Promotional Version of S’well Bottle

12 oz. Force bottle

12 oz. version in a matte gray color

The promotional product industry continues to move closer to the latest trends. One hot (or cold…) new retail water bottle is S’well. These are high end, fashionable bottles that keep liquids really hot or cold for an amazing period of time. To see the variety of S’well bottles, check out their Lookbook. To learn more about S’well and their recent rise, which included a feature in Oprah Magazine and shelf space at Nordstrom, see the article from Bizwomen:

5 defining moments in the evolution of S’well

At Magellan Promotions we now can offer a similar style of bottle that keeps liquid hot/cold for a long period. The plus is you receive the retail look and features at a lower cost.  The products becomes your own once your company or organization’s logo is imprinted. These are an outstanding item to give to staff, prospects and clients to help make a lasting impression. Referred to as Force Copper Vacuum Insulated Thermal Bottles, they come in a number sizes, staring at 12 ounces and going all the way up to 34 ounces.

To see options, pricing and more, go to the link below!

Showroom for Force Insulated Bottles

Looking for more re-usable drinkware ideas?  View our New Promo Products of 2015 Photo Highlights, which includes drinkware trends, or contact us for additional information.


Tech Related Idea for High School Counselors

In one of our most popular posts, Top New Promotional Products for Colleges, we shared a few desk-related promotional ideas that could be given to high school counselors. Note pads, stone coasters, tech-stickers, pennants, and phone holders are just a few ideas that we include in our High School Counselors Showroom.  To keep on trend with new products in the industry, we wanted to spotlight a tech-related idea that high school counselors would find useful and fun.

Discover the Wedge Mobile Device Stand

The Wedge™ Mobile Device Stand is a fully customizable, colorful desk item that also can be used as a screen cleaner.  With 81% of all promotional products being kept because of usefulness, the Wedge will showcase your brand in a high-visibility work area for a long time.




The Wedge Mobile Device Stand and Cleaner

Helps keep device screens smudge free.

Side doubles as a screen cleaner.

The base can be used as a screen cleaner.

Artwork is printed on a single piece of fabric, offering a fully custom imprint area with full color dye sublimation for vibrant graphics. The base of the Wedge is available in standard grey or black, though other special edition colors are now available for an extra punch of color.  An antimicrobial coating prevents the buildup of mold, mildew, and odors. The fabric is 100% microfiber. It’s extremely soft and the entire item has a bean-bag like feel, so it’s easy to hold onto when cleaning a screen. The Wedge is handmade in the USA. Here’s a picture of the phone stand in use.

Mobile Device Stand in use

Colorful, multi-functional tech accessory will be appreciated by high school counselors

We recommend imprinting your brand name on the rounded, rectangle shape that is readily visible when the phone is in place for maximum exposure. In testing it out in our office, the Wedge held my phone at a comfortable angle, so it was both easy to read and touch the screen without sliding around my desk. Numerous colleagues are using the Wedge on their own desks because it’s such a functional and fun product.  It’s bound to be appreciated and will help keep your school top of mind with school counselors or other referral sources.

Link: View More Details and Pricing on the Wedge

Want more ideas? See our High School Counselors Showroom or contact us to discuss your recruitment plans.

Related Blog Posts and Resources:

30+ Ideas for Admissions Marketing30-plus-ideas-for-admissions-marketing

2015 Top Admissions Promotional Items

2015 Top New Promotional Products for Colleges



2015 Top Admissions Promotional Items

One thing that is true of the promotional products industry is there are literally THOUSANDS of products! It’s easy to search and search for the perfect idea with so many choices, which can get a bit overwhelming.

That’s where we come in.  We sort through the latest ideas for 2015 and organize them into categories to make it easier for you to find what applies to your school and organization.  We did just this with our notes and pictures from the PPAI Expo to highlight several trends and top promotional ideas for admissions departments.

New Ideas for Admissions

2015 promo ideas for admissions departments

New products for college admissions.

Starting at the top left, we’ll discuss how each promotional idea relates to admissions marketing.

