Every year, the marketing game becomes more and more competitive. People have grown accustomed to advertising, with commercials and flyers popping at them at every step. Standard means of advertising no longer capture their attention, unless they offer something different than what they’re used to. Companies need to up their game and either become better at designing billboards, ads and brand messages, or turn to other advertising means. One niche many of them seem to overlook is purchasing promotional material. And in this article, we’re showing you how it surpasses all other means of advertising, and why you should incorporate it.
Offline Marketing Is Still Relevant
It’s a common misconception that offline marketing is outdated due to the explosive popularity of the internet and social media. However, to potential customers, no interactive or funny online ad can compare to holding an actual, physical item they’ve received from a company. Especially if it’s one they are loyal to and enjoy using their products or services.
But what makes offline marketing so relevant and a strong, reliable means of advertisement? It’s about the connection. Not only do people like free gifts (like with branded material), but they like human contact upon receiving them. Establishing a connection between the customer and yourself makes all the difference to them. It gives an opportunity to see who’s behind the scenes and doing the actual work. You and your employees are seen as one of them.
Where Does Branded Promotional Material Come Into Play?
It’s your strongest weapon of making the said connection with your customers.
Promotional materials come in all shapes, sizes and purposes nowadays. One can even say it has turned into an art form of its own. It is important to conduct research, and really get to know your target audience in order to create promotional material they will love, use and flaunt. It’s no longer just mugs and caps. Nowadays, it’s common to distribute USB sticks, small digital clocks, notebooks, messenger bags and even collectible figurines. The less standard an item looks, the more likely the people are to use it.
Benefits of Having Promotional Material
Making this connection between your customers and the promotional material is important for several reasons.
1. Better Retention
Potential customers who receive promotional material have a much greater recall rate, and better retention than those exposed to other forms of advertising. They are more likely to remember a company, and decide on becoming returning customers. People love to receive free things (just look at trade shows!). Moreover, branded promotional material leaves the impression of a company that cares about their customers, whether potential or regular.
2. Combines Well with Digital Marketing
Free gifts are not limited to trade shows only. They complement digital marketing in such a way that it extends your reach and creates additional buzz around your website and any social media accounts you have. Contacting influencers, organizing giveaways, or offering branded material on sign-ups and certain company milestones or as referral rewards. The options really are endless.
3. Advertising that Sticks
When your promo materials become a household item, it’s as if your ad is constantly displayed – whether in the living room, or kitchen. If the items are practical, useable in everyday situations, like an umbrella, a notebook, a tote bag, or a USB stick, chances are they’ll become a part of someone’s home. As we mentioned before, people are used to advertisements all around them, so they don’t really perceive indoor promotional items as obvious, invasive advertising.
4. It’s Your Brand’s Seal
One other side of branded promotional material is that of an extension of your company’s voice. It represents you, your brand, and the company values. This is a great window through which you can reach out to customers and show them what you’re all about.
5. Makes You Pop Out
Good design makes you stand out. This goes for branded material as well. For example, in crowded trade shows, one guaranteed way to be noticed is to have banners with eye-popping designs, displayed at a slightly elevated position, so as not to meld into the crowd. The more tempting the designs, the greater the odds of customers visiting your stand.
6. It’s Cheaper than You Think
When they’re bought in bulk, promotional materials cost much cheaper. This is common knowledge to all companies that use this kind of advertising, but not to customers. In fact, they only look at the perceived value of each individual item. And to them, it’s more expensive than it really is. If a digital clock cost you $5 per item, to them, it’s in the range between $10 and $15. That way, it feels as though your rewards are much more valuable.
7. Enforces Word-of-Mouth Advertising
Take, for example, a USB stick as a promotional material piece. When a person uses it around the office, or to share things with friends and family, the design will catch the eyes of others. Since company talk rarely comes up organically in everyday conversation, this is a great way to have word spread about your brand. The same goes for pens, mugs, and similar items.
8. Plays on FOMO
Fear Of Missing Out (or FOMO) is gaining traction across industries nowadays. It plays on what it says: people’s fear of missing out on a good deal. While this is usually applied to discounts and deals, it can be used with promotional material. Limited editions, specific, varied designs, and different windows of opportunity to attain them make your promotional items more valuable as collectibles.
What Is the Takeaway?
Branded promotional material is perhaps the most useful tool in your marketing toolbox. Its offline nature makes it the perfect counterpoint to mass digital advertising, ensuring a connection between the company and the customers. That connection is vital for company’s sales, brand recognition, and retention rates. And while its benefits are numerous, perhaps the greatest value in branded promotional material comes from creating it as a staple of your brand, an easy way to recognize what the company and its owners stand for.