Promotional products are a core component of your marketing strategy and a direct reflection of your company. It is critical that these items reflect your brand values. Let’s look at how you can do this and perform a case study of two Fortune 500 companies.
Do you remember one of the first things you learned about working at your company? Or why you decided to start a business or take a job? Likely, the core values of your workplace played a vital role in your decision, but do they resonate with customers? Take a look at the mission statement for these Fortune 500 companies. What do they make you think about?
- Budweiser: Bringing people together for a better world.
- IAMS: Enhance the well-being of dogs and cats by providing world-class quality foods.
Not only do their missions demonstrate the business offerings, but the scope of the operation, the product offering, and the intended audience. These messages signal a desire to (1) connect people and (2) improve the well-being of pets. Without clear brand values, these companies would just sell beer or dog food. With them, they sell connection and health. The latter makes a lot more money, but how do you ensure consumers understand these values?
We may live in a digital world, but online marketing is not enough to solidify brand values with customers. Branded giveaways and promotional products are a more effective method to achieve long term resonance in the mind of prospects. They are a vehicle to build brand awareness, and an unparalleled method of generating word-of-mouth marketing. According to an ASI study, most people keep promotional items for an average of eight months – a lot longer than an ad or pop-up on your browser! What’s more, the majority of individuals who receive a promo item have a more favourable impression of the company that gave it to them.
Here’s the thing, promotional products are so much more than the traditional shirts, pens, and keychains -we offer everything from coffee presses to frisbees. However, while companies are constantly innovating their product and service offerings, this is not always the case in promotional product selection. This is a missed opportunity! There is something special about receiving a gift that you can touch, feel, and use. Your prospects will love it! But, with a lasting impression, it is critical that you pick the right products for people to remember you by.
To do so, keep these four lessons in mind:
- Promotional items are a direct reflection of your company.
- The reason behind your product matters! Think about what the promotional product type communicates.
- Effective products are unique. There are other options than pens and t-shirts, don’t just follow the promotional product trends.
- Be literal: The copy on your product can be an effective message communication tool.
Still not convinced? Let’s take a look at what the brands we mentioned earlier are doing to communicate their brand values with consumers. Budweiser launched one of the best marketing campaigns we’ve seen with the Budweiser Red Light. When you buy a specially marked case of beer, you will receive a goal-synced alarm system, so that every time your favourite hockey team scores, you can get the big game experience at home. This, Budweiser says, will allow you to “celebrate with your buds like never before.”
These promo items are an alarm-blast reminder to buy Budweiser. What’s more, the red lights work because it speaks to (1) brand values (connection) and (2) consumer values (hockey). In creating a promo product that highlights their mission to bring people together, Budweiser has solidified a clear message that we keep talking about -even all these years later. IAMS: Dog Frisbee Giveaway
IAMS gave away frisbees to pet owners in Australian parks that were designed to look like 10-kilogram weights. In doing this, they emphasized one core message: IAMS creates strong dogs.
These unique promo items utilize copy and product-type to reinforce their brand values and grab the attention of prospects. They are successful in garnering the interest of pet-owners and keeping IAMS top of mind. Promotional products are not just SWAG. They are an essential component of your marketing strategy to share your mission statement and core values with prospects and customers.
Branded merchandise drives sales and brand presence. As a result, it is important that your team develops a consistent set of goals and determines the promotional marketing offering of your business. At that point, establishing a company promo store will ease the delivery on these lessons and ensure consistency across your marketing plans.
It’s your brand, it has to be the perfect product. Whether you are a small business or a retail giant, these conversations have a place in your business.
Stay tuned for our next blog to learn more about what promotional items can do for your business.