You can spend a lot of money on promotional products. If they are relevant they can be very effective. But, some people don’t put much thought into the type of promotional products their target audience and customers would actually find useful – so they waste a large chunk of their budget on items that either sit in a drawer, are passed to somebody who would never be a prospectie customer or, worse, discarded and put into the grey round floor file.
Ask yourself what your prospects and customers would likely keep or find useful. The aim of a promotional product is to expose your company to the right person on a daily basis and keeping your branding at the front of their minds, even if this is subliminal. You clearly want to select something that they will keep and use. We have come up with some weird and wonderful gifts over the years for different clients!
So things like pens, desk ornaments and pads are always useful – BUT don’t over-brand. For example, if you are going for memo pads leave enough white space to allow somebody to use it properly. I am a self-confessed post-it note addict but refuse to use branded notes that have promotional copy taking up most of the available space – I need room to write! If it can be used, it won’t find any real estate on someone’s desk.
Other generic successes are trolley coins (pound coin substitutes that can be used in shopping trollies, gym lockers etc) and USB drives. It does of course depend on your budget as to the type of products you select. But do shop around once you have identified your promotional product because we find that unit prices can vary significantly from supplier to supplier.
Finally, if you haven’t got a budget to purchase something relevant or worthwhile don’t settle for second-rate gimmicky items that you know people would not use. It’s possible that the little fluffy thing might be cute but, really, what would your prospects or customers do with it? If you haven’t a budget for something reasonable, don’t waste money on something completely inappropriate which may do more harm than good for your company’s image.
Don’t opt for cheap pens either – if somebody takes your pen and it doesn’t work, doesn’t write smoothly or, worse, it leaks then you have achieved exactly the opposite of what you set out to do. You don’t want to leave your customers with a bad taste in their mouths when your company is mentioned to them.
And have fun choosing your promotional products – be creative – practically anything can be branded so, if you can’t find what you want in a catalogue, then ask the supplier. I’m sure they will “know a man that can” if they can’t!