All posts by Rocca

What’s Hot! Holiday 2017 Lookbook

If you’re old enough, you might remember inches thick holiday catalogs that arrived in mailboxes every fall. It was an instant boost to spirits as children rushed home from school to look at page after page of the latest toys and dream. We want to recapture some of that magic in the age of click-and-purchase decisions.

 

This year, we’ve created our own book of the latest and greatest-without killing all those trees! And don’t forget, with Rocca’s New PrimeTime program, you get a special bonus when ordering your custom items between August 1 and September 29. Let’s bring some fun back to shopping, shall we?

 

Click below to start shopping!

2017 Holiday Lookbook

Introducing Rocca PrimeTime for Holiday 2017

Understandably, you’re more concerned these days with the ice melting in your drink than Jack Frost nipping at your nose. Surprise! Holiday gift planning season is now upon us. Wait! Don’t stop reading! We have big news! Whether you’re a methodical plotter or fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants, last-minute shopper, Rocca can make holiday 2017 easier for you! We’re introducing a new program that helps you set both your schedule and expectations for custom holiday gifts: Rocca PrimeTime. With four distinct periods of shopping, you’ll know how to best plan your holiday cheer.

 

Rocca PrimeTime
Orders Placed Between Aug. 1 and Sept. 29

You deserve a reward for getting an early start on your holiday gifts, and we’re just the ones to give it to you! Starting your gift process early not only allows more time for creativity, but it also offers you the best selection, more customization options and most economical shipping. Don’t worry that you won’t feel inspired or “in the mood” yet. This summer, Rocca is releasing our own “Holiday LookBook,”, encompassing some of the hottest items on the market this year. It’s a grown-up, high-tech version of those old holiday Wish Books! And, to reward your preparation in ordering during Rocca PrimeTime, your Rocca team will send you a special thank you gift-just for you!

 

Rocca Traditional Shopping
Orders Placed Between Oct. 1 and Nov. 24
Our traditional shopping period offers a variety of items and can accommodate basic customization and special requests, depending on the item and order date. Standard shipping rates apply, and you’re still ahead of game, ready to enjoy a stress-free holiday.

 

Rocca Rush
Orders Placed Between Nov. 27 and Dec. 8

During the Rocca Rush period, you can select from a number of preselected items and customization options from vendors Rocca trusts to deliver prior to the holidays. Procrastination doesn’t pay, so rush shipping charges may apply for holiday delivery.

 

Rocca Plan B
Orders Placed Between Dec. 11 and Dec. 21
While we can’t guarantee delivery of any holiday orders during this period, Rocca’s creativity really kicks in here. So you missed the holidays … don’t miss out on the goodwill! How about January delivery of a New Year’s toast with custom wine glasses or fitness equipment to help with those 2018 resolutions? We’ll help you recover from holiday stress gracefully. It’s the ultimate, “I meant to do that!”

 

So go back to your air-conditioned comfort of summer. Rocca’s already working to pre-empt holiday stress. Join us next month in our Rocca PrimeTime period and your holiday shopping is literally in the bag before your first pumpkin spiced latte! Merry Summertime, y’all!

Happy Birthday, Rocca! No Seven-Year Itch Here!

Because we never shy away from a shout-out or a great piece of cake: It’s our birthday at Rocca! Yes, we’re seven – SEVEN! – years old this month. But before you pull out those lucky number seven comments or seven-year-itch clichés, we’ve got to say a lot of hard work, not luck contributed to this business born during a global recession. And don’t even think we’re slowing down or getting bored –  we’re just hitting our stride! Maybe we’re aging in dog years?

 

You might recall that founder Jennifer Stevens formed Rocca more from necessity than spontaneous desire. Her own disappointment in the quality and customer service of the promotional products industry forced us to build that proverbial better mousetrap. So it comes naturally for us to reinvent the wheel. Heck, we seek every day to reinvent the industry! We love sharing our skills and experience to troubleshoot and make the process easier for our clients. They’ve returned the favor over and over again with their excellent referrals, helping us grow organically to the company we are today!

 

Part of the reason, we’ll never tire of our job is that we’re also always looking for the next big thing. Sure, we take care of those promotional product standards like pens and koozies while saving you money and irritation, but we’re so much more! Whether we’re going to market or searching the latest trends online, we’re all about looking ahead and keeping it fresh. From custom lego sets to hangover kits tailor-made for your celebrations, we’re always thinking of creative, innovative ways to keep your brand and audience engaged.

 

That’s also why we’re also launching a great new way to approach your holiday gift this year with Rocca PrimeTime. We’ll unveil this exciting new program later this month and are thrilled to offer a new opportunity to save you both time and money on your end-of-year gifts. Stay tuned!

 

We’re not blinking, pausing or even taking a breath. The wind remains at our back with great client relationships, a bevy of brand licenses and a team that makes it easy to love what we do every day. Thank you for being part of this exhilarating journey with us!
Bring on the cake and year number eight!

American-Made Products Can Be Good for The Economy and Your Budget

While Independence Day tends to highlight patriotic sentiments and soapboxes, did you know only 67 percent of American consumers will choose American-made products if a lower price is offered? Last year’s Associated Press-GfK poll says that’s in stark contrast to three-quarters of the same participants claiming they prefer buying American-made goods. And while availability and prices seemed to be common excuses, it just doesn’t sit right with us. It’s rare we can’t celebrate economical, quality American-made solutions. Take a look at some of these gems!

 
Yes, American-Made Product Can Be the Norm!
Many clients assume there simply aren’t American-made products to compete with saturated foreign productions of items such as lapel pins, award ceremony medals, and other standard promotional gear. Go ahead. Flip over most lapel pins you’ve been handed to find a “Made in (insert a place not the USA!)” stamp. However, we commonly source from American-made companies for these products. Our recent Texas Cultural Trust lapel pins and honoree medals for their Texas Medal of Arts Awards kept things both in the country and on a budget!  All it takes is one snarky social media story or news mention to make your organization look hypocritical talking about American values and exceptionalism.

 

Put Some Skin in the Game!
People also tend to overlook American products when considering custom office supplies. Notebooks, binders, bookmarks and even keychains can boast an American pedigree, as well as an upgrade in style. Many of these include custom leather products from favorite vendors, such as David Michael Leather and Rustico. We’ve designed incredible American-made head turners, such as leather binders for AT&T, bookmarks for TCU and even leather coasters for CWS Corporate Housing. Transform the common into the incomparable, while keeping your cash in the U.S.!

 

Patriotic Plastics Available!

Finally, don’t assume those game cups and tumblers must come from a land far, far away. From thermal coffee mugs with slider lids, to sports bottles, koozies and cool sleeves, we can source them all from right here at home. We’ve done the leg work and price negotiation for you. Now, just sit back and drink in the fact that your dollars are staying right here in the U.S.

 

At Rocca, we know American-made promotional products aren’t always an option. Some specialty items simply must be sourced directly from a foreign manufacturer. However, when looking at widely available items, we always keep our eyes open for ways to help you invest in the American economy and workers. It’s our promise to you, and our great nation.

 

Have a happy and safe Independence Day from your friends at Rocca!

Some Like It Hot: Summer Items That Sizzle

Struggling with the summer heat and seasonal promotion ideas? Apply the phrase, “lazy days of summer,” to your marketing, and you’ll play catch-up until 2018! Luckily, working with Rocca gives you an endless summer supply of imagination. Need items to motivate staff through that post-vacation slump? Entertaining clients or members at a summer retreat? We cover all these needs, as well as inspired items to boost energy during those summer sales visits.

 

Promotion Ideas for Long, Hot Days

You don’t need a scheduled event to execute warm weather promotion ideas. That soaring thermometer places us all in the same boat – often literally! Whether you’re planning a group activity or offering something to take along on individual summer plans, warm-weather survival bundles please crowds. It’s true. Everyone dreads lugging suitcases or boxes in the summer heat. However, we worked with our CWS Corporate Housing clients on a welcome package to take the sting out of sweltering move-in days. A branded welcome package filled with sun sticks (half sunscreen/half lip balm), cooler bags to prevent ice-cream-run meltdowns and the perfect all-weather tumblers help guests chill out in their temporary home.

 

On the Rocks is On the Mark!

If you’re looking for branded goods for summer festivals or mid-year giveaways, keep it cool with customized chilling and cooling devices. Of course, a S’well chilling bottle feels mandatory these days, but we go far beyond those essentials. Think big picture with thermal bags and Yeti coolers that beg for a road trip. Or, go small and personal with individual chilled misters for Fourth of July celebrations. We can even place your logo on water-activated LED ice cubes. There’s no better way to get someone’s attention than in their frosty cocktail cup!

 

Hot Dogs Aren’t Only on the Grill

Don’t forget that four-legged friends endure summer heat as well! There are plenty of pet products that tie in nicely to promote summer exercise with a favorite pal. We adore the portable, collapsible silicone water bowls we recently prepared for the JE Dunn Weiner Dog Race. These mobile hydration stations keep pets happy if you’re heading to the lake, beach or just out for a neighborhood jog. And, with your branding, it will be a hit at the dog park!

 

Whether you count down the days until summer or shelter indoors until the first whiff of pumpkin spice, Rocca helps you not only survive but thrive in the summer months. So relax in the AC, and let Rocca’s sizzling creativity crank up the heat on your competition!

Let the (Branded) Games Begin!

Summer and fun seem to go hand-in-hand, but branded games can spread that upbeat feeling throughout the year. From fabulous theme products coordinating with events to those top-of-mind items just for the fun of it, games and sports provide an enthusiast and innovative boost to your brand. What’s more, these items stay evergreen, meaning they increase their ROI year after year.

 

Branded Products for Sports Fans

Whether your target audience can’t wait for MLB opening day or fret tirelessly over their NCAA tournament brackets, sporting goods always gain notice with timely references. From mini basketball hoops and branded tennis balls to autographed collectibles, keep those sporty fans appreciating your imaginative style. These items also make fabulous event additions. When NFL legend Rolf Benirschke spoke to a crowd on patient protections, our client could have let the crowd leave only with his incredible story. Instead, we provided keepsake autographed footballs from the Pro-Bowl legend, branded with our client’s logo. This extended the life of the message every time the collectible footballs were viewed.

 

Games Aren’t Only for the Pros

If you think you need a star athlete to fulfill this strategy, let us stop you right there. All you need for the win column is a great product and competitive spirit. We’ve created custom dominos for corporate clients. From Monopoly® boards to washers, clever integration of your brand allows you to integrate marketing in unexpected areas of your audience’s life. Need a sure win for new business development? Let Rocca build upon your plans with a custom Jenga® set. No one can keep their hands off that one!

 

Unexpected Victories

One of our favorite tactics is introducing fun and games in some of the most unexpected places. Just because your product has an element of whimsy doesn’t mean it won’t fit in with serious business. As AT&T geared up for an intense legislative session, we created a Capitol-themed washer game. Legislators and their staff often have long days and nights during session. We received great feedback from happy staffers who were able to blow off a little steam with the washer game on particularly grueling days. For a Lockheed Martin jet launch, we created special building block sets. Sometimes, a fun touch helps you refocus on the big picture.

 

The possibilities for entertaining, creative ties seem absolutely endless when you play with Rocca on your team. Don’t allow your branded products to fall into a predictable rut. Add some fun to keep your audience enthusiastically playing along all year!

Earth Day Every Day! Keep Green in Front of Consumers but Save Some Too!

It’s no secret that millennials attach brand loyalty to social responsibility and value-based products, especially green products. However, the majority of both Baby Boomers and Gen-X consumers now say they are also willing to sacrifice more (read: pay more or switch long-standing loyalties) to sustainable products and brands that believe in eco-friendly business. Corporate responsibility platforms no longer exist as just a subset of your marketing. For creditability, it must stay a foundation of all marketing efforts. Fortunately, Rocca keeps you true to Earth Day values all year.

 

Sustainably Soft Blankets

Going green feels pretty luxurious these days with a wide range of super soft bamboo blankets. Our recent inclusions of these cozy, conservation-minded show-stealers proved a huge hit for both The Texas Healthcare and Bioscience Institute and The Children’s Advocacy Centers of Texas. But don’t stop at blankets, bamboo also makes great scarves and clothing. Beyond producing a fabulous texture and comfort for those with wool or synthetic allergies, bamboo earns credibility for quick harvest regrowth. Bamboo also produces 40 percent more oxygen than a similar sized plants. Isn’t that a breath of fresh air?

 

Hydration Station Domination

From your gym to airports to school campuses, bottle-filling hydrations stations are now a permanent part of our eco-friendly landscape. Why not see your branded products just as frequently? The high environmental – not to mention personal budget – costs of plastic water bottles made insulated reusable bottles consumer must-haves. From the ever-popular S’well to multiple brands of equally effective thermal bottles, you can brand a piece of corporate consciousness. The demand and increased competition also quickly made pricing more competitive. Cut down on waste and BPA risks while enjoying the refreshing taste of marketing success.

 

There’s A Reason Polyester Didn’t Last
Disco jokes aside, the environmental impacts of polyester production only added to the fact that it just didn’t look good or feel good touching your skin. However, today’s custom clothing items go a long way from just breathable, natural cotton. Throw away (or recycle, we should say!) your old ideas of ugly, scratchy hippie clothing. Bamboo, hemp and linen are recognizable choices in the growing options in sustainable high style. We currently adore products from Ecocentric’s Kastifel lifestyle-wear line. Look good, feel good, do good with your next custom clothing order!

 

Corporate Responsibility – It’s in the Bag!
Don’t forget your packaging details. A recent survey by Asia Pulp and Paper found that more than half of Americans want sustainable options for paper and packaging. It also shows that close to half in the U.S. are already willing to pay more for this packaging. This translates to eyes on you, your products and how they are packaged as well. Consider reusable branded shopping bags for a presentation that not only reduces paper waste, but gives legs to your visibility.

 

Green continues to grow in the personalized product industry. Luckily, quality increased while prices stabilized or dropped, giving you more choices than ever. Rocca keeps up on the latest products that stay evergreen in consumers’ minds while keeping you on budget. That’s stress conservation for you!

What’s in a Name? Tips for Event Name Tags and Lanyards

Name tags and lanyards are the smallest items with the greatest role when planning events and tradeshows. Whether you’re hosting a reception for 50 or a convention of 50,000, here are some guidelines for strategically assisting those essential event introductions.

 

Work Those Name Tags!

Here’s the basic rule for name tags: they don’t work if people don’t wear them! Most event attendees expect and welcome name badges – it makes their networking easier. However, too often name tags become last-minute necessities. Have you ever attended an event where flipping lanyards made created an atmosphere of mystery attendees? Encountered a name tag that damaged fabric, or simply wouldn’t stay put? These small inconveniences confine networking but can also sour overall perceptions of events. You don’t need to break the bank on lanyards and name tags, but don’t purchase on the cheap and live to regret it either.

 

VIPs Deserve Very Important Personalization
If you have board members, honorees or donors that really have status, make it show. Not everyone must have the same name badge. This is a time when creativity pays off and pays big dividends for networkers. For the Texas Medal of Arts Award, Rocca knew we needed something special to recognize many notable guests. We created special miniature medals so that everyone could easily recognize guest of importance.

 

Provide That Networking Assist

You’re looking to make connections at events. Shouldn’t they be easy to find? Vertical stacks of color-coded ribbon easily identify groups, such as speakers, media or participants of certain skills or expertise. This makes it much easier for guests to spot their key contacts. It’s also a great area to incorporate ice-breaking activities, such as name tag scavenger hunts. Avoid the temptation of stick-on symbols. Your participants may not be at the event long enough to learn the system and the loaded down badges make tags hard to read.

 

Let’s Make This Clear

Speaking of crowded name tags, make sure information is large enough. No one likes the embarrassing situation of staring a moment too long at someone’s tag simply to clarify if they are a C.E.O. or C.M.O. This is also not the right place to get fashionable with color. Save your branding for other areas and stick to bold black type on white backgrounds for all name tags.

Finally, while we love creativity, don’t let your inspiration result in frustration with lanyard pins or gimmicks that distract or annoy every time someone stands up or shakes hands. Your guests will thank you.

 

Name tags and lanyards may not be the stars of your convention or event, but they can quickly turn into ruthless villains if you don’t plan carefully. Talk to the experts at Rocca about practical yet innovative designs that always result in the best impressions.

Pomp and Gratitude – Graduation Stoles Honor Armed Forces Veterans

With thousands of active-duty military, reservists and veterans enrolling in U.S. colleges, universities and technical schools each year, more graduation ceremonies now include special recognition for those who’ve served in our armed services. Rocca was proud to join with Texas Tech University in 2012 to be the first in the nation presenting distinctive military stoles to their graduates.

 

“It’s an important facet of what we do,” Lou Ortiz, a retired Air Force veteran and now director of military veteran programs at Texas Tech, recently told the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal of the on-going stole presentation ceremony. “We do everything possible to highlight and recognize these students.”

 

The special-order stoles sourced by Rocca may come in a camouflaged pattern, but they are definitely meant to be seen. Especially in large ceremonies, these stoles make it easy to spot those who have served our country, allowing both the school and guests to show their thanks as students receive their diploma.

 

By September 2015, more than 453,000 veterans earned degrees with the Post-9/11 GI Bill. While these students receive help with tuition and fees, many often face additional challenges when transitioning from military culture into student life and leaving behind a steady salary for their studies. This makes both their military and academic accomplishments admirable. As a result, more and more campuses around the nation are adding recognition for this growing student population.

 

While these veteran graduation stoles are close to our heart at Rocca, they are just one of the many specialty graduation items we work with each year. Contact us today on how you can best recognize student achievement – military, academic or community service. However, act quickly. Spring graduation orders must be placed by March 24!

Back to the Future with Your Business Advertising Products

It’s 2017. Today’s branded marketing and business advertising products are all about innovation and customization. You shouldn’t still be leafing through dated pages of printed catalogs. However, we also warn – from experience – that online-only purchases can add an avalanche of unanticipated headaches. If you’re wondering how to navigate an ideal compromise between a dated process and a modern, but who knows what you’ll get online option, Rocca is it.

 

At Rocca, we know inspiration and motivation can strike at odd times. That’s why we offer ideas and examples on our website but we are just an email away to bring your vision to life! And while Rocca holds relationships giving us access to more than 80,000 products (far more than what we can post online!) from the latest awards, apparel, and electronics – we stay up-to-date on all the latest options so you don’t have to.

 

We created Rocca because we were frustrated promotional product shoppers. We know it’s important to gain rough pricing from the very beginning of your projects, whether you’re building annual budgets or ready to place a final order. The best way to get a real estimate is to tell us timelines and quantity and then let us work our magic!

 

Once you’ve completed some initial scans, you want to tap into the Rocca expertise! While online browsing offers you speed and thought-starters, it is no substitute for human knowledge and innovation. Our team gathers information about appealing items and quickly incorporates your audience, budget, and timeline needs. We customize options just for you, without wasting time on useless, excessive sales calls. Or, if you know you’ve already spotted a winner, we’ll take over and manage the order to delivery, leaving you confidently striking another task from your to-do list.

 

Your business advertising products and branded marketing campaigns deserve more than an old-school process or hidden online complications, lackluster quality, and expenses. Contact us today and learn about the Rocca difference and how we form a low-stress, interactive marketing partnership to reach your goal every time!

