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Professional Photographers – We’re Talking your Language

Posted by USB2U on 13th January 2015 | Permalink

Since we were mobbed at The Photography Show at the NEC in 2014 we’ve been looking for some very bright and talented people to join our team and top of our wish list was to find someone who had a passion for photography. Ideally we wanted someone who could see things not just from our perspective as a supplier of USB flash drive packages but also from the perspective of a professional photographer.

We’ve been selling USB sticks since 2003 and we think we’re pretty good at what we do but selling and supporting the Professional Photography sector is relatively new to us and as we’ve discovered photographers have their own unique set of requirements. Although we’ve responded and adapted our offering as best we could we really did want to up our game by hiring someone “from the other side” that could give us an insight into the industry and someone who could empathise with our photography customers.

Step forward Godfrey Hatton.

Godfrey Hatton - USB2U

Godfrey Hatton – USB2U Account Executive

Having been with us a few weeks here’s Godfrey in his own words:

“My name’s Godfrey and I’m the account Executive of the photography department at USB2U. I take great pride in this role, as I myself am a photographer.

I first got interested in photography when I was a teenager, when my dad let me use his old Pentax 35mm and it didn’t take long before I was hooked. Hobby turned into passion and I now have a degree in the subject.

Since graduating, I have won Shots.net Young Photographer of the year 2012, as well as being shortlisted for a number of other competitions. If you’d like to take a look at my work, you can check my website www.gchattonphotography.co.uk

I look forward to working with you. Any questions, just ask!”

Naturally we’d like to keep Godfrey busy so please feel free to give him a call or just ping him an email (Godfrey@usb2u.co.uk.). We’ll exhibiting again at The Photography Show 2015 this year (we’ll have more people on the stand and lots of new products) and Godfrey will be there so please do stop by and say hello.

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Enter our Facebook Prize Draw and Win £300 of USB Sticks and Gift Boxes with your logo on

Posted by USB2U on | Permalink

We wanted to kick off 2015 with a bit of a bang so we’ve decided to run a competition on our Facebook page. We’re giving away 25 of our popular 8GB woodland USB Flash Drives and 25 wooden slide boxes to go with them (light or dark wood – the winner can choose).

The package is worth over £300 and includes printing (or engraving) the USB sticks and the boxes with your logo (you’ll need to supply us with your artwork). This particular product/package is popular with lots of professional photographers but the offer is open to everyone anywhere in the world!

To enter all you need to do is go to our Facebook page, find the post (its “pinned” to the top of our page) like it and share it. That’s it. You have until the 31st January to enter. We’ll make the draw shortly after and we’ll post details of the winner on our Facebook page and once the USB sticks and boxes are branded we’ll post pictures of these as well. Good Luck!

If you are looking for a USB sticks and gift boxes and you don’t fancy trusting to luck then you can of course just get in touch and order your branded flash drives now. We offer over 200 different types of differing memory sizes many of which we hold in stock. We offer a range of delivery options ranging from 24hrs, 73hrs to 7-10 days.

There is no upfront payment on any order. We either offer 30 day terms (upon application) or we ask you to pay when your USB sticks have been produced and are ready to be sent to you. All of our orders are covered by our 10-year no quibble warranty and as a company that’s been supplying USB sticks since 2003 and has a ranking of “Excellent” on TrustPilot you’re going to be in safe hands with any order you place.

There are loads of examples of our work on our Flickr pages and our Pinterest pages to fire your imagination but if you’re still not sure then simply email us over your artwork, logo or design and our in-house design team will work up some examples for you and we can put some samples in the post to you so that you can examine them in the flesh.

Good Luck with the competition.

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Looking Back at 2014 and Forward to 2015

Posted by USB2U on 1st January 2015 | Permalink

What a year 2014 was for us at USB2U. In the last 12 months we have seen record sales of promotional USB sticks, enquiries from new customers have never been higher and the feedback from customers on Trustpilot has exceeded all expectations.

