What happens when you register on The Manko Company’s website

After you register on our website, if you have any product questions or you need help placing an order, please contact us through our website or you can call us at 610-558-6002, extension 1. Once you place an order through our website, our system will notify us of your order. We will contact you via email or phone to go over your order and to let you know that we received your order. If we have any questions or you have questions about your order we can handle them at that time. Once we have all those questions taken care of you will receive a proof for the items that you ordered unless the items you ordered use a stock imprinted items that require no proof.

Insurance Card Holders: Vinyl Colors & Set-Up Charges

Vinyl insurance card holders are one of our most popular items. The most common question buyers have is what colors are available.

Before I start the list, keep in mind that navy is a dark blue, royal blue is a few shades lighter than navy and medium blue is a Carolina blue.

Here’s the list of colors available for each style…

The style 807, 807T and 807E are available in red, navy blue, green, black, maroon, grey, white, medium blue, orange, purple, yellow, teal and royal blue.

Styles 806, 806E, 806T, 808, 808W, 803L, 803, 803P, 805 and 805P are available in red, black, green, navy blue and royal blue.

Style 809 is available in red, navy blue and black.

Styles MCR215, MCR216 and MCR217 are available in clear, red, navy blue, green, black and royal blue.

The MCR800-1-1C is available red, dark green, royal blue, navy blue, black.

The MCRI818FO is available in 2 colors: royal blue and black.

The MCR800-1 is available in red, navy blue, green, black, brown, maroon, gray, white, medium blue, orange, purple, yellow, bone, royal blue, teal, pink, lime, gold or silver.

The MCR800-2 is available in red, navy blue, green, black, brown, grey, white, medium blue, orange, purple, yellow, bone, royal blue, teal, pink, gold, silver, maroon.

The MCR800-3 is available in red, dark green, navy blue and black.

Lastly, the pricing on the insurance card holders includes up to 5 lines of text and a stock logo (excluding the 808W). Stock logos are typically insurance company logos and associations. There is no set-up charge to use a stock logo.

If you’d like to use your agency logo, there is a $50 set-up charge. The set-up charge is a one-time charge which will not be assessed on future orders unless you make a change to the logo, the text or the item.

The 808W is not customizable. The “What to do at the scene of an accident” imprint is a stock imprint and cannot be altered. Additionally, when using that imprint on the 808, there is no room available to print any custom information.

For a free sample of an insurance card holder, please call 877-558-6002, ext. 1.

Water Bottle Labels – An Inexpensive Solution to an Expensive Marketing Problem

Handing out bottled water at an event is a brilliant marketing idea.  I have customers who call me regularly interested in purchasing custom labeled bottled water. They make a great giveaway because when you hand them out at a public event, folks will see other folks with the bottles and they’ll wander over to your booth or table to get some of that water, especially on a hot Summer day. It’s a nice way to attract people to your table or to your booth.

The downside of purchasing this great giveaway is that the overall cost of custom labeled bottled water is astronomical. The price you’re paying for the item is not only to print the labels and affix the labels to the bottles but you’re also paying to ship the bottles to you. Have you ever picked up a case of bottled water? Pretty heavy and thus pretty expensive to ship. Can you imagine how much it would cost to ship them?

I’d like to propose an idea that’s an inexpensive solution to this expensive marketing problem.  My suggestion is to have custom water bottle labels printed. We have water bottle labelsavailable labels that are specifically made for water bottles. They are made from a material that can hold up to the ice in your cooler. They are printed in full color and have a large imprint area. The water bottle labels are printed in several sizes to accommodate different bottle sizes and we can help you order the correct size.

Once you receive your labels, simply go to Costco, BJ’s, Walmart or wherever and buy some cases of water. Then remove the labels on the bottles and affix your own label onto the bottle. It may take a little practice. Also, I recommend buying a few single bottles to test the removal process since some labels are easier to remove than others.

Please watch our Marketing Munchy Video about custom water bottle labels:

807 Insurance Card Holder

The 807 insurance card holder is an amazing, often under appreciated marketing tool.  Over the years, I have been asked a countless number of times “if I only have $X.XX dollars to spend, what promotional product should I buy?” or “I’m just starting out, what’s the first promotional product I should buy?”

My answer is simple and always the same: vinyl insurance card holders.

They’re not very glamorous or sophisticated but their strength as a marketing tool is their simplicity and affordability. Depending on the style you choose and the quantity you order, the price you’ll pay will be from the $.75 range down to the $.23 807 Insurance Card Holderrange per unit (as of this writing) but this is small change when compared to their value.

Insurance card holders are very popular because they offer a convenient way for the insured to keep their insurance information and registration together in one spot for easy access in the event they get pulled over or they get into an accident.

