TEN Magazine January 2019 TEN January 2019 - Page 22

LASER Adding value to promotional items with laser engraving and marking Promotional merchandise is used by almost all companies at one time or another, usually featuring the company name or logo and often a brand message. Personalisation of promotional products is possible by various production methods. Printing technologies are commonly used, but recently laser technology has become more and more popular in the personalisation fi eld. Today, nearly all major suppliers and retailers of promotional items also offer laser engraving for refining their products. Why has laser technology become so popular in this sector? There are many different reasons for this, explained below. Promotional items are part of every successful advertising strategy Branded merchandise is often used in advertising campaigns, providing prospects and customers a tangible memento which will aid in keeping the brand front of mind, holding an advantage over other marketing technologies. For example, conventional TV or print advertising can struggle with the problem of significant loss of advertising recall. A promotional item on the other hand, overcomes this problem as the customer is often able to use it on a daily basis. When combined with other promotional activities, it becomes a valuable tool. Classic examples of promotional items include ballpoint pens, USB sticks and calendars, however new and innovative products such as smartphone accessories (battery powerbanks, selfie sticks) or fitness products (step counters) are becoming more common and these more novel ideas can really set a brand apart from the rest. Modern suppliers of promotional items rely on laser technology The numerous advantages of laser processing Many different materials can be processed and any design can be implemented using a laser machine, with even the finest motifs, logos and photos being reproducible thanks to unmatched precision. Aside from uncoated metals, no additional consumables are required for laser engraving materials and additional processes such as complex machine setups or print preparations are eliminated. This makes producing even small batches of products economical, even one-off laser engravings can be realised without any extra effort or expense, while the contactless processing creates durable engraving results without causing any damage to the material, reducing wastage and rejects. Laser marking on a stainless steel hip fl ask Bernd Kerbl, product marketing manager for Trotec Laser explained “Innovative and successful manufacturers and retailers of promotional items rely on laser technology to offer maximum flexibility in terms of material options, marking content and product sizes or quantities. Laser engraving is perceived as the mark of a high quality product, especially for promotional items made of metal as it does not fade or rub off.” Laser-engraved ballpoint pens made of anodised aluminium Laser processing makes retailers more profi table Promotional items are usually mass- produced. At the same time, there are many suppliers or retailers of promotional items with a broad product portfolio. These goods are often sourced from Asia in large quantities. 20 JANUARY 2019 read online: www.trophex.com