We’ve gained new resellers across Europe and the number of orders we now ship around the world has grown markedly and shows not signs of abating. All we can say is “Wow!” and a big “Thank you” to everyone who has entrusted us with their project, their business and their brand this year. We really do appreciate your order(s) and your faith in our ability to deliver your promotional USB sticks against what often look lime impossible deadlines.

Much of our recent growth has been underpinned by continued investment in new products, a top quality team of people and our own in-house printing and engraving kit. A significant number of our USB memory stick orders are now delivered within 72hrs from order! So whilst many of our competitors talk in of delivery timescales measures in days of weeks we’re, for a growing proportion of our business, are talking in terms of hours.

Customers clearly like the comfort of knowing that with USB2U they can place an order one day and their printed, data-loaded and boxed promotional USB memory sticks can be with them the very next day! It’s a service that de-risks everything because it uses stock we carry in the UK, it uses our own in-house design, print and data-loading capability – nothing is reliant on being “shipped in from factories in China” or on the use of 3rd party printers. It’s a service offering we will continue to expand in 2015.

USB2U for Promotional USB Flash Drives

USB2U for Promotional USB Flash Drives

We’ve also been bowled over by the support we’ve had from Professional Photographers over the last 12 months. When we exhibited at The Professional Photography Show at the NEC in March we knew immediately that it was going to be bonkers. Every day for the 4 days we were at the show people were queuing 4 deep to talk to us. It was crazy, exhilarating and exhausting. Keeping up with the demand from Photographers after the show has, at times, been challenging but again this was primarily down to an embarrassment of orders!

As we enter 2015 we’re absolutely determined to move thing up a notch or two so expect some exciting announcement from us during the 1st quarter of this year. We have already committed to exhibit again at The Photography Show at the NEC in March (but this time we’ll have a bigger stand, more staff, lots of exciting new products and we’ll have a better idea of what to expect!).

We’ve also just launched a new range of Power Banks thousands of which we hold in stock in the UK so they can also be delivered (printed or engraved) within 24hrs! Power Banks are just the start though so again keep an eye out for lots of new exciting products throughout 2015.

2014 was a cracker – bring on 2015

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Our Printed Chic USB Flash Drives Can Be With You in 24hrs

Posted by USB2U on 13th October 2014 | Permalink

We understand that sometimes it’s just not possible to foresee that you’re going to need some printed USB flash drives. We know that things get missed off the “to-do” list. We know that other people you thought were taking care of the order for USB sticks can “forget” them and equally we know that other promotional USB flash drive suppliers can be too confident of their ability to deliver against very tight deadlines.

The typical lead-times that most supplies work to is around 5 – 10 days from final artwork approval (which in itself can add a day or two to the process and even them lots of suppliers won’t start working on your order until you’ve paid for them). This is usually fine in “normal” circumstances but if you need your flash drives in a hurry then it can be a challenge finding a local supplier that can help!

At USB2U we not only hold thousands of blank USB sticks in stock ready to be overprinted but we handle all of the printing, data-loading and QA checking in-house. In fact we hold so much stock in the UK that around 50% of all of our orders are now assembled, printed (or engraved) and data-loaded by us in Northampton. This means our customers get a super-fast turnaround on their orders and there is no risk of them getting “stuck in customs” or being delayed because of shipping issues.

In fact with a print and engraving capacity that exceeds 5,000 USB sticks per day we’re so confident in our ability to turn around orders quickly that we offer a 24hr”rush service”! Although we describe it as a 24hr service the reality is often quicker than this because we seem to get a lot of orders in the afternoon which are then printed and delivered before lunchtime the following day – so, in reality our 24hr service is quite often 20hrs or less!

Here’s what one customer had to say about our rush service and what it meant to them and their client last week:

Excellent service. Saved an important account (Philip Noons of JE Group)

We had an important client call us on Friday evening to get a USB order to them by 3:00PM on the following Monday. None of our other suppliers could help us. I emailed Natalie on Friday evening and spoke with her on the Monday. I had the artwork approved and the job turnaround by 1:00PM. A truly impressive level of service. My courier picked up the items and delivered them to our client’s exhibition in London by 2:30PM that day. Needless to say, our client (a highend retaill store) were extremely grateful. USB2U, thanks to their efforts, made us look good.