When you give your insured the insurance ID card holder, they’ll keep it in the glove box, over their visor or in the center console for a very long time. Each time they swap out their new insurance card for the expiring insurance card, they’ll see your name and contact info.

One of our most popular items is the 807 insurance card holder. The 807 is 5-3/4”wide by 4-1/16” high. It’s available in thirteen different colors, we also have some stock imprints for insurance companies and also associations. This insurance card holder features and opaque vinyl side and your imprint will go on the outside and a clear side. The 2 sides form a pocket and the information is inserted into this pocket.  The 807 can be imprinted landscape style like or it can also be imprinted portrait. The item opens along the 4-1/16” side.

We do have free shipping available on the 807-1 insurance card holder. It’s the same item as the 807 but, when you order 1000 or more units, you get free ground shipping.

If you’d like a FREE sample of any insurance card holder, please call 877-558-6002, ext 1.

Here’s a video that explains more about the 807 insurance card holder

The Smartphone Ring Stand Holder – The Coolest Gadget Ever!

Since we all use our smartphones many times a day, The Smartphone Ring Stand Holder is a great way to market your business. It’s the coolest smartphone gadget ever. The item number is MCHCT588.

It’s a ring that’s attached to a base. The ring raises and lowers and swivels 360 degrees. The imprint goes on the base and it’s got an epoxy dome over it which protects your imprint. It affixes to the back of the phone via an adhesive. You just slip your finger into ring and it prevents your phone from slipping out of your hand. Smartphone Ring Stand HolderYou can also use it as a stand in either portrait style or you can swing the ring around and use it as a stand going landscape style. It’s pure genius.

I found this item by happenstance.

A few weeks ago, I was at Sunday dinner at my Mother In Law’s house and my sister in law had one affixed to her phone. She showed it to me and told me how much she loved it. She handed me her phone and I played with the Smartphone Ring Stand Holder and I thought to myself that this item is a total WINNER! She said bought it at a retail store but I knew that the item could be available in the promotional products world. After some research, I found it, I ordered a sample and when it arrived, I found it was identical to the item I saw that Sunday.

Now, I’ve had the Smartphone Ring Stand Holder for a couple of weeks and I’ve been using it ever since and I love it. I think this is a really great item. Your customers are going to love it too because it’s useful and they’ll keep it for a really long time. I’m sure you’ll agree that the longer a recipient keeps a promotional item, the more they’ll be exposed to your marketing message. Your customers and prospects will see your marketing message every time they use their phone.

You can view a short demo video below

Rodney Dangerfield & The Ultimate Guerrilla Marketing Weapon

I traveled to Montgomery, NY this past week to deliver a speech to a group of Erie Insurance Agents. I live in the Philadelphia, PA area and my route took me through the Pocono Mountain area – what a beautiful drive! The mountains and hills were magnificent and everything was so green.

I’ve delivered about 15 of these speeches over the past 5 years or so. I’m not a pro but I’m not a shy guy and I enjoy doing them. The speech I delivered was about the promotional products industry as a whole and why promotional products are a smart way to market an insurance agency.

Before each speech, I research all my talking points to make sure they are current and valid. During this process, I’m always reminded why I love this industry and why I think promotional products are the ultimate guerrilla marketing weapon. Here are 5 aspects of the promotional products industry that I’m so proud of:

1. According to PPAI, Promotional Products Association International, our industry is a $20,000,000,000 industry (THAT’S $20 BILLION!). We are one of the only advertising mediums on a growth trend even though wRodney Dangerfield & Guerrilla Marketinge’re one of the oldest advertising mediums. We are finally getting some well deserved respect!!

2. When using promotional products, an advertiser only has to buy the ad one time and the recipient of the item will be exposed to the advertiser’s marketing message a countless number of times. You cannot get that kind of value from ANY other marketing medium because all of them have a much shorter shelf life.

3. Most people enjoy receiving promotional products. On the flip side, do most people like hearing radio or TV ads? Do they like ads popping up on the webpages they’re viewing? Probably not. Most people will say “thank you” when given a promotional product. Can the same be said when they’re exposed to a billboard? Again, probably not.

4. Promotional products can target just about every demographic no matter the size or obscure the market. Do you want to sell insurance to Eskimos? With approximately 800,000 items available from approximately 4,000 suppliers, I can guarantee you that there is a perfect product available that would be effective and meet the budget.

