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How You Can Get the Most from 3 Top Uses for Promotional Products

Promotional products can be found just about everywhere—Trade shows, thank-you gifts for clients, and employee programs top out as the most frequent uses for promotional products. Here are some tips for getting the most from promotional items in each of these situations, and for avoiding some possible stumbles.

Trade shows

Minimize shipping costs by selecting items that are light in weight. Forget the bottled water—it’s heavy and the empty bottle will be tossed in the trash, along with your brand, cancelling out the high-value “reminder” value of promotional products.

Remember that Long-term exposure is your goal. At the show and back at the office, you want your item to be a keeper. Food is popular at shows because it draws people to booths. But once it’s consumed, it’s gone and so is your brand.

Fun and interactive items are a great choice. They’re visible, engaging, and often colorful. They’re a conversation starter and keep word-of-mouth going at the show and after.

Client thank-you gifts

Make it a gift of value. Here’s where you might want to push your budget a bit. You’ll want an item your clients will be proud to display in their office or have in their home.

Presentation is everything. Make sure your item is attractively wrapped and packaged. Quality counts here, so make sure the wrapping conveys quality and importance. And never give a client a gift card in an envelope. This is a gift, so make it look like a gift.

Keep the branding subtle. Put it on the gift packaging (not the wrapping). If you’re giving an item of clothing, have your promotional products provider use tone-on-tone embroidery for any branding and place it in an inconspicuous area like a cuff or near a hem. For a watch, put your brand on the back.

Employee events

Wearables are an evergreen item for employee and customer events. But sizing can be an issue and one reason promotional wearables find their way to the Goodwill bag. To make sure your wearables are durable:

  • Opt for outerwear. Fleece vests are especially popular. They span the seasons and sizing isn’t as big an issue as for company-branded shirts, for example.
  • Get sizes in advance of the event. Round up your order and allow for some returns.
  • Can’t get sizes in advance? Here are some guidelines* for T-shirt orders that can generally be applied to other wearables:

Small: 10% of order

Medium: 25%

Large: 30%

XL: 25%

2XL: 10%

Expecting more men to take part in your event? Boost XL and 2XL sizes.

In a world full of marketing messages, promotional items offer frequent exposure at a low cost-per-impression of just $0.004 (vs. $0.033 for an ad in a national magazine). When you want your brand, event, or message to be remembered, and in the most cost-effective way, it’s hard to beat promotional products.