Logo Apparel for a Fit New Year!

Logo apparel seems to arrive on employees’ desks at the dictation of company events, not when employees might make the most use of them. Start a fresh way of thinking in 2017. Encourage your internal teams with their new year’s fitness resolutions with branded sportswear, gear and apparel ready to hit the gym or the jogging trail.

 

Logo Apparel Gives Your Marketing Legs

Quality, useful logo apparel and sportswear never gets buried in the back of closets. The key is finding items people truly value and making them look great. Cheap t-shirts end up in a pile, but wicking athletic wear delivers value that can’t be ignored. The same goes for high-end yoga mats and even fitness bags, which can serve as a stylish presentation to elevate your brand’s logo.

 

Go beyond traditional thoughts on sportswear as well, because we all know fitness and technology find themselves permanently entwined these days. Bluetooth-enabled knit beanie caps thrill runners or those attending cool winter soccer tournaments. And don’t forget all that casual exercise in your halls with a variety of customizable Fitbit covers.

 

Go Recruiting!

Don’t limit your New Year’s sportswear ideas to your internal team either. Clients, external colleagues and partners would likely welcome a thoughtful boost to their back-to-the-grind, burn-those-calories, post-holiday routines.

Use logo apparel to inspire not only new fitness goals for the year, but also a brand new extension to your marketing. Let Rocca help you outfit a new transformation for a fabulous and fit new year!

Rocca’s A Visit from St. Nicholas

T’was two weeks before Christmas and all through the house.

Rocca clients were happy ‘cause their gifts had gone out.

The team checked tracking numbers with eagle-eyed care,

Because it takes more than Christmas spirit to get packages there.

 

The ribbons were tied, logos embroidered with precision

With excellent ROI and brand equity decisions!
CEO Stevens grabbed her coat and fashionable scarf to go.

She said with great pride, “The Rocca team’s got this show!”

 

When out on 15th Street, there arose such a clatter,

But it wasn’t the bumper-to-bumper, start-at-3 p.m. everyday Austin traffic nightmare that was the matter!

Away to the windows, so quickly they flew,

For they knew SXSW wasn’t for another month or two!

 

But what to their wondering eyes did appear …

but Santa! A sleigh! and tiny reindeer!

Santa’s brow was furrowed, his lips tightly drawn

And Stevens softly sighed, “Those deer better not eat our new headquarters’ lawn!”

 

But there was no time to fret, Santa was at the door in a flash.

It was quite plain to see, he had something to ask.

“Oh Rocca team, I’m in a Texas-size bind.

It seems I left some of my CEO gift bags behind!”

 

Before he could sit, the team sprang into motion,

Not a hint of panic, worry or excess emotion.

Stevens took off her coat and started to think,

She called out instructions, and poured poor Santa a drink.

 

“Now, travel kits, and etched wine glasses in a thermal ice bag too.

Now, pull in some custom messenger bags, Pedova journals and a logo pen or two.

And those golfers, they’ll want divot markers, gloves and branded vest for the fall

and don’t forget to throw in a couple of boxes of color-matched golf balls.”

 

“Now tablet stands, chargers and earbuds for all the gadget friends.

Then on to state-shaped cufflinks – the possibilities never end!

Those tumblers are popular – the ones we wrote about in our blog.

There! That should cover everything! That should do the job!”

 

Santa’s eyes bulged in wonder at such an incredible scene.

It was only Steven’s voice that brought him back from his dream.

“Now Santa dear, you know that this deadline is very tight,

you’ve got names, addresses and all logos in tiff formats, right?”

 

A few minutes later, all the orders were out,

And the Rocca team let out a holiday victory shout.

But Santa just laughed, in spite of himself,

“Ho! Ho! Ho! You guys are much more efficient than an elf!”

 

The team all hugged Santa, while Stevens whispered in his ear,

“You’ll get the bill for this early in January of next year.”

He gave her a wink, a quick thumbs up too,

Before out over the capital city he flew.

 

And the Rocca team watched as he dashed through the night,

Knowing he’d have a much easier flight.

A little of their talent was so easy to share,

for the greatest of gift-givers knew they’d always be there.

 

And they heard Steven’s exclaim as they drove out of sight…

“All that grass is still ok after those reindeer, right?”

 

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from Your Rocca Team!

Corporate Gifts a Holiday Crisis? Tips to Save Your Christmas Spirit

Cue the corporate gift holiday meltdowns! We see it every year. Like the site of an empty cranberry bin the night before Thanksgiving, you’re in a predicament with your company’s holiday gifts. Don’t worry! Here are Rocca’s three best Scrooge-saving tips.
 
Corporate Gifts on YOUR Timeline

No one mandates that corporate gifts must arrive before the end of the year. Instead of thanking someone for their business in 2016, wish them a fabulous 2017 and remind them that you look forward to another successful year together. Late December deliveries often wait on empty desks to be cleared off thoughtlessly as the recipient digs out from their vacation. Time pieces, organization tools and other “new beginning” gifts stand out well in celebrating the start of a new year.

 

Perish the Thought on Perishables!
We’re not talking about the proverbial fruitcake! However, adding a perishable item to your corporate gift allows for a later delivery date or even a home delivery. This tactic usually works best in limited quantiles, such as a top-tier VIPs, not a full contact list. Whether you need a custom cooler to go with that delectable brisket or a quick run of bar glasses for a hand-delivered bottle of scotch, let Rocca put some creative (but quick!) thoughts into how you can make a perishable gift last longer.

 
It Never Hurts to Ask!
While we can’t overtake the laws of physics or bribe members of the U.S. Postal Service, we’ve pulled some mighty big rabbits from our hats at Rocca. Give us a call and let’s see what may still be possible depending on the size of your list. You may need to calculate rush fees into your budget, but we’ve achieved the impossible in the past. Let’s talk!

 

If you’re in a corporate gift crisis, let Rocca rescue you from a blue Christmas. Put your trust in the hands of our talented elves and let’s create an inspired holiday miracle together!

Military Support and Recognition Gifts Made Easy

We take military support very seriously at Rocca. Our CEO and founder Jennifer Steven’s brother is a U.S. Army officer and Ranger, so this team knows a lot about our military families’ sacrifice … and how to pack a fabulous care package! We also know that brands – and at times individuals – walk a fine line between expressing sincere military pride and appearing to go through the motions of “what is expected.” At Rocca, we encourage all those planning military pride campaigns and offer tips to help get your team rolling.

 

Military Support Items

Sincere, non-self-serving, military support is always welcome in any form. From a heartfelt thank you to an organized recognition effort. We congratulate you if your brand looks to show appreciation to active duty, guard members and veterans.

 

Our most important rule of thumb is making certain your outreach is truly focused on the service members and not on you or your brand. If your outreach includes selecting material items, look at what military members can truly use, whether it’s your product or not. Active gear and recreational items are always a big hit. As well, spouse gifts and spouse support efforts should revolve around elements that help keep families close and ease day-to-day needs, especially during long deployments.

 

One of the best ways to support our military may be right before you every day. As thousands who have served now work among us, is there something you can do to make their transition easier while acknowledging their service? For years now, Rocca and numerous Texas colleges and universities worked together to launch a graduation recognition program using camouflage graduation stoles that active duty and vets can wear with pride when receiving their degrees. This allows the service member and their families to feel special and gives others the opportunity to acknowledge their service.

 

Finally, if you’re looking to start a military support program, our best advice is to get veterans involved to help guide your efforts. Build a team or task force to help. Because, when it comes down to it … shouldn’t every day be Veteran’s Day?

 

From all of us at Rocca, we say thank you to our active duty military and veterans here and across the globe.

How Sweet It Is

We’re talking about custom candy this week. And, before you ask, the timing has absolutely nothing to do with that bag of trick-or-treat rich chocolate, creamy caramel, crunchy goodness that MUST NOT BE OPENED until Halloween night.

 

Custom Candy = Customer Cravings
The mouthwatering custom candy craze exploded in social events a few years back. We saw everything from wedding monograms to graduation dates printed on hard candy shells. But did you know that custom candy provides a great business tool that melts in your mouth and not in your hand?

 

Marketers need to think past logos printed on M&Ms and jelly beans, because today’s technology allows you to create everything from branded lollipop bouquets to gourmet truffles and everything in between. Rocca can source an imaginative array of engaging and unique flavors from chile-infused chocolates to bananas Foster pralines and even caramels finished with a craft beer reduction!

 

The Perks of Packaging
Skeptics may argue that candy is short-lived and quickly forgotten. Enter candy dispensers and custom containers. Branded packaging not only gives your promotion a higher level of credibility, it stretches the staying power of your brand well beyond that last bite.

 

Custom packaging also opens up the door to more exclusive treats. Heading to a conference in an area known for its community confections? Rocca will deliver cartons and baskets filled with local treats to your VIPs on site. Now that’s a pretty sweet deal.

 

Sweeten Up the Holidays
And ready or not, the holidays are coming! Forget the Mad Men-era fruitcakes. Give something your audience will actually be excited to sink their teeth in. Popcorn flavors no longer stop at butter, caramel and cheddar. Those sticky hands reach the bottom of the tin all too quickly with fluffy kernels of apple strudel, pumpkin pie and s’mores. Nostalgia abounds with frosted shortbread spice cookies. And branded travel mugs filled with hot chocolate will warm even the coldest of hands.

 

Custom candy adds some sweetness to your marketing efforts so let Rocca give your next outreach a branded sugar rush. Now, surely no one would miss one chocolate from that bag, right?

Don’t Let the Holidays Drain You

It’s coming…darkness by 5:30 pm…packages tossed over fences and left by flooding rain gutters…that reach for a bottle of wine only to remember you panicked and took it to last week’s party…the dog throwing up tinsel…everywhere!

 

Yeah, remember the holidays – the most wonderful time of the year?

 

If you associate the holidays with fears like these instead of thoughts of peace, joy and goodwill toward men, you might be suffering from pre-holiday drain. Pre-holiday drain is a lingering condition from taking on too much in holidays past.

 

The cure? Rocca!

 

We not only alleviate your pre-holiday drain but keep you charging ahead all season long. By handling your organization’s gift needs from design to delivery, Rocca gives you back your high-watt holiday smile.

 

You provide us information about your seasonal gift giving – clients, donors, employees, supporters – and we’ll develop and execute a customized plan to dazzle you and your budget right back into the holiday spirit. From the softest cashmere to the latest electronics craze, Rocca has gifts to fit every need and style.

 

This year, recharge your jolly capacity and let Rocca’s team of elves turn your humbug holidays into a festive season.

A Tailgate That Scores

Branded tailgate apparel converts any game day gathering into a memorable event that continues well beyond that last whistle. Whether your tailgate activities focus on fundraising, employee appreciation or client entertaining, we help you deliver kickoff couture even more popular than your famous ribs.

 

Tailgate clothing starts at the top with hats. Forget those generic, uncomfortable caps that never reach your crowd’s heads. Rocca provides expertise in a variety of styles like flexfit, mesh and unstructured caps. And don’t forget the ladies. We hear many requests for “cute baseball hats” every year. This typically translates into a selection of low profile hats, more practical for females.

 

Next, keep those cheap t-shirts in the rag bin where they belong. Outfit your event team and VIP guests in the best of customized cool wear including Nike Dri-FIT polos and Columbia PFG shirts.

 

Be prepared for a drop in the temperature with custom hoodies, scarves and stadium blankets. We source lightweight options that provide warm, water-resistant comfort without the bulk for cheering fans. And, unlike mass vendors, we always select and confirm exact team color matches from University of Texas burnt orange to TCU purple and Dallas Cowboys silver.

 

While planning your game day, don’t overlook the basics. Every tailgate needs branded folding chairs, custom cornhole boards and printed cups. And for those tailgaters in the south, get some Yeti ramblers to keep the margaritas cold in the hot afternoon sun.

 

The right tailgate clothing can make your gridiron event a winner. So put us in coach, we’re ready to play! When you leave your game day apparel and giveaways to Rocca, your brand remains undefeated.

Embroidery: From Fashion Week to Branded Chic

Embroidery defiantly made its mark on New York Fashion Week this fall, as labels like Brock, Cinq à Sep, Desigual, WHIT and others made it a central part of their spring 2017 collections. From embroidered trims to intricate designs, the niche needlework is definitely hot again. But why should the Wintours of the world have all the fun? Rocca can help you explore the possibilities of embroidery in your custom apparel and branded products.

 

Think Beyond the Polo
The branded polo seems to be everyone’s first instinct with embroidery. And, while these timeless shirts always have their place, there are a plethora of other unique logo apparel. Custom headbands, quilted puffer vests, long cardigans, athleisure and workout gear always find welcoming recipients. Also, don’t limit embroidery to the clothes closet. Items like bags, blankets and even yoga mats become fabulous – and somewhat unexpected – places to display custom artwork for your event or brand promotion.

 

Affordable Customization
Many shy away from embroidery due to outdated concerns about price. In reality, the digital age brought embroidery into an affordable range for many projects. This proves especially true for smaller quantity orders, when screen printing set-up costs make embroidery the most economical cost-per-piece option. Also, embroidery is the best imprint method for multi-color artwork as there is no spike in price for additional colors.

 

Dream Your Design
Real estate can be tricky with embroidery. While natural placement areas exist, engage your audience with creative lines of sight. From cuffs and bottom hems to lower shoulder blades, explore other embroidery areas that call attention in a subtle way. Tone-on-tone color pallets also make sure your branded apparel is worn instead of left hanging in the closet.

 

Embroidery straddles the world of high fashion and high-impact marketing. Let the experts at Rocca create some embroidered couture that highlights your brand strategy. They may not sashay down the runway, but they’ll always receive rave reviews.

Motivating Gold Medal Performance

Go for the Gold! Winning at Employee Motivation

Motivation is on our minds as we watch the Summer Olympics. After all, why do we cheer for unknown athletes in sports we didn’t even realize existed? (We’re looking at you, race walking!) People naturally love to see those who work tirelessly rewarded for their efforts as they near success. If you’ve been motivated by this parade of athletic excellence, channel it into inspiration for rewarding merit within your own talented team.

 

A winning employee motivation campaign nourishes the natural draw to rewards and encouragement. These incentives boost employee engagement, and that engagement can influence your bottom line. According to a Gallup survey, companies with high employee engagement enjoy 27 percent higher profits, 50 percent higher sales, 50 percent higher customer loyalty and a whopping 155 percent higher stock return.

 

So what type of employee recognition will produce gold medal performance for your company? Be it desktop awards or incentive trip themed swag, our knowledge of reward structures and inspiring products allows us to steer you in the right direction, no matter what your need or industry. Rocca has executed custom employee motivation programs that recognize everything from insurance sales goals to transportation safety benchmarks to healthcare certification achievements.

 

While the Olympics may come and go every four years, we encourage frequency and consistency with your employees’ moments of glory. According to the Incentive Research Foundation, incentive programs running for even a week or less received a 20 percent bounce in employee performance. Those running a program for six months experienced a 30 percent increase, while programs running for a year or more enjoyed an astounding 44 percent growth.

 

Ensure your employee performance lands a spot on the winners’ podium with a thoughtfully crafted incentive program. While those Olympic medals and snazzy tracksuits may work well with athletes, Rocca designs programs that keep your employees fine-tuning their skills and training to be their best.

In The News: Meet Jennifer Stevens

Jennifer Stevens spent much of her early career navigating the ego-driven world of politician campaigns. A protege of Karl Rove, the former deputy chief of staff for President George W. Bush and a veteran political operative for the Republican party, Stevens began working campaigns prior to college graduation. She participated in Bush’s campaign for Texas governor and was put in charge of Texas Sen. Troy Fraser’s inaugural campaign for the Texas House of Representatives.

 

From there she had her pick of assignments, including campaign manager for then-Attorney General John Cornyn’s bid for the U.S. Senate.

 

“I never lost a campaign,” Stevens said.

 

During the Bush presidency, she had plenty of opportunities to move to the nation’s capital but had no interest in federal politics.

 

“It’s basically impossible to accomplish anything at the federal level,” Stevens said. “I knew it wasn’t for me.”

 

In 2003 Stevens headed a new office of economic development on behalf of Gov. Rick Perry. One of the highlights of that assignment was overseeing Mexico President Vicente Fox’s visit to Texas. There were meetings at the Capitol, intimate events at the governor’s mansion and a lavish event at the Four Seasons Hotel.

 

“It was a blast,” Stevens said.

 

In time she started her own consultancy with a laptop on the kitchen counter of her house.

 

Since 2004, Stevens has handled a variety of assignments, particularly fundraising and special events such as the Mack, Jack & McConaughey annual fundraiser. Most recently she represented the Texas Automobile Dealers Association’s in its successful attempt to prevent Tesla Motors Inc. from selling its electric cars directly to Texas consumers.

 

“Honestly, in all the work I’ve done, winning that Tesla one was especially sweet. We were outgunned and outspent, so I was so proud of being involved in that.”

 

Though her public affairs and public relations business keeps Stevens busy, she found time in 2010 to start a promotional products company Rocca.

 

Her motivation? The lack of quality promotional products for her clients. She began with Texas-based Jon Hart Luggage and now sells a wide variety of items through the Rocca website.

 

“It’s a rocking little business,” she said.

 

What under-the-radar politician do you admire? Is there such a thing? Hmmmm. I would say State Rep. Sarah Davis, R-Houston. She is not necessarily under the radar but she is a fiscal conservative who is not afraid to take a stand. (I love her) willingness to tackle major issues instead of throwing rhetoric into the public just to catch a headline.

 

Who is a historical person you admire most? Susan B. Anthony. She started the fight for women’s rights, including property rights for married women. I also have an abnormal love for Ronald Reagan.

 

What biography should everyone read? “Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln” by Doris Kearns Goodwin. Lincoln surrounded himself with political rivals so that he would not have a group of “yes men” advising him.

 

What would you like to say to Elon Musk [of Tesla]? Cool car but no special treatment. Oh, and you shouldn’t need my tax dollars to stay solvent.

 

What’s the coolest promotional product you’ve seen? The Rocca team worked with Lockheed Martin to design a custom set of building blocks to launch a new jet they wanted to promote to world leaders.

 

What’s Austin’s worst problem? Many in Austin’s city leadership and staff have an anti-business attitude that is dangerous. We have to have a welcoming business attitude or we will lose jobs. Austin is quickly becoming completely unaffordable to many small businesses, and when we lose them we will lose the authenticity of what makes Austin so special. We will become another cookie-cutter large city.

 

What’s in your purse that people would laugh about? Flip flops. I don’t leave the house without two pair of shoes. You never know when you’ll have to walk somewhere or stop for a pedicure.

 

Your cocktail of choice? Wine or vodka tonic. I am trying to move to soda to save calories, but life is too short not to have a good drink.

 

Do you have a life mantra? Work. Don’t worry.

Holiday Planning is for the Elves

Don’t let the goblins and ghouls of Halloween distract you. Before you know it, the holidays will be here and it’ll be too late to chase the Ghost of Christmas Past. While it may not be time to haul out the ornaments just yet, it is time to start planning!

 

No matter the season, your clients and supporters deserve the best. Don’t let a year of hard work end up in the waste basket over a stale gift.

