Why Your Company Should Market with Promotional Products

In the minds of the consumers, promotional products are one of the most effective forms of advertising. Promotional products are great at delivering the core aims of advertising. They create 22% more leads, turn 52% of people into customers, and improve 76% of people’s opinion of the company. They also usually cost less than other types of advertising, giving you more bang for your buck.

Few companies understand the unique benefits of promotional products and even fewer use this powerful advertising method. Don't miss out on the benefits of such a powerful marketing tool.

The Benefits of Promotional Products

The problem with advertising online is that everyone else is too. Every day your target customers are bombarded with ads as they search the internet. It’s unlikely your ad will be even noticed, let alone remembered among the noise. Advertising with promotional products allows you to be distinct from other companies. Customers will remember the only coffee-shop in the area giving out free banded mugs. And customers shop at stores they remember.

Even when customers notice your online ad, they struggle to remember the company name mentioned in it. Only 27% of consumers can remember the name of a company in an online ad. When the advertisement is on a promotional product, this number jumps to 76.1%. 

Promotional products also allow for people to see your ad over and over. Other types of adds, like a newspaper ad, will usually be seen a few times by a small group of people. With promotional products, the same person can see the ad over and over. Nearly three-quarters of people use a promotional product once a week and almost half use it daily. These products are often used in public places, getting more eyeballs onto your ad.

Types of Promotional Products

You can turn nearly anything into a promotional product. Most products fall under four categories: things people can wear, things people can write with, things people use in their home, and things people use in their office.

Overall, the most influential products on the opinions of people are USB drives, outerwear, drinkware, writing instruments, and performance wear. 


Wearables are promotional products people can wear, such as hats and t-shirts. They are the most commonly kept item by recipients.

Because these products are usually worn in public, you company can get a high number of impressions from one item. Bags generate the highest impression for any promotional product, with an average of 5,700 in its lifetime. Hats, outwear, and t-shirts can all generate several thousand impressions as well.

These high impressions make wearables a great option if your goal is to raise awareness of your organization and generate new leads. They also give your long term fans a chance to be a brand advocate, proudly wearing your company’s logo.

When designing a wearable item, keep in mind its visual appeal. People need to want to wear it for it to work. Make it stylish in a way that appeals to your target audience.

Writing Instruments

Writing instruments are the third most commonly kept item by people. Since the focus for pens is on their utility over their appearance, most people keep pens until they run out. People always need pens in their daily life, especially at the office. Every time they sign paperwork, they can think of your company.

Pens come in two varieties: cheap and expensive. Cheap pens cost around around 1/10th of a cent per impression. They make great handouts at trade shows or community events. At these gatherings, it is harder to know if a booth visitor is in your target audience so cheaper products are a good strategy.

A high-quality pen is ideal when trying to influence an individual you know is in your target audience. Expensive pens symbolize the value you place on your relationship, impressing the individual and making the conversion to customer more likely.

Office Accessories

Office accessories can be a great choice, as people usually keep them for a long period of time. The average lifespan of a promotional office accessory is 14 months. Most people use these at work, making it likely your brand is spotted by others moving about the office. Typical office accessories include a day planner, portable phone charger, and a USB drive.

These promotional items are great for trying to create a new partnership or business relationship. Higher quality products show your company’s professionalism and desire to meet the needs of the customer.


Housewares items are great for repeat exposure since people use them on a regular basis. Half of people use logoed drinkware at least three times a week. Branded mugs and glasses are some of the most common houseware items. These are great when working to convert potential customers into customers.

Picking a Promotional Product

The best option for your business depends on your unique situation. Think first about what your target demographic will want. Branded portable phone chargers will not be effective if you are trying to reach an older generation. Think about what your demographic will use every day or will find value in. Some demographics find cheaply made freebies acceptable, while others will only be impressed with quality.

Next, articulate your marketing goal. If you are trying to generate brand awareness, focus on products with a high rate of impressions (like t-shirts worn in public). If you are working to convert prospects to customers, focus on products they will use often in their daily life (like coffee-mugs or a branded leather bound planner).

Finally, think about connecting the product to your brand and services as much as you can. A fun neon branded Frisbee is a poor choice for an accounting firm looking to cultivate a reputation for professionalism. Dentists handing out branded toothbrushes is a great example of using products that connect back to the organization. As your customers use the brush for their oral health, they can be reminded of the oral health services you provide.

Once you pick a promotional product, consider adding some upgrades. Products that are environmentally friendly or made in the USA are even better received by potential customers. If the product is shipped, use a stamp or sticker to brand the box as well. When possible, personalize the product with their company name. These little tricks improve the effectiveness of your promotional products.

Deciding to use promotional products in your marketing is one thing. Designing and implementing a promotional product marketing strategy is an entirely different beast. If you lack the time, experience, or energy to put your campaign into action, reach out to 10twelve! We serve all types of businesses, from startups to well-established organizations. We are happy to help you with promotional product marketing. Contact us for a free 30-minute consultation to get started today.