5. Promotional products are advertising that integrates into our lives. Research shows that there’s a 1 in 4 chance you have a promotional product on your person right now. We use these items in our day to day lives. Do you write a note with a pop-up ad? No, you write a note with a writing instrument. Do you wear newspapers as clothing? No, but you can certainly wear an embroidered sweater to keep you warm. In addition, promotional products typically only carry one message at a time. This makes for a crystal clear, unimpeded transmission of a marketing message. How many billboards are in Times Square? Probably too many to count. A calendar is a miniature version of a billboard at a fraction of the cost and communicates a marketing message for pennies a day. Insurance card holders keep your insureds registration and insurance information handy while marketing your agency at the same time. Do you see the guerrilla marketing connection?

I fell into this industry over 25 years ago. I have been witness to some real marketing successes with promotional products and that is so satisfying. I’ve also been the recipient to some ridicule of my industry. For those folks who think of promotional products as “trinkets & trash” or “tchotchkes”, I urge you reconsider your position. They truly are THE epitome of guerrilla marketing. As our world shrinks, technology speeds things up and younger generations become tomorrow’s buyers, advertising mediums will gain and lose effectiveness. One thing that I think will never change is that, as humans, we like to receive things and, if they are useful and relevant, we keep them. Recipients sometimes thank the advertisers for giving them a promotional product (talk about guerrilla marketing!). Promotional products are the only advertising medium that is useful so I think this medium is here to stay and may become an even more important marketing tool in the future.

Fun Marketing Using Imprinted Coloring Books

Consider marketing your agency with imprinted coloring books. Here’s why: have you ever tried to do business with a husband and wife who showed up to your office with a small child in tow? Was it distracting? Did the appointment take a lot longer than necessary because little Timmy didn’t feel like being cooperative while mommy and daddy worked with the nice insurance agent? I’d be willing to bet that this has happened to you and, if it hasn’t, it will someday.

Giving promotional products to children may seem like a waste of money. After all, children don’t buy insurance. While this is true, pretty much everyone on planet Earth knows that children are a heavy influence upon the behavior of their parents so, if you can keep little Timmy from having a meltdown, you might be able to write some business before Timmy forces his parents to leave your office before you complete the transaction.

Imprinted Coloring Books

How about offering little Timmy a coloring book? It’s a win-win-win: Timmy is happy because he has something to do, his parents are happy because he’s not creating a scene, you’re happy because you can get the necessary work done AND Timmy is happy and he’s way too busy coloring in his new coloring book to tear your office apart.

Here’s another creative way to use coloring books to market your insurance agency. Let’s say you’re exhibiting at a local fair or community event. Consider offering coloring books and a yummy snack like cookies or cupcakes to the kids as they walk past your booth with their parents. The kids won’t be able to resist the offer of the food and coloring book and they will drag their parents to your booth. As they approach your booth, you’ll have a chance to strike up a conversation with the parents. Bingo! Another new opportunity to write some new business!



Promoting your insurance agency with promotional products

Did you have a radio ad in your pocket? How about a billboard? Do you have a billboard in your kitchen drawer? Research has shown that the chances are good that some of you have a promotional product in your possession right now. Do you have a logo’d pen nearby? Do you ever wear a shirt, sweater or jacket embroidered with a logo?

A promotional product is physical advertising. Unlike newspaper, radio, TV, internet advertising and other advertising mediums, promotional products are tangible goods that you can touch and see. Sometimes you can hear them and, yes, sometimes you can taste and smell them. They have a surface on them that can be imprinted with your marketing message and given directly to another human being.

What are promotional products? They’re ad specialties, giveaways, incentives and recognition, business gifts and thank you’s…any product that carries a marketing message that is distributed to a customer, prospect and even an employee. Typical promotional products used for marketing an insurance agency are magnets, pens, calendars and insurance card holders.

Promotional products are no longer the best kept secret in marketing. The industry is a $20 billion industry – that’s billion with a “B” –  and it’s one of the fastest growing of the current marketing mediums even though it’s one of the oldest mediums.

Why is the industry growing? The answer lies in the fact that promotional products are targeted and versatile and offer a low cost per impression. Promotional products are cross between a “laser beam” and a “Swiss Army knife” when compared to other marketing mediums.

Promotional products can efficiently target every demographic and budget no matter how small or obscure the market. If you sell insurance to people in rural areas, promotional products can reach them efficiently. Could you imagine how cost inefficient it would be to run ads in traditional media to get business from this small market? For a few bucks, you could send them each a printed jar opener that would communicate your marketing message for years and years.

In addition, just about everyone hates TV and radio ads so they click mute or flip the channel. In fact, people are using On Demand and DVR’s to avoid commercials altogether. Youtube puts a clock in the corner of the ads that counts down how much time you have to spend watching an ad before you can view the content you wanted to see in the first place. Pop-up ads on the internet are just flat-out annoying. As far as billboards, how many of them do you really recall? Newspaper and magazines; they’re in the decline for their usefulness for marketing.