 

Relevant gift giving keeps relationships headed north and as the gifter, it’s an effective way to stay top of mind well beyond the holidays. Every time your giftee stretches out on that yoga mat or bundles up in that Sherpa blanket, they will be reminded of you.

 

The Rocca elves have been keeping an eye on the trends so you can keep an eye on your bottom line. And word around the North Pole is that Rocca’s gift ideas are fresher than Ms. Claus’ cookies.

 

Whoever is on your nice list, we’ve got the perfect gift for professionals to adventurists and everything in between. So turn the page and get shopping!

What Not to Give

Ever been to a trade show where every booth handed out the same promo product? Not only are attendees less inclined to keep your giveaway but your company is automatically perceived as thoughtless and boring!

 

Over 40 million Americans attend a convention, trade show or conference each year. The exposure to your brand can be explosive if done right. Punch up your presence by ruling out these five giveaways.

 

Pens

Everyone does pens! And most end up in the trash. But if you insist on a pen, then make it cool and worth keeping. Perhaps one with a stylus, screwdriver, USB or even all three.

 

Stress Balls

So 1993! Try a different form of stress relief with a back scratcher or hand held massager. Attendees will be singing your praises after a long day on their feet.

 

Key Chains

Let’s be honest, no one wants to attach your logo to their key ring. It’s too personal and they aren’t even a client yet! Useful giveaways like car chargers are kept by 77% of consumers. Talk about staying power!

 

Edibles

Expensive and short-lived. Don’t get us wrong, branded cookies and chocolates are delicious but attendees will forget about your brand faster than their sugar high. Try branded gum or mints instead. Everyone needs fresh breath and a pack can last up to a month.

 

Nothing

Don’t you dare think about not having giveaways at your booth! If attendees don’t need your services now, you want them to remember you when they do. Promotional giveaways guarantee over 85% of attendees will recall your company’s name and your message up to a year!

 
The key to a successful trade show is your memorable factor rating. You want attendees to remember your brand long after they leave and a smart giveaway unlocks the door to a memorable strategy.

Rocca is 5!

Turning five is a big milestone. Despite our lingering fascination with toys, we’re absorbing knowledge at lightning speed and making our parents proud.

 

Toys Are Still Cool

Who says you need to give up your toys? You just need to play with more challenging ones! Rocca recently created a brain teaser toy for Mission EDC as a way to promote math and science to young kids. Whatever the age, we’ll find the toy your customers can’t put down.

 

Social-Five

We’ve said goodbye to nap time and are ready to be social! Rocca’s new-found interest has led to increased activity and an expanded presence on social media. We are ready to engage with our friends on a whole new level.

 

Challenges Excite Us

As we age, Rocca is becoming more fearless. No matter how high it may be, we’re ready to take you down the big kids’ slide. When all other products end up in time out, we’ll create a custom solution that’s the head of the class.

 

It has been a great five years. Thank you for the opportunity to grow with you!

Never Is the Only Too Late

Recently a few Rocca clients have called to place their “holiday” gift orders wondering if the thought will be lost now that it is March?! You’re busy. We get it! But lucky for you, it’s never too late to show your customers how much they are valued.

 

Thoughtful touch points throughout the year are actually more impactful than a single holiday gift. Think about it. Not only are holidays gifts somewhat expected, they get lost among the dozens of other packages.

 

Why is genuine client appreciation crucial?

  • 80% of a company’s revenue will come from 20% of existing clients.
  • 68% of clients leave a business because they don’t feel appreciated.
  • Attracting a new client costs five times more than keeping an existing client.

Create an effective touch point plan using the four W’s of gift giving.

 

Why? To set you apart from your competition, strengthen your relationship with a client, make a great impression, increase business.  Set goals so you know how to measure success.

 

Who? Long-standing clients, new clients, most profitable clients, clients with the most growth potential. Target the audience in line with achieving your goals.

 

When? After closing a deal, signing on a new client, completing the latest project, company anniversaries, client birthdays, holidays. Timeliness is crucial in gift-gifting so establish a calendar to stay on track.

 

What? Office use, hobby-centric, for the home. Take the time to find gifts that are tailored to the recipient and occasion.

 

Business is about people and there’s nothing people like more than being appreciated. Design a plan to stay in front of your clients in a way that isn’t asking for business – rather, just a nice way to say thanks. The next time business does come around you’ll be the first person your client calls.

A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Event

“Four years ago my professional life flashed before my eyes.  I was hired by a Fortune 10 corporation to produce a major event and executive retreat.  The planning had gone on for months, the budget was healthy but not unlimited and I had been working especially hard to find ways to incorporate the little touches that make an event stand out.  Then it happened…the golf balls were printed with the logo in the wrong color blue.  THE WRONG COLOR! And just like that, Rocca was born.”

 

-Jennifer Stevens, President & CEO of JHL Company & Rocca

 

Over the last decade, JHL Company has been building strategic communications, marketing, event and fundraising efforts for dozens of clients all over the world. Four years ago, JHL’s need for a promotional product vendor who cares led to the formation of Rocca. And the partnership has been benefitting our clients ever since.

 

One Rocca client started out needing golf shirts for their employees and now JHL serves as their outsourced Chief Marketing Officer. Another Rocca client started out needing a clever event invitation and ended up with JHL spearheading not only their event, but the development of their strategic communications plan. On the flip side, one JHL client needed public affairs help and ended up with Rocca executing a five-month legislative touch plan during session.  It works.

 

The synergy behind this one, two punch is evident. Together, we are a united, smart force for our clients.

‘Tis the Season to be Thoughtful

What’s so bad about sending a cookie cutter gift? It’s the thought that counts, right? Well, it can be worse than giving nothing at all because it’s actually sending a message of thoughtlessness!

 

In preparation for the holidays, Rocca has been hard at work to make your job easy. With the help of our most seasoned elves, we have compiled a list of our favorite gifts of the season that show just how thoughtful you are!

 

Rocca's Favorite Things

 

Everyone loves receiving a gift they’re actually going to use and as the giver, it’s an effective way to stay top of mind beyond the holidays. Every time your client throws their watch into the valet or bundles up in that comfy jacket you gave them, they will be reminded of you!

In The News: Rocca President Jennifer Stevens

Jennifer Stevens: The making of an ‘un-lobbyist’

Austinite with public relations firm helmed Mack, Jack & McConaughey benefit.

 

By Michael Barnes – American-Statesman Staff

 

During the summer of 2012, the dreamers behind the giant Mack, Jack & McConaughey benefit were looking for an event planner to skipper their first golf-gala-and-concert outing. Steve Hicks, chairman of CapStar Partners and University of Texas System regent, suggested that they talk to Jennifer Stevens.

 

The fair-haired Austinite with the mighty smile was not, however, by profession an event planner.

“Event planners spend money,” Stevens, 40, told them. “Fundraisers raise money. That’s what I am. If your goal is to raise money — and also have a good event — hire a fundraiser.”

 

The backers liked what they heard. They picked Austinite Stevens for the gargantuan job.

 

“I was like the dog who caught the car,” Stevens laughs. “I talked myself into a job.”

 

Thus far, the founder of the public affairs firm JHL Company — who has taken leadership positions with the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation, Seton Healthcare Family and the Austin Chamber of Commerce — has helped Mack and Sally Brown, Jack and Amy Ingram and Matthew McConaughey and Camila Alves raise more than $2 million for select children’s charities. The MJ&M event returns April 16-17.

 

Along the way, Stevens, who has run major Texas political campaigns and calls herself an “un-lobbyist,” has attracted a growing number of high-profile admirers.

 

“She has an amazing ability to pull different type people together for a common cause,” former Longhorns coach Brown says. “She can relate to anyone. She also has the ability to then make the best decision available and move forward with what is best for all.”

 

‘A can-do spirit’

“I think Jennifer’s family — especially her parents — gave her the foundation to be a great leader,” says Bob Wingo, CEO of Sanders\Wingo Advertising and a Stevens mentor. “Jennifer seamlessly manages extremely complicated multiple projects that involve many moving parts. I love her velvet-hammer approach to handling these projects, no matter how difficult the task may be.”

 

Stevens was born in Denton to two high achievers. Jim Horn, a retired salesman, was the first Republican elected in Denton County. He served 18 years as a state representative. Mary Roberts Horn, currently Denton County judge, ran a small business out of the house that employed Stevens and her brother, James Horn, now a major in the U.S. Army.

“From the earliest age, I was campaigning, going door to door,” Stevens recalls. “People would slam the door when they heard we were Republicans, kind of like Austin today.”

 

She studied political science and English at the University of Texas.

 

“I graduated early so I could catch the political cycle,” she says. “I was that nerdy and into it.”

 

In 1994, when George W. Bush ran for governor, Stevens volunteered and then worked her way into an internship. She admired the way that Gov. Bush competed hard with Democrats but then worked closely with Democratic leaders in the Legislature.

 

“Competition is generally a good thing,” she says. “Bush knew he had to work with them to be effective. It was a great time in Texas politics.”

 

Her next gig was to handle state Sen. Troy Fraser’s campaign budget and scheduling as well as part of his grassroots and media operations.

 

“Holy cow, I think I put 70,000 miles on my car,” she says. “I lived in it. The district is as big as Mississippi.”

 

She next ran the Republican primary runoff for John Cornyn, when he first ran for Texas attorney general. After Cornyn won, she heard that U.S. Sen. Phil Gramm was going to retire.

 

“My heart stopped,” she says. “I knew Cornyn would go for it, and he did.”

 

Yet his announcement was postponed because of 9/11. The 26-year-old had to find a way to make payroll for his campaign against that backdrop.

 

“It was crazy, crazy,” she says. “We put together $181,000, raised $1,000 at a time. We made payroll.”

 

After working on the senator’s transition team, she concluded that the federal government was not her cup of tea. She took a job instead in Gov. Rick Perry’s administration, getting her feet wet in state policy. One of her most fulfilling jobs was to organize the official state visit from President Vicente Fox of Mexico and half his Cabinet.

 

“I was in heaven,” she says. “It was right up my alley — super intense. I’ve always had a can-do spirit.”

 

On her own

“Jennifer listens before she speaks,” says Mike Rollins, president of the Austin Chamber of Commerce. “I think this attribute serves people well because they actually are hearing what others say, which is an essential part of being a good communicator.”

 

In 2004, Stevens founded the JHL Company, a consulting firm that specializes in public and community affairs, mixing ties to business, politics and philanthropy.

 

“We are the message behind what you are trying to achieve,” she likes to say. “Who do you need to know? What do they need to know about you? And how are you going to make and keep that connection? You used to walk the halls of the Lege. Now you’ve got to get into the community. You’ve got to do social media.”

 

JHL can support a lobbying team with strategic communications.

 

“Associations and lobbyists generally take an old-school mindset,” she says. “You have young legislators … now they are there on the iPad. They are making decisions on public policy based on what they are reading there. If you are not there, you are nowhere.”

 

Hicks especially appreciates Stevens’ vast business and social network.

 

“She gets to the bottom line very quickly, builds a consensus and then moves on,” Hicks says. “She surrounds herself with an amazing staff that works endless hours and loves the projects that they are involved with. She is brilliant in understanding who the people are that will have an emotional ‘buy-in’ to a project.”

 

Stevens gets up at 5 a.m. every morning to run with the same group of women she has run with for eight years. Her days are booked in 15- to 30-minute segments. She supervises a dozen employees between JHL and Rocca, a printing and promotional product company she founded because the one she used kept getting orders wrong.

 

“I had asked for a meeting with the owner. While we were talking, he told me that I would never succeed because I didn’t have ‘any testosterone’ in my office,” Stevens says (at the time, she employed all women). “I thanked him for his insights and started a competing business.”

 

Married to lobbyist Don Stevens, her second husband, she cheers their kids’ games and follows their ups and downs closely.

 

“I am very hands-on and engaged with all of them,” she says. “I’m busy, but I don’t take work just to take it. I’ll go: ‘That’s a great idea. A beast of an idea. Who in the world is going to do it? We should do it.’”

 

Helping those who help others

Stevens recently took over as board chairwoman for the local Komen cancer-fighting chapter. She’s also the chairwoman of Austin Gives for the Chamber of Commerce, and she’s on the Seton Fifty board. Komen is a special project.

 

“Like everyone, I hate cancer,” she says. “I have buried family members and friends. Cancer is prevalent in my family. But giving back is not about you, it’s about helping those who can’t help themselves. One in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer. That’s too many.”

 

When the chance to run MJ&M, one of the city’s biggest social-giving events, came along, she snapped to the call.

 

“I love a big idea that sounds impossible, then jumping in and leading and making it happen,” she says. “I kept saying: ‘Trust me, this will work.’ People would say: ‘How do you know?’ I didn’t, I guess. But I trust my instincts, and in business, that’s what you have to do. Small business is like walking a tightrope — don’t look down and keep moving.”

 

It helped that Stevens’ team understood the sensitivities of the prominent people and strong personalities involved.

 

“Jennifer manages large projects by staying focused on the endgame but knowing she can only accomplish one thing at a time,” says Texas Workforce Commissioner Hope Andrade. “She understands how to prioritize to reach success and knows when to move forward and, equally important, to be flexible and change course.”

 

So maybe a former political fundraiser can make a good event planner.

 

“We know how to keep it unique to Austin but appeal beyond, too,” she says. “All the political training in my life has been put to the test for the past two years. But good people coming together to make a major impact on our community — it’s all been worth it.”

 

To view the full article from the Austin American-Statesman, click here.

Pivot to the Personal

If you don’t pay attention to any marketing buzzwords this year, pay attention to this one…PERSONALIZATION!

 

Everything from online shopping and social media to couponing is now customized and has evolved into a customer expectation rather than a perk. Why, you ask, is it always me, me, me?!

 

Because personalized marketing works!  It drives sales.  In fact, according to one Adobe Executive, switching from audience generic messages to personalized communication increases revenue 50-150%.

 

Promotional products are not an exception; they are an extension of your brand. To stand out among the crowd, you must foster a personalized brand experience by selecting items that are specific to your clients’ interests and behaviors.

 

Pay Attention to the Small Stuff
Cut through the clutter of pens and mugs and dig a little deeper. When you gift your client with a divot tool because you discovered their love of golf or a passport holder because you remembered their upcoming travel plans, your customers will begin to see you as a partner and not just a business contact.

 

Adapt in Real Time
As trends change, so do your clients. Stay on top of your customers’ tastes to avoid static gift giving. Social media is a fantastic tool for discovering your client’s interests, but don’t forget good ‘ol face to face conversations and regular phone calls.

 

To get your personalized promotion strategy started, turn to the experts at Rocca.

Stay Among The Cool Crowd

Tired of seeing your conference tote wind up in the trash can? Stop throwing your dollars away with the multi-use cooler tote. Not only does it provide plenty of space for conference materials, your attendees with be singing your praise the next time they hit the beach, tailgate or neighborhood block party.

 

Print

Make New Friends But Keep The Old

Holy branded products, Batman, Rocca is getting a face lift! And sadly, our blog got just about as much coverage as poor Robin’s legs as we’ve been preparing to debut our new look these last few months.

 

With a successful business, why pause to update our look?   Many businesses get so caught up with landing new customers they forget to show the love to existing ones. It’s an expensive mistake, because cultivating a new customer can cost up to nine times more than keeping one in the fold.  We heard from you, our customers and friends, that it was time for Rocca to go to the next level and so we did just that!

 

At Rocca, we understand it’s easier to expand your scope of work with a current client who knows and loves you than it is to convince a new one you’re totally awesome. With that in mind, we’d like to suggest a few ways to keep existing customers feeling cherished:

 

  • Recruit customers for your customers. When they are successful, you are successful!
  • Host a customer appreciation event. Don’t forget creative invitations and great swag!
  • Recognize customer birthdays. Make their day!
  • Survey customer satisfaction—and act on the feedback. That’s what we just did!
  • Utilize Rocca’s client retention program, which reminds you to reach out to clients regularly. Yes, there’s an app for that!

 
When it comes to business development, client retention should be number one on your list as there are rad rewards for those who do it right.

Roll Out The Red Carpet…For Your Employees

We can all guess what happens after the show when Oscar winners forget to thank their significant others on the big night (Cue the Jaws soundtrack). Everyone likes to feel appreciated, after all, and gets a little great white shark-y when their contributions aren’t recognized.

 

As successful companies know, the workplace equivalent of “I’d like to thank the Academy” is an employee recognition program. It’s sort of like an Oscar sweep, because employees who feel valued are also more engaged and perform at a superior level, which is good for the bottom line.

 

Recognition doesn’t have to involve a gold statuette, however. The key is showing appreciation in a way that demonstrates you understand the person. While one employee may be dazzled by the glitz of a public award, another may love a branded computer bag or a personalized King’s Pad.

 

Computer Messenger Bag ProductJon Hart King's Pad - New Site

 

Whatever the vehicle, the ultimate goal of recognition is fostering engagement by telling employees, “We like you, we really like you,” and “We couldn’t do it without ya,” in a way that is meaningful to them.

 

Handle recognition correctly and, who knows, you may wind up with a staff studded with the corporate equivalent of Meryl Streep. Who, it must be said, never fails to thank her husband.

 

Did You Know: The Society of Human Resource Management reports management’s recognition of employees’ performance through praise, awards and incentives is a cost-effective way of increasing employee morale, productivity and competitiveness. The lack of recognition can cost a company anywhere from 30% to 400% of an employee’s annual salary in turnover costs depending on whether the position is entry-level or highly specialized.

New Year, New Goals

As you finalize your marketing plans and budgets for the new year, promotional products are one strategy you don’t want to overlook. Find out why in ASI’s Global Ad Impression Study by clicking here.

 

The Rocca team remains committed to providing valuable products along with top-notch service to our clients. Contact us today so that we can help you achieve your goals for 2014!

Last Minute Holiday Gifts

Have you purchased your client holiday gifts? If not, don’t worry! The Rocca elves are still hard at work!  In preparation for the rush, the elves have picked out three great recommendations.
 

  • A Yukon Cooler is the perfect gift for the outdoor or tailgate lover.
  • Jon Hart luggage is a thoughtful gift that will keep you top of mind when they travel.
  • And natural limestone coasters are a beautiful, yet useful gift! They will stay on your client’s conference table and make you a part of all their strategy meetings.

 
Want other ideas? Check out our Holiday Gift Guide!

Dream Big, Booth Builders

“If you build it, they will come.”

 

Wouldn’t it be great if trade shows were like Kevin Costner’s Field of Dreams? If they were, throngs of people would be all abuzz about every booth in the exhibit hall—it would be like a giant publicity pep rally!

 

The reality, though, is that it’s not enough to just show up with a stack of PR materials. While trade shows can provide a terrific opportunity to introduce your company to key audiences, pulling off a booth that attracts and amazes takes some concerted effort. So, what’s a savvy team to do—or don’t do? Just back from a trade show ourselves, the Rocca team is inspired to share some of our insight.

 

Do

  • Determine your reason for being. Is your goal to create leads, raise awareness or build relationships.
  • Know your public. If you decide the show and audience are worthwhile, design an appropriate booth.
  • Send advance invitations asking key attendees to visit your booth.
  • Have a post-tradeshow plan, and connect with key contacts within 24 hours.

 

Don’t

  • Show up without an elevator pitch.
  • Forget it’s all about the attendee. Find out their needs, and explain how you can help.
  • Let attendees leave without a swagadelic reminder of your company.
  • Lump all attendees together. Separate qualifying business cards from your pile.

