Considering using promotional products to market your business? With so many different items available for branding, there’s sure to be a product that’s the perfect fit for your brand’s personality, which you can put to work to promote your company or organization.
But before you buy just any logoed product, consider this. Your promotional products are going to have the most impact, and lead to the most success for your business, if they are regularly used by the recipients.
Need help determining what items to brand? According to PPAI, a leader in the promo industry, promotional products are most often kept (and used) when they are:
I like these, but there are 2 more reasons for keeping promo I think are important to note:
Now, let’s break down how you can identify promo items in each of these categories to make your promotional campaigns more effective.
Functionality, or usefulness, is probably the most important reason recipients keep promotional products. If a product is useful for a recipient, or fills a need that they have, they are much more likely to keep that product at hand and regularly make use of it. Practical products will be used frequently, serving as a constant reminder of your brand. And, the user is more likely to be using the product in an environment or variety of environments where the item (and your branding) will be seen by a larger audience.
So, what qualifies as a functional product? While some items, like pens or water bottles, are considered general use items, what is functional for your brand depends largely on your audience.
Try to answer these questions:
- Who are you selling to?
- What matters to them?
- What activities do they participate in?
- What demographics do you have for this audience (such as age, gender, profession, etc.)?
- And, would you use the product being considered?
One idea to keep in mind is environmental targeting. This means providing items to be used in situations where your company’s services might also be used. For example, if you are a pet store, you might give out branded tennis balls to pet owners. When the owner plays with their dog, they may be reminded that they need to buy dog food or want to purchase a new toy or accessory for their beloved pet. At the same time, they’re having an enjoyable experience with their pet. And, your logo is there too, front and center.
As essential as certain promotional items may be, not every item can achieve the “fun” factor. Fun promo items include things that bring a smile to our faces, like amusing stress relievers or a desk cornhole set. Or, they could be items that we take with us on adventures, such as frisbees, blue tooth speakers, or bottle openers. My favorite fun promo item? Socks.
Fun can also be about how you brand the item or how you present it, rather than the physical product. If you have a popular tagline or slogan your customers love, you can print it on a basic t-shirt that recipients will be eager to wear.
As with function, what is fun may change depending on your audience. And remember–fun and functional are not exclusive! If you can find an item that fits both categories, you’ll hit a home run.
Styles are always changing. Promotional products follow similar patterns, adapting based on larger social and retail trends. These trends are often reflective of personal style preferences as well. By placing your logo on items that are popular in a retail space, you increase the chances of your item being used by the recipient.
One example of this is the Pop Socket. This collapsible phone accessory first entered the retail market to great popularity. Now, Pop Sockets are also available for custom branding. On top of this, there are an increasing number of comparable phone accessories that serve a similar function and would be popular with (and used by) the same market.
In general, recipients will be attracted to items that are representative of current, wide-ranging trends. For instance, sustainability and reusability are looked for more and more frequently. With that in mind, retailers are offering an increasing variety of eco-friendly options. This is also true for the promotional products industry.
Reusable items like water bottles or tote bags, or products made with recycled or sustainable materials like cork and bamboo, offer trendy ways to incorporate your brand with a promotional product in a way that sends a message.
Promotional items are often given away or available for purchase during events or special occasions. The experience of attending these kinds of events creates memories that attendees hold on to. And, when they receive a branded item as part of that experience, they’re likely to hold on to it, too. Brand recall and loyalty are fostered when you connect with your audience on an emotional level.
The notion of experience is especially important for the Millennial generation. In fact, 78% of Millennials prefer to spend money on experiences, rather than on purchasing items. The power of experiences is certainly not limited to younger generations but is important to note if you are looking to connect with an audience in this demographic.
Experience doesn’t necessarily have to mean a special event. It can also relate to the experience a customer has purchasing from your company or utilizing your services.
Your most loyal audience are those customers or clients who come back to you time and again, who you know by name, and who talk about their experience with others. A more positive customer experience means a more positive view of your brand, and a greater desire to use any promotional products you provide.
Grow Your Business with Promotional Products
At Paw Print & Mail, we’re skilled at identifying the promotional items that will help you connect with your unique audience. Contact our Promotional Branding Specialist, Sarah, today to start growing your business with promo, and visit our online catalog to search a variety of items from our preferred suppliers.