I’ve purchased things from Ikea over the years and I walk in fully understanding the concept of “some assembly required.” In fact, I’ve become quite proficient in translating something in Urdu or Spanish or Japanese that some Swede has decided is English…so much so that putting together an end table makes me feel multilingual. I can now say dowel rod in four languages. Lately though, at some businesses it seems like I’m doing more work yet paying the same amount of money and if I’m doing some of the work, I’m going to be in the mood for a discount.
I blame the oil companies. They conned us years ago with this idea that we should pump our own gas as if we could do it without driving off with the hose still in the gas tank. This may be news to many of you but there was a time when we didn’t pump our own gas. A guy would come out and pump your gas, wash your windshield and check your oil and the only thing you had to worry about was whether he short-stroked your dipstick just to sell you a quart of oil. Most people today don’t even know their car takes oil.
Grocery stores, most notably the supposedly healthy ones like Sprouts and Whole Foods quickly took note and instead of selling you a package of nuts, they took every nut, granola flavor, chocolate and dried fruit and dumped them all into barrels like we had time- warped to a general store in 1885 Dodge City. Under the guise of you having the ability to buy exactly how much you want, they now charge you more for filling the bag yourself, then using a sharpie to accidentally write down the wrong code so instead of being charged for shelled peanuts, you are charged for uncut diamonds.
While I have nothing inherent against the concept of self-serve, I don’t think it’s too much to ask to be forewarned. I don’t take my car in for new tires and have to loosen my own lug nuts any more than I check into the hospital and perform my own colonoscopy. It would be alarming as I was counting backward from 100 and falling asleep to hear the doctor asking me for a scalpel.
Subway as an example, despite heating your sandwich in a toaster oven they stole from somebody’s dorm room, does it right. You tell them what you want on your sandwich and their professionally-trained, clinically-depressed teenagers put it on your sandwich. Then at the end of the line they wrap it tighter than a mummy…just in case you want to eat it next year. My issue is with the eateries that are sneaking in the self-serve aspect without warning or discount. Here’s the deal…I tell you what I want on my sandwich and you put it on the damned sandwich. Don’t point me to a bowl full of mustard packets that I’m going to end up squirting on my leg. You’re the one wearing a hairnet and an apron. I’m buying the sandwich, you’re making the sandwich…let’s try and keep our roles straight. There is no quid pro quo here…where you get the sandwich started and then I take over. My part in this story begins with my first bite. Am I asking too much? If I pay for 100% of the sandwich, shouldn’t they make 100% of the sandwich? If that’s not going to be the way it is, it begs the question once asked by a wise sage, “How much am I paying you to work for you for free?” It’s a whole lot like the berry picking scam where you pay to pretend to be migrant workers for the day.
It’s not really that different in business. IMC has awesome promotional products and, for 2016, we have new products from our collections and 6 new retail brands for the industry. We believe IMC products speak for themselves and we can also show you ways to use and market them to your clients. Our decorations feature your client’s art and we will make your customer think they are special. The 2016 IMC catalog is available by request from the IMC website and will be posted on the online services. We’ll continue to treat our clients professionally and get your orders to you…on time and on budget. If you’re curious about click on the tab and see. You can also get on the distribution list for our 2016 catalog using the catalog page of our website. We have new items in the IMC Collections and several new retail brands debuting in 2016. We have products for every event and if your client has invented a holiday or celebration, we can also custom-make almost anything you can dream to make your client’s event all it can be. Take a look at our YouTube channel to see some videos showcasing popular products for some ideas on how to use them. We take our business relationship seriously and we want you to enjoy, give and receive our products and be able to use them every day. We look forward to working with you and we always have ideas to make our products work for your clients. The 2016 IMC catalog is also live and available virtually at Zoomcatalog.com if you’re tired of fighting paper catalogs. It can be viewed nicely with your laptop, iPad, tablet or phone. IMC is the recognized leader in the introduction of new retail brands to the promotional product industry and has multiple design awards from both ASI and PPAI. Since introducing Waterford® Writing Instruments and MoMA years ago, IMC has presented more than 48 retail brands from global suppliers to enhance the selections you can offer your clients. This year we are proud to present Just Mobile, Block, Magisso, PlayableART, Molla Space and Airplane Pockets to the promotional products industry. We invite you to browse any of our 2,300+ products on the IMC website to see items suitable for any occasion or event and pieces you can use to personalize your relationship with your clients. We have promotional products for every event, show, convention, corporate store and company program that will keep your client looking to you for new ideas. What do you think? Let us know with a comment here or on Facebook or Twitter. IMC wants to know…how’s the service?