 

For more tips on building a dreamy booth, contact us at 512.276.2270. If you do, who knows what magic might result?

Ho! Ho! Ho! The Countdown is On!

If you remember 2009 fondly as the year you wrestled (and bested) another holiday shopper for the last Zhu Zhu Pet in your entire county, pay no attention to this message. If you pride yourself on being the guy who “elongates the fun” by giving belated Christmas presents, read no further.

 

But to those who prefer sending their inner Christmas elf on sabbatical feeling accomplished, gratified and serene, we say: November 20.

 

November 20. Circled, highlighted and otherwise venerated on the Rocca calendar, the mere sight of that date puts our staff in the yuletide spirit. Why? November 20 is our recommended deadline for placing holiday orders.

 

Before your hasn’t-even-thought-about-Halloween self has a panic attack, remember that November 20 is still 7 weeks away. And then revel in the fact that our foresight will make your holidays less nerve-wracking and more cost effective.

 

That’s in part because production times increase after Thanksgiving, which means many smart Americans—those who know you have to get it while the getting’s good—are already shopping for that perfect thing.

 

In addition, couriers like UPS and FedEx will increase shipping rates by about eight percent in the weeks leading up to Christmas because masses of online shoppers are giving them way more work to do.

 

Finally, many vendors will already be out of inventory…BY DECEMBER! In an effort to save on year-end taxes, they stock up and sell down very early.

 

And so, the holiday countdown has already begun. Rocca is ready to help you find that perfect something—and we’ll do it without a wrestling match.

 

*Check out out Holiday Gift Guide to see which favorite products the Rocca elves are recommending this holiday season.

The Golden Rule Rules!

Endorsed by pretty much all of humanity in the history of ever, the golden rule is simple: treat others like you want to be treated.

 

Such sparkly words of wisdom!

 

Why Be Lackluster…?
And yet, far too many companies shun that shiny tenet when it comes to providing good customer service. From unresponsiveness and botched orders to arrogance and shirked responsibility, we’ve all been bamboozled by Professional Pyrites, and it doesn’t exactly inspire loyalty.

 

In addition to being plain old rude, those less-than-stellar ways are especially confounding because customers know a good thing when they experience it-and have these things called “options.”

 

…When Enlightened Is So Much More Effective?
We’re pretty partial to the golden rule at Rocca, and have a fierce resolve to provide a customer service experience that is nothing short of dazzling-according to our own high standards. In our book, providing a truly golden customer service experience means:

 

  • Being accountable for our work every step of the way.
  • Considering vendors as extensions of our own business.
  • Communicating clear and reasonable expectations…and doing our darndest to meet them.
  • Responding to calls within 24 hours.
  • Righting a situation if it goes wrong.

 

We want all our Rocca clients to know they are as precious as gold to us.

Is Your Booty Buzz Worthy?

With the fall comes the barrage of music festivals, charitable events, and conferences, which means there’s always an opportunity to introduce your brand to lots of people. We call this “explosive potential.” Tapping into all that energy and camaraderie can be a marketing goldmine.

 

At Rocca, we can guide you to the best choices on a variety of materials and products to keep your attendees talking. But, just in case you’re curious about what these fall events will be bringing to their eager guests, we’re sharing a quick cheat-sheet to help you hit the right mark. So we present to you the Rocca Guide to Cool Loot.

 

The Drawstring Bag = Winner

Rocca Loves Because: Lightweight, highly visible, handy dandy, and useful once the event is long gone.

Branding Tip: Produce in multiple colors and adorn with ginormous logo.

Recyclable Bottles Make the Environment and Parched Event Goers Happy

Rocca Loves Because: Cheap to print, provides ample logo space.

Branding Tip: Some vendors provide discounts for non-profit events.

Hand Fans are Literally Cool

Rocca Loves Because: Roomy enough for your mission statement, useful, thoughtful.

Branding Tip: Can serve double duty by adding bidder numbers to the back.

Hand Sanitizer Bottles Keep the Germy Masses at Bay

Rocca Loves Because: Goes home with attendees.

Branding Tip: Grab attention with a large, one-color logo.

About ready to get your party started? Let Rocca help your brand get some well-deserved buzz.

Rocca 101: Back to the Basics

Pay attention, class! You know from experience that Rocca is your go-to creative team when you need big ideas. Gold star for you! But, you may be teetering on the pass-fail line if that’s all you know about us.

 

We want to make sure you pass with flying colors by schooling you on some of the lesser-known facts about our business. Let’s review…

 

Rocca Factoid #1: While we’re known for out-of-the-box thinking and creative projects, we are also A+ when it comes to the fundamentals. For example, did you know we are prepped and ready to provide you with branded notebooks, pens, lanyards, rulers, USB drives, laptop and tablet sleeves, t-shirts, backpacks, uniforms, awards, koozies, Tervis tumblers, and coffee mugs?

 

Rocca Factoid #2:  We can save you time (a.k.a. MONEY!) by scouring the scads of vendors out there for the perfect promotional product. Just give us an assignment and we’ll tackle the research for you so you can have fun at recess.

 

Like any good educator, Rocca’s success is based on our students’ comprehension of the subject matter at hand. If we haven’t explained our capabilities in a way that resonates, please raise your hand and feel free to ask questions.

Rocca is 3!

We love an excuse to get our groove on and have done plenty of celebrating as Rocca just turned 3! Like any three year old, Rocca is a creative little rascal, into building friendships and exploring the world.

 

Color Outside the Lines
Rocca recharges creativity!  One recent flair-filled project was an invitation to a Circuit of the Americas Tour, which we customized on a license plate and sent with a race car replica. All the cool kids approved.

 

Nurture Leads to Growth
Like wee ones seeking parental approval, Rocca is happy when our clients are happy. From learning brand guidelines to sourcing the right products, we are all about nurturing relationships into long-term partnerships.

 

Quest for Cool
Rocca is always on the lookout for fresh ways to bring your brand to life, so we are pleased as a preschooler with his first can of Play-Doh when we discover new, hip vendors.  We are always on the search for you!

 

Thanks for being one of our biggest reasons to celebrate our birthday. We look forward to another great year ahead!

American-Made, Made Easy

We love everything about the Fourth of July. Between fireworks, cookouts, red, white and blue cupcakes, and Old Glory stamped on pretty much everything, America really does stage the best birthday party ever. It’s the one day a year when most of us are on the same page, enjoying friends and family, flyin’ the flag of patriotism, and doing our utmost to emulate a Norman Rockwell painting.

 

But, for many, the concept of patriotism is not just for the Fourth of July, and we know that some of our customers strive to incorporate American-made products into their business as much as possible.

 

To help you meet that goal, Rocca has formed relationships with several vendors that only sell products made in the USA, including Tervis Tumblers and accessories, American Apparel and YETI Coolers.

 

We can also provide American-made products sold by vendors that may offer a wider array of merchandise. Examples of those include Tekweld sunscreen, antibacterial spray and hand lotion; The Magnet Group magnets; and Bullet sports water bottles.

 

Please let us know if you’d like more information about these or any of our vendors. In the meantime, we hope you have a safe and happy Fourth of July!

That Special Something

While Rocca is happy to stock you with branded baseball caps and USB sticks, sometimes you need something just a little more refined-a gift that whispers your company’s significance rather than screams “get to know me!”

 

Recently, Rocca was asked by a global, member-based medical organization to develop recognition plaques and a perfect takeaway for both male and female guests at an annual awards gala dinner. They wanted something sophisticated that clearly represented the organization to those in the know, but did not make recipients feel like a walking billboard. Something fabulous, useful and subtly emblematic of the organization.

 

The solution turned out to be luxuriously straightforward and ideal for this group: branded ties and scarves. Working with the organization’s abstract logo, the Rocca team developed a pattern that would appear classically simple to the uninitiated, but immediately recognizable to members.

 

What do you get for the event attendee who has everything? Simply, turn to Rocca when you need a great idea for that perfect gift.

Brand Protection Factor

Summertime, and the livin’ is…distracting.

 

That routine you’ve been cultivating for the past nine months is about to be seriously disrupted by the good stuff that makes summer, well, summer! We know you wouldn’t trade flextime, homework-free kids or that months-in-the-planning beach vacation for more face time with your colleagues (lovely as they are). But just as your still-untouched-by-the sun complexion must be protected from those UV rays, your brand must be protected from summer’s worthwhile diversions.

 

Enter Rocca, 100 BPF (Brand Protection Factor) Collaborator and Summer Fun Enabler.

 

How exactly did we earn that 100 BPF rating? First, we firmly believe one size never fits all, and we take a thoughtful, personalized approach to each client’s goals and audiences. Second, we make it our business to be nosey about your business so we can produce effective, high quality, timely, and cost-appropriate solutions for your needs. Finally, like any control freak with a rep to protect, we are detail oriented. You developed that brand style guide for a reason and we ensure all rules are followed, down to the italicized, lowercased, underlined acronym to be used on fourth reference.

 

So you go hit the beach and let us start working on your end-of-fiscal year and fall promotions!  Rocca is here to make sure you are ready.

Back at It (and Better Than Ever)!

Phew! It’s been a busy few months here at Rocca. And by busy we mean fabulous! It’s been so fabulous, in fact, that In the Bag got a wee bit neglected. But we’re back and better than ever!

 

One great reason we’ve been busy is that Rocca is growing. As our team continues to develop, our top mission remains keeping you happy…with your brand development strategy, with your merchandise and, ultimately, with Rocca. Whether you need something outrageously creative like a capitol-shaped cookie jar or something more conventional like a super-sized order of new golf shirts or employee padfolios, the Rocca team is here to keep you efficiently stocked.

 

We are also busy developing cool merchandise for summer and fall. You do realize summer is JUST AROUND THE CORNER, right? We know that not all events require super oomph-y gifts; sometimes you just need the right polo shirt or a simple sales giveaway item. As you determine your needs, we’ll be ready to find the perfect products for you.

 

So, now that you know what is to blame for a brief In the Bag hiatus, we hope you will agree that hiring new staff, providing super service for super clients and getting the jump on summer was worth it. We’ll be back with more in just a few short weeks!

Political Product Placement

There are always opportunities for gifting, marketing, or event branding – and the political world is no exception. With Texas’ 83rd Legislature in full swing, Rocca Productions is busy executing thoughtful plans for some political product placements.

 

Recently, Rocca Productions created custom cookie jars in the shape of the Texas State Capitol for a client to deliver to the office of every state legislator. Each cookie jar came filled with custom cookies and a targeted message at the bottom of the jar…proving once again that the way to anyone’s heart is through their stomach!

 

When leaders, legislators, or elected officials convene, there are going to be organizations voicing their cause or concern. Don’t miss out on this opportunity. Send your decision-makers a targeted marketing effort that will distinguish your voice from the rest!

Corporate Cupid

Red roses, strawberries, boxes of chocolates…these things reign supreme on the fourteenth of February. But why confine gift-giving to Valentine’s Day? Here at Rocca, we’re putting Cupid in business for the rest of the year, and it starts by sending some corporate love to our valued employees.

 

Rocca is partnering with our parent company, JHL Company, to reward our employees who have been with the company for 3 years or more. As a special gift, each employee will receive a beautiful glass paperweight to display in their office.

 

At JHL Company and Rocca Productions, we love our clients but we also love our team. Take the time to thank those working side by side with you and everyone wins.

 

Do you have a plan to show some love the people you value in the workplace? The opportunities are endless, so call Cupid!

To Market, To Market

We may not buy for Neiman Marcus, but we still want the best for our clients.

 

In the early months of each year, Rocca takes its big ol’ shopping bag “to market” to find specific products for our clients and discover the latest and greatest in branding opportunities for the year ahead.

 

The Dallas Market Gift Show is where buyers for luxury retailers go to stock their gift shops for the coming year. It is a high-end market that features vendors from all over the world, giving Rocca access to anything we can dream up for our clients. Let us search this crème de la crème of gift markets for your year ahead!

 

The ASI Show is made for promotional vendors. This is where promotional product buyers go to learn what the new gadgets are and where the market trends are going. Those not-yet-released-to-the-public types of products are unveiled here. ASI is as much a market show as it is a platform to foster our relationships with the vendors. It’s here that they can pitch new ideas to us, and we can build our relationships with industry leaders in a multitude of specialty areas.

 

Going to market is one of the most exciting times of the year for Rocca. Why? Because we get to shop for you! Our clients deserve the best, which is why we put these two major events at the top of our shopping list each year. See for yourself.

Opening the Door… to Graphics Sanity

Did you know that Rocca’s Supply Closet features quick, easy-to-understand tutorials on graphic design shortcuts and commonly-used software programs like Illustrator, Photoshop, and InDesign?

 

Rocca understands that many of our clients don’t work in design programs all that frequently, so, we’ve got everything you might need to perform an occasional design task without it robbing hours from the rest of your day. Don’t surrender to endless online searches or frantic calls to that grouchy IT guy – just go to Rocca’s handy, 24-7 Supply Closet when you need help.

 

Need to change a font or reverse a logo? Trying to figure out what in the heck CMYK stands for? Unlike so many impersonal vendor help-lines, Rocca wants to provide true customer service to you, including support when things just don’t make sense. You can always use our online Supply Closet or call us when you have a question, and someone will personally help you find the solution.

 

When working with Rocca, the only thing y’all will have to decipher is our Texas accents!

From Rocca’s Elves: Our Favorite Things

As the Rocca elves are busy creating amazing holiday gifts for all of our wonderful clients, we wanted to share our official list of “Favorite Things” from 2012!

 

Hall Decking
One of our favorite ideas for the season is using gifts that help you deck the halls! A wreath or a custom ornament makes a sensational and thoughtful gift for clients on your “nice” list.

 

Taste Testing

We’re not talking fruitcakes! But we do love the personalization of food-friendly products like cutting boards or cookie jars. Sending popcorn? Let Rocca brand the tin! Give gifts like these to your staff and maybe you’ll get a tasty treat in return.

 

Baby, It’s Cold Outside
With personalized cashmere travel blankets and scarves, winter never looked more fabulous . Wouldn’t that be the perfect present for frequent flyers? What about those colleagues that are out in the elements – a pair of custom rainboots is just what they need and can use all year through.

 

Rocca can customize any of these ideas for your specific needs. Call us now so a stress-free schedule can be YOUR favorite thing this holiday season!

Clear the Runway! Cue the Cover Girls!

What do Gisele, Kate and Rocca Productions have in common? We’ve all got cover girl cred!

Advantages Magazine recently read some of our In The Bag blogs and thought we’d be a perfect company to feature in their cover story on professional promotions. Would we ever! They highlighted a campaign in which we sent Lucky Charms® cereal to all of our clients.

 

Showing appreciation is important to us at Rocca Productions, and when our clients responded at a 25% higher rate than the national average for our so-called direct mail campaign, it makes us think that they liked it too! Oh, and of course we sent these out on St. Patrick’s Day, just for a little added fun. Not bad for an unofficial holiday, eh lads and lassies?

 

Rocca takes great pride in our success stories and case studies, and we hope that they always provide you with ideas on creative and promotional experiences. But know that each time you come to Rocca, we look at the individual situation, audience, and strategy before unleashing ideas. We like to call ourselves the personal shoppers of branded promotional products…with the style, confidence, and flair to make a true “supermodel” out of your business.

 


Click Image to read our cover story.

Rocca Productions – Bold Your Reputation.

Introducing ‘In The Bag’

For two years, Rocca has blogged about timely topics we feel deserve some attention. Now we’ve officially named our blog to reflect who we are and what we do … So, welcome to In The Bag, the official blog of Rocca Productions, bringing you all types of goodies, favors, and must have essentials.

 

Here at Rocca, we love all types of bags, whether they’re monogrammed canvas or made of recycled paper. We’ve even been known to drool at a nice Louis Vuitton on occasion. The point is, we found our blog has a lot in common with the bags we love.

 

A bag is a solution center with shoulder straps. Where do you look when you need a Band Aid for a fresh cut – In The Bag. Where do you find all the little things you need to get you from Point A to Point B – In The Bag. So, when you find yourself searching for a solution to a project, we invite you to let our blog become a resource. Comb through our archives. Maybe the muse you’ve been looking for all along will be In The Bag!

 

At Rocca, we fill our bags with everything from meeting agendas to samples to giveaway goodies. We work to pack this blog with professional tips you might be missing.

 

We hope our blog carries the perfect amount of style and sass to break up your day. In fact, after reading our blog, Advantages Magazine featured us in their recent cover story… but more about that exciting news next time!

 

In The Bag… conveying ease, taste, and the resources to make your job easier. Because when you work with Rocca, you’re lockstep with a team of pros that tie up all of your loose ends and allow you to say your finished projects are always ‘In The Bag!’

 

Rocca’s Tailgate Playbook

Two… four… six… eight… who do we appreciate? Smart tailgating hosts, of course! With football season here and the World Series just around the corner, you’ll find that September is a great time to score with products for your awesome alumni gathering or company watch party.

Face Paint is for Amateurs
Whether you’re looking to share your team’s logo or add in a corporate logo to tailgate fun, we know a variety of ways to make your mark. From grill tools to environmentally friendly picnic-ware or custom cowboy boots, we leave little doubt to who you’re loyal to.

 

Choose the Best Seats in the House
Long gone are plastic-covered foam squares. Stadium seats are now built for comfort and convenience with proper back support, drink holders and more. There are so many comfy ways to take your seat these days that you’ll wish there were more games on the schedule!

 

The Suite Life
There’s always room at the top. If you’re looking to entertain in corporate boxes or pre-game hospitality events, Rocca can incorporate clever, branded ideas into a space like no other. We’re ready to help you stock up whether it’s for a one-time event or a full season of entertaining.

 

We might not be able to run the bleachers any more or hit one over the fence, but Rocca makes the MVP list year after year. Give us a call and let us become part of your all-star season!

Storming Those Creative Castles

At Rocca, we make creative product solutions look easy, but it does take some work. Brainstorming is a way of life at Rocca and a permanent part of our customer service process. As the first of an occasional series letting you inside the minds and operations of Rocca, we invite you to take on a few of our favorite brainstorming tips:

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Don’t Fence Me In!
Creative energy can’t live in defined borders. Worry about the practical solutions after you’ve finished brainstorming. Any idea might lead to the right idea. Throw them all on the table and fill in the gaps down the road.

 

Diagnose Before You Cure!
Identifying challenges often provides the best path. Creativity at its most basic form is problem solving, so clearly discuss challenges to open up the solutions.

 

Spread the Fun!
Lure individuals or teams beyond the usual suspects (use snacks if necessary!) to give your brainstorming a lightning bolt every now and then. From hometowns to music tastes, it’s great to gather a diverse group of participants for initial ideas.

 

Note This!
Take notes and build in a break to review them. It might trigger a follow-up on a great idea. You might also find something you noted that’s already escaped your thoughts.

 

Whether you’re dreaming up a new business plan or ways to show employee appreciation, brainstorming opens doors. Hopefully these tips will help you better refine the practice in your business as well. Call Rocca today so we can start brainstorming solutions for your project. Go forth and create!

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Check out our Rocca Lookbook:

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Haul Out The Holly!

