Studies show, during previous tough economic times, businesses that continue to invest in their marketing efforts saw positive growth while companies that decrease marketing also see a decrease in sales. Companies can also reduce costs by outsourcing their marketing efforts rather than doing it in-house.
This month we sat down with Joe Balsama of ValForms AMP Printing, a printing and graphics company in Northern California. We discussed his company, how he got started, how he stays busy when not working and why he chose Business Workspaces.
Tell us about your company and what you do?
ValForms AMP Printing is a do-it-all marketing machine, from graphic design to manufacturing, warehousing and fulfillment. AMP stands for advertising, marketing, and promotion. I am a client relations manager, which means that I do everything!
What is are some of your most common types of products?
Well, the largest client that our company works with is Safeway. Anything that you see hanging in a Safeway, we print it. On the walls, the “Local California” signs, and the Monopoly games—all those things came through our doors.
How did you get started in your industry?
I had a random job interview that turned out to be the best decision that I ever made. That’s how I met Bob Trimble, my boss/partner/mentor/friend. He has taught me everything that I know about the industry, customer service and work ethic. Bob owned his own company, and Amp bought him out in 2010. I had been with Bob for eight years before that, so I’ve been in printing for going on 18 years.
Are there any COVID 19 specific products that you’ve been asked to make recently?
Not signage as much as facemasks, foot covers, hand sanitizer, wipes, packs of wipes—one of the things Amp is good at is kitting, so companies are asking us to put together kits that contain several items that they can either give away or that their salespeople can utilize. Old Republic, for example, has 87 salespeople throughout the United States, and each state has its own guidelines.
We know there’s a shortage of some of those types of supplies. How have you been handling that?
Any way that we can. One thing we’ve had to do is buy empty tubes, labels to put on the tubes, and gallons of sanitizer, and we’re just kitting them ourselves. Whatever it takes—if you had to sum up Bob and me, it would be that we have a “whatever it takes” attitude.
What is something about your business that most people do not know?
We are a manufacturing company with a background as brokers. So whatever we can’t print in our factory, I can find it anywhere in the world and provide it to my customer.
Where do you see your business in 5 years?
Specialty products are becoming a huge part of our business. Placing your company’s brand on everything from pens to billboards and everything in between.
Tell me about yourself.
I’m married and the father of two boys, ages six and eight. I’m a positive fun loving person who just likes people! My sarcasm gets me into trouble sometimes with people who do not know me yet. I’m always trying to make people smile!
Other than work, what are you passionate about?
My boys, my boys, my boys! I never thought being a dad could be so much fun! Parenting is a lot of work, and I am very lucky that my wife Andrea, is such a great partner. I live for my family, they make my world go round.
What types of activities or hobbies do you enjoy outside of work?
Our lives revolve around sports, whether it is playing, watching, or talking about, we are a sports family. We are becoming campers, it is an amazing way to bond and get away from it all.
Why did you choose Business Workspaces and how has working here helped your business?
I did a lot of research before choosing Business Workspaces, from Sacramento to Placerville and BWS just checked off all of my boxes. Printing is not the most glamorous of industries, so having a beautiful entryway and amazing front desk people makes for an extremely positive first impression.
What makes you feel energized about your business?
I am a marketing person at heart, so finding new and creative ways to promote my client’s businesses is about as exciting as it gets. Two months ago, who would have thought that hand sanitizer, face masks, and thermometers would have been the “HOT” items?
Do you have a daily habit that helps you be more successful?
Getting up at the same time, taking a shower, getting dressed every day whether I am going to come into the office or meet a client. It just puts me into work mode turns my brain up to 11.