How To Use Promotional Products Effectively
Promotional products are a great way to get your business in front of new people, but they're not always easy to use. How do you choose the right promo product? How can you make sure that your giveaways are effective? How can you promote with them effectively?
This blog post will answer all these questions and more! We'll discuss what makes an effective promotional product - from imprint size and design intent, to vibe. After reviewing how to create unique promotional marketing products, we'll give some ideas on how to use promotional products effectively- like social media giveaways for higher-cost items or trade shows. Finally, we'll highlight some unique and personal ways to use the most popular promotional items as part of your business' marketing strategy.
What makes an effective promotional product?
First, a good promotional product starts with thoughtful design and intention. How do you want your brand to be perceived? How can your promo item help accomplish that goal? What will people think when they see your logo and what is the message they will receive?
- Matte white ceramic coffee mugs imprinted with a simple logo in teal to make the brand feel clean and fresh. This item looks great on any kitchen counter, but it's also perfect for your friendly neighborhood barista who wants to keep their customers' cups full! How can you use this product effectively? How about giving them away at the coffee shop's anniversary celebration!
- A travel tumbler printed with a big logo on one side and a fun, whimsical motto or phrase on the other! How can you use this product effectively? How about creating perks for your frequent travelers to incentivize them to stay loyal, like discounted drinks or snacks at your establishment (something that will save time and money!)
Set Effective Goals for Marketing Potential
Secondly, an effective promo needs clear goals for marketing potential - how many impressions (AKA eyeballs on your brand) is it worth in order to be effective? How many people will see your logo or business name, and who specifically are you wanting to see your brand? Consider your audience - are you targeting women? Young folks? Conservatives? Professionals? Families? You should consider tailoring your product choice to your audience.
Some examples of how to use promotional products effectively with high marketing potential are:
- A quality toiletry bag imprinted with a simple logo and some product information. How can you use this product effectively? How about sending them to your customers or prospective clients so they have something to keep their makeup or travel accessories in! And since the item is already branded, it serves as an effective reminder of who sent it - perfect for building brand awareness! How many impressions will it get? How about every time they carry their makeup bag? This is a great example of a product chosen to target a more feminine market!
- Plastic sports bottles imprinted with a big logo and some product information on one side, and your website URL and contact info on another side. How about hosting an event or trade show and giving them out as a free gift to new attendees so they have something sturdy to keep hydrated with, but also feel welcome at your event!
Is your company pushing a green initiative, or healthy living program? Choosing a bottle intentionally made from recycled materials or something with a sportier feel can help create a cohesive platform from which to share this information! Distributing reusable branded coffee cups is another great example of how to use promoional products effectively! Remember- how many impressions will it get? How about any time someone is walking around the expo hall or on their way from one meeting room to another.
Effective Promotional Product Imprint Space Usage
Finally, promotional products vary in the amount of imprint space they have. How much room is there for you to tell a story about your company with that item - what kind of message do you want to send out into the world? Optimizing the space you have on your promotional products is key!
Examples of imprint space used well on a promo product are:
- Large car windshield visors. How can you use this product's imprint space effectively? Share a catchy phrase with contact info across the entire width of a windshield. Not only will you stay top-of-mind each time the car owner expands and collapses your promo visor, but you will also capture the eyes of bystanders walking past the car in parking lots. The same people who shop where your customers shop. The like-minded people parked at the gym your customer avatar attends. And so on.
The above gives you some ideas on how to use various promotional products, but we know you want to focus on 2021's trendy promo materials and items. So, without further ado, here is a look at just what those are and unique ways to market them to build rapport and, eventually revenue!
Custom Face Masks with Logos
Customized face masks are a great way to stay active and warm during cold winter months. How about hosting an event or trade show and giving them out as a free gift to new attendees so they have something sturdy to keep their faces covered, but also feel welcome at your event! Where they go, so does your brand. And with a clever design, people will be begging to know "which booth gave you that mask?" Voila! Instant referral maker.
Environmentally-Friendly Promotional Products
Promote new, environmentally-friendly initiatives. Consider an environmentally friendly mailer or gift campaign for Earth Day, or to use as an announcement for your company's latest B Corp Certification or other Green news! Combining free, useful gifts and special announcements is a great plan for how to use promotional products effectively to disseminate information!
Tech - Promotional USB Drive
Custom USB drives - which come in classic shapes as well as fun quirky shapes, or 2-in-1 tool+USB drives - can be given out preloaded with a clever message and documents already saved. Preload a popular resource list, a collection of your top recipes, a fillable planner, budget or similar into it before distributing. It's far less likely to wind up in the trash when they know it holds valuable info. All of these little extras will ensure they keep your thumb drive promo product close at hand, but also think of you every time they use it.
Despite what you may think, winter is not the only time to give out promotional outerwear. How about hosting an event (or manning a booth at an event) that warrants a rain coat or parka, like a fun run or bubble run? Not only will they enjoy your promo-printed parka at that event but likely keep it on them and use it in the future when weather warrants it. And don't forget, people try to escape the Tucson heat all the time - away to places where it's cooler and, god forbid ;), rains sometimes!
Customized Tote Bags
A customized reusable shopping bag is a great way for any business to promote themselves while also being considerate towards their environment! Of course, tote bags make good giveaways for events and trade shows where people are carrying around tons of stuff, but do you really need an excuse to show someone you think they're TOTE-ally awesome? We think not. Give a free tote back to all your prospects, or fill a tote bag with fun snacks as a special gift for your VIP's.
Custom Printed T-Shirts
Cater to niche audiences with t-shirts made just-for-them. Functional value is the biggest selling point of promotional items, so tailor your t-shirt designs for key audiences. Let’s say your client base includes a lot of devoted golfers. Offering nice polos shirts with your logo can give customers the incentive to sport your branding on the course. Polos not in the budget? It doesn't cost much to turn some heads with a soft t-shirt printed with "It takes a lot of balls to golf the way I do" and your logo.
Custom Promotional Drinkware
Promotional drinkware is a great way to get your name out into the community. Why not host a "paint and pour" where they leave with their Picasso and Pinot? Okay, an empty glass of Pinot, that is. Any time they look at their masterpiece and their drinkware they'll be reminded of the wonderful time they had!
Work From Home Products
If you don't have a brick-and-mortar location, why not offer work-from-home promotional products? Offer a virtual goodie bag of sorts during your next Zoom conference call. Create custom backgrounds via clear vinyl that opt for both scenic views on an otherwise bland wall, but also sport your logo discreetly. The oohs and ahhs they get from other virtual conference-goers is sure to warrant some name-dropping. Your brand name, that is!
Custom Printed Hats and Headwear
Custom hats are a great way to draw attention to your brand and a classic example of how to use promotional products effectively. Think about where hats are worn and create a custom cap that will make its debut and that next big game, festival, or other places your target demographic likes to hang out.
Learning how to use promotional products effectively just means getting creative with your concepts!
Promotional items are great because they're both tangible reminders of your company's presence and they provide functional value. It doesn't take much effort to get started and these are just a few of the thousands of options we have. So, get those gears turning! Reach out with your own ideas or goals and we can brainstorm with you!
Until next time,
Vera is a creative-minded, heart-first promotional products (and print/apparel/direct mail/signage/etc.) professional who approaches all aspects of life with intention and enthusiasm. Vera is passionate about vocabulary, self-care, and authenticity (even in business!), and in her free time you’ll probably find her rock climbing or mountain biking, growing things, cooking, reading, and generally finding ways to get up to no good with her wife, Christa.