycling anything that does not. A friend of mine tried this and told me 100% of her shoes sparked joy and thus she could not part with them. In spite of that, evidently the thrift stores in the U.S. are under siege from a tidal wave of people testing this theory and using her system to clear out their clutter at home. I have noticed that “Spark Joy" is now a brand and probably being trademarked. But I believe that no one can or should claim "joy" for their own or for their company. It’s one of the most abundant renewable resources we have. And sharing it usually multiplies its impact.   So that got me thinking about “moments that spark joy”……..small things that give me a little boost in the work week, especially. Yesterday, I was thinking about the “Thursday lift” and the little spark of joy I feel when I allow myself to think of Thursday as a soft entry into the weekend. Most weekends I have plans to be outside hiking with my friends. The combination of the great outdoors and connections with people who are important to me, is a source of joy. The act of thinking about my weekend actually “sparks joy” for me and can carry me through even the most intense work day. When I share that with someone it doubles down on the joy I feel anticipating it. It's a happy moment that seems to infuse my work week and sustain me. If you feel that Thursday lift, we'd love to know? What weekend moments spark joy for you? Whether it’s the anticipation of pancakes with little ones, a long bike ride with friends, Yoga, a delicious long sleep, time for a home improvement project, space to immerse yourself in a good book, time to do nothing, cheering for your kids' team or that 30 minutes you claim for yourself at a local coffee shop, we all have those things that bring joy and the anticipation can have a positive effect in the workplace.  We are trying an experiment and  devoting our brand Facebook page to “Moments that Spark Joy” as a way to accumulate moments of joy, and add a “lift” to your work week. We hope you will take a moment to share your weekend moments of joy on our Facebook page as part of the Builder Promotions Community. You can write a short post or share an image with a few words. There’s something about Joy that’s completely infectious when you share it.  Thanks for stopping by! We'd love to hear from you at www.facebook.com/builderpromotions  Leslie Bridges, Chief Blogger CXO, Builder Promotions, Inc.    

Ever wish you had a partner to give wings to your creative ideas?

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This blog post is devoted to the Marketers who are dreamers and visionaries who wish they had more time to be creative in service of their prospects and customers.  I don't know about you, but sometimes I wish I had more people to give wings to all my creative ideas.  It's often hard to find the time to fully develop and implement a vision. I usually need help. Fortunately for my work-related ideas, our supply chain is a universe of worldwide resources that collectively have the ability to help turn creative visions into tangible brand product solutions. The sky is the limit and people genuinely want to give their time to help.  I love this image (below) because it is what so many Marketers face daily. A lot of us in Marketing derive joy and inspiration from using our creativity and imagination to innovate and find new ways to connect our brands with new customers. But the reality of Marketing is that there is a long daily list of "to do's" that are necessary to the job, and they are not all super creative. This is why it pays to have partners who can give wings to your creative ideas or vision.   In today's blog post we are sharing a few examples of how we give wings to client creative ideas. It's always fun to see how a good collaboration can turn a Marketer's vision into a reality. Can creative vision and budgets align? A couple months ago, a client called to describe a product she wanted and a price point she needed for budget purposes. This high end gift did not exist in that price point because of how the supply chain works. We needed to reorganize our supply chain to produce her gifting solution. She wanted to standardize all the Welcome gifts used for one region and she had a gifting solution she loved already but no way to buy it within her budget. I emailed my Sourcing team in charge of Asia manufacturing and within a week we had a way to make the exact product within the budget she required. I love our partners. I constantly send pictures of something we want to Source and while I sleep, our wonderful AsiaDirect™ team produces creative solutions that can be made and delivered with all of the necessary certifications for the North American market. Just this week I sent a picture of a cool smart phone mini-printer to our team. It costs $150 on the retail market.....but a very different story through our AsiaDirect™ team. Incubating a new Welcome Experience. Another client had been incubating an idea about how to upgrade the welcome experience for her customers. As part of the solution, we designed packaging for high end drink ware with lifestyle messaging to create a beautifully presented set for entertaining.The outcome was a stylish contemporary take on a retail gift package that delivered a creative, upscale brand welcome to new customers. Our inventive packaging team loved the challenge of creating a gifting presentation that no one else was using. It was fun to let them take that idea and run with it. I think our client loved that she could have a creative idea and that we would make it happen for her. She's one of those busy Marketers with a lot of vision and a big long list of not so creative tasks that involve leading one of the largest and most competitive market regions for her company.   Contemporary uniforming speaks volumes to Customers, but how does one create a Brand Fashion line? Uniforming today is really about Brand Fashion. Is your company culture Corporate, Casual or Cool? How do you design comfortable stylish apparel that lets team members reflect their personal styles within a brand fashion line that is reflective of your corporate culture? In an increasingly noisy marketplace, brand fashion gives companies a way to visually deliver a distinctive brand look and feel wherever team members engage customers or guests. But who has the time to design and manufacture a new line of brand fashion apparel? I love that we can ask our brand fashion team to create a story board with creative visuals to begin to transform a client's creative vision into a tangible reality. And it's always rewarding to hear the delight voiced by our clients when they see the brand apparel collection neatly displayed in their own e-Store portal, ready for delivery. It's a truly a tidy and elegantly simple solution that just needed wings.    If you can dream it, we can make it. So next time you are dreaming about a way to use a tangible brand product to connect with customers, remember there is a universe of resources ready to give your ideas wings. Thanks for stopping by. Cheers, Leslie Bridges, Chief Blogger This blog is sponsored by Builder Promotions, Inc., a complete solution of products that support the entire new home buyer journey. We are a Marketing partner with endless resources to transform your creative vision into a tangible gifting solution.   

