How To Use Promotional Merchandise And What To Choose

Posted on Jul 16 2013 - 9:38am by Peter Millikin

Do you have promotional gifts written into your budget?

woman biting lipsMaybe considering them as your next marketing move. Whatever the case may be, here are the answers to the most pressing questions businesses have about promotional merchandise.

How many branded pens does one person really need?

Businesses who use branded merchandise often struggle to find items that are cost-efficient as well as useful to the people receiving them.

The branded gifts often end up being things like:

  • Pens
  • Magnets
  • Logobugs
  • Keyrings
  • Mouse Mats
  • Lanyards

So are these cheaper gifts effective in promoting you or your brand?

The British Promotional Merchandise Association (BPMA) says they are. A survey they conducted showed that:

  • 56 percent of people who have received a branded object feel more favourable towards that brand.
  • 79 percent of the respondents said they are more likely to do business with that particular brand in the future.

How do you choose promotional merchandise that is useful and still affordable?

This is the caveat of promotional merchandise. Stickers, for instance, are fun for kids but highly unlikely to be viewed by your client again. A branded fan will definitely stick in their memory, but can you afford to buy enough of them?

Choosing a product that a customer will use over and over is the best way to promote your brand with merchandise. The BPMA says that cheap products such as pens and coffee mugs have a cost per impression of one tenth of a penny. That’s pretty hard to beat, no matter which type of advertising you are doing.

It also depends on where and why you are handing out these items. If you are running a tradeshow, for instance, pens or other similarly priced items are probably the way to go. If you are running another type of promotion where your customer pool is smaller, you may want to choose a nicer item to give away.

What are the best products to give away at tradeshows?

Tradeshows are a fabulous opportunity for businesses to stand out from the crowd. The best method when planning your tradeshow booth is to choose a theme and work with it. For instance, choose a cinema theme and give out popcorn or set up an antique car theme and hand out car fresheners. Whatever it is, make it something fun, eye-catching and worth someone’s time to stop by and talk to your business!

How can you determine the return on investment (ROI) with promotional merchandise?

Figuring out ROI can be tricky. You can’t be sure how many times someone has picked up your pen, used it and thought favourably of your company. You can, of course, tell if sales have increased or you have had more visitors to your website. This is the best way to tell if your ROI is high or low. If, after the tradeshow, the unique clicks to your site increase by 30 percent, you can comfortably say that your marketing efforts were a success.

Should we stay with traditional marketing methods or move into the digital world?

These days’ digital promotions are invaluable. It’s a way for brands to become engaged with customers and it’s easier in the digital world than on paper.

For instance:

  • Social media
  • QR codes
  • Giving away free downloads
  • Banner ads

All becoming more popular than the old fashioned email marketing campaigns. The key here is to know who you are targeting and offer something that is valuable to them. For instance, teenagers are more likely to be excited about a free music download and seniors are more likely to appreciate discount for their favourite products.

There are loads of ways to use the Red-Inc promotional merchandise service for the benefit of your company. Feel free to contact Adam by using any of the links in his author bio below.

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Read about the Author

Peter has received many accreditation's including many from the Times Online. As founder of You Could Save (2005) and What Stationers (2007) Peter regularly helps consumers and national organisation ‘save money’. He believes that the only successful way to bring people together online is to provide an open marketplace where people can all work together in a friendly, unbiased environment.

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