Holiday business gifts often take on the bad reputation of “that” box under your childhood tree. You remember the festively wrapped but disappointing socks, don’t you? We know you’re still enjoying your summer, but your Rocca elves want to save you from the boring-gift reputation this year. We’re adjusting our hats and tinsel to let you know that now is the best time to get down to some serious Yuletide business!

 

All I Want for Christmas …
Who wants the last egg slicer on the empty Christmas Eve shelves? Early planning allows time to search out unique and truly desirable offerings. When vendors aren’t pressed for time or stacked with orders, they’re more likely to entertain custom modifications or waive fees. This allows Rocca to negotiate for gift perfection and the bottom-line of your holiday dreams.

 

What Came After Pipers’ Piping?
By the second week of December, you may find your gift lost among the crowds of generosity. Early planning allows your expression of thoughtfulness to arrive early and stand out in the season. Wait too long and your gift falls in a line as long as Santa’s in a shopping mall.

 

Need A Little Christmas NOW!
ASAP is an extremely undesirable term during the holiday season. Limited selections prove disappointing, but those rush fees can become downright painful to your end-of-the-year budget. Planning ahead always lands you on accounting’s “nice” list.

 

But don’t feel you have to exchange that lemonade for eggnog just yet. When you’re working with Rocca, we take on the holiday legwork during the days of summer sunshine. (As Texans we’re used to holidays in the heat!) Let us work for you now, so this holiday you can dreamily gaze at a shimmering tree and a completed to-do list!

Introducing The Lookbook

We’ve got news of a fabulous unveiling, but it has nothing to do with the runway or clothing designers! After two years, we are finally done committing the biggest faux pas by carrying around our giant bag of products to client meetings. Rocca is offering a new way for you to take a peek at some of our greatest looks and gather inspiration without us having to lug everything directly to you.

 

That’s why we are happy to introduce the First Edition of our Lookbook, featuring examples of our resourceful product planning in our most requested categories: Gifts, Events, and Marketing.

 


(click to read the Lookbook)

While Rocca approaches each new assignment individually and seeks that sweet spot for every distinct audience and strategy, we hope a look at our past work builds excitement for your next big look. After exploring this new treasure book, you’ll understand that we don’t just fill orders…we create solutions.

 

Take in a private viewing, or you can arrange for a guided tour with the Rocca staff.

 

Either way, this is something you don’t want to miss!

Happy Birthday to Us!


Rocca is two! Although two-year-olds tend to earn a pretty bad reputation, we feel this is an excellent age for a company just starting to hit their stride. We like to say that we are actually two in dog years. Let’s take a look at some of the areas where we’ve grown.

 

Experienced
Aging means learning from experiences – and boy, have we ever! While we already knew left from right and right from wrong, these past years taught us some incredibly valuable lessons.

 

We vow to never again take a bag full of candle snuffers through airport security (Hello, special TSA greeting!) and always check if batteries recharge before spending 30 minutes trying to pry a remote control race car apart. But all of our lessons in knowledge – and a generous helping of truly I Love Lucy-esque moments – allow us to pass on best practices to our clients.

 

Curious
We’re always willing to look a little harder and search one more place to see what opportunities for presentation and savings exist. We know you don’t have time to search far and wide, so let us put our unquenchable examination and exploration skills into action for you.Part of the FamilyAt Rocca, we’re proud so many of you brought us into the fold during the past two years, and that we’ve become an automatic phone call when you demand experience and excellent service.

 

We feel honored working as a team partner with some of the greatest minds in business and philanthropy. Building the trust and personal knowledge of your business lineup becomes our greatest gift, and our constant wish as we blow out the candles.

 

For Rocca, it’s a happy birthday indeed, and we look forward to working with each of you as the candle glow increases.

 

Rocca Productions – Bold Your Reputation.

We’re Game! Meet Bombat Washer Company

It’s baaack! Summer, that is! Whether you’ve been celebrating longer days at the lake, family reunions or simply under a shady tree at a favorite park, you might have played a game or two of washers. Chances are you’ve quickly become addicted and want more. Do we ever have some friends we’d like you to meet!

 

Bombat Washer Company recently became a preferred vendor of Rocca Productions for their quality, consistency, creativity and efficient business practices. While Rocca works with a variety of vendors to fit our client’s specific needs, some vendors impress us so much with their quality and skills that we like to highlight their flair for standing out in the crowd.

 

Based in Austin, Texas, Bombat takes a game of washers from simple backyard fun to an expression of your brand’s or group’s lighter side. Bombat takes pride in custom washer sets either ready to become part of a permanent location or part of a tailgating season’s caravan. Consider personalizing these games with your logo, a favorite sports team or custom design for employee or client gifts, or use them as the highlight at special events or fundraisers.

 

We feel our friends at Bombat share a lot of common traits with Rocca. We both look for creative ways to make a statement, deliver results and products than exceed expectations, and make sure everyone has a lot of fun in the process. Don’t just take our word for it. Talk to us and let us toss around some ideas for your clients and colleagues with Bombat washers.

 

Once you get in the game with Bombat, you’ll see they – along with Rocca -are a real score.

 

Rocca Productions – Bold Your Reputation.

Welcome to Awards Season!

No, our calendar pages aren’t sticking. We’re not talking about the Oscars, Golden Globes or Grammys. For most outside the world of red carpets, awards season falls squarely during the summer convention months. For the bulk of Rocca’s clients awards are presented when a group gets together – and that means anything from a massive convention to departmental happy hour. Still searching for the best way to sing someone’s praises? Let us help you with some ideas.

 

Get into Shape
Gone are the days when rectangular plaques hung row by row in offices. These days, an award should jump into view and stand out just as much as the recipient’s accomplishments! At Rocca, we’re experts in finding just the right way to show your appreciation. Whether you choose something branded with your logo or a little more personal, you’ll find it’s hip not to be the same old square.

 

A Material World
While crystal is the standard, let Rocca help you select the materials that will express your gratitude best. Laser engraving and etching on anything from limestone to sanded aluminum to jade glass inserts can add a unique touch to any accolade. And before you start worrying about the cost of heavy shipping, remember that Rocca works to ensure that all shipping is on-time and on-budget.

 

Thinking Outside the Trophy Box
At Rocca, we know tradition holds its place, so we use our creativity to keep traditions alive in the modern world. With just a little information about the award and its recipient, we’ll reinvent the standard office display. After all, Emily Post never said an award couldn’t come in the form of custom cowboy boots or an engraved wine bottle. Personalized awards work especially well with lifetime service honors or retirees who will want to display their accomplishments away from the office.

 

Rocca works on awards 365 days a year. We’re always looking for clever ways for your brand to say “great job!” at monthly meetings, quarterly retreats, or an annual conference. You give them something to look forward to …  and Rocca will give them something to remember!

 

Rocca Productions — Bold Your Reputation.

Reverence and Respect

Today, in this space where we usually share tips and products with our clients, we instead offer a Memorial Day tribute. Almost 90 years ago … long before the battles of our most recent memory … President Calvin Coolidge delivered these poignant words.

 

Our country does not want war. It wants peace. It has not decreed this memorial season as an honor to war, with its terrible waste and attendant train of suffering and hardship, which reaches onward into the years of peace.

 

Yet war is not the worst of evils, and these days have been set apart to do honor to all those, now gone, who made the cause of America their supreme choice.

 

Some fell with the word of Patrick Henry, “Give me liberty, or give me death,” almost ringing in their ears. Some heard that word across the intervening generations and were still obedient to its call.

 

It is to the spirit of those men, exhibited in all our wars, to the spirit that places the devotion to freedom and truth above the devotion to life, that the nation pays its ever-enduring mark of reverence and respect.

 

Our own reverence and respect for the nation’s military runs deep and personal at Rocca. Many here have relationships with those who currently serve or offered their service in the past. Others simply understand our daily freedoms emerge from the toil of our armed forces. Our company’s founder Jennifer Stevens directly knows the stress and sacrifice of nation’s military families through the multiple deployments of her brother and West Point graduate Major Jim Horn, an Army-certified Airborne Ranger Jumpmaster, who once again leaves for Afghanistan in July.

 

We offer our gratitude today and every day for those who sacrifice, and wish you all a safe Memorial Day weekend

Out of the Office … Still in the Game

Their economy might be hitting the skids, but those Europeans sure know how to leave work behind on a four-week holiday. Unfortunately, this is not an American reality, as our modern time on the clock  — and the accompanying emails, voice messages and team questions — never seem to vacation. However, Rocca knows tips for creating a more seamless exit strategy in our plugged-in world. Whether your calendar is packed with vacation alerts, work conventions or group activities, here are a few ideas to help you prepare for your time outside the office.

 

Who’s In Charge? You Are!
Ever get off a plane to see a slew of emails and a low-charge warning on your smart phone? Have no fear. With AA-battery mobile phone chargers, your team can always stay in touch on the go — meaning no more dead phone excuses. If only we could do something about those reception issues on the beach …

 

Let Them See Your Team Among the Crowds
Avoid looking like part of the nametag herd. Whether your company is heading off to industry conferences, workshops or making a splash at this year’s political conventions, pass out custom lanyards to identify your team among the crowds. Rocca sources lanyards in a variety of colors and even shimmering textures so your group becomes a known entity anywhere.

 

Keeping Important Points At Hand
Finding your thumbs overworked when on the go with your tablets, smartphones or GPS?” Constantly fumbling for a pen at the last minute? Let Rocca take care of two problems at once with customizable Touchwrite stylus pens. The stylus saves you from going astray (and annoyingly opening the wrong windows or apps!) in tight spaces. A small twist turns the stylus into a pen for signing those travel receipts.

 

Smart companies prepare for corporate travel and out-of-office procedures before the last-minute scramble out the door. If you need more help finding organizational items for your team, give Rocca a call and leave with ease!

A New Degree of Fabulous

Here come the caps and gowns! Makes you a little nostalgic, doesn’t it? The graduation parties. The new opportunities. Translating that game-day enthusiasm into workday victories. Learning to “creatively” stretch those first paychecks! Before these graduates step foot on that ladder to success, help them with the tools they might need along the way. Rocca creates gifts with motivation, comfort and a little nostalgia for this class bravely heading out into the new economy!

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A Stylish Reference
After years of a tighter economy, new-graduate hiring is on the rise. That means there’s a lot of interviewing going on out there! Whether you’re arming an entire honor society with subtle advertisements of their achievement, or giving an individual a visual edge, we have you — and their portfolios — covered. Personalized business accessories take graduates from dorm-room disasters to polished professionals. Send them to those interviews with sleek, personalized bags or cases to expertly present their work and greatest potential.

 

Warming Up To That Cold Cruel World
Sure, a graduate no longer needs a security blanket … unless it’s cashmere! Whether you choose to customize with a collegiate logo for the new alumni or a simple monogram, blankets and wraps provide years of use from interview travel to snuggling on the couch while saving on that first heating bill! A variety of colors assure you’ll capture their personality, while the easy-care prevents hassle and cleaning bills.

 

There’s No Place Like Home
If your graduate is leaving home for the bright lights, make sure they take something (preferably light and easily packed into a U-Haul) with them to ward off those homesick blues. If your graduates are Texans, handcrafted Jon Hart gifts displayed in their office (cube) or apartment (studio) keep Lone Star roots strong, even if they’re making their way in  the Big Apple. We can also source local vendors and artists across the country to make gifts truly represent home for any graduate.

 

Whether you’re looking to impart wisdom and wishes on a group of friends, an entire university club or your tenth-floor interns, Rocca moves your selections to the next level. Don’t forget, Rocca’s also your source for custom stoles for the big day. Whatever your need, Rocca helps you graduate to excellent gift giving!

 

Rocca Productions–Bold Your Reputation

Adding a Rocca Credit to Your Brand Computation

Fingers cramped in a calculator-hovering position? Spreadsheets stacked to the ceiling? Expense reports expending your patience? Whether your tax preparation was a write-off winner or deduction disaster, Rocca brings you cash-flow comfort this week by reminding you how we extend your business dollars year after year. Here are just a few reasons why we save our clients an average of 40 percent on their branded purchases.

Vested Benefits 
Not to brag, but vendors want us. Rocca purchases for clients throughout the year, not just here and there. When we find a quality vendor for a specific project, we leverage that possibility of a long-term relationship to get a better price or value-added perks. Sure, vendors find individual consumers desirable too; they just don’t have the potential — or negotiating power — that Rocca holds.

 

Short-Term Gains
Don’t try to hide it. We know you’ve been there. Management either drops a new project in your lap at the last minute, or you pushed back an event’s priority a few weeks too many. Now you’re scrambling to find a vendor as fast as possible and staring down rush fees. Never fear. Rocca knows where to look so that you don’t simply go with an over-priced, inferior-quality Google search result. We know how long reasonable product production takes and the tricks to shave time and costs for sudden success.

 

Lifetime Learning Credits
We’re like a big sister standing outside the dressing room saving you from a designer purchase that would be fabulous … three seasons ago. Rocca follows trades, tastes and technology so your brand doesn’t throw money down the drain on second-rate clearance items. Remember the, “it’s not a bargain if you don’t use it,” wisdom? We live by this motto at Rocca and keep you honest about your purchasing needs. We don’t just fill a product void. We create lucrative brand outreach.

 

When working with Rocca, a year’s worth of purchase receipts brings back great memories of jobs well done and savings in the bank. See how we can help you preserve more of your hard-earned cash. If you could only say the same for those mileage reports!

 

Rocca Productions — Bold Your Reputation

Spring Into Green with Rocca

Ahhh … spring. That precious time when the Earth renews itself before facing the incinerator called summer. Wouldn’t it be lovely if we stayed in a constant state of rejuvenation? While we can’t promise your brand the dewy, youthful glow of celebrity-pitched skin moisturizers, we can offer it a little halo shine! Let us help you refresh your brand with thoughtful, eco-friendly, green products.

 

The Greater Good
When looking at your gift and custom-product strategy, you’ll find green products high on the list of user-friendly desires. With plastic bags now banned or restricted in cities from L.A. to Hong Kong and Seattle to Fort Stockton, reusable bags fill an even greater need. Easy-to-clean, reusable tumblers also add a bit of green — and your logo — to your client’s black coffee. When looking at any items from gifts to meeting materials, viewing products through a green lens extends not only the life of the product … but your reputation as well.

 

Materials Matter
Recycled paper, plastic and glass are the most visible and readily available recycled products. Did you know that recycled paper results in a 64 percent energy savings? Recycled plastics also emit eight times less carbon than first-source, and one ton of 50 percent recycled glass saves 300 pounds of mining waste. But don’t stop there when thinking Earth-friendly materials. Also consider recycled and natural products like metals and eco-friendly fabrics. Whatever your project, tell Rocca, “make it green,” and we find solutions.

 

Below the Surface
We also dig deeper when looking at environmentally friendly products. We can complete the recycled loop with products such as recycled inks and Earth-friendly dyes. These products display all the resiliency and wear of virgin products, without the heavy conscience. Don’t forget the details of accessories either. Many items now contain options for solar chargers or rechargeable batteries to keep your products green for years to come.

 

Infuse a bit of environmental rejuvenation into your projects this spring. Let Rocca place a recycled material logo on your next purchase and add a caring commitment to your brand’s identity.

 

Rocca Productions — Bold Your Reputation

Sporting Brand Smarts

We hope you’re deep in bracket success during this year’s March Madness. But in case you picked Duke to win it all, we offer some consolation: in a few weeks you can move to the next sports obsession! Here at Rocca, we’re always game to help out our sports fans. So this month, we hope to inspire a few key plays in your upcoming season.

 

From Locker to Looker!
Blame it on Mean Joe Green and that famous Coke commercial, but signed, displayed athletic jerseys now hold places of honor in businesses and residences alike. Whether your departing officer or favorite client is a Cowboy or Kings fan, we find the right style for displaying any keepsake with pride.

 

Come Play!
Don’t just invite someone; ask them to join in the game! Customized pennants and balls allow a bit of fun with your brand, whether preparing for a sports-themed event or any occasion that benefits from a little lively raising of the roof!

 

Suite Luxury!
Although the talk is all hoops now, it’s not too early to think about outfitting your company suites or boxes to cheer on the boys of summer or gridiron gladiators. Rocca fills your luxury box with treasures of creative branding. Give us a brand message, and Rocca produces guests who leave events enthusiastically on point.*

 

Whether your bracket is teetering on the rim or already in the (trash) basket, take some time to talk with your creative pros at Rocca. Around here, it’s always the season for success!

 

Rocca Productions — Bold Your Reputation

 

* Rocca takes no responsibility for disappointing team scores!

SXSW Interactive: Technology Gone Wild

At Rocca, we love staying ahead of trends and the latest news so we can pass our informational gems along to you!

 

SXSW, or in full form, South by Southwest, holds its annual interactive, film and music festivals right at our doorstep in March. As much as we’d love to say we’re hip to hearing the latest tunes or chatting up movie stars, we’re really all about the interactive portion. And we’re not alone! The SXSW Interactive Festival, exploring the latest in creative technology and social media, now attracts more attendees than the famous music portion, following its 30 to 40 percent growth each year since 2009.

 

Here are a few things we’re anticipating at SXSW and how your branded products can benefit:

 

Networking Events and Promotional Tents
With more than 49,000 industry professionals attending the interactive portion of SXSW, this is the place for businesses to show off their brands. In addition, everyone from Levi’s to Red Bull stands ready to court the festival masses with promotional venues. We’ll see who pushes through the noise, note innovative and fresh ideas, and comb through the treasures and trash of promotional products. Basically, it’s a thousands-member-strong focus group for products to the high-tech crowd. While the techies and hipsters may not be your brand audience, remember they often serve as early adopters on trends that become mainstream demands.

 

Digital Links for Your Branded Products
You know them and you may use them, but will QR codes remain the right fit for your products? Will they soon be replaced by another innovation? Are snap tags the most economical way for your logo to launch customized digital messages? What about NFC technology and Mobile Visual Search? We’re keeping up with conference buzz on these savvy marketing marks, and learning best practices, uses and placements. Rocca not only selects great products but can also guide you on how best to link those products to your digital information and promotions.

 

Devices! Devices! Devices!
Sure, iPads dominate right now, but at a gathering of tech-world leaders, you’ll find everyone looking over their neighbors’ shoulders. No, they’re not copying notes, but simply observing what device others use to take those notes! We’re searching for the next big breakout and what branded accessories they might require. Whether devices become even thinner or fit in the palm of your hand, you’ll want your brand covering the next big thing first.

 

So, check our blog during the coming weeks to see what becomes legendary at this playground for the smart and savvy. Who knows? We might even teach all those SXSW attendees the proper use of y’all in their social media posts!

Freedom and Independence

Although most won’t think about Independence Day until the grills fire up on the Fourth of July, Texans celebrate our state’s Independence Day today. Pondering those thoughts of freedom made us think about the battle our clients encounter most often: the ability to free their time.

 

Whether you are an executive with a looming annual meeting or part of a Fortune-500 team staring down a shareholders’ luncheon, we know all about the epic struggle for hours and minutes you face with planning. You prepare for an early start, but day-to-day tasks and an overflowing inbox complicate your strategy. As the busy summer conference and meeting season approaches, there’s no better time to engage Rocca. Here are ways we help you stay ahead of the curve:

 

Time
You know what you need — from company awards to executive gifts — but what and how to select those items remains a challenge. Instead of spending hours surfing the web through pages of “meh” and “not quite right” items, send in Rocca — the ones most familiar with materials, specifications and vendor reputations. Looking for American-made products? We pride ourselves on finding American-made and regional products for each event whenever possible.

