Our company is part of the British Promotional Merchandise Association which gives industry standard regulations for the promotional products industry in the UK. They recently released the results of how promotional products impact businesses and consumers today.
BPMS Industry Research 2013 Survey Background
1,000 respondents (where 52% were aged 30-49) from IT, retail, services, insurance, charity and education sectors where interviewed in December 2012, by BPMA and an independent research agency, to find out how promotional items affect consumers’ response towards businesses who offer them. The study further analysed which promotional products were the most effective in eliciting the most positive response. Here are 4 lessons we learned from this study:
1.) Promotional items are welcomed positively and are still effective tools for brand recall
Here’s a summary of survey results that tallied common responses from promotional merchandise recipients:
– 94.1% Do not forget the advertiser/product after they have had the promotional item for more than six months
– 66.6% Generally keep promotional products if they are practical
– 46.1% Generally like receiving products that have an advertising message
*multi answers were possible
2.) Promotional products are as effective as TV advertising but only take a fraction of the cost
BPMA asked respondents which of the following media were effective in making them remember a product, brand or service:
– 39% TV garnered the top spot
– 35% Promotional merchandise followed
– 10% Print and Online split
– 5% Direct Mail was last
3.) Promotional products are still the best motivators for purchase decisions
Respondents were asked which of the following advertising media were the most effective in getting them to take action:
– 50.7% Promotional Products got the top spot
– 19.4% Went to TV
– 11.2% Went to Online Ads
– 9.8% Print (newspapers/magazines)
– 8.9% Direct Mail
4.) Recipients were most likely to pick a promotional product if it’s USEFUL and ATTRACTIVE
The study asked respondents what actions are they most likely to take if free promotional items were being given at an event:
– 53.9% “I would get the promotional item if it’s useful.”
– 20.2 “I would get it regards of the product”
– 17.4% “I would get the product if it’s attractive”
5.) The Top Promotional Products for Brand Recall are Mugs, Pens and USB sticks (storage device)
Lastly, respondents also clarified which promotional products (if they are useful) will enable brand recall, and help retain an advertising message:
– 47.1 % Mugs
– 47.1% Pens
– 40.6% USB Stick
– 36.7% Calendar
– 35.2% Diary or Notebook
As part of the promotional marketing industry we are happy to see that promotional products are still getting the recognition they deserve for being one of the most effective tools for marketing any business. It doesn’t matter if you’re one of the Fortune 500 or a small startup, anybody can reap the benefits of using promotional items in their marketing arsenal. They’re not only cost effective, but they are the most positive means to create and maintain lifelong customer relationships.
According to the British Promotional Merchandise Association the promotional pen is the best selling promotional product. At Promo2u we have a saying that this is not a pen, it is an ambassador of your brand, it can be a low cost motivator or a high end reward so how do you choose the pen that’s right for you and your business and why does this matter?
Point ONE: Identify your target audience If the application and the end user profile match up then the pen and the company represented on it will be of a higher value to the user(s) and this will provide a positive awareness of the brand / name for the lifetime of the product ensuring you get a better return on your investment.
Point TWO: Consider design Both the aesthetic appeal and overall design are important components in making the correct selection. Colours and designs vary enormously, as well as the branding areas, also great to consider black or blue ink, take time to consider a line which is complimentary to the application as well as your targets profile. For example a pen which is made from recycled plastic may strengthen your message by subtly helping your target audience get a feel for your companies approach to ethics and the environment.
Point THREE: Consider budget There are literally tens of thousands of pens to choose from, having an idea of the target cost per unit can help narrow your selection, whilst it is important to note that the branding on volumes of up to 1000 units can represent a large percentage of the costs so how its branded will impact directly on the unit costs. (Just the barrel or on the barrel and the clip or maybe the barrel, the clip and the box?)
Point FOUR: Consider branding area / available options You will need to consider how much information you need to convey. For example do you need a company name / brand plus a strap line on just the barrel and is this using 2 SPOT colours (without tones or shading), or will you require an intricate design with a multiplicity of colours so considering branding on the clip as well as all around the barrel using 4 colour process print (using graduated tones like with photos and blended illustrations)? You will need to ensure the selected products have the capability to represent your brand / message effectively, do not under estimate the importance of this, how your brand / marketing message sits on the product is paramount in achieving a clear and memorable communication. Resist the urge to write a book, of course the promotional product industry has a solution for this, when you find yourself trying to communicate too much on the pen, consider a banner pen.
Various print methods and options for engraving are available. Some products can be printed and engraved, others will only be suitable for SPOT colour printing whilst in todays digital world many pens can now be printed 4 colour process using 360 degree wrap around technology. Most pen manufacturers / distributors provide details of the printing areas and different personalisation methods available either online or in their printed literature. At Promo2u we can offer visuals showing how the product will look with your branding and provide this service free of charge to help you decide ask your promotional products adviser to help you, that’s what our experience team are there to do!
Point FIVE: Increasing the demand and appeal of your pen so it is the pen of choice for your target audience? It is quality rather than quantity that matters wrote Seneca. How a pen writes, its weight, colour of ink and design all impact on the interest your target audience will show towards your product. There is also that good old basic need, one of the top reasons people keep promotional products is because they find them useful. Multi functional pens can help ensure your messages stay with your customers to the point when they need your service / product.