If you find yourself in need of promotional USB sticks in a hurry then there really is only one place to call!

At the moment we’ve got some special pricing on our Chic USB Sticks and yes, they can be with you (printed and data-loaded) tomorrow.

Promotional USB Sticks in 24hrs

Promotional USB Sticks in 24hrs from USB2U

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Why Buy Your Promotional USB Sticks from USB2U

Posted by USB2U on | Permalink

It’s not an easy decision determining where to place your order for promotional USB memory sticks but at USB2U we thought we point out a few reasons why we think we’re the preferred option for thousands of customers every year and more importantly why lots of these customers return to us time and time again.

We could wax on lyrically about having our own USB factory in China or about our world domination of the flash drive market and how we only ever supply products that no other supplier is capable of supplying. We could even boast about our swanky offices in London and our offices in the USA but you know what we’d rather focus on a few facts and why we think we’re the best supplier of promotional USB sticks in the UK.

Fact 1: Experience – We set up our little company in the UK in October 2002. We’re now in our 13th year of trading and in this time we’ve supplied millions of flash drives to tens of thousands of companies, schools, universities and public bodies in the UK.

Fact 2: It’s all about quality and price – Our focus since 2002 has been on supplying the best quality flash drives we can at a price point which customers are willing to pay. To achieve this we have “partnerships” in place with a small number of key USB factories who we trust and who have passed our rigorous due diligence tests.

We prefer to have multiple factory partners because this way we can ensure they compete with each other for our business, which in turn ensures we always, get the best prices possible (for us and for our customers). There is also the added advantage of having back up options in the event of local problems (capacity issues, power cuts, local shipping and customs issues etc.)

Fact 3: Keeping overheads to a minimum – We operate from a warehouse located on an “edge of town” industrial estate in Northampton. It’s not glamorous, its certainly not swanky but it is relatively inexpensive (certainly when compared to London) so being based here allows us to keep our costs to a minimum.

Fact 4: We let our customers do the talking – A couple of years ago we started encouraging all of our customers to leave feedback about our service on TrustPilot, an independently run 3rd party review site. We don’t vet the reviews because we genuinely want to hear what our customers think about the service we provide (good and bad). We’ve been delighted with the results – from over 2,250 reviews we’ve been rated as “Excellent” and have achieved a score of 9.6 out of 10.

Fact 5: UK product and print - Over 50% of our Promotional USB memory sticks are either assembled, printed or engraved by us (in-house) in the UK. No other UK supplier carries more stock in the UK or finishes more of their products in the UK than us. This allows us to be uniquely flexible when it comes to meeting customers requirements and in particular those to support those customers who need their flash drives in a hurry.

Fact 6: Delivery from order in 24hrs – A growing number of our customers are taking advantage of our unique “Rush” service that allows them to buy their USB sticks the day before they need them. Not necessarily recommended for the faint of heart but it’s a service that encompasses over 20 different models and a wide range of memory sizes and packaging options.

Fact 7: Guarantees – We offer a 10 year guarantee on all of the flash drives we supply and in the event of any failures we’ll pick them up from you at our cost and arrange replacements with as little fuss as possible.

Fact 8: Lost or missing shipments are not a problem – We know from painful experience that occasionally things go wrong. Customs checks can delay shipments, volcanoes can erupt without warning and human error can result in orders being sent to the wrong address! Whilst we do all we can to mitigate against these risks ultimately if things do go wrong then we’ll simply re-print your order from our UK stock and rush it to you on our 24hr service!

Fact 9: Our staff are brilliant – we love them and our customers seem to enjoy working with them as well. We’re a relatively small team of around 20 many people some of whom have been with us for nearly 10 years! If you want to see what a companies employers think about them then check out Glassdoor.com – it’s where employees say what they think about companies they’ve worked for and they give some interesting insights into how the company is run and how they view their customers.

