Guest Author - Deborah Crawford
How do you choose giveaways to promote your business? Promotional products can be an important and efficient part of your marketing plan. And, if you choose them wisely, they can really help in branding your company and in selling your product or service.
So, how do you choose a product that is affordable and effective? Here are six tips on making the selection:
1—Determine your target market first. Promos that appeal to middle-aged corporate executives are not the same promos that appeal to athletic teenagers or young mothers or senior citizens approaching retirement. Once you know just who your target demographic is, choosing the right item will be much easier.
2—Determine a budget. First, choose your overall budget for this project. Let’s say you decide to spend $250. Then, decide how many individual items you want. $250 can buy a few high-end promos or it can buy a lot of lower-end items.
3—Make sure your “Cost per Item” fits with the image you want to portray of your company. If your clients spend an average of $2000 per interaction with you, giving them a 2-cent pencil is not going to buy you a lot of love unless it is part of a larger, overall promo plan. (For instance, a 2-cent pencil could be great if you make it whimsical for a special occasion, or if it accompanies something like a free pencil cup your customers get when they buy a customized desk set or home office organization project.)
4—Analyze your target market customers. Just imagine how they spend their day. What is it that they use? Where do they go? What do they wear? Drive? Eat? Read? Who do they talk to? How do they make purchase decisions? And so on.
5—Explore available promotional items with both your target market and cost per item in mind. Once you see a few things you like, you can often obtain samples from the vendors who sell these items. Or, you can find a local vendor who can check with her suppliers to get the best deal for you. This is a good option if you do not have the time to do it yourself.
6—Be sure you can get your “message” across on your giveaway. Is there enough space for your information to be clear? Will the colors work for you? Small and home based businesses should make sure that, in addition to your company name, there is adequate space for your phone number and/or website address.
Vistaprint has great deals on small-quantity promotional products and I’m a big fan of their FREE Deals of the Week. This is also where I get business cards.
If you need additional help in choosing promotional products, stop by the SOHO forum and tell us what you are looking for—we’ll help brainstorm and suggest ideas for you.