The Right Stuff

Whether it’s key chains or checking options, Robyn Shapiro asks all the right questions

WHO DO YOU CALL WHEN YOU NEED to choose from more than 750,000 imprinted products for a company or organization advertising promotion? Why, René Advertising Specialties, of course.

Who does Robyn René Shapiro call when she needs to discuss questions concerning her company’s banking and financial issues? Why, Paducah Bank, of course.

rightStuffPerhaps the more interesting question, however, is HOW do you choose from more than 750,000 specialty items when you’re trying to create a memorable image for your brand or event?

“Well, first we start with some questions actually!” explains Robyn Shapiro, second-generation owner of the Paducah-based small business. “We begin with asking the client some questions about the end user; then we talk about the available budget, how many pieces the client needs, and what the end result or goal of the promotional campaign is to be. From there we can then start to actually pin down the exact type of item to be utilized. I love the challenge of helping a new business get their name out in the community or to help existing businesses target new clients or show appreciation to their loyal customers.”

And what is STILL one of Robyn’s favorite choices for useful “branding”?

“I still think the pen and the coffee mug are a couple of the most effective and affordable choices for successful usage of promotional products,” Robyn answers. “But we aren’t limited to the ordinary. Clients can choose from tote bags, portfolios, watches, t-shirts, hats, etc. In fact, we can imprint a logo on practically any item imaginable!”

Robyn considers promotional products to be a form of tangible advertising. “In terms of the media, an ad or a radio spot are here and gone. Promotional products linger; they stay in use and in circulation. I leave a pen with our name and logo on it with every restaurant tab I sign and then that pen gets passed on to someone else and probably to yet another person, and the message just keeps getting passed along.”

This very company was passed along to Robyn by her mother, the late Carol René Hoover. “My mom was introduced to this business when she was a bored housewife in Frankfort when my stepfather was in state government,” Robyn explains. “She had worked for a specialty company there and really enjoyed the business, so she started her own here in Paducah in 1989.”

From there the amount of “stuff ” available to prospective buyers has sky-rocketed and the growth of this Paducah business has expanded as well. “For someone who really hates clutter, I am totally surrounded by ‘stuff,’” Robyn laughs.

Robyn has found that during her tenure as leader of the ‘logo imprint’ craft, people have become more quality oriented. “They are not as much budget driven as they once were, I think,” Robyn comments. “It’s more about a quality product. For the most part, when people spend money for this, they want to get something they know will be used and valued.”

And Robyn can relate. Quality banking services are high on her agenda as a client, as well. “The financial products and services that I get from Paducah Bank are on par with any bank anywhere. Small businesses like mine, here in town, cannot only get top notch products but even more value, we have access to professional, personal contacts,” she adds. “I don’t think there are many places where you would feel comfortable picking up the phone and calling the bank president, knowing that he would take your call. It’s really wonderful to work with people on a professional basis that you also see at Chamber events, or Rotary, or fundraisers. That’s one of the beauties of Paducah and that’s one of the beauties of Paducah Bank as well!”