When we think of advertising, most people think of billboards, TV ads, magazine spreads, or even online promotions. But you can also think smaller—on pens, mugs, flash drives, calendars, and more. These little advertising tools might not be as flashy as a high-production-value commercial or attention-grabbing billboard ad, but they have been shown to be both more effective and more cost-efficient as an advertising medium. Here are a few reasons why promotional items are such a great deal.
They’re cheaper. A billboard is a big investment. Business promotional items are cheap by comparison. Your business might have some growing to do before you can afford to spend thousands on advertising, but you can buy promotional items at pretty much any price point. They’re financially accessible to businesses at all levels.
According to the ASI’s 2013 Global Ad Impression Study http://www.asicentral.com/asp/open/AboutASI/pressRoom/index.aspx?id=8210, people keep promotional items they receive for an average of six months—much longer than the run time for most traditional ads. And with an average cost of less than a cent, promotional items provide exceptional reach for the money spent.
They get seen on a regular basis. If you buy ad space somewhere, people will see your ad one time—and then go on with their day. If you print your logo and message on a useful promotional item, its owner will see it regularly. Some items, like pens or desk calendars, will get seen every day. That’s a pretty good rate of exposure for an inexpensive promotional item. They promote brand recognition—for a fraction of the cost of a full branding campaign.
They’re mobile. Smaller promotional items, such as pens and notepads, are easy to pass along. Your item might get passed on to someone who’s never heard of your business—but whose interest might be sparked if they need what you offer.
Branded promotional items are generally cheap and easy to pass on—a pen with a company logo on it, for instance, may pass between a large number of different owners in its lifetime. Each time someone uses the pen, they’ll see the company’s branding—and it will create an impression. This is how pens and other promotional items can reach a surprisingly large audience at a fraction of the cost of more expensive advertising methods.
They generate goodwill. Personalized promotional items are the perfect gifts for customers and the public. A free giveaway can be a great way to get people to sign up for your mailing list or participate in a promotion. They produce positive feelings about your business at a cost of approximately half a cent per impression. Giving something away makes your company look generous—and that’s sure to be seen positively by the people who benefit.
The best strategy for promotional items is to choose items that are useful to your target client on a day-to-day basis. This might mean something obvious—such as a pen or notepad—or something that’s more specific to a particular type of clientele. The more creative you are in choosing the right promotional item, the more your item will stand out—and get the attention and return you deserve.