Target Customers with Integrated Marketing Strategies

If recent history in the promotional products industry has taught us anything, it’s that competition in today’s marketplace is more ferocious than ever. With the constant challenge of differentiating yourself to stand out from the crowd, generating the right kind of new business and cultivate meaningful relationships all while managing the clients you currently have – it’s no surprise that few of us have time to analyze our business methods or make any major changes in the way we work. Now more than ever, you have to be a master in various methods of communication to get the attention of customers and prospects. Creating and implementing a marketing plan that promotes yourself as efficiently, professionally and economically as possible is key to your success. An integrated approach, incorporating print and online communication strategies, will help you get the best results.Integrated_Marketing_image

At Vernon, we focus on innovative, turnkey marketing solutions to get our account executives the attention they want and deserve. They include:

1. Direct Marketing. Print media is still a convenient way to present products to a “shopper” and one of the best vehicles for lead generation. Whether it is personalized product catalogs, eye-catching postcards or dimensional mailers, Vernon’s direct mail programs ensure that the account executive’s name lands on the desk of his/her clients and prospects numerous times throughout the year.

 2. Personalized E-Marketing. Email is a quick, easy and economical way to market yourself. It can reinforce the messages delivered through traditional methods – direct mail, phone calls and personal visits. Vernon offers a turnkey email communication program, creating and distributing personalized weekly product specials and monthly educational e-newsletters to clients and prospects on behalf of our account executives.

3. Website Marketing. Clients and prospects want to access ideas and purchase products quickly and easily, when it’s convenient for them. A website is an easy way to keep your target audience educated on current trends and product offerings, share best sellers and promote special offers. In addition to our corporate website (www.vernonpromotions.com), Vernon account executives have personalized websites to allow their customers easy product ideas and shopping at their fingertips.

Through these and other integrated marketing programs, we empower account executives to make a difference with their customers and prospects. Combine that with beginning our 114th year of industry success and you have a winning combination.

BILL VERNON CELEBRATES 60 YEARS AT THE VERNON COMPANY

 

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NEWTON, IA – In September 2016, Bill Vernon, Chairman of The Vernon Company, marked a career and company milestone by becoming the first person in the company’s 114 year history to celebrate 60 continuous years of service in its corporate office.

Vernon joined his family’s company in 1956, after college and a tour of duty overseas in the U.S. Army. He was elected President of The Vernon Company in 1969 and became the Chairman and CEO after the death of his father, Bill Vernon, Sr., in 1974.

During his 60-year tenure, the company’s annual sales grew from $5 million in 1956 to $70 million today. “My father has been the most instrumental person in the company’s success over the past six decades,” said Chris Vernon, current CEO. “His contribution to this company, to the industry and to our family is remarkable and is an important legacy in the company’s history.”

In addition to the contributions he has made to his company, his industry accomplishments are just as impressive. He was named Chairman of the Board of Promotional Products Association International (PPAI) in 1971, inducted into the PPAI Hall of Fame in 1985, named the Counselor’s Person of the Year in 1986 and received the Marvin Spike Lifetime Achievement Award in 2013.

Outside of the industry, Vernon has also left his mark in the state of Iowa. He was the founder of the Iowa Games and the creator of the Iowa Sports Foundation. He served as chairman of the Des Moines Civic Center, was a member of the board of directors for the Des Moines Art Center, and served on the Wells Fargo Iowa Board for almost 30 years. He was also a civilian aide to the Secretary of the Army for Iowa and a delegate to the Republican Party National Convention. Additionally, he served on the board and helped co-found Progress Industries in Newton, Iowa – a nonprofit organization designed to provide job skills and independence for citizens with disabilities.

“I’ve had a perfect balance between civic and business activities over the years,” said Vernon. “Being involved has helped shape my pride and enthusiasm for this company, my home town, and the state of Iowa. I hope that the involvement I have had, professionally and personally over the past six decades, has left a lasting impression and that my family and our company will continue to build on that legacy.”