 

Expense
We’re familiar with industry bulk breaks, standard mark-ups and true production costs, leading us to know how far to push and when to walk away. Rocca saves our clients an average of 40 percent more than direct ordering. We leave you with the security that you’re receiving maximum value without sacrificing your brand’s or event’s style.

 

Creativity
The rules of, “we’ve always done it that way,” don’t apply to Rocca. We’re always thinking of better approaches and innovative strategies to reduce costs and tedious labor — not only with new branded products, but also for existing items.

 

At Rocca, we’ve worked with products for association, industry and public events —  large and small. So if you’re wondering how to make an impact at this summer’s conference, pick up the phone and call the experienced team at Rocca. You’ll find working with us gives you the freedom to focus on the more important items on your to-do list.

 

Rocca — Bold Your Reputation

Why Rocca Feels Passion For Fashion

Let’s see, almond, avocado, oatmeal, mint and … houndstooth!

 

Nope, we’re not cooking at Rocca, but we’re certainly watching them stir the pot. We’re combing through the results of New York’s Fashion Week, and it has nothing to do with our closets but everything to do with you — our clients!

 

While you’ll encounter few people strutting to the break room in couture, trends spawned off Fashion Week — especially those dealing with colors and textures — filter down to items such as house paint, appliances and office supplies. It can also affect the sizes and shapes of everything from computer bags to sunglasses. With the explosion of Pinterest, the social media pinboard (hitting 11.7 million unique visitors in January), we’re bracing to see fashion-inspired trends spread like never before … and we’re ready.

 

We know you don’t have time to follow fashion innovations, but at Rocca, we make it part of our job. We look ahead to see what items carry a classic connection and what will be momentary trends. It’s not only our job to keep you looking up-to-date, but we also maintain your brand’s integrity within the folds of changing times. You don’t want to be the guy at the next tradeshow handing out the country-blue mouse pads, do you?

 

But while we’re ready to keep your brand in vogue, we thought we’d leave you with a few tips for your closet just for fun. (You don’t want your brand to outshine you in hipness, do you?)

 

  • Don’t tell PETA, but leather is back in a big way.
  • Get ready to pack up your swingin’ Mad Men fashion and get some Midnight in Paris panache: glamour is reaching back to 20’s, 30’s and 40’s styling.
  • Sporty chic rocked the catwalk. This should make company picnics much more interesting!

 

So consider Rocca your brand’s personal stylist. Trust us, and your marketing will turn heads season after season.

 

Rocca Productions — Bold Your Reputation

Golfing 2012 — Be A Hit with Rocca!

We’re seeing spring fever diagnoses reach epidemic status already this year, and for many that means thinking about long days on the greens. We can’t cure your springtime longings, but if you’re planning an upcoming tournament or just a few “working” afternoons complete with clubs, Rocca can help you hit ‘em straight.

 

High-Class Hydration
Cart or carry, you work up a thirst on the links. Rocca helps you put a little luxury in libations. Manning the 12th hole beverage station? How about personalized YETI Coolers to keep your players refreshed and refocused on your brand? Or if you’re leaning a bit more personal, individual golf-bag styled can coolers complete with tee storage make great welcome-basket gifts or tournament take-aways.

 

Marking Your Progress
Customized metal ball markers become a stylish and useful gift when making the springtime client rounds. However, if you’re more worried about some of those mysterious “ball swaps” during tournaments, consider passing out some customized marking pens, making certain the rightful owner always claims that water-hazard shot.

 

Gratitude — It’s in the Bag
It’s the ultimate gift for your favorite golfer. Custom bags available in fabric or leather make extraordinary thank-you, retirement or speaker gifts. While we have access to the finest bag materials, we can also coordinate a durable travel case for those who often jet away to their favorite back nine.

 

These are only a few ideas where Rocca can help you take your best branded swing this spring. Call us for more custom creativity. Yes, golf may be the game of kings and commoners, but with a little help from Rocca, you’ll have everyone feeling like they’re blue bloods on the green.

 

Rocca Productions — Bold Your Reputation

Leaving Lasting Impressions

You want to make your mark, but are you always sure how? At Rocca, we answer a lot of questions regarding printing and engraving methods. We can guide you to best choices on a variety of materials. But, just in case you’re carrying around one of those pesky, “learn something new each day,” resolutions, we’re sharing a quick cheat-sheet to help you hit just the right mark.

 

Pad Printing
The world isn’t flat and neither are many of its objects! Pad printing uses a flexible silicone rubber pad to transfer single or multiple-color designs onto three-dimensional surfaces. Golf ball logos are a great example of pad printing.

 

 

 

Embroidery
The term often provokes thoughts of stitched ladybugs on ‘70s denim or stacks of pink nursery blankets, but embroidery’s come a long way, baby! Digitized logos now create computer blueprints for maximum precision on even the most intricate designs. We urge clients to remember embroidery pricing is not based on the number of colors in a design, but stitch count.

 

 

Etching
So simple, even the cavemen did it! However, today’s etching often involves computer technology and chemicals to carve surfaces. This leaves your metal, glass or film objects with sharp cuts, accurate designs and little of the residue, chipping or scratching that hindered more primitive etching practices.

 

 

Laser Engraving
Laser precision is a cliché for a reason! And, like advancements in etching, modern engraving eliminates some of the past frustration of tool bits, which could scratch or wear down an item’s finish. Those tools never touch your surface today, leaving you confident that every item will look identically outstanding.

 

 

Hot Stamp or HotPress Printing
We’re not talking about iron-on t-shirts here! Heated stamping dies press against metals or pigments and transfer designs to paper, wood, plastic or leather. Heat sets the sizing agent. Gold leaf serves as a common example of hot stamping.

 

 

 

Embossing/Debossing
These cause lots of confusion. Embossing occurs when a combination of heat and pressure raises a portion of paper, leather or other material, and the design rises toward your audience. Debossing displays the opposite effect. The design goes away or departs from you. You can combine either of these processes with ink. Use of the process without ink is referred to as blind embossing or blind debossing.

 

But all this etching and stamping talk barely scratches the surface. Have more questions or want to know what method works best for your next project? Contact Rocca. We’re always the best first step in any process.

 

Rocca Productions — Bold Your Reputation

There Are No Hanging Chads in Branding

There’s definitely a whiff of elections in the air! Though Austin streets are quiet during this off year for the Texas Legislature, we know the wheels of government are turning, ideas are flowing, and hands are shaking out there. As the sister-company of a public affairs consultancy, Rocca Productions stands well-versed and ready to assist in the special needs of legislative and political work. Here are just a few advantages to politicking with Rocca!

 

Conference with Confidence
Whether you’re headed off to NCSL, SLC, or ALEC, we know how to TCB (take care of business!). From legislator gift bags to outfitting your hospitality suite or providing welcome gifts, Rocca holds extensive background in legislative conferences. We know what’s in, what’s out, and what will be left for hotel housekeeping. Stand out in this year’s crowd by roccin’ a fresh approach.

 

Avoiding Awkward Awards
Many Texas organizations choose the clearer calendars of non-legislative years for honoring lawmakers. Let’s be honest, the standard brass plaque and paperweight are so Ford Administration! Awards should do more than hang on a wall with dozens of similar styles. Rocca selects gifts that beg for use and display so the message of your members’ support is active, not passive. Let Rocca search for the right look that honors commitment, but awards it with style.

 

Not Even Redford Could Loosen These Lips
Bottom line: we know many of these decisions are sensitive and require the utmost discretion. While we always have our ears on the ground and do our competitive research, you know you’re working with seasoned, discrete pros with your Rocca team. Purchases and budgets fall within mute lips and there’s no worrying about anonymous sources and word about town.

 

So batten down the hatches and position your PACs, members, and supporters. With Rocca on board, you can navigate the choppy political seas with grace and ease.

 

Rocca Productions — Bold Your Reputation

This Little Rocca Went to Market!

While we’re out there pounding the convention floor and keeping our eyes open for the latest and greatest gadget, we keep you in mind. We came armed with an arsenal of notes and well thought out plans to spur us along to ideas and products that would meet your needs for your next event.

Our partnership with you allows us to be your personal buyer and cull through the thousands of products and vendors to give you the peace of knowing you’ll have a quality item that makes an impact at your next convention or client meeting.

 

Sprawling aisles lined with vendors as far as the eye could see—it was literally a Rocca dream.

 

Be Buttoned Up in 2012

How wonderful is that blank appointment calendar those first days after the hectic holidays? But scroll a few weeks ahead and there it is … the big presentation you’ve been dreading for weeks. Turn 2012 into the year when you present your very best each time you enter the room. Rocca has all the tools to leave the biggest of the big dogs demanding a curtain call.

 

Add Value with Virtual!
You always want them clamoring for more … now you can give it to them! With video presentation folders, your “leave-behind” becomes a continuing visual message to review or pass up the chain of command. Whether used for news conferences, sales calls or client presentations, each folder contains enough digital memory to continue the conversation, wow and engage. Your message automatically plays when opening the magnetic card. Now that’s a way to stand out in a stack of contenders!

 

Can Someone Make Me A Copy?
The awkward lugging of briefs or supplemental research disappears when you place all your background information into the palms of clients’ hands. Wrap up your meetings by passing out easy- to-share copies of your work on individual USB drives. These drives also efficiently present all agendas and background materials before your annual meeting — saving the frustration of traveling with heavy bags. Add your logo to the USB to securely deliver the information you worked so hard to create, while utilizing a thoughtful, environmentally friendly solution to stacks of paper.

 

Your Mark Must Be Memorable.
Whether you’re selling products or big ideas, the rules of sales apply: the quicker you close the deal, the better! Rocca can help you discover courtesy items or follow-up gifts to help you stay top-of-mind until the deal is done. Whether you’re pitching a new sports arena or software innovation, Rocca finds the perfect creative expression to match your topic, audience and goal. We’re not talking about pencils or outdated mouse pads here. Rocca’s innovative team finds custom gifts your audience will truly use, while recalling how well you understand your business and theirs.

 

So get ready to give them your best this year. We can’t be there to straighten your tie, calm your nerves or offer that last-minute breath mint. But when you enter the room with Rocca products, you bring the power of a full creative team with you!

 

Rocca Productions — Bold Your Reputation

Fresh Beginnings …

John Galsworthy said, “Beginnings are always messy.” No offense to the late Nobel Prize recipient, but we couldn’t disagree more! Only days away, we’re looking at the New Year as a great time to get clean and tidy. If the thought of organizing already gives you the 2012 blues, consider these time and frustration savers from your pals at Rocca.

 

 

 

Staying Plugged In and Sane Being “plugged in” these days seems to make our desks more “plugged filled” when constantly charging multiple smartphones, laptops and accessories. Keep your technology tidy by utilizing personalized charging stations for your team. Not only will you create more space, but with a consistent home for each item, you’ll reduce the number of lost phone searches throughout the office.

 

 

 

 

When You’re On the Go … So Is Your Office Traveling not only takes you out of your comfort zone, but also your supply zone. Handy, travel-sized office-on-the-go companions serve as productivity insurance policies, containing a last-minute highlighter or staples whether you’re down the street or half a day away. Order now, so your team is prepared for 2012 and not frantically looking for a paper clip or tape during this spring’s conference.

 

 

Love Your Lists It’s on every organizational guru’s list — write down what you need to do and check it often. But no one likes staring down a desk filled with scraps of paper and lunch napkin notes. Customize stylish Post-It pads with your logo or employees’ names and give each reminder a sense of belonging. These customizable pads are a great pick-me-up for employee desks and also outstanding client outreach.   Consider a tidy tiding to the New Year by clearing the clutter. Now that’s something to celebrate!

 

 

 Rocca Productions — Bold Your Reputation

By The Numbers …

The close of this year most likely marks the close of a long, tedious budgeting process for the coming year. After months of back-and-forth on your marketing numbers, totals for 2012 may only now be jelling like your great-aunt’s holiday fruitcake. As you polish your final predictions, we encourage you to consider a few more numbers from the Advertising Specialty Institute’s global research.

 

  • 83 percent of U.S. consumers can readily identify advertisers from which they own promotional products.
  • Nearly one half of consumers report a more favorable opinion of companies after receiving a promotional product.
  • On average, these promotional products cost $.005 per impression. That’s three times less than a prime-time television spot.

 

One of the greatest advantages of promotional products is your ability to target meticulously. Your branded outreach goes specifically to desired audiences who see and touch your efforts instead of walking by or clicking past.

 

So give some thought to placing promotional products on your spreadsheets and in your customers’ hands. The move might just result in a larger pie to carve from for 2013.

 

Rocca Productions — Bold Your Reputation

Giving Thanks

Boy, are we in a thankful mood! Not only do we have our national day of thanks coming up, but this week also marks the one-year anniversary of Rocca Productions’ blog. To celebrate, we’re going back to our Thanksgiving roots. So today we present— just as you might have done in the third grade —our Thanksgiving acrostic.

 

T  —Oh, Texas! Sure, all Texans are known to be a bit proud of their state, and Rocca Productions is no different. We’re thankful to operate in a healthy business environment with low operational costs and a cornucopia of local vendors that allow us to pass along savings.

 

H — Heat. Yeah, we’re thankful it’s gone! Bring on the apple cider!

 

A — Artists. We’re thankful for the new artists and craftsmen we discover every day. At Rocca, we know personalized products don’t have to come in the form of mass-produced plastic from China. We adore those small-business individuals who produce creative products, from metal workers to leathersmiths.

 

N — Networks — our social networks, that is! We’re thankful for the new friends we’ve gained with our Facebook contests this year. If you’re on Facebook, follow us for more exciting contests and giveaways. This month also marks our Twitter debut, so follow us at @RoccaProduction!

 

K — Knowledge. We know that knowledge is power! In our second year of business, Rocca is thankful to be expanding our team bringing even more creative specialists on board — each one well versed in their own specialty niche.

 

S — Selection. The vast selection of our vendor relationships gives us the ability to make sure you always get a fresh perspective and exactly what you are looking for to achieve your marketing goals.

 

We appreciate our clients for recognizing that Rocca seeks to innovate the promotional products category and trusting us to infuse marketing strategy and cost innovation. We’ve been thrilled to share in our clients’ success stories and look forward to many more in the years ahead. At Rocca Productions, we’re thankful for you.

 

We wish you all a safe holiday, surrounded by family, friends and thoughts of thankfulness.

 

Rocca Productions — Bold Your Reputation

 

These Are A Few of Our Favorite Things …

You know the holidays have arrived when you receive those thick, mailed catalogs to be searched, dog-eared and starred. We’re keeping that holiday tradition alive in the digital age by sharing some of Rocca’s favorite holiday products for 2011.

 

 

Coffee Table Books
Put yourself on display with a limited edition of personalized books relating to your industry. Have a lot of college football fans on your list? How about a history of conferences or popular teams? Legislative clients? A beautiful tour of the statehouse or our national monuments begs for display. Whatever subject you choose, recipients realize the attention is on them with personalized greetings.

 

 

 

King Pads
Take note! This isn’t your run-of-the-mill Post-it pad. These stylish holders stand far above normal promotional paper items. Feature either your logo or the recipient’s monogram on leather, available in colors to fit your needs. Want to stay top-of-mind throughout the year? Complete your order with custom page inserts.

 

 

 

iPad Covers
It’s topping wish lists again this year – the iPad. From the looks of boardrooms, airports and coffee shops, everyone else already has one! Pair this popular purchase with a custom iPad cover for employees or clients. Choose from a variety of colors and watch as your company’s brand shines brighter than any other holiday adornment.

 

 

 

Etched Barware
Yep, this economy makes everyone long for a good, stiff drink. Make sure your brand is within arm’s reach and serving with style. Mad Men has everyone in a retro craze, and etched barware fits perfectly with the classically chic (should this be …with this classically chic style.). We have many personalization options for monograms and logos to keep production flowing and your budget from hitting the rocks.

 

 

 

Cashmere
This luxurious but durable fabric is a winner for stadium trips and a staple of the polished jet setter. Check out travel packages, which include easy-to-pack blankets, pillows and eye masks. Monogramming and subtle logo placement guarantee warm thoughts throughout the year.

 

 

Rocca Productions — Bold Your Reputation.

Elves: A Cost-Benefit Analysis

So you’re worried that jingling isn’t sleigh bells, but the limited change you have for client and employee gifts this year? Rocca is up to that challenge!

 

Many people worry tight budgets make a service like ours an unaffordable luxury. Today we’re providing a little Elf 101 on how working with Rocca actually saves you an average of 40 percent more than direct-order purchases.

 

Vendors Covet Long-Term Gains
While you may only purchase branded products or gifts occasionally, it’s Rocca’s business 365 days a year. We hold greater negotiating power with vendors because they realize working with Rocca can lead to a long-term relationship, not just a brief flirtation. Therefore, your bottom-line benefits from vendors courting us.

 

It’s Not Our First Rodeo
We know the ins and outs of this business, from spotting inflated prices to managing shipping efficiencies. We possess a fine-tuned too good to be true radar and are familiar with the quality-control standards for each item, which means you won’t get stuck replacing peeling logos while everyone else sips eggnog this year.

 

Making the Most of Shorter Days
Whether science backs us up or not, hours seem to fly faster before the holidays. Ordering merchandise is most likely only one item on your growing to-do list. Letting Rocca search for gifts, process orders, double-check and approve your artwork, deal with vendor questions, and track deliveries returns your time to other end-of-year tasks. Your productivity goes up while your stress declines.

 

Rocca not only finds unique items tailored to your brand and audience, but we satisfy tight budgets to make any Scrooge proud. In this economy, we may just be the holiday miracle you need.

 

Rocca Productions — Bold Your Reputation.

Wonder Woman – All The World is Waiting For You!

Even without that cool invisible plane, Wonder Woman contemporaries surround us each day maneuvering through life and making our world a better place – across the conference table, on the jogging trail, or down the block. We’ve heard stories of amazing women overcoming incredible challenges since posting about Rocca’s commitment to fighting breast cancer. We work with incredible vendors and artisans who turned passions into thriving companies and who, along with Rocca Productions, make up the 8.1 million U.S. female-owned businesses. Everywhere you turn, there’s a story of an outstanding woman.

 

We’re inspired by stories of these modern-day Wonder Women, and want to hear more! Share on our Facebook wall about an extraordinary woman who inspires you. The subject of the story with the most likes by noon CDT on Friday, October 21 will receive a beautiful bouquet (delivered on your behalf) and a gorgeous 16-inch “Grayce Statement” necklace from Kendra Scott – a dynamic, creative Wonder Woman in her own right!

 

So help Rocca spread the appreciation and encouragement. Post your story of a woman overcoming odds, giving of herself, or astonishing in unconventional ways. If they can give us a lead on where to purchase those fantastic golden lassos, even better!

 

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Roccin’ with Purpose

Next month, Rocca and our parent company JHL will lace up our collective kicks along with hundreds of men, women and children to support Austin’s Race for the Cure. Breast cancer has touched many of us through numerous friends and loved ones, and unfortunately, odds predict those numbers will rise.

