Vendor Gifts as Proxy for Economic Recovery

I buy things for the lab (which may not be a true statement in the near future; we shall see), and some vendors like to thank me for my business by throwing in some item that I didn’t buy but might find useful or enticing. I have gotten t-shirts, beanbags for juggling (or possibly hackey-sack), the ever-useful thumb drive that is 3 generations smaller than what’s on the market (128 MB. Oh, joy), and , of course, office supplies like pens, highlighters and post-it notes emblazoned with the company logo. Often, however, the gift is food of some sort.

I’ve noticed that in the recent tougher economic climate that the companies engaging in this practice had been scaling back or discontinuing their give-away advertising efforts. I’m happy to report that the “lab snacks” assortment we get from one optics vendor, which had been downsized for much of the past year (or at least ours had been), have returned to the full cornucopia. Full recovery can’t be too far down the road.

3 thoughts on “Vendor Gifts as Proxy for Economic Recovery

  1. What’s your secret for getting in the good graces of Thorlab’s packing elves?

    I recently toured a lab (which, admittedly, has a much larger optics budget than mine) and they had a few hundred-or-so lab snacks boxes stacked against a wall. I’m lucky to see one every year or so.

    P.S. Isn’t there some sort of governmental paperwork you should be filling out every time you down a vendor-supplied red vine?

  2. Same thing over here(Europe). No love from Thorlabs in the past 6 months or so, before that the red boxes came with every shipment.


  3. We’ve been dropping some serious coin with them, buying for our attempts to learn how to build a femtosecond comb. That might help. We even got snacks with a backorder, which didn’t used to happen — it was one box per order, no matter how many shipments into which it was broken.

    I’d hate to think the lack of shipments to Europe is because the snacks aren’t ROHS compliant.

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