Fact 10: We really do value your business – Although we’ve been doing this for over a decade we love what we do and we’re 100% committed to our customers and making sure they have a positive experience with us. If things go wrong (as they occasionally do no matter how good you are) we’’’ front up and work with you on a resolution and being based in the UK with UK production and print capabilities we can always find a solution.

USB2U - Your Trusted Supplier of USB Memory Sticks

USB2U – Your Trusted Supplier of USB Memory Sticks

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Review of USB2U Flash Drives by Professional Photographers

Posted by USB2U on 16th September 2014 | Permalink

In today’s highly competitive flash drive market a clear focus on quality, service and value is absolutely critical. Arguably when it comes to supplying flash drive packages to professional photographers the bar gets raised even higher.

Why? Well professional photographers aren’t just buying USB sticks to give away at a trade shows. They’re not using them to give to a team of roving sales people who can hand them out as a “promotional gift” and they’re certainly not looking to post them out in their thousands to a prospect list!

No, most professional photographers are using them to hold and store some of the most precious memories any of us will ever have!

USB flash drives have for many photographers become the obvious replacement for CD/DVD’s. Partly it’s because less and less people now use CD/DVD’s, partly it’s because they’re a format that is now a little dated and old fashioned and partly it’s because the range of USB flash drives now available are much more attractive, particularly when combined with great packaging (something that was harder to do with a large CD/DVD).

Quality, quality, quality is what’s needed. Cheap and cheerful standard promotional USB sticks that have poor read/write speeds, a short life span and a relatively high failure rate are certainly not the order of the day. At USB2U we understand this. Not only have we invested in taking time out to meet and talk to photographers at shows like The Photography Show but more fundamentally we have hired a dedicated Photography Sector Account Manager who, because her mum is a professional photographer, really understands photographers and what makes them tick.

USB Flash Drives for Professional Photographers

USB Flash Drives for Professional Photographers

We’ve also put together a dedicated web site aimed specifically at photographers and all of the products and bundles that feature on the site have been carefully selected – so expect high quality packaging options combined with high performance flash drives all of which are then hand finished (printed or engraved) in our own Northampton based facility. This way we get to control the quality locally and nothing is sent out until we are 100% happy with it.

The feedback we’ve been getting over the last 18 mths (since the new website launched) has been amazing. Here’s just a sample (more can be viewed on the TrustPilot site where there are well in excess of 2,000 customer reviews):

Sally (Amplified Studio): “We went for engraved wooden USB’s that came in gorgeous presentation boxes to match. The price was good, and communication was excellent. Nothing seemed too much trouble. The turnaround time was also faster than expected. I will certainly be using USB2U for all of our USB’s from now on and can’t wait to start giving these out to our clients.”

Iain Struthers Photography: “Great speedy service at a reasonable price. Ordered 25 wooden usb sticks for presenting to my photography clients. They are stunning items and have been very well received by all who have seen them. Will definitely be using them again!”

Steve McKenna L.M.P.A. (SMK Photographics): “Got my USB drive delivered and love them. From first initial point of contact all the way through to the finished product we were kept informed of what,why ,how,& when Great product & going down a treat with my customers”

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Hang onto your Hats if you’re about to buy Promotional USB Memory Sticks

Posted by USB2U on 15th September 2014 | Permalink

At USB2U we’ve been supplying promotional USB memory sticks for nearly 13 years and because of this we’re pretty good at understanding when things are likely to get challenging in the market.

We’re about to enter such a period and it has nothing to do with the forthcoming vote on Independence in Scotland albeit the uncertainty around this has caused a bit of a spike in prices because of the pound has fallen heavily against the dollar.

No, the turbulence we’re about to experience happens every year and it is holiday related. Not ours but the factories in China that manufacture the flash chips and assemble the USB memory sticks. The holiday in question is one of the biggest taken in the year – The combined “National Day and Golden Week”.

National Day is celebrated on the 1st October and whilst the official holidays break is only 3 days it tends to be extended into the week-end with most factories and offices closing for at least 1 week. This extended holiday allows their staff to return to the provinces to spend time be with their families.

