Business promotional products are defined loosely as any item that may be branded with a logo or used as part of a business communication process. They tend to be used either in direct advertising campaigns, or as physical items to help start a communications process between a business and its consumers, clients or customers.
For instance, an upsell card on a restaurant table (the thing that tells you what kind of pudding you could be eating, or what cocktails are on offer) is a promotional product – just as much as a novelty USB stick or a themed mouse mat. The key lies in the campaign – the purpose of the advertising defines the business promotional products most likely to be used.
Digital business promotional products have grown quickly in the last couple of years, as handheld, mobile and more powerful digital technology has come to define not just the office but the social life of many target audience members too. Thus it is that a famous shoe company can spearhead a new advertising campaign with a USB stick shaped like one of its iconic boots; while office and business to business promotion continues to use the most recent innovations in small electronic stationery. Portable memory is a popular choice; as are styluses for touch screens, and even gloves with fingers designed to work the screen on a tablet or a smart phone.
In some cases, the perceived value of business promotional products has an effect on their efficacy and use. In bas terms, the more valuable the object is the more likely it is that the recipient will keep and use it. In general advertising terms, a long lived message is more valuable than a short one – so where the circumstances dictate appropriately, the advertiser may choose to supply promt0oional items with a perceived value attached to them.
The importance of circumstance in all advertising is well known. Where business promotional products are concerned, that importance is doubled. There are, for instance, types of campaign where an apparently valuable or long lived item is quite beside the point. These are the seasonal or one night campaigns designed to raise the sales of a particular consumable.
Alcoholic drinks promotions are clearly the easiest examples of this kind of campaign. Where alcohol is promoted in line with a seasonal event, the nature of the promotion dictates that promotional products used alongside it are evanescent. In the same way that no-one would have their Christmas cards still on display at Easter, no advertising campaign reliant on a specific holiday or festival period is looking to make a lasting mark on year round sales.
That said, clever promotions using fleeting circumstance can create long term sales spikes that are hard to beat. A particular brand of stout, for example, has made its ownership f St Patrick’s Day (which sees sales spike for one night out of every year only) so complete that it can be confident of raking in a huge revenue every 365 days, without fail.