How to Choose Promotional Products with Added Value
When it comes to promotional products, it’s not about what you buy, but how you use them to elevate your brand that matters most. While I always recommend the basics , it is more important that you know how to use your promotional products for the highest return on investment.
Here are some of my favorite examples and case studies of how to use promo products in ways that will ensure that your clients will truly remember your brand.
Example #1: Call To Action Wristband. A few years ago, Dr. Oz launched the “Just 10” campaign on his famous TV show. It was a call to action for his interested followers to commit to losing “Just 10” pounds in the New Year. However, in order to receive the awesome “Just 10” silicon wristband, you were required to register on the website. The amazing part about this was that in just one week, he was completely sold out of over 100,000.00 wristbands. Here is why this specific campaign worked. First, Dr. Oz set an achievable goal for his target group. Ten pounds is not a number that is out of the realm of possibility. Instead, it is a goal that is completely attainable with a little bit of extra effort. Next, the people who signed up and received wristbands got something (besides the physical wristband of course.) What did they get? They felt like they had become part of a larger community. They became part of a group of like-minded people who were also trying to shed those unwanted pounds. Everyone wants to feel like they are part of something bigger than themselves- and almost everyone craves support in an endeavors such as these. Finally, this simple, cost-effective product worked because it served as a daily reminder of a goal that these individuals were working towards. This was a perfect example of not just leaving wristbands in a bucket for people to take, but truly creating value for the consumer.
It is important to note that the wristband/call to action idea is certainly not limited to use in weight loss pursuits. Get creative, and think of a way that you can use a similar approach within your specific job setting. For example, you may want to do something similar in order to motivate your sales team at work. Or perhaps you are a teacher looking to come up with some kind of incentive to offer your students on the first day of school. It would even be great to use wristbands at a charity event as a reminder for participants to give back. If you would like additional ideas, please feel free to contact us. We would be happy share some more suggestions.
Example #2: Drink ware + Additional Message or Quote. Drink ware is my absolute favorite product category in the promotional product industry. Why? Because we all use it!! Right at this moment, I have a logo’d mug with hot water and lemon next to me as well as another logo’d tumbler filled with my iced coffee on my desk. If you want a return on your investment, I highly recommend providing your consumers with a drink ware item that will stay in front of their eyes (and keep your brand fresh in their minds) day in and day out. Remember, it is a proven fact that 80% of people who receive a promotional product will remember the company! With that being said, please utilize the available space on whatever product you choose to give. The worst thing for you to do is just slap a logo on one side of the cup and call it a day. A great idea is to use the other side (of the cup or any other item) to give your clients and gift recipients a little something extra. For example, I recently gave a speech to a group of inspiring CEO’s. Rather than simply handing them each a mug with my logo on it, I printed the slogan, “Be The CEO Of Your Life” above my logo. I can not tell you how many people have since posted a picture of that quote on their Instagram and tagged me in it. My point, they remembered my company. Do whatever you can to make your brand and your giveaway product relevant to your specific consumer base. Another example is choosing to provide something valuable like a “Green Smoothie Recipe” or even “Tips to Make it a Great Day!” on the reverse side of the drink ware you are gifting. Anything additional that you can add to your branded product that would motivate or inspire your consumers will surely go a long way. If you connect the motivational piece to your brand in some way, then you can be sure that your company will be remembered by the consumer.
Example #3: T-Shirts. It sounds so simple, but I absolutely love T-Shirts as a giveaway. A T-shirt is particularly meaningful for me if I have to achieve something in order to earn it! For example, I just recently completed a 10K race and I love the shirt that I received at the event. I feel proud to have earned it, and I love to sport it on my morning runs and because it represents a personal achievement and a milestone for me. Another example of “earning your T-shirt” comes when you participate in a walkathon or event with an organization such as the American Cancer Society. While it is true that every participant gets a T-shirt, you can receive a special jacket (the “Team Challenger Windbreaker”) if you work hard enough and recruit a certain amount of teams. Let me tell you that using this motivational approach to earning apparel really works! From personal experience, I know that when I formed a Relay For Life team a few years ago, I wanted to recruit additional teams and members and that windbreaker was part of my motivation. I also witnessed many others who were actively recruiting team members and fundraising in efforts to earn that Team Challenger windbreaker. See, here is the thing: it became so much more than just a simple jacket. It became a representation of one’s achievement, and something that people have worked hard in order to get. These type of challenges go a long way! See if you can incorporate some kind of “contest” or challenge into your workplace environment. Feel free to ask me for suggestions on how to use various promotional products as prizes or tokens. Have a little fun with the T-shirts you order by adding an uplifting slogan or something unique to your cause to the back. One more piece of advice, when it comes to shirts, I always recommend spending a little bit more money for soft, trendy, vintage inspired tees. If they are cute, on-trend and comfortable, then people will actually wear them and not just add them to their donation piles.
