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Custom Medals | 2 min read
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Whether you’ve been organizing running events for years or taking on a new role, you're probably not surprised to hear that event directors should try to order their custom medals as far in advance.

Perhaps you want to use the medals for promotional purposes to spread awareness about your event before it happens. On the other hand, maybe you simply want to have all the medals staged and ready for the finish line. Either way, it’s a lot more comforting to know that all of your medals have arrived, and they’re not something you have to worry about.

Often, event directors procrastinate, and as their event quickly approaches, they are frantically scrambling to get their medals delivered on time.

If that happens, you’re almost always guaranteed to have more stress and increased costs due to expedited freight. On top of that, you may not end up with the medal you truly want and envision because you’re confined by a short turnaround time. For example, due to production time requirements, instead of ordering a custom neck ribbon unique to your event, you may end up with a plain stock ribbon that doesn’t showcase your event.

If the worst-case scenario happens and your medals don’t arrive on time – and this is something that does happen – well... you can imagine what a nightmare that turns out to be. You’re going to upset both participants and sponsors, which could damage the success and reputation of your event.

Running Medal Timeline

The custom medal timeline consists of the following steps:

  1. Design creation and approval
  2. Order info and approval
  3. Production
  4. Logistics and shipping
  5. Delivery

For Custom Die Cast running medals, there are two typical timelines:

  • 4-6 weeks* for faster delivery turnaround (shipped via air & more costly).
  • 10-12 weeks* for orders shipped via ocean (least expensive).

You probably want to start the ordering process at least 4-5 months before your event to leave enough time to get your best price, have your product to use for event promotion, and avoid the stress of getting your medals at the last minute.

It’s also important to note there are other factors beyond your control that can have a significant impact on the timeline, such as:

  • Human error
  • Shipping delays
  • Holidays
  • Weather issues
  • Customs delays
  • Import and Export delays
  • Capacity issues (production and logistics)
  • Strikes

For example, during the COVID-19 Pandemic, the worldwide supply chain experienced significant delays and shortages of materials, equipment, and manpower, causing lead times to increase up to 8 weeks longer than the standard.

How To Get Your Running Medals Faster

So, how can you get your running medals faster? Here are 4 ways:

1. Understand the Process and Timelines

As outlined above, having a solid understanding of how the timeline works is really important to get your custom medals on time. Work with an experienced and trusted partner who can walk you through the process.

2. Start Earlier

The earlier you start this process, the better off you’ll be. Super simple, right?

We mentioned giving yourself at least 4-5 months before your event date, but you can never really order too early. Starting the process early allows plenty of time for the design, manufacturing, and shipping methods and a bit of wiggle room for unexpected delays.

3. Simplify Your Design

Other ways to expedite the process are to consider having a simpler medal with fewer custom features. However, you can still have a sleek, gorgeous medal without overcomplicating it. For example, having a medal without color versus with color takes less time to produce. That also reduces the design/revision time and the production time.

4. Pay Rush Charges / Expedited Shipping

The easy answer, of course, is to pay for rush charges (design services and production) and/or expedited shipping. However, that is obviously a costly process and not something you want to make a regular habit.

Amazing Custom Medals Delivered on Time

Hopefully, you found these tips helpful. Don’t get burned by starting the process too late and risk not getting your custom medals on time. On the other hand, if your event is fast approaching and you need to get started, we can help!

*The COVID-19 Pandemic has created worldwide supply chain delays and shortages of material, equipment, and manpower. Lead times may reach up to 8 weeks longer than the standard timeframes.


5 Tips For Designing an Amazing Custom Medal

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