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14 February 2024

Getting to Know the APPA Board: 10 Questions for APPA Director Diana O'Cobhthaigh

APPA: Tell us a little bit about yourself- what is your role at your company and what does this involve?
Diana O'Cobhthaigh: As the owner of TurnKey Promotions I wear all hats and juggle many responsibilities, primarily to identify and manage all processes that achieve our clients targets, keeps them happy and to support healthy growth of the business. We will be celebrating ten years in October 2024, which is an exciting milestone.

APPA: What made you want to work in the promotional products industry and why?
DO: I was approached to work in the industry as a salesperson. I had no sales experience at all but did know how to build relationships and look after clients.  Once I started in the industry I never looked back- I love it.

APPA: What did you want to be when you were growing up?
DO: I wanted to be an artist- but needed a "real" job to earn "real" money! I now get my creative fix from our industry.

APPA: What is the most memorable promotional campaign you've ever seen, and why did it stand out to you?
DO: I loved the terrarium project run by APPA member New Age Promotions. I remember thinking that would have been the most impressive gift for the recipients to receive but also one of the most challenging to distribute all over Australia.

APPA: What is your prediction for the promotional products industry in 2024? Are there any trends you can foresee taking off?
DO: With increasing awareness of environmental issues, there's a growing demand for eco-friendly promotional products right across the industry. Items made from recycled materials, biodegradable products, and anything manufactured in a way that inflicts minimal harm on the environment are likely to gain traction. Every year, our industry gets a little bit more sustainable, and i think this year will be our most socially  productive to date.

APPA: What's the most unusual or interesting request you've ever received from a client in the promotional industry?
DO: We had a client that wanted hair ties and tanning mitts for an event targeting woman … luckily we have suppliers like PromoCollection who managed to produce them offshore for us without a fuss. Not the standard promotional product but a fun challenge nonetheless.

APPA: What is the biggest misconception people have about the promotional industry, and why is it not true?
DO: Some people still believe that our industry is all about SWAG (stuff we all get) but a well thought out promotional campaign to meet client objectives can enhance brand image, increase sales and instill loyalty (from employees and customers) via coveted quality branded merchandise.

APPA: Can you share a funny or memorable experience you've had at an industry event or trade show?
DO: My most memorable experience was attending an APPA Leadership Conference in Melbourne a few years ago. I was on my own and met some amazing ladies that also ran their own businesses. We have since stayed friends and catch up on a regular basis to discuss work, the industry and our lives in general. We help each other with tricky client requests, collaborate on projects and support each other to grow and succeed. I wouldn’t be here without that network and i have APPA to thank for bringing us all together!

APPA: If you could create a promotional product for a famous celebrity, who would it be and what would the product be?
DO: Celebrity Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. I would create a “Rock Fit Kit” complete with branded workout gear, Bluetooth earbuds, resistance bands, protein shakers, some printed recipes (his own, of course), a rock-shaped stress reliever and fitness towel all presented in a gym bag. Maybe everything could also be super-sized, like The Rock himself!

APPA: If the promotional products industry had a theme song, what would it be and why?
DO: I will survive by Gloria Gaynor- for those challenging clients.

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