Over the last couple of decades, the act of giving your customers and even potential clients promotional products as gifts has become incredibly popular. To give an example of the rise, back in 1991 a study which was sponsored by the PPAI found that less than half of the businesses which participated in the study had used promotional gifts as part of their marketing strategy. Fast-forward to a study conducted in 2007 and the results are remarkably different. The 2007 study showed that a whopping 87% of companies had reported that they used promotional products as a way of attracting and retaining their customers.
Clearly, this shows that this is a trend that has caught on massively, but the real question is why?
If you’re not using branded promotional gifts as part of your marketing strategy then your company could be suffered and you could, potentially, be losing out on customers and repeat business which your competitors are now capturing by using this pleasant form for bribery.
So, if you’re looking for a new marketing strategy, or if you’re looking for a way to increase the number and the value of repeat orders and improve your overall conversion rates, then sit back, relax and let me explain to you how printed promotional gifts are the perfect way of getting more people to engage with your business and your brand.
Raising brand awareness:
Many companies use promotional products as a way of getting their name out there. This is because, when a gift which has your name and company logo printed on it, is given out, your customer then becomes your advertiser and acts almost as a brand ambassador for you. They’re more likely to recommend your business to their friends, family, colleagues and their bosses.
Brand awareness is about building brand associations and a gift goes a long way in getting potential customers to associate with your brand in a positive way – whether you’re providing your customers with something useful or if you’re giving them something which is visually attractive. The gift secures a solid, positive impression in your prospects mind which makes your brand easier to remember – in a good way.
To emphasise this point, a study of tradeshow attendees conducted back in 2003 showed that over 62% of attendees have said that they had received one or more promotional product. More impressively, almost 72% of those also remembered the name of the company which provided them with the gift – think about all of that extra awareness.
A gift is a thoughtful token, a kind gesture and it can also help your company to advertise at a much lower price than many other advertising methods. You might be thinking how can printing and giveaway products save you money?
Well, what you might not realise is that corporate gifts are, in fact, amongst the most cost-effective ways of promoting a company or a brand. A study conducted in 2008 revealed that the average cost per impression of a promotional product was as little as 0.004p!
To give this some perspective, if you were advertising on TV or placing an advert in a newspaper, the cost per impression was as much as 0.19p which means that giving away business gifts gives you almost five times more value for the money that you spend.
Improves your company’s image:
If you’re looking to create a positive and lasting impression in your prospects minds then a promotional gift will achieve this. This was proven in a study by Georgia State University which found that people who had received free gifts were more likely to have a positive impression of the company that gave them the gift.
Outside the world of business, a gift is considered an iconic symbol of goodwill – for this reason, it only makes sense that giving your prospect a gift would improve the overall attitude of said prospect towards your company.
Generate more leads:
Promotional products are designed to peak the curiosity of potential clients and grow interest in your company and the services which you offer. It’s incredibly common for customers to be more receptive to any business that has given them something for free. These gifts can, therefore, be used as a tool to encourage your customers to sign up for a newsletter or visit your website.
In a 1998 study at Wayne State University, they found that intent to buy was between 10-20% higher for customers who had received a gift from a company. This shows that corporate gifts are one of the most effective ways to attract and generate more leads.
This is fairly obvious, but with increased brand awareness and greater customer goodwill, you will get more sales. This study conducted by the Southern Methodist University shows that customers who receive promotional products will more than likely spend more on products and services that are provided by the company that gave them the gift.
You should consider gifts as a way of providing your customers will added value. Customers who feel that a particular company is giving them greater value for their money will generally spend more money with that particular company.
Maintain customer loyalty:
In the same report as highlighted in the point above, it is suggested that when your customer received a business gift from you, they are more likely to reorder from you in the future and the frequency and speed which they reorder will also see improvements.
This shows that corporate gifts don’t only help you generate new orders from new customers, but they also serve as a way of encouraging repeat business from your already valuable clients. It’s also a great way to ensure that your customers know that their business is important to you.
Generate more referral leads:
With all of the different forms of advertising that are now available, it’s easy to forget that one of the best sources of new leads is your own customers – and promotional products are a brilliant tool when it comes to encouraging word-of-mouth lead generation. Instead of including a free gift with every referral request, why not offer this gift as an incentive to your customers?
In a previous case study, a letter to your customers which offered a promotional gift as an incentive for referrals was 500% more likely to receive a response than a plain letter asking for your customers to refer a friend.
You do need to be careful here though, as the report also showed that letters which included the free gift didn’t receive a single response. This shows that offering the gift as an incentive rather than sending the gift and hoping for the best is definitely the way to go.
Develop employee relationships:
As well as helping you secure new leads and repeat business, corporate gifts are a great way to incentivise your employees as well. Awards and other corporate gifts are the perfect way to reward good work and to say “Thank You” to your staff for their continued hard work and dedication to your company.
A survey by Baylor University showed that employees were more motivated towards reaching their goals and objectives if they had the chance to win the incentive. It also encouraged their co-workers to do the same and this leads to a happy and well-functioning company.
Promotional products are also a brilliant way of reminding employees of particular concepts or aspects of your company. An example of this is providing all of your employees with printed pens with your latest offer or incentive printed onto them as this will serve as a constant reminder of the latest promotion that your company is running. This will then encourage your employees to relay this information to your customers – again improving your conversion rate and providing you with a brilliant ROI.
Building B2B relationships:
Much like individuals, companies also like to receive free gifts – especially when this gift can be continually used in an office environment. By providing a gift which is perfect for office use, you’re also providing a reminder of your company’s goodwill and also of the products and services which you can offer them.
This means that, when you’re looking to form or maintain a partnership with a distributor, seller or any other organisation, a gift will go a long way to ensuring new and repeat orders.
Promotional gifts are the perfect, low-cost and dependable way of giving your company the edge over your competitors and securing your place within the business world. No matter what industry you’re operating in, offering free promotional products as part of your marketing strategy will help you secure new clients and also build lasting relationships which can help you grow your business.