 

That’s why Rocca is committed to doing all we can to support survivors, find treatments for and seek prevention of this destructive disease. Our CEO Jennifer Stevens (formerly Jennifer Lustina) currently sits on the board of the Susan G. Komen for the Cure Austin Affiliate. She can’t help but enthusiastically share stories of hope and possibilities for a future when these fundraising races are no longer necessary.

 

Until that time, we will hit the pavement, dedicated to raising awareness and spreading hope. And maybe one day we can live in a world where breast cancer is no longer a threat to the lives and livelihoods of women.

 

If you would like to support our team, please donate at http://bit.ly/osa2Yo or contact us at Tabitha@roccaproductions.com. We also encourage you to find out more about the path to a cure at komen.org

 

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Don’t Be a Seasonal Scrooge

The economic news this year is making many feel as if their wallets — and hearts — have grown two sizes too small. In a recent survey, nearly 60 percent of business owners reported the downturn affected their gift-giving habits. Only 47 percent of small business owners anticipate giving corporate gifts to clients, a slide even from 52 percent last year.

 

So, if no one else is giving, you’re off the hook, right? Remember that saying your Mom had about following people off the Golden Gate Bridge? With fewer items competing for attention, your holiday investment earns the advantage of greater distinction and higher esteem than ever. Keep next year’s growth in mind with your gift selections and you may just see that holly-jolly spirit follow you into 2012.

 

Here are a few tips when considering holiday gifts:

 

Channel The Giving Tree
The holidays are a time to say thank you. There is no mandate that gifts relate to your product or service, but they should hold appeal for the recipient and stay consistent with your brand image and company philosophy.

 

Resist Vanity
Logos can customize holiday gifts, but a little thought and strategy is essential. Make sure the recipient stays the center of attention. Utilize clever placement, coordinating color palettes or techniques such as blind embossing to add class to conversation pieces.

 

Plan For Savings
Afterthoughts are not thoughtful! Start early to arrange for timely distribution and a possible thank-you conversation prior to clients’ vacations. Last-minute orders and express shipping only increase your costs and stress.

 

At Rocca, we’re experts in planning thoughtful gift strategies and selecting creative items catered to your recipients’ needs. No need to send a wish list to Santa’s Workshop  — contact our Rocca Elf Hotline to place the right gift and the right end-of-year message in your valuable clients’ hands!

 

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Beat It, Heat Wave! Let’s Head Outdoors!

These cooler evenings mean fall’s on its way, and it’s time for the outdoor festivities and functions to begin.

 

Austin kicks off the festival season September 16 with the ever-popular ACL Music festival. While your function may not be to this scale, Rocca can help your al fresco event please the most demanding divas for little more than a song. Here are a few ways Rocca can make your outdoor event out of this world.

 

Wrap it up — We’ll Take It!
Whether you are sponsoring an area at a charity garden party, drawing crowds at a tailgating event, or offering refreshments along the course at a golf tournament, Rocca helps custom table wraps, sidewalk decals and tenting identify you with style. We handle various materials and styles as well as provide expertise in logo and tagline positioning for multiple-use impact.

 

Nom! Nom! Nom!
Nothing makes food taste better than a little noshing in nature. Rocca utilizes multiple resources for environmentally friendly dinnerware that carries your logo with pride and responsibility. Passing out water bottles at the festival? How about custom bottle labels with your logo so patrons know where to place their gratitude? And everyone will know who’s responsible for the Christmas parade’s hot chocolate in your custom branded heat-sensitive cups. Pass a bit to Santa and you’ve even got a celebrity endorsement!

 

Trot ‘Til You Drop
Benefit runs and walks play a prominent role on many fall through spring calendars. If you’re sponsoring your own, we have unique options for distributing information and race materials. Are you a contributing sponsor with space in the official race bag? Rocca has ideas on many usable, health-minded options so participants know your contribution isn’t only about dollars, but a shared philosophy.

 

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LET THE MUSIC PLAY! Without passes to this weekend’s ACL Music Festival? Visit Rocca Production’s Facebook page and post your favorite one-hit wonder. If your post gets the most “likes” by noon on Wednesday 9/14, you win a pair of sold-out, three-day passes courtesy of Rocca!

We Remember …

“I was campaign manager for John Cornyn at the time, and we had just finished a staff meeting concerning the September 12 kickoff tour to announce his candidacy for U.S. Senate. Our consultant asked me to come back to the conference room because a plane hit the World Trade Center. The words didn’t even make sense. I walked in and saw the television just as the second plane hit. The news became more and more heartbreaking with each minute. We spent the rest of the day cancelling the fly-around, focusing on one task at a time to ward off shock. The next morning, I not only felt tremendous grief, but also a sense of resolution. I felt such trust that our extraordinary country could rise above. That belief motivated me to get through the months ahead.”

 

-Jennifer Lustina
Owner, Rocca Productions

 

 

“I was raised around Ft. Hood, so the concept of heroes was nothing new. When the events of 9/11 unfolded, I even worried those men and women could also be targets of unthinkable acts. However, the stories of all the police, firefighters, co-workers and unknown civilians who rushed to help victims reinvigorated my definition of hero. I was overcome by this strange sense of safety in that our country was full of so many individuals who put their lives on the line to help others. I know the goal of the terrorists was to make us feel scared and weak, but it ended up having the opposite effect. I was never so proud or felt so secure because I realized we lived in a country filled with heroes who walk by us everyday.”

 

-Tabitha Lawson
Director, Rocca Productions

 

“You can be sure that the American spirit will prevail over this tragedy.” 

Hey Gang! Hey Gang! Listen Here! We’re Talkin’ YETI Coolers, Let’s Give ‘Em A Cheer!

It’s time for turf, touchdowns and tailgates!

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Football season is here, and Rocca is ready with our newest All-Star player, Texas-based YETI Coolers. These sleek coolers not only look great toting your marinating ribs, but they are also tough enough to withstand the blitz of an all-American defense. This “king of coolers” boasts a thicker insulation without a hindering weight, a true sealing closure, and increased cooling ability. With their “grizzly-proof” exterior, these coolers attract attention anywhere they go. And they go many places – the game, the deer lease, the lake, and everywhere in between.

 

Wouldn’t you love to have your logo on these charmers as they’re seen and enjoyed out and about? Think about providing customized YETI Coolers to those at your next charity event or group hunt. Wouldn’t your board and senior management love these practical gifts delivered to their office this holiday instead of the usual poinsettia and cookie basket? We’ll work with you to find the right cooler for your crowd, as well as the best customization options to maximize your brand exposure.

 

So, as you’re imagining your championship-winning fantasy football team this season, also consider the points you’d score with friends and clients by teaming up your brand with the reputable style and quality of YETI Coolers. A YETI Cooler game plan might just make you this season’s MVP!

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Rocca Productions – Bold Your Reputation.

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Who wants to win a FREE YETI Cooler just in time for football season? Rocca wants to know your favorite sports memory – the greatest comeback, biggest nail-biter or most incredible team performance. Post your favorite glory story on our facebook page and if it receives the most “likes” by Sept. 2, we’ll send you tailgating with your own YETI Roadie25 Cooler – valued at more than $200. Don’t be afraid to add some depth to your bench either. Get new friends to “like” Rocca on facebook so they can vote for you too!


Anniversary Site Seeing

We’re kicking off our second year at Rocca Productions with an expanded web presence! We thank all who followed our blog during the past year, and we will continue bringing industry updates and practical tips your way – now housed on a beautiful, expanded website!

 

What You’ll Find
While much of the site is an introduction to our work, we created a special section with existing customers in mind. We view our F.A.Q. section as more than just Q&A – it’s our continuing education center, discussing everything from file uploads to process. This best practices forum will expand as we discover more tips to make working with Rocca seamless. Check out the page and see if we’re covering questions relating to your next project. Have an idea you think would be helpful for the page? Send it our way!

 

What You Won’t
You might also ask if we’re offering an online catalog. The answer is no – and with good reason. You’ll see many product examples on the site, but at Rocca we don’t limit your selections. Rocca’s unique presence is all about creating marketing solutions with items specifically chosen for your audience and not about forcing you to choose from warehouse inventory. So, while we offer inspiration, we know true brand enhancement comes from our human insight, not our website.

 

Don’t be shy – take a tour! We’d love your feedback. From Team Rocca, we thank you for a wonderful first year, and we look forward to creating even more brand magic in those ahead.

 

Rocca Productions — Bold Your Reputation.

Let Rocca Give You the Star Treatment

The late Don Snell, the Texan behind Jon Hart Designs, not only launched a successful Texas business but became a major theater actor and Hollywood star — even singing at Carnegie Hall.

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Two Thumbs Up for Jon Hart Quality & Design
While Snell definitely had star-power, we most admire the legacy this Houstonian built by transforming a small tent business into a leader of beautifully designed, high-quality, fashionable products. Today, 150 coated-canvas and Texas mink items — from outdoor gear and gun cases to luggage, make-up bags and portfolio covers — carry the Jon Hart brand. While you may not think style when pondering key chains and diaper bags, Jon Hart offerings make you a believer.

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Their luxury products remain affordable and practical, even if you’re not on the pages of Variety. But if you are looking to make a name for yourself, Jon Hart is a master of tasteful, individual personalization, making their products ideal for group coordination and holiday gifts. They can even create and house a metal stamp of your logo to keep on hand for quick-fill custom orders.

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Perks — They’re Not Just For Starlets Anymore
We’re so certain you’ll love the Texas-based Jon Hart line, we’re offering an exclusive Friends of Rocca benefit to help you get ahead on those Christmas orders. We’re treating our customers to 15 percent off any Jon Hart orders placed through Rocca in August. Choose any item, any quantity, and we’ll give you this special introduction to the beautiful world of Jon Hart.

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Excellence Marks The Spot

You know the shape, you know the colors, you might even know the standard proportions, but do you really know what your logo says when you place it on products? From canvas bags to crystal awards, here are some things to keep in mind when you make your mark.

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Size Matters
Bigger is not always better. Consider your audience. If you’re designing a piece to be carried or worn by employees advertising your company, make it bold and clear. However, if you want others to utilize an item, subtlety goes a long way. Creative design planning conveys a message without screaming. Going overboard usually guarantees a product will never see the light of day.

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Show Your True Colors
Hours went into your logo’s design. After the struggle to find the perfect color don’t select a base that diminishes it or conflicts. Brilliant yellow blankets look great, but your green logo may only make people thirsty for a clear soda. If your heart is set on a specific item’s color palette, explore if a logo can appear in solid white or black. Also, some vendors offer custom colors at a surprisingly reasonable rate. Let us explore possibilities before throwing in the (clashing) towel.

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Look Who’s Talking
Sometimes logos make statements. Other times they need to start conversations. If your items are sales tools or conference materials, make contact convenient by providing your web address. Additional items should be as simple as possible. List your best source, not a jumble of five social media options. At a conference promoting green options? Send them directly to that section of your site so they don’t leave after a fruitless search. The easier the action, the greater the reaction.

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Logo placement greatly contributes to your brand’s style. Think of it as an essential element of fashion requiring attention and consistency. Even if you wear fabulous dresses to the parties, someone can always recall if they caught you in baggy sweats at the grocery store.

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Baseball, Mom, Apple Pie & Rocca!

We hope you’re wrapping up and heading out early for a fun Independence Day Weekend!

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In our work, we continually witness what’s made this country so extraordinarily resilient — the spirit of America’s creative, innovative and hard-working entrepreneurs.

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That’s why we like to keep our blessings in mind year-round by supporting the economy here at home. Whenever looking for a product, we first explore your regional vendors, then seek out every available option to find American-made merchandise.

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This weekend, we’ll be toasting our forefathers with a fabulous Made-in-the-U.S.A. product: Tervis tumblers. Along with their competitive pricing, they offer a quality and durability not found in many imported products. If you’re interested in one of these gems, check out our offer below, or place your custom order for the company picnic or Labor-Day cook-off.

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Be happy, stay safe, say a prayer for our troops and celebrate a great nation.

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Rocca Productions – Bold Your Reputation.

Want to win your own Tervis tumbler? We’ll give one to the first three people to share what’s cooking on their July 4th menu. (Can you tell we haven’t been to the grocery store yet?!?)

 

Think Snow!

We know it’s a billion degrees outside, light enough to mow the grass until 9:00 p.m. and a daily battle to fill the pool before more water evaporates. Who said summer was relaxing? After all this work, we want you to treat yourself to a peaceful holiday season – by planning ahead with Rocca.

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When it comes to all things merry and jolly such as client gifts, employee appreciation and holiday party favors, the earlier you plan the better. Advance preparation allows you additional creativity. Find clever and tasteful ways to express a tagline or logo such as bottle etching or unique placement, and avoid junk-closet confinement with the tacky, mass-produced trinkets. (You know, those items you’re too embarrassed to even take to the lake or ballpark?)

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Why not let your packaging play a role with a personalized stocking of goodies arriving December 1 to decorate with your thoughtfulness all season long?

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For many items, extra time also equals extra money in your wallet by avoiding rush fees. The thought of expedited shipping rates with climbing fuel prices is enough to melt the ice in your lemonade! So whether you’re looking for something to last a lifetime like limited edition personalized books or items to make your year-end celebration a night to remember, we can help.

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Because in the end, the best part about being a Summer Santa is letting the Rocca elves work while you pass the sunscreen!

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I Scream, You Scream, We all Scream for SUMMER!

Yes, we’ve entered the long summer days when office attire goes casual, airports fill with pint-sized passengers and every third e-mail receives an out-of-office vacation notice.

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Before your brand wanders off for a mid-year siesta, talk to your Rocca team about taking advantage of the slower pace and revving up your brand in an uncrowded field.

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Here are a few ideas to keep your brand sizzling:

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Life is Sweet, Grab a Spoon
Silver-plated ice-cream pint coolers can be personalized and etched with your company’s logo. What better motivation for employees on those long afternoons when they’d rather be at the pool? These caddies also make a great addition to group picnics or V.I.P. firework watch parties.

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Share the Heat
What adds even more value to the name Weber on a grill? Why your name, of course. Choose from Weber’s line of charcoal and gas grills, which can be personalized for company anniversaries, retirements or simply a way to wish favorite clients an incredible summer season. Even better? You can treat yourself, as Weber is currently offering a free Q120 gas grill with all custom orders.

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San Tropez Survival Kit
O.K., so your corporate retreat may not be on the Riviera, but summer indulgences still provide an instant pick-me-up. Light-weight, vented Colombia fishing shirts with sun-blocking technology (an excellent UPF 50 rating!), lip balms, bottles of sunscreens, and misters can call be customized, guaranteeing comfort when the mercury and humidity battle for supremacy.

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So, turn up the heat on your brand with a little creativity, a little Rocca and a lot of summer fun!

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Rocca Productions – Bold Your Reputation.

Sometimes You Feel Like a Nut …

This week at Rocca, we’re thrilled to spotlight one of our new approved vendors – Austinuts.

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Why do we say approved vendor? At Rocca, we’re very picky about who we work with to achieve our clients’ success. We don’t want a single item of your seasonal gift basket or client thank-you supplied by someone who doesn’t insist on the same nuts-and-bolt quality inspection we do. Get it? Nuts and bolts? O.K. … rough crowd.

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However, the superiority of Austinuts is no laughing matter. Employing dry-roast techniques found in the Mediterranean, they use specially designed ovens utilizing only hot air. No extra oils. No additives or preservatives. Just fabulous results. Ask us. Sampling is part of our quality control! They even work with us on special-order nuts and candies to address low-carb, sugar-free and kosher needs.

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We also respect Austinuts’ willingness to roll up their sleeves and get creative with Rocca exploring custom packaging. We just won’t stand for a generic food basket. We want your brand promoted throughout any item – soup to nuts! Really, not even a small chuckle for that one?

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Fortunately, our taste in vendors is much better than our taste in jokes. When you work with Rocca, you’ll know everything that goes into your order comes from companies that are adamant about excellence – just like our friends at Austinuts.

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What’s In A Name?

People often ask us the origin of the name Rocca. Actually, we’re named after a baby bump.

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Yes, when our President Jennifer Lustina was expecting her second child, she teased her own father that she was following celebrity trends and naming his granddaughter Rocca. Fortunately for her child the joke ended at delivery, but the name went instead to another of Jennifer’s babies – Rocca Productions.

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A fitting metaphor, Rocca is a creative concept born from the work of our parent company – JHL Company, celebrating its seventh anniversary this month. A fundraising and public affairs consulting company, JHL staff spent many hours searching for and ordering the promotional products they felt would extend their client’s brand.

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The experience more often than not left JHL employees disappointed, frequently underwhelmed and often irate. The team repeatedly found themselves trying to pry options out of vendors who only worked to move high-inventory items, or pacing the floor waiting for products delivered past deadlines. Quality inspections? Well now, that was obviously not part of their standard practice, as many faulty items earned trips right back to those vendors’ spacious warehouses.

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JHL Company knew there was a better way to do business, so Rocca was born. We designed the company of JHL’s dreams –creative and conscientious innovation. We built upon the pillars of strategic marketing, quality and timeliness until every negative product-ordering experience at JHL was turned into a positive process. Our place in the world was to change the way people approach promotional products, and we even found we could do it saving our customers an average of 40 percent!

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So this month, join us as we wish a happy anniversary and happy Mother’s Day to JHL Company – a parent who infused wisdom, demanded integrity and gave us one heck of rockin’ name!

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A Tisket, A Tasket is Nothing Without That Basket!

Picture the scene next Sunday: dozens of children in their Easter Sunday best running out on the lawn hunting plain, white hard-boiled eggs? Not very appealing. You might as well hide some lettuce or jars of mayo. What provokes the frenzied gathering of eggs at Easter? Of course, it’s the colorful packaging!

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It may seem a silly analogy, but at Rocca, we know packaging is serious business. From unique twists on the conventional such as custom tissue paper and ribbons to logo-etched ice buckets delivering a celebration at the close of a deal, we know how something arrives is just as important as what.

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Take your next annual meeting as an example. Sure, you assemble a welcome packet for pick-up at registration. However, what does it say about your company when board members receive a welcome of useful creativity at their hotel? Small touches like specially created USB drives containing agendas and background documents, or welcome messages and directions printed on water bottles and sunscreen make their arrival more than an afterthought.

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Don’t forget to think green either. Recent surveys show U.S. consumers are increasingly savvy when it comes to green packaging and demanding a little courtesy for the planet. We explore all options for creative and responsible presentation. Most of all, we adore packaging with multiple purposes that never has to see a trash bin.

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So, when you’re digging through those baskets for the chocolate bunnies this weekend, take notice of the power of packaging. How else could Peeps have ever become popular? Happy Easter!

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No Sweat – Make A Hit by Getting Fit!

With rising obesity and health care costs, that old apple a day gem just doesn’t cut it anymore. The number of small- and mid-sized businesses taking part in weight management and wellness programs jumped 25 percent in 2010. When participating in these programs, 38 percent of employees said they increased productivity, 28 percent reported they were absent less frequently and almost 50 percent claimed the program increased their company loyalty.

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Ready to lace ‘em up and get started?

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Whether your company offers incentives, passes out pedometers or holds classes right in the office, don’t forget Rocca in your planning. We’ll help your brand work harder than a 6 a.m. spinning class next to a bakery!

