Having run a small business for a number of years, I have tried many ways to attract new clients and corporate gifts have been one of the most effective tools I have come across. At first, I was determined to find new and unusual products that would set my firm apart from the competition but many of these failed to make an impact and I eventually came to the conclusion that there must be a good reason why some corporate gifts are perennial favourites with companies of all sizes.
To help others avoid making the same mistakes as I have, I've put together a list of 5 old school marketing giveaways that I believe are very effective.
- Coffee mugs – When printed with a corporate logo and the name of your organisation, these would have to be right at the top of most people’s lists of unoriginal promotional gifts. However, they are seen in offices all over the world and are popular for a very good reason – they work! They are relatively inexpensive, easy to source and almost everybody uses them on a daily basis. In short, they fulfill every requirement of the ideal giveaway. If you want to make sure that your existing customers always remember your company, there are few better choices than the good old ceramic mug.
- Baseball caps – Another classic marketing gift that companies all over the world have been using since the beginning of time, or so it seems. They provide plenty of space for company names and slogans, and can be printed in full colour, embroidered or decorated with digital transfers if desired. Their flexibility and the fact that they are so practical is what attracts me to baseball caps over many other marketing merchandise options. The only proviso I would add is that they are not suitable for every demographic so you need to be sure that your clients will appreciate them before you order a huge quantity to distribute far and wide.
- T-shirts – I have to say that I find many corporate t-shirts very unattractive so if you are going to use them to promote your firm, you had better make sure that you get the design right. The large surface area available for printing and the fact that if they are worn on a regular basis they will provide your company with excellent exposure are the main reasons to consider presenting your clients with free t-shirts and there is no doubt in my mind that a well-designed shirt made from good quality material can be a highly effective promotional tool.
- IT accessories – You may think I am deviating from the script a little with this one as computer accessories might not be considered as old school, especially by older readers. However, they have been around for long enough to qualify in my opinion and the digitalisation of our world seems to be a one-way process that is not going to stop any time soon. One of the best options in this category is promotional USB drives decorated with your company name as many employees like to take files home with them and to clients’ offices when they are visiting to make a pitch. While some use a laptop to do this and others rely on cloud storage, there are times when neither option is convenient, which is why flash drives continue to be very popular.
- Key rings – Vintage marketing gifts that have served their purpose very well for many years and continue to be an effective promotional tool. Their small size means that they are most suitable for companies that wish to raise their public profile with a discreet logo rather than those with a long marketing slogan that they would like to be seen by as many people as possible.
You can probably think of dozens of other candidates for a list such as this but space limitations prevent me from mentioning them all. As with any form of advertising, it is vital to identify your target audience before choosing the most suitable corporate giveaways for your firm. Failure to do so could result in you wasting an awful lot of time and money before you eventually stumble on the right products and designs.
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