As marketers it’s easy to get caught up in the latest new marketing craze. Whether it be the latest social media trend or latest digital fad (Pokemon Go anyone?), too often we jump ship for the latest fad. Sometimes the best approaches are the tried and tested techniques. When it comes marketing strategies that actually work, you can’t go past promotional items. In today’s competitive marketing environment you really need to offer something of value to your customers to make you stand out from your competitors. In this article we give you 8 reasons why you should be using promotional items to promote your brand.
A Promotional Gift Creates Brand Awareness
Promotional gifts are very powerful tools to help grow your brand. Brand recognition requires your brand to be viewed over and over again until a customers are familiar with it. Promotional gifts are the perfect opportunity for this, especially if it is the type of product that is used every day such as a promotional pen or cup.
Promotional Items Last a Long Time
In today’s marketing environment each communication is increasingly short lived. How long do you think that social media post is going to gain attention? A week at the most? One of the major advantages of giving a branded gift is that people will use the item for a longer period than a business card that may be simply placed in the bin. Take for example a high quality keyring. How long do you think people will change their keyring? Once every 5 years at most?
Creates Customer Retention
As marketers we often focus on attracting new customers rather than keeping existing customers happy. Did you know it can cost up to 5 times more to attract a new customer? Providing practical gifts is a proven tactic for improving customer retention. The Marketing Mix’s client, International KeyReturn recently had major success improving customer loyalty for automotive service and repair company Auto Masters. International KeyReturn provided Auto Masters with a custom branded keyring with a return service for lost keys for all of their customers. So far KeyReturn have returned over 420 sets of keys in 3 years, which has strengthened Auto Masters relationship with their valuable customers.
Turns Your Existing Customers into Brand Ambassadors
The most valuable marketing channels for your brand is your existing customers. This is because customers value the opinions of their peers over any other source of information on a product. Using a branded gift is an excellent method to amplify word of mouth and can boost this in two ways.
1. It creates customer delight, increasing the likelihood that the customer will discuss your brand in a positive manner.
2. A unique gift is likely to be a point of conversation between you, your customers, their friends and peers.
Image credit International KeyReturn
The number of options for promotional gifts is almost endless, and allows you to create a tool that is customisable to your target audience. For example if you’re a personal trainer, you could provide a free workout shirt with a custom slogan to your clients. Or perhaps you sell boutique wines, and could consider giving away a branded wine decanter.
Powerful Tool for Attracting New Customers
Nothing is more attractive to a prospective customer than something for free. Leverage this power by using promotional gifts to attract new customers. Often getting customers to try your product is the greatest barrier to attracting new business. Consider offering free sample packs as trials, this is the perfect way to boost interest & gain new customers.
Your Customers Interact With Your Brand Daily
Creating a functional promotional item means your customers will interact with your brand every day. For example, a food wholesaler that sells to restaurants could provide a branded knife as a gift to those chefs who order your products. Another example would be simply providing a branded desk calendar or notepad & pens, as this is an almost certain way to get a customer to retain your gift and be reminded of your brand daily.
Use Promotional Items to Add Value
Instead of giving a discount, consider giving something a little bit extra in the form of a promotional gift. Often customers will overestimate the value of a promotional gift and by leveraging on this perception you can add value at a lower cost than providing a discount. You can even utilise a point’s based system to encourage loyalty and additional purchases.
Image source The Marketing Mix portfolio.