Example #4: Silicone Wallet. This one is a very inexpensive item that really goes a long way. It serves as a great way to hold those few necessary items that you want to have with you when you don’t feel like carrying a purse or wallet. Thanks to our society’s obsession with cell phones, this is one of our most viewed promotional products. Let’s be honest, most of us barely put our phones down. In today’s day and age, we are constantly connected. We often hold our phones as we socialize and we even keep them out on the table while we are out to eat at restaurants. This is great for the active individual or the networker. I know personally, when I go out for a run, I bring nothing else besides my cell phone and headphones. Having the silicone wallet attached to my phone allows me to easily carry the essentials (like my ID and maybe five bucks in case I need to buy water bottle on the fly.) For those professionals who are frequent networkers, the silicone wallet serves as a great place to store a single credit card and any business cards you may have collected at an evening event or happy hour. Staying at a hotel out of town and want to use the gym? Simply stick the room key in the back of your phone. For students this especially works because you can tuck your student ID into the wallet and have it on you at all times. In addition to not having to lug your entire purse around when you don’t need it, you are also creating a walking advertisement for others to display. Since your company’s logo is always exposed on the back on the cell phone of whoever is carrying it, your company’s name will be noticed and likely remembered by all who see it.
Example #5: Tech Items. It is incredible how much the industry has changed over the years. Gone are $3.00 stress relievers and here to stay are the items in the tech sector. Backup chargers and additional phone cords are popular. But one of my favorites is “The Selfie Remote”. In 2013 the #1 most googled words was “Selfie.” Don’t just hand out Selfie Remotes; USE THEM TO CAMPAIGN!! Do you want to see your company explode on social media? While at an event, tell your consumers to take a picture and encourage them to share it on social media using a hashtag with your company’s name. As an added incentive, have them show you the #hash-tagged picture they took at the event in order to receive an awesome selfie remote of their own on their way out. BOOM! Just like that, your event goes viral on social media. Sit back and watch hundreds of pictures be posted because you are giving people something for free. Are you interested in having a company-wide fitness challenge? Simply ask your followers and/or colleagues to post one picture on social media exercising or eating a healthy meal. In return, offer them the prize of a selfie remote. Don’t just give away products, have your consumers work for the product. Not only is this fun for them, it also elevates your brand!
Example #6: Blankets & Towels. These are some of my all-time favorite promotional products. Why? Because I bring blankets/towels with me so many places. When I go to the park, I lay down a blanket or towel. When I load luggage or dogs into my car, I lay them on top of a towel or a blanket. Needless to say, if it’s cold inside my house, I use a blanket. Towels and blankets have so many opportunities for everyday use. For this reason, I love to print my own logo on both beach towels and blankets. But keep in mind, if you are going for more of a high-end product, I recommend embroidering your logo (tone on tone) in the corner. This works especially well for high end clients. If you are dealing with a younger demographic, such as colleges or universities, then I would print a really awesome ‘stand-out’ image on the towel or blanket. A vendor of mine recently sent me a blanket with an outline of the state of Texas and all of the Texas Hot Spots on it. I thought that was so cool and I have been showing it to all of my clients at meetings. Have a little fun with these items. You might want to print a blueprint of your university, of your city or of your state. The same goes for towels. Try using the space for word clusters, inspirational messages or catchy sayings. Another reason why I love blankets and towels is because the imprint area is really large. Not to mention, it is a one size fits all item! Everyone who uses promotional products should have these two items on hand at all times.
I could go on for days about marketing strategies and ideas you can use to enhance your brand. This truly is my passion. If I can help you at all, please feel free to reach out to myself, or anyone at Ali Specialties for more creative ideas and products that you can use to elevate your brand. Let me know what your ultimate goal is and I will be happy to customize a presentation catered to your unique needs. As always, I look forward to your feedback!