What happens when you think of Prospects as Guests in your Experience?

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Welcome to our Blog! We're glad you stopped by.  The other day at work, I went from feeling really stressed and overly-busy to happy and relaxed in the course of an hour. This may sound like the start of a blog post about workplace stress reducers. Please stay with me. The stress reducing activity was unexpected. Surprisingly, the activity that prompted my feeling so good was a seemingly tedious task to call 17 business unit clients about the shipping status of their orders (unplanned on a very busy day and on top of our regular system for updating clients). It was a high exposure project with a deadline and we needed to go the extra mile. What happened in that hour was surprising. I shifted from stressed and uptight to feeling inexplicably great, happy and relaxed. I reflected on the 17 calls. How had they made me "feel"? I had been the recipient of a well-crafted, thoughtful customer experience and it made me feel good, relaxed and happy after 17 consistent phone calls. People (humans) answered the phone and they were warm, friendly and polite in a way that made me feel they wanted to be talking to me. What literally stopped me in my tracks was that as I was introducing myself quickly (so as not to waste anyone’s time), the person answering said, “Hi, how are you, Leslie?” I was stunned and slowed down to say, “I’m well thank you. How are you?”  Then I asked to speak to our client contact and when she said she’d connect me, I thanked her to which she said, “your are welcome”. All of this in about 45 seconds. When I spoke to the client contact, it happened again --the warm welcome, and appreciation for the information I was sharing. Another thank you followed at the end of that call. I continued this for close to an hour. I noticed that the Headquarters office answered for the Business unit office when they were not able to catch their phone and another warm, upbeat welcoming human was equally as hospitable. At this point you may wonder why I'm writing about this as if it's magic. It's not magic of course, but it's incredibly rare. This brand understands that people who call them are guests in there experience. When I did reach a few voice mails, the automated system announced that I could “at any time” say the name of the person I wanted to reach. What? No pressing the phone pad to spell out a name? I could interrupt the long message - awesome. I began to understand what was happening. This brand had figured out that when consumers DO decide to reach out by phone, that means they really need/want to talk to a human, and preferably someone who is genuinely happy to hear from them. Auto-attendants for the most part make us "feel" that the company would really rather we engage online and use self-serve options. This brand made me feel that they wanted to hear from me, and I think that consumers who find it most convenient to call them will reward them handsomely for being thoughtful about their need to communicate with a human via phone. Here are the small but very significant details about the happy and warm humans, that made me go from stressed and uptight about my unscheduled hour of shipping update calls to genuinely relaxed and happy for the rest of the day. 
  • Humans answer the phone and sound like they like their job and they like you and are happy to hear from you. Someone has hired naturally hospitable people or trained people to act hospitably. Likely it’s both. 
  • This brand understands that people in the age of technology who make a phone call really want a human and they have gone to the trouble to deploy Headquarters team members to answer the phone when a Business unit office can’t cover their own.
  • The simple step of investing in voice-activated “speak the name” rather than spell out the name on your key pad, is a recognition of the fact that people who make a call really want to speak to someone. If you use voice mail, you need let them know you are happy for the contact by reducing the pain and torture of automated attendants.
How are you hard-wiring customer experience design in your company? What are the small but significant details that underpin your unique brand experiences? How does your brand make people feel? In our company, we have created a written inventory of brand touch points to which we then apply 3 experience filters. We want to embed company behaviors and processes that make people feel that, in every single brand touch, they are Welcomed, that we Value them and that they Matter to us. There is always room for improvement, and the commitment to thinking about how people feel, means that if we fall short, we know about it fast and we can quickly address it to improve the experience going forward.  Thanks for stopping by. Please come again! Cheers!  Leslie Bridges, Chief Blogger Our blog is sponsored by Builder Promotions, Inc., is a complete solution of builder-centric branded products and print collateral that support the entire new home buyer journey. Our products help deliver customer experiences.  We are tweeting, pinning, posting, writing and Linking In. Here’s where you can find and follow us. Twitter: @HomebuilderMktg Instagram: @builderpromotions Pinterest Board: Fun, Creative, Useful Gift Ideas Facebook: Facebook.com/builderpromotions LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/builderpromotions/    