  1. Custom Imprinted Box – 3D direct mail really makes a statement.  We’ve seen some creative admissions acceptance mailings, and we think a custom imprinted box would be a fun way to say, “You’re IN!”  For a smaller sized mailing, we especially like the Greeting Cube, which can be imprinted on both the inside and outside of the box. A higher value mailing could also be used to target specific student populations at various stages of the enrollment funnel.  According to the Direct Marketing Association, 3D mailings receive a 250% better response rate than standard mail, so it’s a great way to keep prospective students engaged with your school. For more direct mail ideas, see our Direct Mail Showroom.
  2. Mini Polaroid Camera – as we talked about in Help Students Picture Their Future at your School, a Polaroid camera would be a fun way to instantly provide a picture to a prospective student visiting campus.
  3. Tech Tattoos – These ultra removable decals are an inexpensive, safe and easy way to personalize electronic gadgets. The stickers are designed for laptops, tablets, e-readers, cell phones, music players, game consoles, and more. People love to show school spirit on their devices, making these tech tattoos ideal for prospective students (either in a direct mail piece with information or an event handout).  We also would recommend custom sticker sheets, such as the ones Wartburg College created with us.

    design your own sticker sheet

    A custom sticker sheet is another direct-mail friendly and new product for prospective students

  4. Luggage Tag – These high quality, embroidered luggage tags are a favorite idea for admitted students. It could easily be used in a get ready to “pack your bags” and come to our school themed event or mailing.
  5. Custom Pen Holder – Do you have a landmark on campus that would make a fun, custom pen holder?  This is a unique idea for high school couselors. There are so many options – check out the catalog here. Desk items are a gold standard among promotional products, meaning your brand gains more exposure when its displayed on a desk.
  6. DigiClean Mailer – We’ve written about the DigiClean many times (NACAC Top Products, DigiClean Testimonials, as one of our most popular tech screen cleaning promotional items.  DigiClean products come affixed to a direct mail card, so additional school information can be promoted on a larger space than the DigiClean itself. DigiClean and DigiGrip are items that literally “stick around” and resonate with tech-savvy prospective students. Click here for a link to the DigiClean Showroom.

Which items are you most interested in for your school or college? Let us know if you’ve seen any unique promotional products that colleges are using in the comments below.

Looking for more product ideas? See our Top New Promotional Products for Colleges blog post.

2015 Trends: The Growler

While attending the PPAI Expo in Las Vegas, some clear trends emerged after walking through the show floor.  One interesting trend in drinkware (as featured in 2015 New Products for Business and photo highlights) was the growler. The increasing popularity of craft breweries and home brewing has helped the growler emerge as a popular vessel for beverages.  Many brewpubs and breweries will sell growlers, which is typically a 64 oz container, or howlers, which is a half-growler or 32 ounces. It’s an ideal way to bring home fresh beer!

Recognizing this popularity, the promotional products industry displayed a wide array of insulators, carrying cases, and 32 – 64 ounce beverage containers.  Here were a few images of what we saw.  Click on the image for a link to product details.

Growler Koozie sample

This was one of many growler items at the PPAI Expo.

Growler carrying case

Carry your growler in style with this insulated carrying case.

growler cover numo

Another sample insulator for a growler

Growler-related promotional items are perfect for brewpubs, breweries, restaurants or bars. Since this is a relatively new product category, customers will certainly appreciate the unique, novel appeal of these items.

Here’s a snapshot of a wide range of drinkware trends we saw this year.

2015 Trends in Drinkware Promotional Items

So many drinkware options

For more information about trends in drinkware or other new for 2015 promotional items, give us a call at 414-831-0184.

Links to product information:

2015 New Promotional Products for Businesses

As we mentioned in a previous post, Michael Wolaver and Pat Conley from our sales team attended the PPAI Expo in January. There they visited with promotional product suppliers to learn about what’s new and trending for 2015. After sharing their long list of products and reviewing pictures, we came up with ten awesome new products that any business could incorporate into marketing plans.

2015 New Promotional Products

It’s probably no surprise that more than half of the ten top new items are related to technology. Year after year the number of tech promotional products continues to grow and innovate. Heading up our list are the tech items.

1. Cell Mate Phone Wallet and Stand

This Phone Wallet was one of our favorite products of 2014. Available March 2015, the Cell Mate Phone Wallet is a multi-tasker because it can open up to be used as a phone stand.