Whilst a week might not sound long the problem is that people panic buy in the lead up to the holiday, the factories get rammed with orders and the whole mess that ensues can take weeks to sort out. Of course when the factories return from their holidays they have the double whammy of trying to deal with orders not fulfilled before their holiday and handing the backlog of orders that have built up during their holiday!

Chinese National Holiday - Promotional USB Sticks

Chinese National Holiday – Promotional USB Sticks

The cut-off day to get an order sent from the factories in China before they close for their holidays is the 25th September. If you miss this date then they won’t start working on your order until the 6th October when they get back to work. The reality is that on this day they’re going to be handling a large back-log so the usual turnaround times will be extended. You could, depending on when you place your order, be looking at a 4 week lead time!

Our advice is to get your order in now. Don’t wait. Get your place in the production queue secured. The longer you leave it the more likely you are to be disappointed. If you wait until next week then beware of any promises you are given on delivery.

Buying locally will de-risk your order and ensure you get your promotional USB memory sticks when you need them but the challenge will be finding a supplier in the UK that holds stock and has the capability to print or engrave them. A small number do but typically those that do only hold a very small range of products and a limited range of memory options.

At USB2U we’ve learnt over the years that customers need support during this period which is why we hold large quantities of USB sticks that we can print or engrave in-house. We also offer a “Super Fast” 24hr turnaround service on a wide range of USB sticks, a service that is designed to get customers out of trouble.

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We’ve Smashed Through 2,000 Reviews for USB2U on Trustpilot

Posted by USB2U on 30th July 2014 | Permalink

As a relatively conservative British company it’s not really the done thing to brag but we’re so pleased to have broken through 2,000 customer reviews for USB2U on Trustpilot that we couldn’t resist the urge to post an update about it on our website. It’s a big milestone for us and the fact that the vast majority of our reviews rate our service and products as “Excellent” is something we’re really chuffed about!

We started using the independent review service provided by Trustpilot a couple of years ago. We did it (and we have to pay for the service) because we wanted to give our customers a chance to comment on the service and the promotional USB memory sticks they receive from us.

At the outset we had no real idea what the reaction would be. We felt that we were offering a good service, it’s certainly something we strive to do and the team here at USB2U put their heart and soul into trying to give our customers the best experience they can. But without actually asking our customers for their feedback we were really just guessing what people might be thinking and of course if there were issues with our service we were never going to find out. OK, we might get the odd one or two customers providing feedback but by introducing a trusted and independent 3rd party to manage the reviews we’ve found that customers are much more willing to provide feedback (good and bad).

We’re by no means perfect and we’ve picked up a few negative comments over the last couple of the years. Mostly it’s been where we’ve dropped a catch or made a silly mistake – we’re all human and with the thousands of orders we handle ever year the odd one or two errors are bound to creep in. We’ve taken these on the chin and when they do happen we use the feedback as constructively as we can to make changes and improvements or our processes. Any negative feedback hurts but more importantly if a customer has taken the time to write it then it typically means they’re pretty unhappy and we’d rather know about this so we can deal with their issues and make sure we get it right next time.

Our current ranking based on just over 2,000 reviews if 9.7 out of 10 which of course we’re delighted with! There are simply too many to highlight and post here but if you are interested pop over to the Trustpilot site and have a browse through the reviews – we can’t moderate or adjust them, all we can do is ask/encourage customers to say a few words and rank us.

If you are looking for trusted UK supplier of promotional USB memory sticks then checking out 3rd party review sites like Trustpilot is a good place to start!

Promotional USB Twister Flash Drives

Promotional USB Twister Flash Drives

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Branded USB Memory Sticks – It’s What We Do

Posted by USB2U on 2nd April 2014 | Permalink

If you’re looking for a supplier of branded USB memory sticks then please do add us to your short-list of possible suppliers. Branded USB memory sticks is what we do and we’ve been assembling, printing, engraving and data-loading them since we started the business back in 2002 (some 12 years ago!).

During this time we’ve supplied millions of USB sticks to tens of thousands of customers (large and small) and, the vast majority we’re delighted to say, stay with us and keep coming back for more. One of the most important aspects of any buyer/supplier relationship is “trust” and this is particularly true when you’re looking to buy a product that is customised to carry your brand and typically has to be delivered against an immovable “drop dead” date.

