As a promotional products distributor, it is hard not to be offended when a successful entrepreneur known on a certain hit pitch TV show, Mark Cuban, shares a list of rules for new start-ups and one of them is to avoid buying swag (stuff we all get – AKA promotional products). Obviously we love custom apparel and promotional products and believe everyone can get a boost from distributing them on occasion. Just visit ASI’s research page to check out all the promotional products stats and it won’t take long to realize there is definitely something great about using branded products. On my recent reflection of Mark Cuban’s anti-promotional product stance for company start-ups, his advice does make some sense. Allow me to explain. The situation Imagine someone gave you a really great quality t-shirt with a logo on it that you knew very little about and felt no passion for. You end up using the shirt occasionally at the gym or when you’re running out of clean clothes. You like the shirt well enough that you hold onto it and wear it over a few year period. Unfortunately every single time you wear it someone inquires about the company logo wanting to know who they are and what they do and in response you have very little or nothing to say other than you got the shirt for free. What could have been a golden opportunity to share a passion for that particular company may have turned into
Distributing promotional products is often a win-win situation for both the givers and receivers. Organizations are anxious to give out products that will spread their message and brand, while almost anyone will accept a great promotional item. Some people, in fact, will not only happily accept a great promotional item, but they might even go crazy over it.
What is it exactly about promotional products that people have come to love?1 – It’s free. This is obvious and probably the reason people go crazy over it. It is natural human instinct for people to enjoy getting something for nothing. 2 – It’s an unexpected bonus. Whenever we have zero expectations for something, it is easy to feel satisfied even when given just a little extra something. Several months ago I completed my usual shopping trip at a local retailer and was informed at the checkout that one of my purchases came with a free bonus product. I never would have bought the bonus product on my own, but after trying it out at home I completely fell in love with it. But really, who doesn’t love an unexpected bonus? 3 – You feel singled out. Not all promotional gifts are handed out to every person who walks in the door. When there is a limited supply of gifts it takes being the right person in order to get one. Becoming a recipient means you’ve been identified as someone who would be valued in some way—maybe you won a contest
One of the most common topics we discuss with customers is what they can afford to purchase within their budget. Many of these clients want to select the very cheapest product that will fit within their budget regardless of the outcome. While we understand the sentiment, the cheapest products may not always deliver as much or any sort of return on investment, and the truth is that there are ways to afford more expensive products that will have a greater impact. We suggest the following strategies to everyone who wants to decrease the cost of purchasing custom products but not limit themselves to only the very cheapest products. 1. Utilize specials Always stay aware of current specials and promotions. Promotions won’t always fit your current needs, but if you stay up to date then surely something will come up that will. If you aren’t sure what specials are available, search the company website and give them a call directly to find out. Calling a company directly gives you a chance to find out if there are other offers not advertised on their website or if there is something you missed. The downside to utilizing specials is that sometimes you need to be ready to purchase at any moment. 2. Plan Ahead We realize that planning ahead is not always possible. Sometimes events and new ideas come up at the last minute and there is nothing you can do about it. However, planning ahead as much as possible will save a