Leather phone wallet and stand

Leather phone wallet and stand

It’s bi-fold design also means more security than the phone wallet we saw in 2014.  Cards and cash are safely stowed with less risk of falling out. Leather material also provides a higher-end look and feel.

2. Mobile Device Cleaning Kit

While we LOVE the DigiClean smartphone cleaning pad, we really liked the look and convenience of this device cleaning kit.

Mobile device cleaning kit

Cleaning kit includes microfiber cloth, cleaning spray and pouch.

Neatly packaged inside a pouch comes a lint free, microfiber cloth and a 6.75 mL spray cleaner. The cleaner is safe for electronics, alcohol free and non-toxic. It cleans and sanitizes at the same time, keep your device smudge-free,
and safe from bacteria that causes illness.

3. Solar Power Banks

We’ve seen more and more interest in on the go chargers. One of the newest iterations is a solar powered charger.

solar powered charger

This power bank’s battery runs on solar power.

These power banks use Monocrystal silicon solar panels, which efficiently convert sunlight to energy. The compact battery can charge any mobile device from smart phones to iPads and tablets. The Solar Power Bank comes individually boxed with a USB cable, so it’s easy to handout.

4. Leather Swivel & Stand Tablet Holder

Do you ever wish a tablet holder could accommodate both vertical and horizontal orientations? The Eclipse Swivel & Stand Tablet Holder can do just that!

Eclispe Leather Tablet Swivel and Stand

Easily rotate a tablet in this stand.

Here’s a quick video demonstration of the product:

5. Lynktec Stylus Pen

Here’s a high quality stylus pen with a very fine point for more accurate contact with a smartphone or device.

Lynktec TruGlide Combo Stylus with Retractable Pen

Smooth writing and easy typing on devices with this stylus pen.

6. DigiGrip

The DigiClean Screen Cleaner is one of our most popular promotional items.  When a new product in this same line was introduced, we decided to take a closer look.  The DigiGrip Plus Anti-Slip Wipes is a screen cleaner AND a phone grip that sticks to your phone, including most cases, even if rubberized or heavily textured.

DigiGrips Grip and Screen Cleaner

DigiGrips is a mobile phone grip and screen cleaner in one.

Similar to the DigiClean Plus, it includes full color, two sided imprint, including the sticky side that adheres to your device.  Photos, QR codes, phone numbers, and locations can easily be imprinted on the DigiGrips Wipe itself or on the included custom 3.5″ x 6″ Marketing Card or 2″ x 3.5″ Business Card!

7. Cooling Towel

This promotional product is something you have to physically touch to believe! Michael demonstrated the Chilly iCool Towel in the office, and we were all impressed!

Chilly iCool Towel

Keep your cool with this innovative towel.

The towel can absorb eight times its weight in water and keeps cool as the water evaporates. It can continue cooling for hours as long as the towel is kept damp. The chemical-free design is biodegradable and machine washable. Store the clean, moist towel in its original package to get years of reliable use. Pretty cool, huh?!

8. Tritan Tumbler

This is a classic style, higher end tumbler that keeps drinks colder since it is lined with a double wall. This means your hand does not warm up the glass when holding on to it.

Tritain 16 oz tumbler

Tervis-style tumblers are available in many colors, can feature an insert, embroidered patch, or dome imprint.

We recently created a tumbler for Western Racquet Club, using their logo on an embroidered patch. Learn more about that project in our case study.

Western Racquet Club Tumbler

Final products – WRC gave out these tumblers at a tennis event.

9. Hustle Duffel Bag

We like this affordable duffel bag as an alternative to an event tote bag.

Hustle Sports Bag

Roomy sports bag with shoulder strap and large imprint area.

This sports bag has a roomy main compartment and a mesh outer pocket. Available in six colors.

10. Puffy Vest

This lightweight, packable vest caught our eye. The shell of the vest is made from recycled PET bottles.

Radius Puffy Vest

Puffy vests were trending at the PPAI Expo.

Premium insulation provides warmth without the bulk of other puffy vests.

From tech items to drinkware, our top ten new promotional products for 2015 spanned across a lot of categories and price points. Which promo product would you want to include in your branding and marketing? Comment below and let us know your favorite!

Please contact us with product related questions or to request a custom quote. For more product information, visit our 2015  New Products for Businesses Showroom.

Need more SWAG ideas? Call our Idea Explorers at 414-831-0184.