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How about personalized yoga mats? With every downward facing dog, they’ll reach a Zen-like state remembering how much their employer cares.

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Have some future Rockys needing to blow off some steam? Let us customize jump ropes complete with calorie-burn calculators to keep them light on their feet.

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Contact us today for more ideas on how to keep your workforce – and brand – in top shape this year!

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Gimme! Gimme! Gimme! Gimme!

You know the stampede. Doors open and conference-goers scavenge booths like they’re collecting Mardi Gras beads on Fat Tuesday. How many of those giveaway items actually live outside the convention center’s florescent lights? At Rocca, we’re constantly looking for items using the following guidelines:

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Is It Just What I Need?
Packets of anti-bacterial wipes or custom mints brand your company a hero during times of conference crisis.

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Do I Always Want It With Me?
Custom USB drives or playing cards tucked into bags receive thanks and attention during future flight delays.

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Is It Memorably Clever?
The hardest to hit, unique to you may not be innovative to those attending their fifth conference this year. That’s why Rocca monitors product trends for you, sorting what’s cool and what’s old school.

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Above all, you must select items that speak to your market. Custom fortune cookies might be great for an entrepreneurs’ convention, but provide little luck at a green products conference with a keynote on organic farming.

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Let Rocca insert some strategy into your giveaway stash. Live outside the junk drawer.

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Rocca Productions – Bold Your Reputation.

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We want to hear from YOU! What’s the best item you ever picked up at a conference or convention?

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Austin’s Rockin’ and so is Rocca!

Our home of Austin, Texas is alive with the sound of music this month as the South by Southwest (SXSW) music, film and interactive festival rolls into town. Concert lovers bounce from performances by The Strokes to hometown-favorite Spoon, hoping to hit that once-in-a-lifetime show. You know the kind. The one you’ll brag about for years, while the grandkids say, “Who”?

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At Rocca, we’ve got the perfect way for you to capture your next memorable event. Commemorative and engravable ticket stubs provide the perfect opportunity to savor a special moment, whether it’s a V.I.P. client event at the championship game or an employee incentive reward to see the new Spiderman musical – should it ever open!

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Tickets preserved in copper, bronze or aluminum make a perfect thank-you or follow-up after an event. Remarkable evenings become unforgettable as office and home displays keep you top-of-mind months and even years later. Who wouldn’t like to brag of their own version of Willy Wonka’s golden ticket?

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As our resident New Kids on the Block fan would say, these tickets are truly, “The Right Stuff.”

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Rocca Productions – Bold Your Reputation.

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It’s not only about toe-tapping during SXSW. Trends such as foursquare, Sweet Leaf Tea and Twitter exploded here. Rocca plans to scour the streets for the next big thing. What cool bags are hipsters sporting? New ways to carry water bottles? What giveaways land in the curbside bin? Yes, your Rocca team even monitors the garbage to keep our clients current! At an event ripe with innovation and trendsetters, you know Rocca is on the job.


Are We There Yet?

The halfway mark is almost upon studious boys and girls: Spring Break! Traveling with the family provides more challenging opportunities than day-to-day travel, so we thought we’d share some of Rocca’s favorite travel and packing tips.

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Get on a roll!
Rolling clothes in tissue takes up much less space and leaves you with fewer wrinkles. Don’t have a bag with dividers? Placing items inside a few empty shoe or boot boxes in your bag can actually save space while you stack neater.

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Take charge of your trip!
Phones, DVD players and games become worthless without their chargers. Avoid texting withdrawal or a child’s meltdown by carrying a separate bag and checklist for all power sources. Not sure of the best carrier for all of your electronics? Check with Rocca and learn about your options.

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Make your bank jealous; tell them where you are going.
Has your super-vigilant bank ever noticed your San Francisco shopping only to security flag your card before dim sum? A few quick clicks on your bank’s website might save you from asking your mother-in-law for cash at Disneyland.

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What’d you bring us?
Line the bottom of your luggage with a flat reusable grocery bag so that all those souvenirs can come back with one set of sturdy handles.

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Need other helpful items before you hit the road? Check out our supply of customizable luggage tags (the brighter the better!), passport cases, TSA-friendly clear pouches and other organizational gems to make this trip and all future ones a breeze for your family and colleagues.


 

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Luck, Know Your Ladies Tonight

Poor February holidays fall a bit flat. Yes, you scored cheap post-Valentine’s chocolate and fluffy new towels on President’s Day, but did anything make you really feel like celebrating? At Rocca, we want to add some fun to 2011’s shortest month … and what’s more fun than something free?

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We combined February’s holidays of love and presidents with a trivia contest about our presidents’ loves  – first ladies! The first three Rocca friends to correctly answer the questions below will win a travel-ready manicure/pedicure set. Remember, that groundhog didn’t see his shadow, which means sandals and pool feet are coming out sooner rather than later! (And we’re not just reminding the ladies, here!)

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So fire up your search engine and post your answers in our blog comments section by Feb. 28. But don’t wait too long! The contest closes after three winning responses. After that, your toes are on their own!

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1.  At just 21 years of age, who was the youngest first lady?

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2.  Who was the only bachelor president who arranged for his niece to serve as official hostess?

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3.  Which first lady made headlines by saying, “Somewhere out there in this audience may even be someone who will one day follow my footsteps, and preside over the White House as the president’s spouse. I wish him well!” during a Wellesley College commencement?

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Rocca Productions – Bold Your Reputation.

Hey Kermit, It’s Very Easy Being Green When You’re Working with Rocca!

Since the afternoon of December 26, stores have been drowning in pinks and reds anticipating Valentine’s Day. While we’re as big of romantics as any, we’d like to propose something different than chocolates and tulips: a little love for Mother Earth. It’s February, and at Rocca we’re thinking GREEN!

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Gifts not only express kindness and gratitude, but selections also make a statement about those giving. Let others know how thoughtful your organization is by selecting from our range of eco-friendly products.

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Environmentally friendly notebooks, glassware made from recycled windshields and reusable shopping bags sustain positive feelings long after an item is received. What better way to plant some new inspiration in your clients than the gift of native seedlings they can watch grow with their business? How could anyone resist sharing that their pen is made from biodegradable corn?

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Let us help you send the right message with a variety of creative, environmentally friendly options.

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Now is also the perfect time to select items for Earth Day events on April 22. Order fun attire for your group’s clean-up activities or offer your appreciation for all those giving back to their communities.

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There may still be a bit of frost in the air, but with Rocca you can warm up some good will with great deeds.

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Rocca Productions – Bold Your Reputation.

What Motivates You?

Let’s face it, the past few years have been rough on American business. Employees fretted over job security and dwindling retirement accounts. It seemed for a while the entire nation suffered a Conan O’Brien syndrome.

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While a steady paycheck is an incentive, wouldn’t it be nice to turn away from those dark days and start with fresh motivation this year? At Rocca, our team can help you craft an employee recognition program that works with your budget while maximizing enthusiasm and loyalty. We work with you in designing product tiers and themes, creating statements about your office culture instead of, “stuff I got from work.”

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Have an office full of outdoor enthusiasts? We can cover everything from engraved rods and tackle boxes to customized canoes. (Wouldn’t that surprise a family if Mom drove home with a canoe on the car?)

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Want to express your appreciation for employees’ work-life balance? Look into a range of home products from espresso machines to Kitchen Aid mixers that tell them you realize they have a life outside the office.

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Need a sales incentive? Instead of just a vacation reward, send them off with customized luggage to remind them they are part of a team, no matter where they go.

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In recent years, studies show employees not only note the items they receive from incentive programs, but the message it sends. With your Rocca team, you can present clever extensions of your brand, not items for the junk drawer.

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We bet they only offered poor Conan a toaster. They should have called Rocca!

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Rocca Productions – Bold Your Reputation.

Here a Pad, There a Pad, Everywhere an iPad.

Rocca’s top five iPad apps:

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1) Notes Plus – Note to self! Record important meetings or turn a few finger strokes into organized notes and pdf documents.

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2) AMEX & AMEX Travel – As a small business on the move, these tools help us monitor accounts and manage travel schedules with ease.

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3) Wi-Fi Finder – This app is perfect for those on the go, in a hurry and avoiding fees.

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4) Scrabble – Somehow, the board game that really bored you at grandma’s house becomes fun on the treadmill.

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5) Angry Birds – We only keep the kids off it so WE can play!

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Listed in the top tech, business, music and even general news stories of 2010, it’s almost impossible avoiding the iPad. Every meeting, you’re greeted by the back of people’s screens as they – ahem – work away on them.

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Why not take advantage of this innovation by showing off your business or association with customized iPad covers? Not only do these covers provide protection when everyone from airport security screeners to your intern fumble it, but now your logo follows these fashionable darlings to the boardroom, coffee shop, poolside – everywhere.

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While you’re at it, why not look into some new team totes to organize all the space saved with the iPad? We have bags that easily transition from office to weekend which look great and make travel a breeze. There’s no better way to start a new year than with better organization. For that, your iPad and Rocca are a winning combination.

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Rocca Productions – Bold Your Reputation.

Of All Things Bright and Beautiful

Images of all things clean and sparkly dominate each January to go along with our hopes for a fresh start. Even our Rocca logo is shining this month.

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We toast a new year with glittering champagne while watching a radiant ball drop above thousands in a packed – and probably not always so fresh – crowd in Times Square.

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Chinese, Irish and Japanese traditions dictate cleaning your home for a new year to wipe away previous bad luck. It’s also no surprise the 1993 clear product trend launched with Crystal Pepsi’s January ads. And yes, how could we ever forget the push to ring in the new year with a Zima – although believe us, we’ve tried.

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If you’re making a new start for 2011 by brightening your mental and physical space, we have a clear winner for you.

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Check out Rocca’s beautiful, customizable crystal. We have gleaming barware to replace the tattered and tired. We have timeless pieces to mark the employee anniversaries coming up in 2011. Order now, so you’re not scrambling when your loyal bookkeeper’s 30th year celebration falls just as you return from summer vacation.

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Whether you’re looking to launch an employee recognition program this year or simply celebrate special clients, we can create custom pieces that shimmer with new possibilities, but last a lifetime.

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Rocca Productions – Bold Your Reputation.

It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like … A LEGISLATIVE SESSION!

Every two years, as the rest of us recover from the holidays by dozing in front of bowl games, the Texas Capitol picks up where Santa’s workshop left off. (And ironically, they’re making different kinds of lists of who’s naughty and nice!)

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This week, members and staffs are preparing for the January 11, 2011 kickoff of the 82nd Texas Legislative Session. Attorneys proof bills while munching leftover turkey sandwiches and schedulers organize instead of hitting the post-holiday sales – all so the session kicks off in a highly efficient manner.

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We know you appreciate these efforts and are already thinking about memorable session gifts. We’re well versed in the state’s gift-giving regulations and plan with those in mind. Also, whether you’re organizing group office visits or a day on the links, Rocca can handle everything from personalized polo shirts to golf balls to make certain you stand out in the crowds.

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This session carries even more excitement, as it includes the January 18th inaugural ceremony for Gov. Rick Perry and Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst. Partner with Rocca for a successful celebration with your clients and guests. We offer gifts to match your crowd from commemorative office items to cocktail glasses and barbecue tote bags. Place customized blankets, sunscreen and umbrellas in your guests’ rooms to prepare them for January weather that’s as unpredictable as a bill stuck in conference committee.

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They say the legislative process is like watching someone make sausage. At Rocca, our job is to help you turn that messy procedure into the most stylish charcuterie plates.

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Rocca Productions – Bold Your Reputation!

And This Year’s SWAG Goes to …

The Golden Globe nominations are out! Although we’re in the midst of the holidays, the Hollywood Foreign Press Associations’ nominations kicked off another huge season for the team at Rocca: SWAG season!

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If you’re not familiar, swag is an acronym for, Souvenirs, Wearables and Gifts, but in Hollywood it became, Stuff We All Get. During the next few months at the Golden Globes, Grammys, Oscars, Sundance Film Festival and more, celebrities will shuffle through tents and suites hunting swag, emerging with gift baskets and bags filled with products. Companies strategically plan where to place swag and event organizers give best-picture worthy performances to land the top gifts at their party. It’s cutthroat, political, Madison Avenue and Hollywood rolled up in one … and we love it!

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While we may not place the latest cut of Diesel jeans or oxygen peels in our inventory, we are watching the reports of swag to see what hot new items might spill over into more fiscally responsible gift bags.

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As an example, the Flip camera pocket-sized video recorders graced previous Grammy and ESPY gift suites. Now, it’s easy to catch celebrities like Oprah, Ryan Seacrest, Evan Rachel Wood and Beyonce using these pocket-sized 4G camcorders with built-in USB, allowing you to plug them directly into your computer. Know who else has them? Rocca Productions. We can even turn these swag-to-celebrity darlings into your special swag with personalized designs.

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Part of our job at Rocca remains watching trends for you and offering products we know are in demand. So, if you catch us browsing through celebrity photos, we’re not just looking for Jennifer Aniston’s latest date. We’re hard at work for you!

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Rocca Productions – Bold your Reputation.


Baby, It’s Cold Outside …

OK, let’s face it. The words brisk and chilly better describe Texas winters, but isn’t it fun to snuggle up and pretend we’re having rough weather?

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Before you complain too much though, did you realize a shift in the jet stream has forecasters predicting the coldest European winter in 1,000 years? In fact, November marked the most widespread snowfall in the U.K. since 1993 and the deepest snow since 1965.

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As if we needed another reason to be thankful we live in the U.S.A.! While Putin is pulling out his thermals this winter, we can address cold with a nod to style over survival.

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Let Rocca help you personalize an order of striking 100 percent superior pashmina cashmere wraps and travel scarves, as well as fashionable cashmere blankets. Feel you need something a bit heavier? We’ll work to find the perfect weight to keep everyone warm at the group hunt without looking like you stole the stadium blankets that lined your truck bed all summer.

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Need an idea for those you’re entertaining at bowl games? Check with us about express delivery options and you can pass out gorgeous blankets to compensate for the stadium’s instant cocoa. For all you horned frogs, we’ve already spotted the perfect color purple for your well-deserved spotlight. (And don’t worry Longhorns. Order your blankets for next year’s games, because we know you’ll be back!)

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Start gearing up now to help your group stand out, stay cozy and look fabulous with your organization’s logo during January’s inaugural parade. We’ll have them ready to ship in advance or await guests in their hotel rooms.

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This winter, bundle up in pride, and be glad for your birthright that you don’t have to try and monogram a down-filled parka or elk pelt.

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Rocca Productions – Bold Your Reputation!

Rocca’s Favorite Things About Holiday Parties

1.     Hello? Egg Nog! It’s basically a rum milkshake.

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2.     People you saw an hour ago feel the need to hug you

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3.     The funny face people make when seeing those little cocktail wieners

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4.     Annual resurrection of the Kenny Rogers/Dolly Parton classic “With Bells On”

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5.     Counting the number of red sweaters J. Crew sold

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Gathering, Soirée, Shindig, Get-Together … however you say it, those of us at Rocca love a good party, especially this time of year! We hope you’re all set for the busy holiday season, with your holiday tie, breath mints and host/hostess gifts ready to go.

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What? You forgot about the host gifts? Add another mark on Santa’s naughty list!

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While your running to the market for a last minute bottle of wine, maybe you should get a jump on your new year’s resolutions and vow not to get caught in this situation next year.

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Here at Rocca, we can help you devise a stash of gifts always on hand for when you might need them, whether it’s a dinner party or weekend visit.

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What about sterling or crystal wine stoppers etched with the state of Texas?

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A mahogany box of wine accessories beats a boring bottle of vino any day.

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Make the rounds with your college alum? Keep a stash of serving pieces etched with your school seal close at hand.

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Looking like your appreciation of the host’s hospitality was an afterthought is almost as bad as showing up empty handed. Think ahead and you’re sure to be a hit at the party and every time they see your gift. How many bottles of wine stay around long enough to do that?

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Rocca Productions – Bold Your Reputation.

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We want to know your favorite awful Christmas song! Pull ‘em out and post in our comments section. Give us your Charo, Clay Aiken, even your Cyndi Lauper’s “Christmas Conga” … we can take it! If the Rocca staff deems your song the worst holiday song mentioned, there is a prize in it for you!

Hats Off To The Rangers!

Today we’re celebrating the Texas Rangers. (We mean the law officers, not the baseball players … although we like them too!) On November 24, 1835, the Republic of Texas officially sanctioned this group of premier crime fighters, even though they’d been on the job for more than 10 years at the request of Stephen F. Austin.

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Today, 144 of Texas’ finest proudly wear the distinctive star. They take on some of the state’s biggest law enforcement challenges, such as serial crime, public corruption and officer-involved shooting investigations.

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Just last year, the Rangers made 1,610 felony arrests, recovered more than $1.8 million in stolen property as well as almost $4 million in contraband.

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If you grew up in Texas, you know the stories well. The Rangers bravely took down the bad guys like Sam Bass, John Wesley Hardin and Bonnie and Clyde.

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Capt. W.J. McDonald is credited with the Rangers’ creed: No man in the wrong can stand up against a fellow that’s in the right and keeps on a-comin.

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Now, here at Rocca, we can’t make you a Ranger, but we can help you identify your own proud posse. The Texas Ranger’s star belt buckles are in a league of their own. Why not create a fabulous gift for your top troops with a custom Max Lang belt buckle? Throwing an inaugural bash? What better way to commemorate the upcoming legislative session?

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The father-son team of Max and Chris Lang created custom belts and buckles for everyone from Willie Nelson and Loretta Lynn to Greg Norman and President George W. Bush. Made right in Houston, the family business also designs jewelry, cufflinks and spurs. Let us find the memorable piece right for your occasion.

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Of course, only the buckles give you the swagger of a Texas Ranger!

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Rocca Productions – Bold Your Reputation.

Make Some News With Rocca

Last week’s breaking news items left us a little cold at Rocca.

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Thanks, Mr. Jobs, but we loaded Beatles CDs on our laptops long ago.

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And Wills, if you would have waited much longer to give that cute little girl a ring, we were going to knight you Prince Playa’.

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If you share big news, make our eyes pop, not our lids droop.

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Michael Jordan’s going to play baseball? We almost double-dribbled our peanuts and Cracker Jack.

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Warren’s granddaughter Nicole Buffet lives on $40 thousand a year? Holy disownment!

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Michael Jackson marries Lisa Marie Presley? We’re still scratching our heads on that one.

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Our point is, if you’re going to tell us something is news, it must deliver. And when you do so, deliver it in style.

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Here at Rocca, our team knows more than products. We’re specialist in making an impact. We draw from a range of experience – everything from media relations to event planning – so we know what captures people’s imaginations and stays with them weeks after the headlines fade.

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Let us help you make your announcement a true statement.

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Launching a new product? We have the right personalized bags for your samples.

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Celebrating a major milestone? We carry the perfect gifts to thank the team who made it happen.

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Honoring someone special? We find commemorative pieces that stay in the front office, not the back bookshelf.

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We’ll be happy to consult with you to find the right items for your announcement – all while staying within your budget. (Which is the only news your bookkeeper wants to hear.)

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Details provide your message’s style and keep it – and you – top of mind.

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After all, if it wasn’t for Diana’s gorgeous engagement ring, William and Kate’s big day would have been a big yawn.

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Rocca Productions – Bold Your Reputation.