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by Jonathan Vatner | May 31, 2011

On alibaba.com, it's possible to buy traditional promotional products (such as notepads and USB flash memory drives) direct from a manufacturer, rather than through a third party, thus eliminating the reseller's markup. Often, planners can negotiate the prices down even further; some even get the manufacturer to logo the items for no charge. Novice buyers beware, though: Be sure to ask for the seller's export license and references before buying. Thanks to international education consultant Naomi Woods for the idea.