TWELVE VERNON EMPLOYEES RECOGNIZED AS PPAI FELLOWS

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Newton, IA – Twelve employees of The Vernon Company have been recognized as Promotional Products Association International (PPAI) Fellows. The new PPAI Fellows Program is a way to thank and recognize individuals who have continuously supported the promotional products industry through personal involvement, and who have contributed to a culture of rich volunteer engagement. The twelve Vernon employees recognized in this inaugural group of PPAI Fellows are:

  • Jerry Delgado (Puerto Rico)
  • Sue Moore (Nebraska)
  • Michael Propst (Ohio)
  • Dave Regan (Iowa)
  • Hal Small (Florida)
  • Andrea Smith (Iowa)
  • Bill Szydlowski (Iowa)
  • Jeff Thomas (California)
  • Chris Vernon (Iowa)
  • Bill Vernon (Iowa)
  • Dale Worden (Florida)
  • Rick Yood (Florida)

Each of these individuals were recognized based on their combined contributions in one or more of the following activities: serving on committees, advisory groups, task forces or boards for five years or more; mentoring, facilitating or teaching education sessions; contributing articles to PPAI publications; and volunteering in the promotional products industry.

Chris Vernon Named CEO

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The Vernon Company recently announced that Chris Vernon, Co-CEO of The Vernon Company, has been promoted to Chief Executive Officer and Vice Chairman effective July 1, 2016. Chris will continue to serve as President and manage daily business operations across all Vernon operating divisions. William F. (Bill) Vernon will continue as the Company’s Chairman.

Chris Vernon has been with the Company since 1987 and has held various responsibilities in sales and marketing. He was appointed to Co-CEO in 2014 and President and Chief Operating Officer in 1999. He is a graduate of Lake Forest Academy, Lake Forest, Illinois, and has an undergraduate degree in political science and a master’s degree in business administration (Kellogg Graduate School of Management) from Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois. He worked for Harris/Lanier Corporation and NCR Corporation in the 1980s prior to joining Vernon.

“This is another step in our succession planning & leadership transition process that has been occurring the past several decades,” stated Bill Vernon. “Chris has proven himself to be an effective leader in our business, our industry and within the community during both good and difficult business cycles.  He has also built an outstanding executive and administrative team to whom we are deeply indebted. We are very proud of the success and growth of our businesses in the promotional product and sign graphics markets.”

Vernon Implements Online Learning System for Employees

The Vernon Company is pleased to announce that it has entered into an agreement with lynda.com to offer its online educational system to all home office staff.

lynda.com is a leading online learning company that helps users acquire business, technology and creative skills to achieve personal and professional goals. Through Vernon, members of the company’s home office staff now have access to the lynda.com video library of more than 4,100, engaging, top-quality courses and video tutorials taught by recognized industry experts.

“We are really excited to start using lynda.com. Our ultimate goals are to help our employees build and expand their personal skills and knowledge and to grow professionally,” said Chris Vernon, President and Co-CEO at The Vernon Company. “In today’s competitive marketplace, it’s imperative that we arm our staff with the best tools and resources available to not only help them in the workplace, but also to help them expand their overall knowledge and skill sets.”

lynda.com, Inc. was founded in 1995 and was acquired by LinkedIn earlier this year. Learn more about lynda.com on LinkedIn or by visiting www.lynda.com/press.

Bergman, New Director of Administration

The Vernon Company is pleased to announce that it has hired Shannon Bergman as Director of Administration, effective September 1, 2015.

Bergman comes to Vernon with a strong service, branding and sales background. Most recently, Shannon worked for Newton Manufacturing as the Sales Service Manager. Additional experience includes leadership roles at The Maytag Company and West Bank.

In this position, Bergman will assume management responsibilities for the Vernon Administrative Managers and support staff, including Pre-Sales, Customer Service, Order Department and Sales Support. Overall, these Administrative departments provide assistance and support for Vernon’s 270 Account Executives around the country.

Brad Lundquist, Vernon Senior Vice President of Operations, commented, “We are excited to have Shannon join our team. We have been looking for a strong leader to oversee our admin areas, because we know this is a very important role. From helping AE’s find the right products, to getting orders to suppliers, resolving order issues and so much more, these departments are the best-kept secret to Vernon’s success over the last 100+ years. We couldn’t do it without them.”

A native of Newton, Bergman graduated from Upper Iowa University with a bachelor’s degree in marketing. She lives in Newton with her husband, Jim, and two daughters; one is a sophomore at Grinnell College and the other is a high school senior.

The Vernon Company is recognized as one of the largest and most successful promotional product firms in North America. Founded in 1902 by F.L. Vernon, we serve more than 40,000 customers from our Newton, Iowa corporate headquarters.

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