New Promo Products of 2015 – Photo Highlights

Michael Wolaver and Pat Conley descended upon Las Vegas earlier this month to attend the PPAI Expo.  While we compile and organize a few top 10 lists of new promotional products we love, we wanted to share some photo highlights from their trip.

bright colors, office and kitchen swag

Bright colors, office & kitchen items

From top left:

  • Fun, new shimmer ink imprint on cloth bags.
  • Bright colored trucker hats
  • Reflective safety bands
  • Fluorescent desk accessories
  • Trivet or Growler coaster
  • Collapsible measuring cups
  • Pizza cutter and server
So many drinkware options

So many drinkware options

From top left:

  • Extra large fruit basket infuser
  • Stainless steel and matte black travel mug
  • Snacker – holds a snack on top of your drink
  • Colorful tumblers
  • A way to “spritz” yourself to cool off
  • Growler insulator / cooler
  • Juicer bottle
  • Mugs with flocked imprint
Technology related items

Technology related items

From top left:

  • Tech Tattoos – decals
  • LokSak Waterproof bag for your phone
  • Tablet stand and holder that rotates landscape to letter orietation
  • Full color phone holders
  • Bluetooth headphones
  • Device chargers
  • Elastik phone cases
  • Cell Mate phone wallet and stand
  • Cleaning kit
Team spirit ideas

Team spirit ideas, Pat Conley showing off #1 Hand

From top left:

  • Fun spirit socks
  • Chrome domes large signs
  • Techno Skinz Decals for laptops and other devices
  • Poms with imprinted handle
  • #1 Ultimate Hand

Which pictures and products stand out most? Here was our top new promo products post from 2014.  Stay tuned for the 2015 lists!

Help Students Picture Their Future at your School

Help students picture their future at your school with creative custom frames.


Custom Frame showcases a prospective student on a campus visit. Image credit @uwadmissions

This is a fun, themed promotional item that can easily be incorporated into campus yield events, direct mail, and additional marketing ideas. The custom frame helps achieve the goal of engaging students in a memorable way with a social media component. We created this custom frame for the University of Wisconsin-Madison and wrote about it in this case study. Here’s our guide for how to use a custom frame at your school.

How to use a Custom Frame – On Campus

This oversize custom is an ideal event-related photo opportunity! Here are a few pointers for using the frame:

  1. Pick a favorite spot on campus to have custom frames setup during a campus tour, open house, or yield event. Think of a picturesque, iconic spot on campus.
  2. Assign staff members or current students to have prospective students pose with the frame as part of your event or visit. If staffing is limited, place on a stand to keep it in place.
  3. Another staff member should take pictures with a Polaroid and / or camera phone.
  4. Share digital pictures via social media using the hashtag imprinted on the custom frame. Email, tag, or private message students a copy of the picture. If using a Polaroid, pictures can be shared with students on the spot and posted to a bulletin board.
admitted students custom frame

Check out these #AdmittedBadgers at a yield event. Image credit @uwadmissions

Direct Mail Ideas

Remind students of their on campus experience by mailing a smaller, magnetic frame along with a thank you note. The note can include a generic picture of the magnetic frame displaying a picture taken with the large custom frame on campus, or an actual picture of the student for a more personalized touch.

Direct students to check out pictures of all admitted students on a URL that includes links to your admissions site. Bold, call to actions can promote campus overnight events, invite students to join an incoming class group on social media sites, or instructions on how to secure their place on campus.

For UW-Madison, we created smaller magnetic frames and had them inserted them into envelopes that were imprinted to help streamline mailing of their admitted student packets.

Other Marketing Ideas

“Picture your Future here” themes can easily be integrated into existing marketing. Whether printed or electronic, all communications to students can include custom frame imagery. Emails, posters, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Snapchat could feature similar imagery.

Admissions counselors could travel with custom frames to bring to high school visits or events and share pictures via social media.

The custom frame is an ideal product for engaging prospective students, tying in social media, and taking advantage of the #selfie photo sharing trend. To view additional information on the custom frame, visit our admitted student showroom or read our case study.

Products Featured

  • Large Custom Frame – 31″ x 42″
  • Medium Custom Frame – 23.5″ x 35.25″
  • Magnetic Frame for direct mail – 5″ x 7.375

How would you use this campaign on your campus?

