Company sells ideas, not just ‘stuff’
Creative Promotional Products has a large showroom to feature their talents to customers and potential customers. | Jackie Pilossoph~For Sun-Times Media
Creative Promotional Products
7300 Monticello Ave., Skokie
Updated: January 21, 2013 2:41PM
Dan Granick is known around his office as “the idea guy,” which makes sense, since he’s the owner and president of the promotional marketing and branding company, Creative Promotional Products.
“He takes his scratch pad out and he’ll just draw the ideas we’re thinking about,” said Mike Elowe, Co-Vice President of Creative, and Granick’s brother-in-law. “He brings them to life.”
Creative Promotional Products was started in 1994 by Granick and his father, Stu, who had extensive experience in the industry. The Skokie based company designs and sells promotional items to businesses all over the world, with products including apparel, writing instruments, drinkware, bags, calendars, desk accessories, paper products, award and recognition and sportswear.
“Anything you can put a logo on is a promotional item,” said Judy Elowe, who is Granick’s sister, and a Vice President for the company. “We’re a one stop shop. We create the concept, the design, logo development, branding and Web design, all the way to the tangible item and then to production, manufacturing, fulfillment and delivery.”
Elowe said not all promotional companies have a design studio or the capabilities to handle the whole process.
“Our industry has 14,000 or more suppliers,” said Granick, who was a corporate attorney before starting the business. “And most people in our business just order from them. What makes us unique is that we are creative, and we go out and present concepts and ideas to our clients and potential clients. We find items to help our customers grow their businesses.”
James Flores is the director of marketing for The Federal Savings Bank and a client of Creative, and said investing in promotional products is a great way to familiarize people with the firm.
“One of the things we’ve gotten from Creative is our company apparel, and they were able to reproduce our logo on polos, fleece, and sweatshirts,” said Flores. “It helps promote the company and helps with our branding.”
“We listen to our customer and what they need,” said Granick, “Who is their audience? What is their promotion for? And then we come back with ideas that help fulfill that need. We’re the behind the scenes people who make our customers look good in the light of their customers.”
“They always provide options,” said Flores, “There’s no limit.”
Creative, which has a large showroom in their Skokie offices works with all different size businesses and with all budgets.
“We have clients that range from a mom and pop shop or a one person law firm up to Fortune 100 companies,” said Mike. “There’s always something to fit a budget. Someone can have a budget of 15 cents an item or as high as $200 per item and we make it work.”
Creative is the preferred promotional partner of the Chicago Bears, which means that any giveaway at a Bear’s game most likely comes from their firm. Creative also has done giveaways for the Bulls, the Cubs, the Blackhawks, the White Sox and other professional sports teams around the country.
The company employs 35 individuals, 16 of whom are salespeople. Six are family members.
“People always ask me, ‘How do you work with your family every day?’” said Judy, “And I always tell them the truth. I always say, ‘It’s great,’ because it is. We don’t always agree on everything, but in the end, we are working toward a common goal and we respect each other.”
“How many people get the opportunity to spend this kind of time with their father and their family?” said Granick. ~.