Promotional Items - 6 Questions To Buy The Right Product

Shopping for promotional items gives new meaning to the phrase “like a kid in a candy store.” With thousands of products to choose from and hundreds of variations of each project, there is a seemingly endless selection of products designed to grab the hearts and minds, and eventually the wallets, of prospective customers. How do you choose?

Finding The Right Giveaway

When buying promotional items for your event, you want to strike the balance between something that is intriguing and popular enough to draw visitors, yet effective enough to make it memorable – without breaking your budget.

That’s a lot to ask of a small promotional item, so most companies consider several criteria when choosing a good giveaway:

  1. What’s the budget? People love flat screen TVs and would love you forever if you randomly handed them out, but that type of gift would be a budget buster.  It would require hefty sales from a large percentage of customers to be cost-effective. Choose something people will like that is decent quality, yet affordable. If you give away pens, find a compromise between the $0.19 models that sometimes don’t write and a $10 one.
  2. What is the goal of the giveaway? The gift you choose should meet your event and marketing goals. If you’re trying to introduce a new product or promote a specific message, you might choose a unique gift that compliments that message. If you want to reach top executives, something useful with a bit more value has a better chance of remaining on their desk or kept in use.
  3. Who is the target recipient? Trade shows and other events are often targeted to people in different job capacities or with specific interests, so you want a giveaway that they will find useful. If your typical attendee is likely to be a homeowner, a tape measure or potholder might be something they would use frequently. Catering to young engineers? Novelties and tech gifts stand out as popular giveaways.
  4. Does everyone get the same giveaway? Smart companies have several levels of giveaways available so that anyone who visits the event might get a pen or couple mints, while qualified prospects or customers might walk away with a good quality tote bag. You want positive ROI from your giveaway, so it makes good business sense to reserve some better quality giveaways for those you believe have real buying potential.
  5. Can the giveaway be tied in with your brand? Imprinted merchandise that ties in with your brand can be particularly effective in helping people remember you. A small pocket first aid kit in an imprinted case can be a good reminder to people to visit your health clinic. A USB drive is a welcome gift to any attendee. You can buy it in different case configurations appropriate to your business. A few examples are a guitar shaped flash drive for musicians.  Or perhaps one that looks like a pencil would speak to teachers, engineers, or students.  Your imagination is the only limitation in most cases.
  6. What will the customer have to do to receive giveaway? If you plan to ask multiple questions of everyone who comes by, most will be more likely to answer if they perceive real value in the giveaway – think a $5 gift card versus that $.19 pen. Giveaways can also be used as contest prizes; just make sure that the promotional item is something visitors will view as worth winning.
trade shows in action distant view promotional

Don’t Forget To Mark It As Your Own

No matter what you select, it is crucial that you imprint it. Your purpose in offering a little gift to a wide assortment of attendees is to make people remember you. If you offer something without your name or logo, your potential customer may remember that they got it at a tradeshow or other event, but not that they got it from you.

When planning for an event, selecting the most cost-effective gift that’s appropriate for your audience is very important, but can be hard to do. To increase the chances that you’ll get it right, buy your tradeshow gifts from The Document Group, Houston’s top destination for printing, copying, and scanning. We offer a large selection of popular giveaway items, along with professional staff who will help you find just the right thing for your next event. Just check our website or call us at (713) 343-4000.

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