Top 5 Ideas for Campus Tour Staff

Fall is a beautiful time of year for campus tours. Striking fall colors and cooler weather are realities of our Wisconsin location. Recent conversations with some Midwestern colleges have us sharing ideas for warm apparel. To further expand on outfitting tour guides and admissions staff for campus tours in the colder months, we assembled a list of our favorite ideas.

Top 5 Ideas for Campus Tour Staff

  1. Extra Large Umbrella – Keeping campus visitors comfortable and dry in inclement weather is important.  What a better way to do this than with a huge umbrella with an 80″ arc?  This is a new product that is the LARGEST arc umbrella available. It can hold 4 people underneath! Features vented technology, which allows the wind to pass through the vents. This simply means it’s easier to hold onto on extra windy days. Currently available in black, though we expect more colors to added in the future.  Another larger arc umbrella option with more color choices is the MVP Umbrella. With either item, smaller quantities are available, simply let us know what you need.

    80" arc umbrella for campus tours

    Extra large umbrella can hold up to four people underneath

  2. Outdoor Weather Gear – Many schools have a closet of 10 or more jackets for their tour guides or student ambassadors. This is more cost-effective than simply giving everyone a jacket. Plus keeping them in the tour office makes it easier to keep track and take care of them.  For this purpose, we recommend a durable rain jacket or versatile soft-shell winter jacket.
    Soft Shell Jacket for Tour Guides

    Keep guides warm in a branded soft shell jacket

    On those days when it really pours, consider having re-usable ponchos available for visitors.  This lightweight poncho is a great alternative to single-use ponchos.  It is also eco-friendly and PVC-free.

    rain poncho for campus visitors

    Keep campus visitors nice & dry with this poncho.

  3. Rugby Shirt – A long sleeve rugby shirt is a classic, collegiate look that can be worn over layers, while providing an easy to identify uniform for campus tour guides or staff. Ten different colors available plus custom colors, so you can match your school colors.

    Striped Rugby Shirt

    Red and White Rugby Shirt will stand out in a crowd!

  4. Custom Frame – This is a fun “accessory” that can be used on a campus tour, admitted student day, or any admissions’ event.  The custom frame is an extremely popular way to encourage photo taking and sharing via social media. Learn more about it in our Custom Frame Case Study. Large Custom Frame for Social Media
  5. Winter Hats – A warm hat is an essential for cold winters! This is one of our favorite, USA made knit hats because of its retro look with the knit-in lettering. Poms are also a fun, trendy feature.

    Knit in winter hat

    Knit-in Letters with many colors available to match your school’s colors

What tour items did you like best? How do your tours and respective uniforms change with the seasons?

For more campus tour ideas, including promotional products to give to visitors, visit our showrooms:

  1. Staff and Tour Guide Apparel Showroom
  2. Campus Tour Showroom

Contact us with any questions or for additional promotional product ideas.

Easy to Love – New Promotional Products

Account Managers Paige and Elise recently attended a new product showcase, where they discovered some new and fun promotional items. Here’s what caught their eye:

Color Engraved Titanium Items

These are beautifully designed, durable promotional items. A laser printing process delivers brilliant, shimmering colors on either stock or custom shapes.  Personalization is also available, making this an ideal gift item. All products are USA Made.

Suggested Uses:

  • Handout at events
  • Recognize volunteers

Sample Guitar and Car Titanium Promotional Items

Check out the wide range of items and options!

Color Titanium gifts design samples

More sample Color Titanium Items

Shimmering colors on Titanium Promo Item

Look at the cool, reflective imprint

Full Color Imprint Phone Stand

Although it has a restaurant theme imprint, the options are endless for this full color phone stand.  It is made of a rigid styrene material with a securely attached plastic kickstand that folds flat. Custom shapes are available, so you could really get creative with this item!

Suggested uses:

  •  Students or Alumni
    • Imprint an athletic schedule
    • Imprint a campus mascot or scene from campus
    • Fold down the kickstand to include in a mailing
  • High School Counselors / Referral Sources
    • Imprint important dates, contact information
full color imprint phone stand

Ideal for any desk or table top surface

Collegiate Mascot on Phone Stand

The Cal Mascot looks sharp on this phone stand sample.

