According to the Promotional Products Association International (PPAI), 85 percent of people who receive a promotional product from a company tend to do business with the same brand. The group further explained that 89 percent of recipients recall the advertiser’s name for 24 months after getting their items. With promotional products, ranging from silicone bracelets to custom lanyards, playing an essential role in brand visibility and marketing, small business owners should consider investing in a high-quality promotional product.
But how do you know an item is “high quality?” It’s not enough that an item has the brand’s logo and company name on it. To fully engage with the target audience, you need to look for 3 things.
The most important aspect of having a great promotional product is its usefulness to the recipient. Think of practical items that provide immediate value, such as a keychain, ballpen, kitchen item, or journal. There are two main advantages to this. The first is that a useful product is less likely to be thrown in the trash. Think about it, how often do you throw a promotional flier compared to the number of times you threw a bracelet? After all, people are less likely to throw away something with an inherent monetary value that they received for free.
Secondly, items of value tend to be used more frequently, which has an osmotic marketing effect on the target customer. A pen with your company logo, for example, is not a “hard sell” for your business, but it regularly flashes on your customer’s mind whenever they need to write, whether they are aware of it or not. Because they are using your ballpen frequently, they will subconsciously remember your business and are more likely to return.
This is why experts recommend that small business owners choose a promotional product that can be used for a while. The longer the promotional item is kept, the higher the chances are that others (such as family members, friends, or colleagues) will see the brand name and create a positive impression between the owner of the item and the brand being promoted. It’s a subtle but powerful marketing tactic that offers great social proof.
Promotional products should promote your business—and that means choosing an item that lasts long, works well, and is of great quality. Remember that your customers will associate the promotional product with your brand. If, for example, their silicone bracelets snap off after 10 minutes of use, they will instinctively associate your brand to be of the same shoddy quality and no longer want to buy your products or avail themselves of your services.
You need to invest in a high-quality item that works well. A good recommendation is to ask for samples from your trusted suppliers before handing them out to your customers. Take the time to try them out, whether that’s wearing your bracelets every day for two weeks or asking a friend to put on a custom lanyard and see how they like it.
It’s more important that you give out products that represent your brand well, even if they take a little more time to manufacture or test out, rather than cutting corners and marketing your brand “just because.”
Keep in mind that a faulty product reflects negatively on your brand. Even if an item is given as a gift, customers will not take kindly to being handed a poorly made item.
This is not a must-have, but it’s something you should consider. For you to make the greatest impact on your customers, your promotional item should be something that represents what your company does or represents. The best example would be a customized ballpen if your business deals with writing instruments or a silicone bracelet if you’re raising awareness for a certain charity or cause.
When your promotional item aligns with your company goals or service, you create a more powerful impression on your customer. The effect triples when you take into account the other two factors mentioned in this list. Experts say that an item that is useful, functional, and relevant is the best type of promotional product a business can give.
In the United States, the 5 top promotional products customers want to receive are t-shirts, pens, mugs, water bottles, and headphones. If you’re just starting and have no idea which item to choose as your promotional product, you should consider any of those items.
To end, recall that customer loyalty is one of the key drivers of your company’s success. The return on investment is much higher when it comes to returning customers who remember your brand after all. Promotional products are low-cost marketing tools that promote brand recall and strengthen a positive customer perception. These items work as your business card, allowing new customers and repeat clients to remember your company and create an emotional attachment to your brand.
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