Promotional products offer an extremely low cost per impression because they are used in our day to day lives. Recipients welcome promotional products and they tend to hang on to them or pass them along to others. The items are used over and over again by the recipients which exposes them to your marketing message a countless number of times. When was the last time you used a radio ad? When was the last time you “lost your billboard” and someone else picked it up? Does anyone welcome more TV ads? When was the last time you sat in front of the TV and said “I wish there were more ads”? On the flip-side, you could invest about $200 on a box of pens and distribute them to your customers and they will see your marketing message over and over and over.

So, how do you market your insurance agency with promotional products?

The most important consideration is the distribution plan. You can have the coolest item ever created but if it never leaves your supply closet, you wasted your money. The plan can be very simple – you can mail the items to your customers, you can hand them out at your office when they visit, you can put them in bags and hang them on door knobs. Whatever you choose to do, make sure it gets done otherwise you will not see a return on your marketing investment.

The next decision is the choosing the product and the message. Think about your end goal. Are you looking for new business from new customers or are you looking for more business or referrals from existing customers? By the way, you’ll spend more time, money and effort prospecting for new business from new customers. Also consider the target market itself and the types of items they would find useful. Studies have found that 91% of people have a promotional product in the kitchen, 74% have at least one promotional product in the office and 55% have at least one promotional product in the bedroom. If you’re like most insurance agents, you work with the general public. Since most people have kitchens, most people work and most people go to bed at night, these types of items could be a choice to market your insurance agency.

As far as the marketing message, most promotional products have enough room for your agency name and phone number. Other items have bigger imprint areas which allows for more ad copy. If that’s the case, use that area creatively. Letting people know about other lines of business you write could help you round out the account or get more referrals.

Lastly, choose a quality product. If the imprint wears off easily or the pen stops writing after a few weeks, you wasted your money. The longer the item survives, the longer it will market your agency.

Does your insurance agency have a great logo?

I’d be willing to bet that a lot of insurance agents would say that a great logo needs to be “memorable” and “creative”. While this might be true, having a creative and memorable logo is not an indicator that it will look great when it’s reproduced when printed on an item. A logo that prints well will enhance your agency while a logo that does not print well may hurt your brand.

I started working in printing and promotional products industry in February 1990 and I’ve printed everything from business cards to whoopi cushions to insurance card holders. Most of these items were imprinted with an insurance agency logo. I’ve printed millions of items and I’ve worked with 100’s of logos – some of the logos printed well while others looked terrible.

The characteristics shown below can help you determine if you have a great insurance agency logo. If you don’t have a logo and you’re hiring a designer to create one for you, insist on the following:

  1. The logo needs to be legible at just about any size. This may seem like a simple idea but I’ve seen logos that look great at one size then almost indistinguishable when reduced by as little as 25%.
  2. The logo must first be designed in black and white. When you have something that looks good to you, then you can add the color (or colors) later. There are times when you’ll need to have the logo printed in black or a single color due to cost restrictions. If the logo works in black and white, you’ll have more options on how it’s reproduced later.
  3. If you have a multiple color design, make sure none of the colors touch one another. If the registration is off (i.e.: the alignment of the colors) when the item is printed, it will be very noticeable. Also, touching colors sometimes add to the cost of imprint. Lastly, touching colors makes it difficult to reproduce the logo in one color when necessary.
  4. The logo should be solid colors and not contain any shading or gradients (for example: black that fades into gray). This effect cannot be printed on some items while on others it can make printing cost skyrocket.
  5. The best logos have no fine details or thin lines. They are difficult to reproduce and often get blurry or washed out when the logo is printed small.
  6. Lastly, make sure you acquire the “native vector files”, the PMS colors (ie: Pantone Matching System) of the logo and the names of the fonts used in your logo and the fonts in your logo are “outlined”. Perhaps what I just said is jargon to you, but it’s a language your designer will understand. A good designer should be able to provide these files and information to you. If your designer doesn’t know these terms and cannot provide these files to you, find a new designer. By the way, when you get these files, you most likely will not be able to open them. These files require design software to open them and use them. DON’T DELETE THEM! Simply save them to a drive and email them when requested.

In conclusion, your logo is probably the first thing a prospect sees before they contact you and it’s imperative to make a great first impression. They’ll see your logo on your on all your marketing communications including your website, billboards, printed communications like newspapers, printed collateral like brochures and on promotional items. My advice is to invest some time and money into having a logo designed for your agency that is not only attractive and represents your insurance agency well but also is easily reproduced. It will pay dividends for you over the long haul.