Silly Band Type Bracelets

Silly Bands, or Squiggles are perfect for any event that includes children and families.  Six rubber bands come packaged in a poly-bag with a full color marketing card. Kids love collecting and trading these bands!

Choose from six themes or ask about creating your own custom shape.

  • Dinosaurs
  • Music
  • Sports
  • Sea Creatures
  • Transportation
  • Insects
  • Dental
  • Fruit
  • Animals

Suggested uses:

  • State Fair or expo booth promotional item
  • Family-friendly company picnic
  • Customer appreciation event
Silly Bands

Kids will love these silly band shapes.

Cold Weather Ideas

As summer turns to fall, we are all starting to bundle up more. This new Microboa Sherpa Blanket would be an appreciated gift for staying warm and cozy! It includes a carrying bag.  Decorate with your logo to promote your brand.

Suggested uses:

  • Employee Appreciation
  • Gift for speakers at a conference or event
Warm Microboa Sherpa Blanket

Customer will gladly cozy up with this Microboa Sherpa Blanket

From this same partner comes these custom imprinted sweatshirt blankets.  We have run these for collegiate clients, and they were very well received.  The packaging and presentation is especially nice, rolled and wrapped up with a label that includes an image of the blanket’s design.  This means you won’t have recipients immediately unrolling the blanket to see what’s imprinted.  Available in 28 different colors.

sweatshirt blanket rolled and labeled

Attractive presentation means it’s easy to handout or mail these sweatshirt blankets right away!

Custom Shaped Post-it Notes

Last but not least, custom shaped Post-it Notes grabbed Elise’s attention.  Who wouldn’t love a state shaped or mascot shaped note pad?  They are fun and useful promotional items.

fun custom shaped post it notes

Make your own custom shaped Post-it!

Which new items do you love most? Let us know what you think in the comments below, or give us a call for more information at 414-831-0184.

2014 Magellan Product Showcase

We recently held our seventh annual Magellan Product Showcase on Tuesday, April 8th at The Hamilton, located on Milwaukee’s east side.  A wonderful group of our customers had a chance to interact with the Magellan Promotions team and six industry leading suppliers to learn about the latest trends and new promotional products for 2014.  We shared ideas to help support promotional marketing projects over a fun and relaxing lunch time event.

For more pictures, visit our photo album on Facebook.

From event counters, table throws, and small giveaways, to mason-jar inspired drinkware, tablet holders, and wireless speakers, we featured THOUSANDS of products at this event! Technology items: holders, chargers, USB drives, laptop sleeves and other electronics continue to generate a lot of interest, similar to last year.  Customers also enjoyed checking out options for tote bags, apparel, water bottles, mugs, pens, and natural products.


Each attendee received the following free samples:

  • Gemline Muse Convention Tote
  • The Player Cup
  • Ambassador Journal
  • Aqua Pearls Hot / Cold Pack
  • Stylus Pen
Goodie Bag - samples handed out at the 2014 Magellan Product Showcase

Goodie Bag – samples handed out at the 2014 Magellan Product Showcase

Most Popular Products 

The results are in! Our clients voted on their favorite products featured at the Showcase and the top five products were:

1. Bullet Vibration Speaker – Simply place mobile phone on the flat surface and listen as the sound from the internal speaker is amplified. Easy to use. No wireless settings or cables needed.

Best in Showcase Product - Bullet Vibration Speaker

Best in Showcase Product – Bullet Vibration Speaker

2. Aqua Pearls Hot / Cold Pack – Reusable pack is both microwave and freezer safe.  Available in six fun colors.

aqua pearls hot_cold_pearls

3. North End jacket / shirts – modern apparel available in men’s and women’s sizes

4. Isaac Mizrahi Tote / Gemline Tote Bags – trend conscious bags

5. Hat with integrated LED Lights – ideal for runners, the LED lights on the brim enhance visibility.

LED lights in hat brim, Isaac Mizrahi tote, North End Jacket

More Favorite Items: Hat with LED lights, Issac Mizrahi Tote Bag, North End Jacket

It was fun learning about what promotional products really stood out for attendees.  Please contact us if you have any questions about these items or if you are interested in receiving a sample.

Thank you to everyone who attended the 2014 Magellan Product Showcase! We look forward to seeing you at next year’s event!