The point is that you need your USB supplier to deliver a good, high quality product that echoes all of the strengths and values that you have invested in your brand and importantly you you’re your supplier to delivery your USB sticks when you need them – no excuses.

We recognise of course that pricing is a major factor as well so the service and products we offer are priced to be amongst the most competitive you’ll find anywhere but importantly our prices are backed by a strong quality ethic, a determination to offer the service second to none and we also warrant our USB memory sticks for 10 years – so, if you have any problems with them (of any description) then we promise to replace them with new ones at our cost. This is not a hollow promise tossed out there by some company that is new to the market and feels they need to add this statement to compete with the more establish companies like USB2U- our promise is underpinned by our strong position in the market, our trading history and our financial stability.

For an indication of what our customers think of us take a look at the reviews we’ve received on TrustPilot – Trustpilot is an independent 3rd party review site that we’ve invited our customers to post to over the last 2 years. In this time we’re delighted that over 1,500 customers have taken time out of their busy schedules to review us and we’ve even more delighted that they’re rated our service as “Excellent” with an overall score of 9.7 out of 10!

So, if you’re looking for a trusted supplier of branded USB memory sticks give us a call – we’d love to hear from you.

USB2U - Trusted Supplier of Branded USB Memory Sticks

USB2U - Trusted Supplier of Branded USB Memory Sticks

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PostScript to the 5k USB Stick Scam

Posted by USB2U on 18th February 2014 | Permalink

Last week we posted an article about a company that approached us in a panic because the 5,000 USB sticks they had purchased direct from a “factory” in China were not working on any of their PC’s or Mac’s. They were dumbfounded because they thought they had done everything they could to make sure the factory they were dealing with was legitimate and that the USB sticks they’d ordered would be up to the job.

Not only had they taken the precaution of buying from a “Gold” supplier on a reputable Chinese supplier brokerage web site but they’d also insisted on being sent a sample of the USB sticks for testing before they committed to the final order of 5,000 and importantly before they agreed to pay for them!

The dialogue with the factory was good and the shipment of the sample was arranged promptly. The independent tests on the sample undertaken in the UK suggested everything was in order so they pushed ahead with the order for 5k USB memory sticks. Payment was wired to the suppliers’ bank account in China and three weeks later the USB sticks arrived – then the fun began!

When inserted into any PC a quick check of the “properties” of the USB sticks suggested they had 512MB of memory (the size they had ordered) but when they tried to use the memory and load content onto the USB sticks alarms bells started to ring – it looked like data was being transferred onto the USB stick but when it was taken out and re-inserted it had nothing on it! The same scenario was repeated with multiple samples from the 5k batch and irrespective of whether they used a PC or Mac and irrespective of how large the data was they tried to copy onto the stick nothing was on them when they were re-inserted!

All attempts to contact the supplier in China were met with silence. Panic set in.

Having been sent a couple of the samples our initial suspicion was that the USB sticks had no memory in them at all but having sent the samples to our factory in China they have discovered that the USB sticks do have a very, very tiny memory module and that this has been “masked” to look like a 512MB stick! The small memory module inside the sticks is normally used on “web keys” – its just large enough to carry a website URL and nothing else.

The “masking” of this memory to make it look like it has 512MB of storage is pre-meditated fraud. The supplier knew exactly what they were doing and they knew the 5,000 sticks they supplied were nothing like the original sample. The buyer had been duped and was now thousands of pounds out of pocket and without the USB sticks they so desperately needed for their event.

The simple moral of this story is that whilst it’s tempting to save a few pounds by buying direct from a factory in China it’s also incredibly risky and you’ll have no safety net or recourse – if it all goes wrong as it has in this scenario then don’t expect to recover your money or get replacement USB sticks.

At USB2U we’ve been supplying promotional USB memory sticks for the last 12 years and we don’t let our customers down.

USB2U - Your Trusted Supplier of USB Memory Sticks

USB2U - Your Trusted Supplier of USB Memory Sticks

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