15 Jan 2008
Strapping Success(HKTDC Gifts, Premium & Stationery, Vol 01,2008)
|Ming Wai Metal Products' lanyards include versions with PVC and metal badge decorations, and models with PVC cardholders|
They are inexpensive everyday items that have become an increasingly popular and effective advertising and promotional tool
Lanyards may have begun as practical ways to carry small items, but over the years they have been transformed into indispensable gift and premium items.
The fact that they can be easily customised to hold identification badges, whistles, keys, mobile phones and other small objects makes them ideal for businesses ranging from schools and hospitals to convention companies.
As befits a world leader in innovative gifts and premiums, Hong Kong is well represented by creative companies such as Top Source Industrial Ltd, which defines itself by developing patented lanyards such as an intriguing V-cut version.
"The V-cut lanyard is a special body-fitting lanyard," explains General Manager Patrick Chung. "Its unique shape fits to the human body perfectly and provides space for a more eye-catching logo."
Made of polyester and featuring silk-screen printing, the lanyard's length and width is dependent on customer requirements, with a minimum width of 12mm. "Other choices in materials include beads, denim, PU and leather," Mr Chung advises.
New lanyards are introduced every six months at major gift fairs, with one of the latest being the patented V-cut Hoodyard that combines a hood with a V-cut lanyard, silk-screen printing and nylon cap.
"The water- and sun-proof hood makes it ideal for outdoor activities, such as sporting events and concerts, with a printed logo that can be used for advertising and promotional purposes," explains Mr Chung.
He adds that these two new products have attracted "a lot of interest" from the majority of its customers, who are in the promotional, retail and corporate fields. "One of our strengths is being able to come up with really creative new ideas that set trends for lanyards," Mr Chung claims.
Equally inventive is Quo-Luck Co Ltd, which makes lanyards that are divided into function categories - mobile phones, water bottles, carabiners, luggage belts, dog leashes, bracelets and ID/ticket holders.
"We are the market leader in the development, manufacturing and marketing of lanyards that cater to a variety of applications and have more than 3,000 key customers," insists Sales and Marketing Director Ray Tse.
One particularly hot seller is model ACBH03, a 36mm-wide badge reel lanyard available in eight colours that features a swivel operation to ensure the attached product always hangs straight.
Another popular choice is model QLE7082, a carabiner lanyard made from polyester with a satin cover and silk-screen printing. "It has a width of 25mm and is 80mm in length," Mr Tse advises.
Silk-screen printing is the hot finishing choice of the moment, he explains. "Silk-screen is more popular with our customers than the woven-in and dye-sublimation lanyard as it provides a premium quality product with a competitively low printing set-up cost for samples," Mr Tse reasons.
He says development trends are focusing on multifunction items in order to ensure that a promotional company or premiums client can use customised lanyards for a variety of products.
"Many lanyards are used for either ID purposes or as promotional goods, so they have more value if they can serve more than one function because the end-user will keep it for long-term use," says Mr Tse, who adds that Quo-Luck introduces new lanyards every three months.
One of the company's competitive advantages is its one-stop sourcing operation. "Customers can source completed lanyards or simply order accessories from our extensive selection," Mr Tse explains.
Quo-Luck offers a wide choice of materials, including nylon, polyester, PVC and silicone. "We believe the environment is a priority and are now in the final testing stage of using organic cotton and environmentally-friendly printing inks," Mr Tse notes. "These new lanyards should be launched soon."
Also offering a wide selection of materials for its large range of lanyards is Ming Wai Metal Products, including polyester, leather, PVC, nylon, PU, metal chains, plastic beads and cotton.
New model DS008 features a woven polyester strap with reflective strip or a plastic clear strap and ATBC-PVC plastic holder, while also in demand is model DS016 with heat transfer strap, epoxy/metal badge and ATBC-PVC micro-injection badge.
Strap width and length depends on customer requirements, says General Manager Philip Hung. "Using a woven strap allows intricate logo design, while ATBC-PVC, TPU or EVA lanyards are popular choices because they can be moulded into any shape," he explains.
The company introduces new products twice a year, with the latest advances including laser engraving or an embossed logo on the metal accessory part such as the release buckle or mobile phone strap cap.
Key clients include international camera brands, cartoon companies, major sports brands, pet product companies, and organisers of international sporting events.
Mr Hung says customers choose to work with 17-year-old Ming Wai because of its experience. "We also have the ability to produce and offer professional production suggestions on all parts of the product, including the lanyard, plastic and metal accessories, leather, mascot, sewing, and printing," Mr Hung concludes.
Securing profitable gifts and premiums business is simply a matter of latching on to Hong Kong manufacturers who produce a constantly expanding range of lovely lanyards.
TEXT BY VICKI WILLIAMS
Year Established: 2004
Year Established: 1990
Year Established: 1994
Year Established: 1992
|Top Source Industrial Ltd
Unit A, 1/F
Hing Yip Fty Bldg
31 Hing Yip St
Kwun Tong, Kowloon
|Year Established: 1989|
Major Product Categories: garment accessories, gifts and premiums
Brands & Certificates: -
Minimum Order: 1,000-3,000 pieces
Monthly Production -
Delivery Time: 20-25 days
Factory Size & Location: 2,000 square metres; Dongguan
Year Established: 2004