Speaking of tradeshows, another important aspect of exhibiting is promotional items! There are literally thousands of options when it comes to promo items, and they vary from dirt cheap to very high-priced.
While promotional item spending can quickly add up, these items can be extremely helpful in tradeshow effectiveness and beyond! Here are a few tips you can keep in mind when selecting your items in order to get the most from your budget.
-Have a Determined Objective in Mind!
Before you buy anything, or even set a budget for your promotional items,set an objective. What do you want to achieve with your items? If you don’t know exactly what you hope to achieve through the use of promo items, you are likely to over-spend on generic items. So decide what exactly you wish to achieve.
Do you want to: Build awareness? Attract or reward loyal customers? Build your distribution list? Test a product?
Whatever your reason, make sure you have a clear-cut objective. This will drastically affect the type of promotional item you choose, and save you money!
-Purchase/distribute promotional items that people will actually use!
Do your research! Search out certain items that will complement the type of business you promote and that your customers will use often. In addition, try to use items that will actually be used when/where the decisions about your product/services are made. If your potential customers work with computers, try a mouse pad or flash drive, so your brand will be at the front of their minds when they make buying decisions.
-Don’t automatically choose the cheap route; remember it is quality, not quantity.
Try to avoid “throw away” items. Make your promo items an investment that will last. These items should be used to express gratitude to your customers and remind them that the relationship you share with them is important to you. So keep appearance and shelf-life in mind when carefully selecting your products.
-Use creativity to design your promotional items and differentiate your company.
Use your promotional items as a way to set yourself apart from your competition and position your company away from the “just another company” image. Select items that emphasize your marketing messages and promote your business. Don’t forget to promote your website too – every item you chose should include your website address on it.
-Having trouble thinking of creative ways to use your promo items? Why not:
Use your promotional items as a coupon! Most items have an imprint area large enough to offer a discount! Don’t be afraid to think outside the box and use your items to promote your company and make sales by offering special deals/discounts.
Build your contact lists. A good way to build your mailing/email list is to hold some sort of contest or drawing, and give a promo item as the prize. When the opportunity to win FREE gifts is on the table, people are much more likely to give their personal information.
Promotional items can take up a large portion of a marketing budget, but if you take your time and choose wisely, you can make the most of your budget, and have promotional items you can be proud to hand out!