Mobile cell phone chargers. Miniature speakers. Cool connecting cords. Portable electronics. Put your own logo on a branding product that will be used and respected and seen and admired in the nonprofit marketplace.
This is a great emerging Branding Product category. But be careful. New and untested factories and products enter the market faster than I can type this warning.
“WARNING?” Yes – a warning. Some of these products are crap. You have seen news reports about portable battery packs that overheated, started fires and/or fried cell phones by discharging erratically. I know of three major recalls of logo-imprinted power packs due to their tendency to set fires.
Sure, they look cool – these modern, upscale plastic or metal little gadgets. With your logo on the outside you expect to have a winner.
But it is the electronic innards that count. They will will enhance the end-user’s affinity for your nonprofit. Or undermine that affinity!
Here we will show you how to avoid mobile battery chargers that over-promise and under-deliver. We will tell you how to pick a mobile charger (or other electronic device) that avoids risk and enhances your nonprofit brand. You’ll find examples below.
But first- our Mantra about basic dynamics of logo-imprinted Branding Products.
The VisABILITY Mantra: Nothing puts your brand in front of more people, more often, more positively and with less cost per impression than high-quality products imprinted with your logo. But, unlike other branding media, these products endure. So they generate repeat impressions which enhance- or undermine – your brand as long as they are in use.
MOBILE BATTERY CHARGERS: Remember now …..the exterior is nice. The insides are essential. Big difference between nice and essential – especially in a product that endures and is expected to perform.
So, Tip# One: buy products for their electronic competence, not because they look cool.
And, Tip # Two: know what level of service you are selecting to help the end-user (your supporter) service his or her power-hungry mobile electronic devices.
Consider these characteristics before you buy:
Minimum Performance: for charging nothing larger than cell phones and smart phones – look for 5 volts; no less than 2,200 milaAmp hours of stored current (stated as mAh on the product); 1 amp of output; and 1 USB port. Units with these specs will top off a phone battery or even fully recharge it. But these units can’t do much for a laptop and may not hold their own power for more than a week or two.
Much More Zippy – better specs: 5 volts; 4,000 or 5,000 mAh of stored current; 1 amp of output. Units with these specs can juice a smart phone much more quickly. These units also retain their power for a considerable period of time. And they can power-up a notebook or iPad. The really good ones have a 1 amp USB port for phones and a 2 amp port for larger devices or faster power transfer.
Top Of The Line: Premium units, reasonably priced and not much larger, feature 10,000 or 11,000 mAh; contain both 1 and 2 amp USB ports. These zippy items will quickly charge every kind of portable electronics. They will also hold their charges for a remarkable amount of time. (The VP of our favorite and most reliable supplier mentioned that his father carried one in a brief case for six months and, when finally put to use, it energized his laptop just fine.)
(1) You must not buy electronic items for price alone! NEVER!
When I get time I will do a video for this blog. It will demonstrate two identical cell phone chargers. One cost a few nickels less than the other. The identical looking but less expensive one was recalled from the market because it overheated, became a fire hazard and quit working. By then millions of people had one of their own.
The technique that leads to disappointment – and possibly to fire: any product can be made for less – merely by reducing quality. With these chargers the case will be super-cool. The reduction in product quality and production cost will be in the electronics – where it cannot be seen by the person making a purchase decision for his or her nonprofit.. The most expensive to save your nonprofit money is to put its logo on a lower price product that will disappoint the end user.
(2) Operating on your own, you can’t guarantee product quality. Your vendor can – and should – do it for you. He or she should know who the reliable quality-conscious factories are. Insist that he or she show you products ONLY FROM factories of that caliber. Miniature electronics is one area where you must set firm quality rules.