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Promotional Products: Cost-Effective Long-Term Advertising Options

January 28th, 2014

Senior management and marketing gurus have debated the subject of the best components of a winning product strategy forever. While achieving a consensus and agreement on the most effective marketing strategy typically proves challenging, often the most cost-effective option is using valuable promotional products.

Today there are many cost- and marketing-effective options for businesses large and small. Typically marketing and branding your business can take one or more of three primary directions.

  • Media. Radio and local or national TV predominate advertising media strategies. Advertising in prominent magazines and newspapers still holds its place in print media campaigns.
  • Internet. Net-based strategies typically include PPC (pay per click) advertising.
  • Promotional items. Useful items with your business logo or name remain popular components of winning marketing strategies.

Many businesses are adding or featuring promotional specialties as major components of their formal branding and marketing objectives. There are multiple reasons for favoring these types of marketing options.

  • Cost-effectiveness. While Internet PPC is a bit cheaper per impression than quality promotional items, paying just for other website visitors to click on your ad does not generate brand enhancement or revenue. Spot radio advertisements are around the same cost, but, to be effective, radio messages typically must be repeated as part of a longer term campaign. However, useful promotional specialties reinforce your brand and marketing message, as customers and prospects wear or continue using these items, with your name and/or logo over and over again.
  • Long-term advertising. While committing to a lavishly produced Super Bowl TV ad may be a bit beyond your business marketing budget, local TV may be a better buy for most smaller businesses. However, buying one or sporadic 20- or 30-second spots is still expensive for short-term impressions. Remember, you must also factor in the costs to produce the spot when buying TV time. Even local TV spots can eat away your ad budget quickly. However, quality promotional products, such as wearables, e.g., T-shirts, and tech accessories, e.g., smartphone covers and pouches, often become semi-permanent additions to customers' daily lives. Remember, you only pay for these products once without needing to run numerous ads in the broadcast or print media.
  • Target audience expense control. Depending on your industry and customer base, companies enjoy much better cost control, reaching their target audience without spending money on advertising to those who are not prospects. TV, radio and print media can make no such promises. Even Internet-based PPC costs your business for reaching surfers who may just be killing time visiting random websites.

You needn't be a CPA or touted marketing expert to identify the cost-effective benefits of promotional items. Your customers and prospects may use that ballpoint/stylus pen or iPad case, embossed with your business logo, for years, impressing even their friends, who may become your customers soon.

By Travis Shafer
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