Summer Gift Sets are “presentation ready”, saving you time.

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It's summer time and our clients are all asking about outdoor themed gifts to create memorable experiences at New Home Community marketing events. Whether it's a farmer's market, live music, BBQ, Yoga in the park, or an outdoor themed Open House, our clients are looking for lifestyle gift items that extend the brand experience long after an event finishes. The team at Builder Promotions has been searching for pre-packaged Gift Sets because time is scarce for our busy clients and we know that the closer we can get a brand gift to "presentation ready", the easier it is for clients to create a great brand experience that is fun, memorable and a reminder of the homes consumers' love in communities they've visited.  We're excited to offer 4 new BP Brand Style Guides with over 20+  fresh new Gift Sets we think everyone will love. Add your logo or messaging and we package all the items into one pre-designed printed gift box "presentation ready" for your new home buying customers and prospects.                          Here are the titles of our Gift Set Style Guides which each have an abundance of creative ideas that are easy on the budget and present beautifully to new home buying prospects and customers, Realtors and employees. There are multiple color/design options for pre-designed packaging to pair with your branding. This is seriously fun shopping and it's work-related, so go ahead - indulge in a 10 minute creative break! Click the links below to peruse each guide and have fun pairing the color options with your own brand.                                               BP Style Guide  - Picnic Gift Sets                                               BP Style Guide - Thank you Gift Sets                                               BP Style Guide - Fitness Gift Sets                                               BP Style Guide - Wellness Gift Sets What kind of brand experiences are you designing? Is the experience economy changing the way you Market to new home buyers? Sometimes a small brand touch goes a long way to enhance that experience. Thanks for stopping by! Cheers, Leslie Bridges, Chief Blogger Our blog sponsored by Builder Promotions, Inc., is a complete solution of builder-centric branded products and print collateral that support the entire new home buyer journey. We are tweeting, pinning, posting, writing and Linking In. Here’s where you can find and follow us. Twitter: @HomebuilderMktg Instagram: @builderpromotions Pinterest Board: Fun, Creative, Useful Gift Ideas Facebook: Facebook.com/builderpromotions LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/builderpromotions/