As I waited in line at an event this weekend, my gaze settled on the back of a man standing a bit ahead of me. His black shirt featured the intriguing name and logo of a brewing company I hadn’t heard of before, and I was instantly curious—what’s the story here?
While I lost track of the logo-clad individual in the crowd, his shirt stuck with me, leading to a Google search and a plan to bring along some of this beer next time I get together with friends. Without any commercials, traditional advertisements, or over-the-top marketing campaigns, this brewery earned itself a customer.
If you look around your desk right now, it’s likely you’ll find at least one item printed with the logo of an organization you support or company you do business with. These promotional products may be a part of your daily routine: the coffee mug you carry to work with you, the pen you write notes with, or the shirt you wear to the gym.
The use of promotional products is an increasingly popular method of growing brand awareness. As the brewery shirt story shows, putting branded promotional products out into the world can help your fans become brand ambassadors, creating more fans (and paying customers) for your business.
Investing in Promotional Products for Your Business
You’re probably using more traditional forms of advertising to market your business, and those efforts are vital to maintaining your sales strategy. Combining those methods with promotional product advertising can help to take your marketing to the next level. According to the British Promotional Merchandise Association (BPMA), advertising with promotional products directly correlates with improved brand recognition and increased sales. It’s also been shown to have a higher return on investment than other marketing strategies.
A major reason for investing in promotional products is to create increased brand awareness, especially in ways that resonate with your customers.
Want some compelling statistics?
- A study by Promotional Products Association International (PPAI) found that 76.2% of people who received a promotional product in the past two years could remember the product, the company it came from, and the message behind the item.
- 80% of consumers own at least one promotional product, and over half of them use a promotional product at least once per week
- 60% of consumers keep promotional products for up to two years
- Including promotional products in advertising increases the effectiveness of other marketing by 44%
- In the PPAI survey, 52% of respondents did business with an advertiser after receiving a promotional product
- Promotional products create a more positive impression of the advertiser 53% of the time
Targeting Your Customers
Consumers like to receive promotional products, and as the numbers show, these products can have a big impact on spreading brand awareness and bringing in customers. But how can you ensure that your promotional products will do the same?
Think usefulness. You could come up with a fantastic idea for a promotional product, but if consumers don’t make use of it on a regular basis, its potential impact diminishes. It’s also important to consider the longevity of the product you’ll give away. If it can be used up within a month or two, it’s probably not the best choice for making a significant long-term impact.
Make yourself familiar with the term environmental targeting. This simply means giving away items to be used in an environment where your company’s services would be required. For instance, one of the items most popular with consumers is the USB stick, and if you’re a tech or software company, it makes sense to give away USBs branded with your logo. When consumers are using your USB at their computers, they’ll be reminded of your company, and since they’re working in an environment in which your services would be called upon, they are more likely to make the decision to invest in your business.
If possible, it’s helpful to give your customers a choice between a few different promotional items, to ensure that the items will actually be used. A survey by BPMA found the top four categories of promotional items were: the USB stick, electronic items, writing instruments, and mugs. Another way to speak to your customers is to give them an item personalized with their name or business, rather than just your logo.
Extend Your Advertising Reach
Promotional products can reach across time and space in ways that other forms of advertising can’t. Because consumers tend to keep promotional products around for long periods of time, there is the potential for many more impressions of your brand to be made than would come from a one-time newspaper or digital advertisement. A customer could wear your shirt while traveling somewhere outside of your advertising area, giving a new audience exposure to your brand.
And it’s also a good thing if consumers give away promotional items. Here’s a bonus statistic: 63% of consumers will pass along promo items they no longer want rather than throwing them away, creating more opportunities for new people to be exposed to your brand and, hopefully, become customers.
Giving away a promotional item can be a great way to break the ice with a potential customer in a way that a cold call could never do. And, a gift often creates an unspoken obligation on the part of the customer to do business with you; some consumers are even willing to switch to a different brand to receive a promotional gift. The relatively small investment you make in creating the product could lead to a valued relationship and a lot of sales from that customer down the road.
Promotional products are a great way to increase the impact of your advertising, and we’re here to help. Contact Paw Print & Mail today to start increasing your brand awareness, or visit our promotional products and branded apparel online store to shop ideas for your company.
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